Showing posts with label El Al. Show all posts
Showing posts with label El Al. Show all posts

03 June, 2024

UK's Virgin Atlantic and Israel's El Al, sign code share deal on London flights

El Al Israel Airlines has signed a new codeshare deal with the UK's Virgin Atlantic to start from 19 June 2024. 

Under this new agreement, customers of both airlines will be able to fly on the Tel Aviv-London Heathrow route on flights operated by El Al and Virgin with a common code - El Al's code will be added to Virgin's flights and Virgin's will be added to El Al's flights.

Virgin, which is 49% owned by Delta Air Lines, is a member of the Sky Team Alliance. El Al has also recently signed codeshare deals with Delta, Scandinavian Airlines and Air France.  Virgin Atlantic will resume flights between London Heathrow and Israel in September, the airline confirmed this week, with a daily flight in each direction between Heathrow and Tel Aviv using Airbus A330 aircraft from 5th September.

Juha Jarvinen, Chief Commercial Officer, Virgin Atlantic, commented:  “As we celebrate our 40th anniversary this month, we know that giving our customers more choice and award-winning service in the skies is what fuels our success, alongside working with the best partners. We’re delighted to launch codeshares with our SkyTeam partners at SAS and Saudia today, enhancing our connectivity and offering greater customer benefits to our frequent flyers, who will be able to achieve rewards faster.  

“Our return to Tel Aviv on 5 September will be welcome news for customers who have enjoyed our service since 2019, and this time round it’ll be strengthened by our new codeshare partnership with EL AL.”


19 December, 2023

EL AL and Delta Air Lines confirm new codeshare deal....

EL AL and Delta Air Lines, leading airlines in Israel and the US, are launching a new cooperation: a codeshare agreement, loyalty club rewards, and benefits that members of both clubs can enjoy. The partnership offers passengers all the benefits of both airlines, with an expanded network of routes, and a more diverse range of gateways in the United States, Canada, Mexico and throughout Latin America, all with a single ticket.

Delta customers flying from North America will be able to fly on EL AL’s nonstop services from New York-JFK, New York-Newark, Boston, Los Angeles, Miami, and Fort Lauderdale to Tel Aviv. Meanwhile, EL AL’s code will be added to Delta's non-stop Tel Aviv flights (once restored), as well as up to 280 same-day connections via Delta’s U.S. gateways in New York-JFK, Boston, and Los Angeles to destinations including Atlanta, Washington DC, San Francisco, Las Vegas, Seattle, Dallas, and Toronto.

“Delta remains steadfast in our long-time commitment to serving consumers and businesses who depend on convenient, high-quality air service to and from Tel Aviv," said Alain Bellemare, Delta President - International. "Through our codeshare agreement with EL AL, we will offer customers more convenient travel options between North America and Israel.”

“The start of this codeshare agreement between Delta Air Lines and EL AL offers customers access to convenient one-stop services from Israel to cities throughout the Americas and welcomes new North American customers to EL AL's world class service to and from Tel Aviv,” said Shlomi Zafrany, EL AL V.P. - Commerical and Industry Affairs.

“We are proud on this cooperation with Delta whom I see as a valued long-term partner,” said Dina Ben Tal Ganancia, EL AL CEO.

Delta and EL AL customers will be able to earn and redeem miles on each other’s services on Delta’s SkyMiles and EL AL’s Matmid frequent flyer programs. Effective Jan. 15, both airlines will offer reciprocal benefits to their top tier frequent flyer members like preferred seat access, priority check-in and boarding, additional baggage allowance, and lounge access (where applicable).

It should be noted that Delta has cancelled flights between the U.S. and Tel Aviv because of ongoing conflict in the region.  The carrier advised it was continuously monitoring the security environment in Israel to inform cancellations to the flight schedule to and from Ben Gurion Airport in Tel Aviv. 

Delta flights between TLV and New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK)  will continue to be cancelled until March 29, 2024. Delta in October suspended booking for TLV flights to and from Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport (ATL) and Boston Logan International Airport (BOS); those services remain suspended.


22 June, 2023

EL AL to lease two Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners from AerCap Holdings

Leasing giant AerCap Holdings confirmed at the Paris Air Show this week that it has signed lease agreements with EL AL for two new Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners. The aircraft are scheduled to be delivered in Q4 2025 and Q1 2026.

