Published On: Sun, Aug 10th, 2014

Turkish Airlines cuts 2 daily Israel flights

Reduced tourist traffic has also caused Wizz Air to cancel routes to Prague, Katowice and Warsaw.

turkish-airlines

Turkish Airlines has cancelled two out of the 7-8 daily flights it operates between Ben Gurion Airport and Istanbul between August 18 and the end of October for “operational reasons.” Sources in the airline industry say that the wiping of Turkey off the Israel tourist map and the incitement against Israel by Turkish President Recep Erdogan have taken their toll. Turkish Airlines is the biggest foreign carrier operating out of Ben Gurion Airport with many travelers using Istanbul for connection flights elsewhere.

Meanwhile, last Thursday Turkish Airlines announced that due to a shortage of pilots it is hiring 200 Iranian pilots. The pilots are unlikely to be put on Israel-bound flights but will almost certainly be flying some connection flights.

Low-cost Hungarian airline Wizz Air has also announced that it is cutting back Tel Aviv flights. The airline is cancelling its routes from Tel Aviv to Prague, Katowice and Warsaw. These flights are reportedly making operational losses since the start of Operation Protective Edge. However, Wizz Air will continue flying to to Budapest in Hungary, Bucharest and Cluj-Napoca in Romania, Vilnius in Lithuania, and Sofia, Bulgaria as usual though there may be reductions.

Those booked on flights to Prague, Katowice and Warsaw have been told that their money will be returned.

Wizz Air only began flying to Israel in 2012 and flew 129, 888 passengers in and out of Israel in 2013 and 35, 843 passengers in June 2014 alone.

 

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news – www.globes-online.com 

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