Just as Israel re-opens to individual tourists, a new company, Pangea, will take over from Check2Fly at Ben-Gurion Airport .
Pangea moves in on November 1 and will work alongside Check2Fly for three weeks at Terminal 1. Then, on November 21, Check2Fly will cease to operate at the airport and instead open up a testing complex nearby.
Check2Fly, which is co-operated by Omega and Rambam Health Care Campus, is being ousted from providing tests for outgoing passengers after a months-long legal battle that began when the companies won a tender from the Israel Airports Authority to provide testing for both departing and arriving travelers.
Pangea, the company that came in second, had appealed to the court, saying that Omega did not meet the criteria of the Airports Authority’s tender.
Because of Pangea’s appeal, the court gave the tender back to the Airports Authority. First, the authority canceled its tender for incoming passengers and turned it over to the Health Ministry, which on June 15 ousted Check2Fly and replaced it with Test & Go, operated by Femi Premium.
In addition, the authority offered Pangea to take over for Omega for outgoing passengers, which led to an additional legal battle that only recently was completed.
Omega was the cheapest company and hence was first selected by the airport.
For a test that takes 14 hours from screening to results, the price has been NIS 40. For a test that takes only four hours it has been NIS 120.
Now, prices are going to rise, Globes reported, to NIS 89 for a slower test and to NIS 149 for a rapid test.
As Check2Fly leaves the airport, it will expand further across the country, including recently opening up a new testing station at the Azrieli Mall and one at Dizengoff Center Mall in Tel Aviv beginning on November 3. The mall complexes will operate six days per week. Rapid tests will cost NIS 135.
Moreover, new complexes are expected on Habarzel Street in Tel Aviv and at Ramat Hachayal, with plans to expand further in the coming weeks and months.
“I have no doubt that... opening more positions will make it easier for people coming and going from Israel and will provide the best and highest quality service for the benefit of maintaining national health security,” said Omega CEO Lily Nankin.
The company said its tests will continue to meet all requirements for travelers wishing to test before flying abroad.
Not all travelers are required to take a test to board an airplane abroad; that depends on the rules of the country to which an individual is flying. However, all incoming travelers to Israel are required to take a test within 72 hours of arrival in the country.