EL AL Israel Airlines was founded in November 1948 as Israel's national carrier and operated its first scheduled flight in 1949. In June 1950, EL AL began service between Tel Aviv and New York. Today EL AL, serves more than 60 international destinations in more than 35 countries.

AerCap is the world's largest 787 owner, with 126 aircraft owned, managed and on order.

Speaking during the announcement ceremony, AerCap's Chief Executive Officer Aengus Kelly said, "AerCap is delighted to partner with EL AL on this deal following the long history of successful cooperation between our two companies. We are very pleased to support EL AL's ongoing fleet modernization program with the lease of these two new 787s and help them meet their sustainability commitments. We wish Dina Ben Tal Ganancia and all the team at EL AL continued success."

Dina Ben Tal Ganancia, EL AL's Chief Executive Officer said, "As part of EL AL's strategic implementation plan, we signed an important agreement today for the lease of two new 787-9 Dreamliners, that will join EL AL's wide-body fleet in 2025 and 2026. These advanced aircrafts will be the 18th and 19th aircraft in our fleet. In order to meet our business goals, set in the strategic plan, we are required to adjust our acquisition plan, and I am pleased to sign this agreement today, which is another step towards realizing the goals for our fleet. These aircraft enable us to expand our route network and add more attractive destinations for our customers. I would like to thank our partners at AERCAP and Boeing for their support and partnership along the way.''

06 March, 2023

No El Al pilots want to fly Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his wife to Rome.......

According to Israel's 
Channel 12 and Walla! news agency the nations leading commercial airline hasn't been able to find a pilot to volunteer to fly Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his wife on an official visit to Rome.

There are a number of protests taking place in Israel against the coalition government of Netanyahu following a  raft of judicial reforms which would halt the courts from overturning any amendments made by the government, ending judicial independence and giving more power to the government for future judge selection.  

Channel 12 and Walla have reported that a deadline of 14:00 local time yesterday for volunteers to fly the Prime minister passed without a single pilot wanting to do the job.  Many others have refused to fly a requested Boeing 777 because of the reforms.

According to local media,  it is not just commercial pilots that are refusing to take to the skies over the reforms.  Haaretz and  Arab media operation Almayadeen have reported that the vast majority of the 40-strong 69th Squadron reservists have said they will not attend training taking place this week.  

12 September, 2022

El Al Airlines agrees to repay government COVID loan

Photo El Al
El Al Israeli Airlines plans to repay a $45 million loan that it took from the government during the COVID-19 pandemic by the end of the year, under a deal reached between the airline and Finance Ministry, they said on Sunday.

The loan was part of a government package to help the airline weather the crisis, in which Israel's borders were closed to foreign tourists for nearly two years, sending revenue and profit at Israel's flag carrier tumbling, reports Steven Scheer.

The ministry and El Al said the loan repayment would be two years ahead of schedule, but as part of the deal, El Al's planned $62 million share offering would be delayed until April 2023, while the state will advance El Al security payments of $20 million by Dec. 20.

El Al, which has reported losses for four years and racked up debt to renew its fleet, laid off 1,900 employees - nearly one-third of its staff - as part of a recovery plan mandated by the government to receive a $210 million aid package at the height of the pandemic.

The loan repayment will eliminate or ease a host of spending restrictions on El Al and will allow it to update its route network, add staff, lease new aircraft, invest in working capital and developing new income channels, it said.

El Al will still not be allowed to pay dividends or buy back its own shares until 2028.

"I am sure that the move will lead to improving El Al's ability to grow and deal with a competitive market and changing reality," said chief executive Dina Ben Tal Ganancia.

Reporting by Steven Scheer; Editing by Elaine Hardcastle for Reuters

05 September, 2022

Israel to ban Boeing 747s, other 4-engine planes amid environmental concerns

Photo El Al 

Israel will ban Boeing 747 and similar aircraft with four engines as of March 31, 2023, to reduce noise and air pollution, its airport's authority said on Sunday.

As part of a broader plan under development to improve the surrounding environment, the authority said that it had already told airlines they would not be able to land large aeroplanes at Ben Gurion Airport near Tel Aviv as of the 2023 summer season.

