El Al Israel Airlines said, on Thursday, it would add flights to New York in 2024 after the United States agreed to admit Israel into a program that will allow visa-free entry by Israeli citizens, Reuters reports.
Starting next June, Israel’s flag carrier will add a daily flight to New York’s JFK Airport that will bring daily flights to JFK and Newark airports to as many as six per day and 33 per week.
On Wednesday, the US government said Israel would be admitted to the US Visa Waiver Program (VWP) as of 30 November, 2023.
This is a breakthrough, and we are preparing to expand the flight frequencies based on the expected increase in demand, CEO, Dina Ben-Tal Ganancia, said, adding that New York had long been the top destination for Israelis.
El Al said a survey it commissioned of Israeli adults who plan to travel abroad found that just 30% of them hold visas to enter the United States, while 40% of those considering flying to the USA said the need for a visa was one of the main barriers to flying there.
If Israelis may enter without a visa, the willingness to fly to the USA would rise by 20%, according to the poll. It also showed that 65% of respondents said New York was the most sought-after US destination, followed by Los Angeles at 13%.
In all, El Al, as of next June, will operate 49 weekly flights to the United States, including non-stops from Tel Aviv to Los Angeles, Miami and Boston. It will also add a route to Fort Lauderdale, Florida, in April.
El Al also recently forged a strategic cooperation with Delta to broaden connection options in the USA. It said that the collaboration would allow El Al to increase the supply of seats to US destinations, while expanding its route network.
Middle East Monitor / ABC Flash Point News 2023.