Ben-Gurion Airport to receive NIS 1 billion expansion

Ben-Gurion Airport handles more than 90% of visitors entering and exiting the Jewish state.

April 25, 2018 07:54
2 minute read.
An El Al Boeing 777 aircraft at Ben-Gurion International Airport

An El Al Boeing 777 aircraft at Ben-Gurion International Airport. (photo credit: REUTERS)


Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analysis from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief


Israel’s main airport is planning a major, billion-shekel ($280 million) expansion to serve the steadily increasing number of travelers to the Jewish state – already at recordhigh levels.

Barring a war or deterioration in the security situation, the airport expects to see more than 25 million individual arrivals and departures in 2019. The congestion that is bringing has forced the Israel Airports Authority to expand its facilities.

Ben-Gurion’s main Terminal 3 will add more than 36,000 sq.m. of space on four floors. The airport will also place 88 new check-in counters adjacent to the existing terminal, accessible by a pedestrian footbridge.

In the midst of 2018’s busy summer season, the airport plans to setup 25 temporary service counters in a 2,500 sq.m. structure adjacent to the Terminal 3 building.

This comes on the heels of a new passenger wing inaugurated in February that offered eight additional plane exit gates and four bus exit gates. This fourth passenger wing, Wing E, can accommodate up to 1,800 passengers per hour.

The planned expansion is being designed to reduce the load on the general check-in area and improves service for passengers.

Ben-Gurion Airport handles more than 90% of visitors entering and exiting the Jewish state.

Those entries and exits, or transits, occurred some 20.8 million times in 2017, according to data from the Israel Aviation Authority, a sharp uptick from 17.9 million transits in 2016. The airport’s 2018 estimate is 23 million transits, placing it among the world’s busiest airports.

The rapid uptick in passenger traffic has taken place despite the negligible number of passengers using the Lod facility for connecting flights.

Flagship airliner El Al has not adopted a transit-friendly business model for security reasons, putting it at a competitive disadvantage to airliners like Turkish Airlines, which has turned Istanbul into a major transit hub.

More than 100 airliners now service Ben-Gurion Airport, a handful of which have launched operations in the past year. The increase in competition comes after Israel signed the Open Skies agreement a decade ago, permitting more European airliners to fly to Tel Aviv.

This summer, a number of mostly European low-cost airlines are reportedly planning to inaugurate service to Tel Aviv, further increasing traffic.

A multi-year expansion plan is already in progress, with recent renovations to Terminal 1, which services domestic locations and hosts low-cost airliners like Wizz Air, EasyJet and Ryanair.

The relatively strong local currency has made shekel- priced flights cheaper for Israelis, as have low oil prices and greater competition.

It took three years from 2014’s Operation Protective Edge in Gaza for tourism numbers to bounce back. But by 2017, a record-breaking total of 3.6 million foreign tourists visited Israel.

Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

Yair Kravits (3) and Deni Avdija celebrate during last night’s victory over Montenegro.
July 17, 2019
Israel cruises into Under-20 quarterfinals


Cookie Settings