Mumbai: In light of the growing demand for Israel as a tourist destination, the country is set to greet the latest initiatives to further boost outbound travel from India.
With an average load factor exceeding 80 per cent and the increased demand on Air India’s New Delhi-Tel Aviv flight services, the national carrier has confirmed an increase in frequency on this sector, adding a fifth weekly flight starting November 26, 2018. The airline will now fly five days a week including Monday in addition to Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday on the 256-seater Boeing 787 Dreamliner. The aircraft departs from New Delhi at 16.50 pm and arrives in Tel Aviv at 20.45 pm (local time). On its return leg, the flight departs from Tel Aviv at 22.15 pm and lands in New Delhi the next day at 8.15 am.
In addition to Air India’s announcement, Israeli carrier El Al has introduced a new Boeing 777-200ER aircraft on its Mumbai-Tel Aviv route. The new airplane has a capacity of 279 seats in a four-class configuration of First, Business, Economy Plus and Economy and will cater to the rising demand from India. El Al is the only airline currently servicing the direct Mumbai-Tel Aviv sector with three weekly non-stop flights. The aircraft departs at 12.20 pm every Sunday, Monday and Thursday from Mumbai and arrives in Tel Aviv at 16.50 pm (local time). On its return leg, the plane departs from Tel Aviv at 20.15 pm every Saturday and Sunday to land in Mumbai the next day at 7.30 am. On Thursdays, the flight takes off at 8.30 am from Tel Aviv to reach Mumbai at 19.45 pm.
These announcements have come at a time when Israel Ministry of Tourism has recorded a growth of 58 per cent with 48,800 Indian arrivals to the country from January to September 2018 vis-à-vis 30,800 Indian visitors during the same period in 2016.