Ryanair cancels all Israel flights until end of October

Irish low-cost airline Ryanair has announced the cancelation of all flight to and from Israel until the end of October. Before October 7 Ryanair, which has the biggest fleet of planes in Europe, was one of the most popular carriers among Israeli travelers. After its announcement, tens of thousands of customers were told that the flight they had booked to and from Israel were canceled.

Last month Ryanair made headlines by saying it was not prepared to operate flights to and from Ben Gurion airport’s Terminal 3 because of the higher airport fees charged. Terminal 1, which serves low-cost airlines, has been closed since the start of the war due to lower passenger traffic.

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Sources in Israel’s aviation industry say that there is still not enough passenger traffic at Ben Gurion airport to make it economically worthwhile to operate both Terminal 1 and Terminal 3. The main reason for the lower airport fee in Terminal 1 is the reduced services there provided by the Israel Airports Authority (IAA). But an aviation expert was critical of the IAA’s policy. “Instead of placing obstacles in the way of companies wanting to return to Israel, we should be helping them. It is not logical that a company wanting to return should encounter obstacles.”

However, other low-cost airlines have chosen to resume Israel flights. Wizz Air, for example has notified passengers that because of the higher airport fees charged at Terminal 3, tickets will cost more. This month Wizz Air is operating 134 flights a week at Ben Gurion airport and in April the number of weekly flights will rise to 282. Both Transavia and Blue Bird have resumed flights to Tel Aviv but easyJet has made no official decision on the resumption of flights to Israel. Low-cost Turkish airline Pegasus has also not renewed flights although this is likely for political reasons.

Israel Airports Authority said, “Last year Ryanair operated 1,750 flights that paid Terminal 3 fees. Ben Gurion airport is open to receive all airlines.”

Published by Globes, Israel business news – en.globes.co.il – on March 13, 2024.

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd., 2024.

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