EasyJet ‘cannot say’ when Israel flights will resume

Flights have been suspended until at least October 17.

Neil Lancefield
Thursday 12 October 2023 12:00 BST
The airline suspended its Tel Aviv operations after the Hamas attacks on Saturday (PA)
The airline suspended its Tel Aviv operations after the Hamas attacks on Saturday (PA)

EasyJet hopes to resume flights to and from Israel “as soon as possible” but “cannot say” when it will happen, chief executive Johan Lundgren said.

The airline suspended its Tel Aviv operations after Hamas’s attack on Saturday.

Flights have been suspended until at least October 17.

In the UK, easyJet usually serves Gatwick, Luton and Manchester airports from Israel.

Mr Lundgren said the carrier will “continue to evaluate this on a daily basis”.

He added: “We are making our decisions (based) on a multiple number of sources. We are engaging with probably 10 or 12 different authorities, government authorities, security experts, alongside the expertise that we have within ourselves.

“We are making then a weighted decision on what it would take for us to start up again.

“We want to start up again. We believe it’s an important route to have in place.

“But for now, when we have weighed up all the information that we have, we have decided to continue to suspend the operation.”

Mr Lundgren said “a number of things” must happen for the airline to feel “comfortable” about resuming operations to and from Israel.

He added: “That is obviously something that we want to do as soon as possible but we cannot say now when that is.”

Mr Lundgren said the airline has not seen a reduction in demand for flights to other countries in the region, such as Egypt and Turkey.

He said: “I think that this is very much a specific issue locally from the demand point of view.”

On Wednesday, British Airways and Virgin Atlantic became the latest airlines to suspend flights between the UK and Israel.

British Airways flight BA165 returned to Heathrow after nearly reaching Tel Aviv before the decision was made.

There were reports Palestinian militant group Hamas fired multiple rockets towards Ben Gurion Airport.

Health Secretary Steve Barclay, when asked if there will be Government-sanctioned flights to bring back UK citizens, told Good Morning Britain: “At the moment there are still commercial flights but of course the Foreign Office keeps these issues under review.”

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