The directive is mainly for cargo aircraft since most, it not all, carriers have stopped using 747 and other four-engine planes on routes to Israel.

Flag carrier El Al (ELAL.TA) has already retired its fleet of 747s and uses twin-engine Boeing 777 and 787 planes on long-haul routes. Competitors also use those Boeing planes or comparable Airbus (AIR.PA) ones to Ben Gurion, although the 747s are still used by some for cargo.

Operation of aircraft with four engines will be allowed in exceptional cases and only with a special permit.

Reporting by Steven Scheer from Reuters. 

13 February, 2022

Israeli airlines to increase repatriation flights to Ukraine as insurance companies halt coverage.

A number of Israeli airlines are increasing flights to Ukraine over the next few days to help Israeli nationals evacuate the area ahead of a possible Russian invasion. EL AL has scheduled a flight for Monday from Kiev and has confirmed it will operate additional flights as required. 

Two repatriation flights have been scheduled by Arkia on Monday and Tuesday with more planned if the need arises. Israir has said it will offer a flight from Kiev on Monday, with others planned. 

Many other airlines are cancelling flights or rerouting them as insurance companies will cease to cover aircraft flying in Ukrainian airspace from tonight. 

Ukraine’s State Air Traffic Services Enterprise issued a notice to airlines warning against flying over the Black Sea,  as safety could not be guaranteed.

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11 February, 2022

EL AL Airlines and SKY express tie up.

New interconnection cooperation for SKY express with the Israeli airline EL AL Airlines, this cooperation offers an even more strategic global destination, as it provides the possibility of booking a single ticket in the network of both airlines.

EL AL Airlines operates flights worldwide and its headquarters are located at Tel Aviv Ben Gurion International Airport. Its fleet consists of 45 aircrafts type Boeing 737-800, 737-900ER,  777-200ER, and 787-9. Respectively, SKY express operates in important European countries and serves 34 Greek destinations.

The alliance with EL AL is added to SKY express' interconnection deals with American Airlines, Air Serbia, Qatar Airways, Air France, KLM, Middle East Airlines, Cyprus Airways, Condor and Dohop. The company that changed the landscape in the country's aviation continues its dynamic international development, further strengthening its position in the international market.

"We want to thank EL AL Airlines for the between us cooperation. Our goal and systematic effort are to have more new collaborations with important companies in our area. The cooperation strengthens our strategy, whose main goal is to offer our passengers more options, but also to strengthen the potential of our country as a dynamic travel destination around the world", stressed Mr Yannis Lidakis Commercial Director SKY express.

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31 January, 2022

EL AL Israel Airlines Relaunches Boston to Tel Aviv Flights

EL AL Israel Airlines, Israel’s national carrier, has announced the return of their non-stop service from Boston’s Logan Airport to Ben Gurion in Tel Aviv. EL AL had operated this route from 2015 until mid-2020 when it halted the flight due to Covid-19. With international travel returning, and travel to Israel in great demand, relaunching the Boston route is a priority. This flight will service Boston as well as the entire New England region.

Flights will begin on Sunday, March 27, 2022, and will operate twice weekly, on Sundays and Thursdays from Terminal E at Logan. Prior to the pandemic, EL AL flew thousands of passengers from Boston to Tel Aviv annually.

The route will be operated by EL AL’s new, Boeing 787 Dreamliner fleet which has three classes of service: Economy, Premium and Business.

EL AL’s all-new, Boeing 787 Dreamliner features the latest and most modern amenities including Business Class with lie-flat seats, gourmet meals, an extensive choice of wines and beverages, as well as complimentary Wi-Fi for the duration of the flight. EL AL also offers a Premium Class with oversized, comfortable seats with extended legroom and all the amenities of Business Class.

EL AL’s CEO, Avigal Soreq, stated, “We are so excited to return to Boston’s Logan Airport. Our previous Boston flights were very attractive to travellers from across the US and we know this will be very convenient for Bostonians and transiting travellers.”

Passengers from outside of the Boston area can benefit from EL AL’s codeshare agreement with JetBlue which allows them to seamlessly travel from many cities such as Baltimore, Atlanta, Pittsburgh, Philadelphia and Washington to Tel Aviv via Boston, all the while collecting Matmid Frequent Flyer points.

