After the flag carrier El-Al, it is the turn of the private company Israir Airlines to announce routes between Israel and the United Arab Emirates, in the wake of the diplomatic normalization agreement between the two countries.
Israir Airlines, Israel’s second-largest airline after El-Al, will launch direct flights from Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion Airport to Abu Dhabi and Dubai next October. Cleared to fly over Saudi airspace, the air link between Israel and the United Arab Emirates will be provided in three and a half hours.
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According to the Israeli press, Israir Airlines will market packages including flights and four hotel nights in the United Arab Emirates starting at 700 dollars (approximately 592 euros). Also according to the Israeli press, the two major airlines of the United Arab Emirates, Etihad Airways and Emirates, will in return benefit from the slots to serve Tel Aviv.
“In recent weeks, we have witnessed an increase in the demand from the Israeli public to return to flying and vacationing in countries that Israelis are allowed to enter without the obligation of isolation, and there is no doubt that there will be a great demand for Abu Dhabi as well,” said Gil Stav, Israir’s vice-president of marketing and sales.
The Emirates is one of some 20 countries that Israelis can visit without having to quarantine for two weeks upon their return.
Local authorities in Abu Dhabi said this week that they had instructed all hotels in the city to prepare kosher food options, in apparent expectation of hordes of Jewish tourists in the aftermath of next week’s signing of a peace treaty between Israel and the United Arab Emirates.