EasyJet plane 370.
(photo credit: Globes)
EasyJet will add two weekly flights between Tel Aviv and London’s Luton airport
beginning November 1, in addition to the seven weekly flights the low-cost
airline already operates on the route. The airline will also run two weekly
flights from Tel Aviv to Manchester beginning November 1.
the rates for the Manchester route will begin at $50 per way, and will run on
Monday’s and Thursday’s.
The flights between easyJet and Luton began in
2009 and have been a success for the company, as have the four weekly flights
between Tel Aviv and Geneva and Basel.
Speaking at a press conference in
Tel Aviv on Thursday, UK Commercial Manager for easyJet Hugh Aitken said the
company is looking to promote Israel in much the same way that it does Iceland,
as a “different type of destination” for European travelers. He added that such
efforts require familiarizing European tourists with Israel, who may not
understand that their “perception is different than the reality” when it comes
Aitken said the company is looking to expand its operations in
Israel over the coming years, but faces higher operating costs, and to some
extent, problems selling Israel as a travel destination for European tourists.
According to Aitken, the company faces higher operating costs at Ben- Gurion
International Airport as well as a requirement that passengers check in at
terminal 1 and fly out of terminal 3, which he said complicates
He added that company can’t currently fly to Eilat due to what
he said was the insufficient infrastructure of the Eilat airport. The low-cost
airline already runs 26 weekly flights from across Europe to the beach resort of
Sharm al- Sheikh in the Sinai Peninsula – a route that they said has not lost
popularity since the Egyptian Revolution began in January of last
Opening up the Israel market to easyJet and other low-cost
operators will require the full implementation of the “open skies”
Following eight rounds of negotiations beginning in 2008,
Israel and the European Union finalized their negotiations on open skies earlier
this month, which will create a “common aviation zone” between Israel and the
EU, opening up more travel opportunities, and most likely bringing down travel
prices for Israeli consumers.