EL AL also offers an interline agreement with American Airlines that allows passengers to schedule flights from across the US to TLV through Boston.

“EL AL has been a great partner to Logan for many years and we are excited that they are relaunching their Tel Aviv - Boston service,” said Massport’s Director of Aviation Ed Freni.

Boston - Tel Aviv

Flt LY16

Departs 20:30

Arrives 13:50*

Tel Aviv - Boston

Flt LY15

Departs 00:50

Arrives 05:30


* following day

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07 December, 2021

EL AL Israel Airlines is the official airline of the Miss Universe 2021

Miss Universe departing Andrea Maza on a flight to Israel for the competition
Photo PRNewsfoto/EL AL Israel Airlines Ltd
EL AL Israel Airlines is the official airline of the Miss Universe 2021 competition taking place in Eilat, Israel for the first time
Hundreds of delegations and representatives including those from the United States and from dozens of countries around the world will arrive on EL AL's aircraft in preparation for the exciting event, on December 12

EL AL is the official airline of the Miss Universe 2021 competition that will take place for the first time in Eilat, Israel. Over the last few days, representatives from 80 countries and 5 continents have arrived in Israel ahead of the competition, including the current Miss Universe, Mis Andrea Maza, Mexico's representative.
The international competition will be broadcast live to more than 170 countries and to 600 million viewers all over the world. This year, the competition will highlight the significant issue of the global warming as part of a green agenda that is also part of the values of the "Miss Universe" organization.

During their stay in Israel, the delegates were guests at EL AL and took part of the Miss Universe campaign to encourage tourism to Israel and to strengthen the EL AL brand around the world.

The event and the participants are hosted in Israel by the Israel Ministry of Tourism.

Even though Israel is currently closed to tourists now, however, the delegation arrived under Covid 19 regulations and received special approvals to enter Israel.

EL AL also announced that the representative of the United Arab Emirates will also compete for the title of Miss Universe and will participate in the event in Israel alongside the representative from Morocco who will also compete, for the first time, in 40 years.

Amit Sagi, CMO and CDO of EL AL said: "We are proud to be the official airline of the competition, to fly hundreds of participants to this competition from dozens of countries around the world and give them their first experience of Israel, already on the way here. EL AL is not just an airline, its Israel".

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06 November, 2020

EL AL slowly reinstating

EL AL has slowly been reinstating flights 

EL AL the Israeli airline has started to reinstate some of its flights that had been suspended due to the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic.

EL AL flights to North America, London, Paris, Amsterdam and Frankfurt operate on the airline's 787 Dreamliner aircraft, which will offer 3 classes of service: Economy, Premium and Business.

EL AL has also restarting flights to Zurich and the codeshare agreement with Swiss Air Lines.

31 August, 2020

Donald Trump's son-in-law takes first official Israeli flight from Tel Aviv to Abu Dhabi. UAE

Jared Kushner said on Monday that the United States could maintain Israel’s qualitative military edge while advancing its relations with the United Arab Emirates.

Kushner,  the son in low to US President Donal Trump also said Palestinians should come to the negotiating table. He made his comments after landing in Abu Dhabi airport, after making the first official Israeli flight from Tel Aviv to the UAE.

Kushner, also spoke to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin regarding a range of subjects, including the introduction of regular scheduled passenger flights and the business opportunities for the Trump organisation. 

He thanked Saudi Arabia for granting permission for the first official Israeli flight from Tel Aviv to the United Arab Emirates after arriving in Abu Dhabi airport.  Despite, the Saudi authorities not granting the same rights to Qatar, in breach of ICAO and international regulations.  

The El Al Boeing 737 jet was equipped with an anti-missile system toward the rear of the aircraft and was piloted by Captain Tal Becker.

Images Reuters

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04 July, 2020

El Al Israel Airlines shares details of its first quarter of 2020

El Al Israel Airlines Financial Results for the First Quarter of 2020 

The global pandemic of coronavirus COVID-19 has had a dramatic on airlines around the world,  the Israeli airline El Al is no exception.  The carrier that is still trying to negotiate a full rescue bailout deal with the government has released select details of its results for the first quarter of the year. 

