The ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas has not only caused death and destruction in the region but also disrupted global air travel.
Many major airlines have suspended or canceled flights to and from Israel, citing safety concerns and regulatory guidance. Here is a list of some of the airlines that have stopped flying to the Middle East’s only democracy:
1. Aegean Airlines
The Greek airline canceled all flights to and from Tel Aviv until Thursday, October 12. It said it would monitor the situation and update its customers accordingly.
2. Air Canada
The Canadian airline canceled flights to and from Tel Aviv until further notice. It said it would work with the Canadian government and other partners to assist Canadians who need to return home.
3. Air India
The Indian airline also suspended flights to and from Tel Aviv until October 14 “for the safety of our passengers and crew”. It said it would provide alternative arrangements for those who had booked tickets on these flights.
4. Air France
The French airline suspended flights without providing a timeframe. Its unit Transavia France cancelled flights through Thursday, October 12 and said it was not yet known what this meant for flights from October 13.
5. Air Malta
The Maltese airline canceled two return trips on Monday and Wednesday, October 9 and 11. It said it would continually adjust operations as needed.
6. Cathay Pacific
The Hong Kong-based airline canceled its Tuesday and Thursday flights between Hong Kong and Tel Aviv and said it would provide further updates regarding its next scheduled service.
7. Delta Air Lines
The US carrier canceled all flights to and from Tel Aviv for the rest of October, but said it would work with Washington if needed for repatriation flights of American citizens. Delta flies to Israel from Atlanta, Boston, and New York.
8. Easy Jet
The British low-cost carrier paused flights with Tel Aviv through Friday, October 13 and said it would adjust the timing of flights in the next few days.
The Finnish airline suspended flights to Tel Aviv until the end of the Nordic winter season on March 30, 2024. The airline does not currently use Israeli airspace, it said.
10. Lufthansa Group
Germany’s Lufthansa, Austrian Airlines, Swiss International Airlines, and Brussels Airlines canceled their Tel Aviv flights through Saturday, October 14. They said they would continue to monitor the situation closely and inform their customers about any changes.
11. Hainan Airlines
The only Chinese airline to fly between China and Israel, canceled flights connecting Beijing and Shanghai to Tel Aviv from October 12 to 31. It said flights between Shenzhen and Tel Aviv were unchanged.
Italy’s new national carrier canceled flights to and from Tel Aviv. It did not specify when it would resume the route.
13. Norwegian Air
Norway’s low-cost airline is canceling its flights from Copenhagen and Stockholm to Tel Aviv, as well as return flights, until December 19, a company spokesperson told Reuters news agency.
14. Korean Air
The only South Korean airline that operates direct flights between Incheon and Tel Aviv, canceled its Monday flight – but said it would operate a return flight from Tel Aviv to Incheon to bring people home.
15. American Airlines
The largest US carrier suspended direct flights to Israel after the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) urged airlines to exercise caution when flying in Israeli airspace. The airline said it would resume operations as soon as the situation stabilizes.
The conflict between Israel and Hamas erupted on October 7, when the Palestinian militant group fired thousands of rockets from Gaza into nearby Israeli towns during a Jewish holiday. Israel responded with airstrikes and ground operations in Gaza, targeting Hamas leaders, infrastructure, and weapons. More than 200 people have been killed in the conflict so far, most of them Palestinians. Several attempts to broker a ceasefire have failed, as both sides vow to continue fighting until their demands are met.
The disruption of air travel to and from Israel has caused inconvenience and uncertainty for many travelers. However, the safety of passengers and crew is the top priority for airlines, and they will continue to monitor the situation closely and adjust their operations as needed.