Etihad Airways became the first Gulf carrier to operate a commercial passenger flight to and from Israel. The historic flight departed Tel Aviv Oct. 19, and returned from Abu Dhabi Oct. 21. The flight, in cooperation with Maman Group, brought Israel’s top travel and tourism leaders to the United Arab Emirates.
A Boeing 787 Dreamliner made the 3.5-hour flight, part of a travel trade mission to bring tourism industry leaders, key corporate decision makers, travel agents, cargo agents and media to experience Abu Dhabi and the wider U.A.E. region at the invitation of Etihad Airways and representatives of Abu Dhabi’s tourism industry.
This latest step follows the signing of the Abraham Accords between the UAE and Israel in Washington, D.C., on Sept. 15. Also part of the growing cooperation, EL AL Israel Airlines made its first symbolic commercial flight between Tel Aviv and Abu Dhabi Aug. 31.
The flights also carried commercial cargo. Etihad became the first non-Israeli airline in the Middle East to launch a dedicated website for the Israeli market in Hebrew. An English version is also available.
“Today’s flight is a historic opportunity for the development of strong partnerships here in the UAE, and in Israel, and Etihad as the national airline, is delighted to be leading the way,” said His Excellency Mohamed Mubarak Fadhel Al Mazrouei, chairman, Etihad Aviation Group. “We are just starting to explore the long-term potential of these newly forged relationships, which will be sure to greatly benefit the economies of both nations, particularly in the areas of trade and tourism, and ultimately the people who call this diverse and wonderful region home.”
How do you think this cooperation will enhance the Middle East region? What other developments would you like to see in the future? Does seeing this historic flight make you more likely to choose Etihad Airways? Tell us about it. Email us at [email protected] Please include your full name and location.
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