Posts Tagged ‘El Al’
Only in Israel…
Israeli President Ruby Rivlin personally welcomed new Olim (immigrants) as they step off the plane today, August 12, 2014.
This flight was called the “Soldier’s Flight” as 110 of the young people on this Aliyah flight are joining the IDF.
Thousands of Israeli tourists have been trapped in Turkey for days, due to cancelled flights to Israel.
Needless to say, the atmosphere in Turkey towards Israel isn’t pleasant at the moment.
This morning, beginning at 5am, El Al initiated a rescue mission, at the request of the Israeli Ministry of Transportation, sending multiple planes to Turkey to bring back the stranded Israeli citizens.
So far 3 flights have landed in Turkey, and El Al is expected to fly in 3 more planes at least.
Israel reportedly told the United States that it understands the rules and the reasoning behind the FAA ban on US flights to Israel, according to Arad Nir of Israel Channel 2.
Israel reportedly told the US that this situation (of the FAA ban) can’t continue, so in order to resolve it, Israel will need to significantly and disproportionately ramp up its attack on Gaza, and put an immediate stop to all the rocket attacks, thus allowing US flight to Israel to resume.
Nir claims the message was understood and the FAA ban was rescinded.
As Israeli officials work to untangle the mess at Ben Gurion International Airport in the wake of an international ban on flights in and out of Tel Aviv, an ominous question is hanging over the Jewish State.
Did the United States allow Hamas terrorists to rule over Israel’s skies? Why would an “ally” do such a thing?
Although the FAA lifted its ban — which had to be approved by the White House — by midnight Wednesday, it still wasn’t clear whether airlines got the message. Worse, perhaps they had.
The damage incurred by an unprecedented 48-hour FAA ban on flights to Israel by U.S. carriers was incalculable, triggering a cascade of bans and possibly unparalleled damage to Israel’s economy.
The European Aviatian Safety Agency (EASA) “strongly recommended” its airlines avoid operating in and out of Tel Aviv.
Air France, Lufhansa, Germanwings, Austrian Airlines, Alitalia, Aeroflot and its associated airlines, and Turkish Airlines all suspended flights. Air Canada, generally a strong supporter of the Jewish State, also shied away.
Many still have not reinstated their flights. Those that have still have not established regular schedules. Ben Gurion airport is still a mess, with desperate travelers trying to figure out how to find their luggage and fix their ruined plans. Tracking down food, caring for children, getting enough sleep, changing clothes and dealing with hygiene needs — all of these issues were cast aside by many airlines after the first 24 hours, and by some from the very start, travelers told Israeli radio interviewers.
British Airways alone maintained its twice-daily flights to Ben Gurion International Airport from London Heathrow Airport.
Israel’s Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu offered his gratitude and special thanks to British Foreign Minister Phillip Hammond on Thursday in a news briefing with media, noting that apparently Britain alone understood the importance of not handing a “free prize to Hamas terror.”
Fifteen minutes before midnight, the FAA lifted its flight restrictions on U.S. airline flights into and out of Ben Gurion airport “by cancelling a Notice to Airmen it renewed earlier today…
“Before making this decision, the FAA worked with its U.S. government counterparts to assess the security situation in Israel and carefully reviewed both significant new information and measures the Government of Israel is taking to mitigate potential risks to civil aviation,” the notice read.
The back step followed a hugely publicized flight to Israel by former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who scorned the FAA moved as ridiculous. Bloomberg immediately boarded an El Al plane straight to Tel Aviv, declaring to reporters that Ben Gurion International Airport is the safest in the world. The prime minister greeted Bloomberg at the airport, thanking him for coming and calling him a friend and a “man of principle and truth.”
With El Al now being the only airline flying in and out of Israel, I came up with some new slogans for them. I hope they use one:
“El Al – The airline that flies you to Israel. The only one…”
“El Al – Our pilots are trained in evasive maneuvers”
“El Al – If we didn’t have a monopoly before, we sure do now”
“El Al – Keeping Israel Open for Business”
“El Al – We’ll take you anywhere (except Gaza)”
“El Al – Special Discount for Brave Americans – Just kidding, no discount”
“El Al – We never fly to Israel on Shabbat – those other airlines are just copycats”
“El Al – Hah! Now those HAS Advantage points you collected are really worthless”
“El Al – If you thought our service was bad when we had competition…”
“El Al – Fly El Al, see our anti-missile system in action”
“El Al – We’ll keep on flying, even when missiles fly too”
“El Al – It’s not just an airline, it’s an adventure”
“El Al – Flying the unfriendly skies”
“El Al -We know why you fly us, because we’re the only one around’
Let’s hear your ideas.
4.8 million Israelis traveled overseas in 2013, according to a report in Yisrael Hayom.
That’s an amazing number, considering there are only 8 million citizens in Israel. It’s also the highest ratio of travelers to citizens in the world.
It’s was a 11.6% increase from 2012, up from 4.3 million. The average traveler’s age is 40, and 900,000 Israelis traveled out more than once.
July and August accounted for 1.7 million Israelis abroad. If you add in the holidays in September and October, that number jumps to 2.7 million. An astounding one-third of the country was overseas at the same time.
With numbers like that, it’s no wonder Israel never feels crowded.
Quite interesting, the time when most Israelis stop flying out of Israel are during wars and national emergencies, when the number of travelers out of the country drops dramatically and people choose to stay in Israel.