The increase in departures, which is unparalleled in almost any Western country, continues a trend that began about five years ago with the signing of the Open Sky Agreement. According to data from the Central Bureau of Statistics, the number of Israelis flying abroad between January and May 2017 is nearly 85% higher than in the same period in 2012.
One of the leading travel agents in Israel told Ynet, "What has taken place a few years ago is nothing compared to what has been happening in recent months. The people of Israel are simply in the air and going on vacation at a rate not seen anywhere else in the world."
About 1.6 million passengers (Israelis and tourists) passed through Ben-Gurion Airport in May, reflecting an increase of about 9% compared to May 2016. The more significant figure relates to the period between January-May, when more than 6.86 million passengers passed through Ben-Gurion Airport, an increase of 17% compared to the same period in 2016.