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Profitability Of USA-Israel Flights

Mon Jan 23, 2006 11:27 am

I have heard on these forums that flights between the United States and Israel are quite profitable. Also, in a recent thread about the Israeli government possibly allowing Israir to start flights between TLV and New York, it was mentioned that El Al will probably appeal that decision to the highest court in Israel because the government promised to not allow additional Israeli airlines on this route as part of El Al's privatization. Given that, I would guess that it is profitable. In reality, how profitable are the flights between the United States and Israel, particularly for flights originating in or leaving JFK/EWR? Also, how profitable do you believe Delta's new ATL-TLV-ATL flights or El Al's nonstop TLV-MIA-TLV flights will be? Are there prospects for expanding USA-Israel service, particularly with more cities in the United States? Lastly, who typically flies these flights: religious pilgrims, businesspeople, people visiting family, tourists?
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RE: Profitability Of USA-Israel Flights

Mon Jan 23, 2006 11:52 am

CO, EWR-TLV, 2x daily. DO IT!

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RE: Profitability Of USA-Israel Flights

Tue Jan 24, 2006 1:15 am

Quoting Airplanetire (Thread starter):
Lastly, who typically flies these flights: religious pilgrims, businesspeople, people visiting family, tourists?

All of the above. Tourists are coming back to Israel.

I believe Delta will do very well.
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RE: Profitability Of USA-Israel Flights

Tue Jan 24, 2006 3:14 am

Actually USA-Israel is not the gold mine people think it is.

Sure during the summer season and around holidays flights fill up easily with relative high fares. However during the off season there is plenty of capacity and cheap fares out there making the route marginal at best.

The long distance involved, competition from near every European airline offering one stop service, plus the very extensive presence of tour operators and consolidators in the market make the US-Israel market a quite competitive and price sensitive for the airlines involved.
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RE: Profitability Of USA-Israel Flights

Tue Jan 24, 2006 4:16 am

I would think these are pretty profitable flights and here is why: CO operates between 12-14 flights a week on the route, which requires probably 3 777's at least. It's no secret that CO is desparately short of widebody capacity, given that they are pulling widebodies off of European flights and replacing them with 752s left and right. If their widebody capacity is that short, conventional wisdom states that they're only going to use the 777s where they make the most money. If they devote up to 3 777's for TLV service, it must be extremely profitable and have high BusinessFirst loads given that the 777 has the most capacity in J class.

I'd be willing to wager that EWR-TLV is a cash cow for CO, and that DL will do well on the route from ATL-TLV, even if it gets off to a slower start. It took CO time to nurture the route and it is now a success.

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