The airline says the results were significantly affected by the crisis, especially towards the end of the quarter when they sent the majority of staff home and grounded all bar a few aircraft. The mass grounding of its own jets and those of other airlines around the world partly resulted in a rapid drop of fuel prices - good news you might have thought for an airline - but not when the planes are routed to the tarmac and not when many months previously you hedged your future fuel requirements at rates that were so much higher.  

El Al says its revenues decreased by about 25% around US$321 million, compared to 2019 levels.  The company recorded a net loss of approx. US$140 million, better than some had expected, especially when compared to a loss of US$55 million in the first quarter of last year

The crisis has led to a dramatic reduction in demand for passenger flights and an unprecedented number of flight cancellations, and therefore, El Al cancelled many flights already in February 2020, and finally announced a complete halt of passenger flights as of mid-March 2020, due to Government guidance addressing these circumstances and the fear of contraction of the virus.

Since the outbreak of the coronavirus crisis, the struggling airline has taken a series of streamlining measures and steps designed to improve its cash flow:

20 May, 2020

20 June - new start date for El Al flight schedule

The Israeli airline El Al has confirmed today that it is extending its scheduled flight suspension until 20th June in response to the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic. 

 The airline will continue to operate a tiny number of special repatriation type flights, whilst all normal scheduled flights are cancelled until 20 June this year.  The airline also confirmed it would be using some of its passenger aircraft to transport cargo and special goods.

The extension of the flight grounding was perhaps inevitable after the Israeli government extended its ban on foreigners entering the nation and forcing all arriving Israeli citizens to enter a period of quarantine, earlier this week. 

“In light of the low demand for passenger flights, the company has decided to extend the temporary cessation of flights,” the airline said on Wednesday.

However,  the airline will be operating a special service on a Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft on Tel Aviv-Paris-London-Tel Aviv routing on 21st, 24th,2 7 May (one-way tickets only).  The carrier that posted a massive loss earlier this month will also operate a special Dreamliner flight from its home base of Tel Aviv to Hong Kong on 25th May.

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17 May, 2020

More big losses for El Al Israel Airlines Ltd as the carrier struggles forward, one week at a time.

The coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic could not have come at a more inopportune time for  El Al the Tel Aviv based airline.  It was mid-way through a major upgrade of its aircraft fleet and seeking to stem losses and return to the days of a healthy profit. The carrier had taken delivery of 14 new Boeing 787  Dreamliner aircraft as well as completing an improvement of its narrow-body aircraft fleet. It was slowly expanding its route network in the face of increasing competition whilst its net loss for 2019 stood at US$60. 

Then the pandemic hit, which led to a sharp decline in demand for passenger flights,  countries around the world started imposing entry restrictions and travel bans, including the Israeli authorities who were among some of the first to halt almost all arrivals and instigate very strict rules.  The end result was thousands of stranded people and flight schedules being cut down to zero.  This caused the loss of substantially all of El Al's revenues and created a liquidity problem for the company, which it may never recover from. 

The airline's fuel hedging programme was worthless as no flights were operating and the price dropped through the floor and then some.  With all the flights cancelled, the airline had to refund passengers on a monumental scale, the like of which, it had never seen before.  Therefore the firm had to introduce a number of streamlining or cost-cutting measures, including placing around 90% of its workforce on unpaid leave whilst only reducing the wages of its board and senior executives by 20%.

14 May, 2020

EL AL appeals to Benjamin Netanyahu to force Finance Ministry to cut conditions required to gaurantee bailout loan of $400 million.

El Al Israel Airlines has asked the Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu to think again on conditions set for state-guaranteed loans.

The Israeli government is requesting a complete overhaul of the carrier, including cutting staff numbers before it will agree to provide baking for a series of loans to help the airline through the coronavirus COVID-19 crisis. The airline wants the government to guarantee up to 80% of loans amounting to $400 million.  

A source at the airline told news agency Reuters that it had offered to cut 2000 jobs, reduce yearly expenditure by $350 million but Finance Ministry officials wanted more.

EL AL CEO Gonen Usishkin has sent a letter to Netanyahu advising him that the government’s hard stance would force the carrier into bankruptcy. “We ask that you instruct the Finance Ministry to amend the plan and remove the impossible conditions,” he wrote, adding it “refuses to connect El Al to a ventilator, as most countries in the world have done”.

