Ben Gurion Airport's low-cost terminal to resume operations on June 1

Terminal 1 to reopen after war-induced hiatus in bid bring back low-cost airlines and lower air travel prices

Roy Rubinstein|
Ben Gurion Airport’s Terminal 1, designated for low-cost and Eilat flights, will reopen on June 1, the Transportation Ministry announced on Tuesday.
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טרמינל 1, נתב"ג
טרמינל 1, נתב"ג
Terminal 1, Ben Gurion Airport
(Photo: / Roman Yanushevsky)
The move is expected to bring back airlines, like Ryanair, that halted flights but promised to return upon Terminal 1's reopening, drawn by its lower fees of $11 per passenger versus Terminal 3's $27.
Terminal 1 was closed shortly after the outbreak of the war, as most airlines grounded their flights to Israel and passenger footfall at Ben Gurion Airport plummeted.
The Transportation Ministry was eager to reopen Terminal 1 as quickly as possible, but staffing issues and additional logistical challenges have prevented this.
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According to Airports Authority data, recent months have seen a steady increase in passengers traveling abroad, as well as a significant return of foreign international airlines to Ben Gurion Airport.
The data indicates that over 60 international airlines operating at Ben Gurion Airport are expected to fly to more than 100 destinations during the summer months. The daily passenger number in the summer is expected to reach about 70,000, compared to the current 35,000 passengers.
Calcalist reported that Transportation Minister Miri Regev attempted to allow low-cost airline passengers to continue paying reduced airport fees at the Terminal 1 rate, even if their flights depart from Terminal 3.
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גם חנויות הדיוטי פרי נפתחו היום אחרי הפסקה ארוכה מאוד
גם חנויות הדיוטי פרי נפתחו היום אחרי הפסקה ארוכה מאוד
Terminal 1, Ben Gurion Airport
(Photo: Roy Rubinstein)
Regev believed this move would incentivize low-cost airlines to resume operations in the country, expand offerings to passengers, revive competition lost since October, and thereby reduce prices.
Sources close to the minister told Calcalist and Ynet that the issue is being handled by the ministry's legal advisor, Yael Cohen, and her team, who believe the change should be implemented as a temporary measure.
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