By Staff Correspondent
In response to the mounting tensions between Israel and Hamas, Air India has announced a lenient rescheduling and cancellation policy for passengers travelling to and from Tel Aviv. This move comes as a part of the broader aviation industry’s reaction to the geopolitical situation in the region.
Those holding tickets issued prior to 9 October for journeys up to the end of the month are eligible for the said waivers. Air India, which typically operates five weekly services between New Delhi and Tel Aviv, had already suspended its services from 7 October, extending the halt until at least 14 October in light of the situation.
It’s not just Air India recalibrating its operations. Global aviation giants like United Airlines, Delta, Lufthansa, American Airlines, Air France, Ryan Air, and Aegean Airlines have also been adjusting their schedules either by suspending services or curtailing the frequency of flights to the region. Observers at Tel Aviv’s airport have noted a tangible impact due to the conflict, signifying broader implications for regional travel.
The ripple effect of the Israel-Hamas escalation is also palpable in the travel and tourism sector. Indian tour operators are witnessing a surge in last-minute itinerary changes and cancellations from clients slated to visit the region or nearby areas like Jordan come December.
Interestingly, the December quarter historically sees a robust flow of travellers to Israel, Jordan, and Egypt, attracted by the favourable climatic conditions. Data from the Directorate General of Civil Aviation highlights that, for the October-December 2019 period, as many as 38,573 passengers travelled between India and Israel.
European travellers, while expressing concerns over the instability, haven’t made notable cancellations or delays for trips to the region, shared an executive from a leading tour operation speaking to the media. The forthcoming months will be crucial in understanding how the geopolitical shifts might affect global travel trends.