El Al’s campaign is in response to the rising competition as part of the “Open Skies” policy being promoted by the Transport Ministry.
El Al’s previous attempt to sell cheap fares through a separate department (Basic) on its flights to Europe failed. Three years ago, El Al offered discount fares that did not include check-in or meals. Three months after launching the deals, El Al decided to end it, as it was not worthwhile financially.
The El Al flights will depart from Terminal 3, and not from the new area of Terminal 1 that opened last week to serve low-cost flights.
According to the Israel Airports Authority, 55 international flights per week are expected to pass through the new wing this winter. As part of the implementation of the “Open Skies” policy, the government decided to approve all slot requests from low-cost carriers, and of the 55 weekly flights that are scheduled to run this winter, 22 are newly approved. From the summer of 2014, it will be possible to run 130 weekly flights (25-30 daily flights), and next winter 100 weekly flights are expected. Fifteen airlines operate low-cost flights from Israel to destinations in Europe, and due to the “Open Skies” policy, the list is expected to grow, and the competition over Israeli passengers will intensify.”
The company said, “El Al is forming plans for the beginning of Short Haul operations, with five Boeing 737-800 airplanes, to destinations that will be set and publicized by the company’s management. The plan is to begin operating in this area no later than the 2014 summer schedule.”
Published by www.globes-online.com