In an attempt to blackmail the government the airline said it had committed to refund over $285 mullion to customers who've had flights cancelled,  but unless the authorities guarantee the loans relaxed conditions, the airline would go bankrupt and customers would lose this money. 

Usishkin said that in the event of bankruptcy Israel’s security would be harmed since the country would be reliant on others, while 30,000 direct and indirect households would lose their livelihoods, and the economy would lose millions each year.

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11 May, 2020

Changes ahead for EL AL as Israeli government considers bailout

Mass changes ahead for the Israeli airline EL AL as the government looks to a massive bailout of the carrier, according to the Israeli Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon.

The national carrier had previously asked the government to back loans of around $400 million to help it survive the coronavirus COVID-19 crisis that has plunged it into even greater uncertainty and mounting losses.  

The airline has grounded most of its aircraft since the pandemic first started to cause nations around the world to introduce travel bans and entry restrictions. Around 6000 staff have been placed on leave without pay and will be so until the end of June at the earliest.

In order for the bailout to take place, the government wants the airline to make significant changes, including shedding over a third of its staff, something the unions are completely against.  The government also requires the carrier's owners to put in more funds to the struggling airline.  A request that has not been welcomed with positivity.

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22 April, 2020

El Al needing government backed loan to survive.

The Israeli airline EL AL is in desperate need of a loan that is backed by the government in order to serve the economic downturn caused by the ongoing coronavirus COVID-19 crisis.

It is understood the airline is in deep and advanced negotiations with a leading bank in Israel for a loan that will be backed in part by the government.  The airline needs between $200 and $300 million to recover from the current situation and reemploy the 5,500 or so of the airlines 6,000 staff have been on unpaid leave since EL AL ground al but a few of its aircraft.  

04 March, 2020

Major job losses at El Al......over 1000 jobs to go and salary cuts to others.

The national airline of Israel, El Al has announced it will axe over 1000 jobs from its 6000 strong workforce and cut the salaries of its management teams as it struggles to cope with increased costs and the Coronavirus - COVID-19 outbreak.

The Israeli government has introduced some of the most stringent entry and travel restrictions on foreign nationals since the coronavirus crisis began by any nation.  It has also forced many Israelis who have returned from abroad into quarantine at home.

Because of these restrictions,  El Al has either axed or reduced many of its flights to Asia and Europe and issued warnings that it revenues would take a massive hit.  This is on top of already heavy costs and difficult trading conditions that have afflicted the carrier in recent years.  

The airline has also asked, Reuters reported, unions to reduce by 20% the salaries of its highest-paid senior workers and in line with many other airlines, is instigating a ban on non-essential expenditure and freezing recruitment. 

“I am determined to do everything to ensure the future of the company and will act with courage, transparency and fairness,”  claimed CEO Gonen Usishkin in a statement on Tuesday. These efficiency steps were “painful,” he said, but are, “meant to allow the company to overcome the crisis and come out stronger.”

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18 February, 2020

Changes to EL AL's schedules

EL AL is making changes to its schedules for flights to and from China

Beijing – following the previous announcement of temporary suspension of the flights until March 25,2020, will now extend until April 24, 2020.

Hong Kong – following the decision to allow customers to change or cancel their flights without a penalty, the airline will now temporarily suspend its flights until March 20, 2020.

Bangkok -  EL AL will continue its flights to Bangkok, however, will reduce frequencies from double daily to one daily on certain dates.

Tokyo - EL AL is preparing to inaugurate the launch of the historic Japan route on March 11, 2020 as planned.

Gonen Usishkin, EL AL CEO: "We are continually monitoring the reports from China.  We hope that the recent cautious optimism as reported in the global media will indeed continue in the coming days.  Nevertheless, we at EL AL have decided to make commercial adjustments to the schedule in the Far East and increase frequencies to North America and Europe with a focus on the upcoming Passover period."

EL AL will do all possible to assist its passengers holding tickets for the changed or cancelled flights, finding alternative flights as needed. As soon as the situation allows, EL AL will reinstate its flights to Beijing and Hong Kong even prior to the dates mentioned.

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