נחיתת המטוס האמירתי בנתב"ג
An Etihad plane on the runway at Ben-Gurion Airport in October
An Etihad plane on the runway at Ben-Gurion Airport in October

Etihad Airways to launch Tel Aviv-Abu Dhabi flights in March

UAE flag carrier says it 'will launch daily scheduled year-round flights' between the two cities, calling move an 'historic moment" that 'cements Etihad's commitment to growing opportunities for trade and tourism'

Itay Blumenthal, i24NEWS |
Published: 11.16.20 , 11:11
Etihad Airways is launching direct flights between Tel Aviv and Abu Dhabi from March 2021, the United Arab Emirates' flag carrier said Monday.
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  • The route will initially only see one flight per day and will also offer Israelis more connecting flights en route to China, India, Thailand and Australia.
    נחיתת המטוס האמירתי בנתב"גנחיתת המטוס האמירתי בנתב"ג
    An Etihad plane on the runway at Ben-Gurion Airport in October
    The Abu Dhabi-based airline "will launch daily scheduled year-round flights to Tel Aviv", it said in a statement.
    It said the service will begin on March 28, approximately six months after Israel and the UAE signed a landmark agreement to normalize relations between the two countries.
    "The commencement of scheduled flights is a historic moment and as an airline, cements Etihad's commitment to growing opportunities for trade and tourism," said Mohammad al-Bulooki, Chief Operating Officer of Etihad Aviation Group.
    Dubai's budget airline flydubai has already announced that it would start direct flights to Tel Aviv this month, operating 14 flights a week.
    ג'ארד קושנרג'ארד קושנר
    American and Israeli officials arriving in Abu Dhabi on an El Al plane in August
    (Photo: AFP)
    A plane from Israel's flag carrier El Al also landed in Abu Dhabi in August, ferrying American and Israeli officials to the UAE for talks on the nascent diplomatic agreement.
    The UAE and Israel have already signed treaties on direct flights and visa-free travel, along with accords on investment protection, science and technology.
    The UAE was only the third Arab country to normalize ties with Israel following Egypt in 1979 and Jordan in 1994. Its move was quickly followed by Bahrain, and Sudan also announced last month it would normalize ties.
    While official ties were only formalized in September, two Etihad planes landed at Ben-Gurion Airport earlier in the year, delivering food aid to the Palestinians during the coronavirus pandemic.
    Cargo from the UAE is taken off a Etihad Airways flight to Ben-Gurion Airport on Tuesday  Cargo from the UAE is taken off a Etihad Airways flight to Ben-Gurion Airport on Tuesday
    An Etihad Airways flight delivers food aid for the Palestinians at Ben-Gurion Airport in May
    (Photo: Screenshot)
    “Etihad Airways operated a dedicated humanitarian cargo flight from Abu Dhabi to Tel Aviv on May 19 to provide medical supplies to the Palestinians,” the airline said after the first plane arrived in Tel Aviv.
    “The flight had no passengers on board.”
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