With North American Carriers Sitting On The Sidelines, El Al Reports Record Profits And Flight Loads

El Al, Turkish, and United planes in Miami May 2024 ©DansDeals
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The war between Israel and Hamas has limited the flights options available for North Americans to fly to Israel. American, Delta, and Air Canada haven’t flown to Israel since October 7th and United only flew for a month, before suspending service again when Iran attacked Israel.

While many European carriers have returned to Israel, it’s tougher for the North American carriers as the crew needs to stay overnight due to the flight length. When United briefly resumed flights to Tel Aviv in May, they were the first foreign carrier to house their crew in Israeli hotels since October. Getting unions to sign off on overnighting crew in Israel has been one of the challenges for North American carriers.

All of this has been a boon for El Al.

The airline reported record 1st quarter results, swinging from a net loss of $34.4M on revenue of $500M in Q1 2023 to a profit of $80.5M on revenue of $738M in Q1 2024, its best ever quarter in history.

El Al carried 62% of all traffic to Tel Aviv in Q1 2024, up from 22% in Q1 2023.

Flight loads in Q1 2024 were an incredible 93%, compared to 85% of seats filled in Q1 2023.

Increased cargo demand also contributed to the record quarter.

El Al CEO Dina Ben Tal Ganancia notes that the last minute cancelations by foreign carriers has created a crisis and demand for every seat they can sell. She called for foreign carriers to return, noting that El Al can’t fill all the demand to Israel.

However, the airline also notes that those last minute seats are sold at high prices, which helped fuel the record profits.

This summer, El Al is taking delivery of a Dreamliner that was originally built for Air China and plans on adding more 787s to its fleet over the coming years. The airline added 15% seat capacity in Q1, but there’s only so much capacity that the airline can add, given airport slot restraints and limited aircraft.

DansDeals reached out to Delta and United to see if they will resume flying to Israel next week, as scheduled. Neither airline had an update from their previous statements that they gave us.

United’s last statement,We are canceling our daily Tel Aviv flight through June 5 as we continue to evaluate our next steps. We continue to closely monitor the situation and will make decisions on upcoming flights with a focus on the safety of our customers and crews.”

Delta’s last statement, “There has been no change to the June 7 start date. We of course continue to evaluate, as always, but that remains the current plan as of now.”

In the meantime, El Al expects to have big 2nd quarter results as well.

Do you plan on visiting Israel this year? What airline are you booked on?

HT: tavster, via DDF

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104 Comments On "With North American Carriers Sitting On The Sidelines, El Al Reports Record Profits And Flight Loads"

All opinions expressed below are user generated and the opinions aren’t provided, reviewed or endorsed by any advertiser or DansDeals.


Their load factor went up around 10 percent and their revenue went up close to 50 percent. Clearly their prices are alot higher then they were as anybody shopping for flights can see. The question is if they can sustain their customer base once other carriers return


I think they probably will gain some new customers. I have relatives that fly business and always flew United but took El Al on their most recent trip. They were pleased and are considering flying El Al for future trips to Israel. I know as an economy kosher-keeping passenger I would choose it if all other things are equal or close.


Has Turkish resumed flights from North America to Israel? Any forecast as to when they might resume?


Dude turkeys done. Like forever type done. No more hair transplants.


What about if erdogan loses the next election?


Since when do dictators lose elections???
Dictators get deposed. Ain’t happening anytime soon. They tried it once, and we all saw how it worked out.


I’m booked on Air Canada for October 13 JFK-TLV with a stopover in Montreal.
We were originally booked for October 12, but that flight was canceled.
Also are booked TLV-JFK Oct 29 with Air Canada as well.
Both flights through Aeroplan.
(originally had a flight with Turkish on Oct. 13, but was canceled due to current events. Air Canada stepped up and let us fly with them, with no extra points usage. Was very nice of Air Canada. Let ‘s see if we get to Israel)


High pricing has been a major factor in its profits.


@Dan is their pricing higher than it used to be, or are only last minute tickets expensive?


MUCH higher. Check it out yourself!


If anyone begrudges these profits, realize if prices were capped it would result in even further reduced supply so you can’t win.

Fam members booked on DL for early July – if DL and UA dont resume summer supply crunch will be insane…

Im planning to fly AA/ITA which seems to be running


I want to fly to Israel in August. Delta happens to have time slots that fit my schedule. Is flight cancellation risk minimal? Thanks.


Any airline but El Al.


Why would you not fly elal?


Status on other airlines and their associated benefits


El Al has elite benefits for partner airlines like Delta elites from what I understand.


I don’t have status, so this does not apply to me.


So happy for them! Thanks for another great article dan! I think I have suggested this before but I think you should start either a partner news website or sections of dansdeals. I always love your reporting




Your happy for them getting rich on my expense?
They charge rocket high pricing & then refused to refund me $8 they overcharged me, saying that they can’t issue a check in this amount, they can only refund me in form of matmid points.



Dan\'s the Man

Don’t know how crazy it is but could United fly the crew to Athens to overnight there and then fly back to Israel the next day to fly TLV to EWR or is that too crazy?

Huh? Why?

Why would UA (US based carrier) do this? The safety of the aircraft also is a factor.


I believe British is doing that. I was booked on (Iberia.com) AA JFK-LHR-TLV with the lhr-tlv on BA, they needed to cancel because BA had a crew stop in Larnaca.

Huh? Why?

You can fly to a connection point ATH to meet the crew and originate your UA flight. Is that too crazy?


I am traveling to Israel next week, God-Willing. LY was sold out from NYC area so I need to fly from MIA to get to TLV


War is always good for business


Depends for who. It’s not good for United nd Delta.


Any thoughts on Ryanairs recent Israel ads?


On one Pre Rosh Chodesh Iyar flight JFK-TLV, gate agents were weighing carry-on bags. I know at least one guy that was made to pay $99 dollars because his bag was over ElAl’s carry-on allowance.


Why is that disgraceful? That’s the contract of carriage that carryons can’t be overweight.


Do it by check-in when you have the option to remove things.


You really have no experience flying and you should know that almost every airline does not weigh carry on luggage especially after how much you paid for the flight you get to bring what you want on top of the plane especially if it’s important but in elal that not the case because they need to take every last penny from you


Ye happened to me too but they let it be 2kg over the weight. Fair enough. Don’t bring your seferim shrank.


Delta doesn’t have a weight limit for carry ons.


My wife and I always flew to Israel on United and we are Silver premier members. Our next flight is on ElAl and we intend to make ElAl our carrier of choice. United is so unreliable and they abandoned us in time of need so why should we give them our business now?


So you can have elite status when you fly domestic. Elal status won’t help you in the US.


We did 3 rt on united in 2022-2023. Had round trips booked on United for Nov ’23 and Jan ’24 which were all cancelled. We ended up going in March on El Al. We have 2 united credit cards that we likely won’t be renewing. Have to admit, I really enjoyed the United Newark and Miami Lounges especially since they expanded the Kosher food options, but for the foreseeable future, El Al is getting our $.


We all know that they canceled their flights to Israel to show sympathy to the Palestinians, there wasn’t missiles in a long time, now they should eat it


Your cuttinh your nose off to spite your face.

Boy in a Desert.

I doubt it. These airlines are in the business of making money not political statements. It’s more likely that the unions are scared of flying to a war ( or are making a political statement).

Kat man

el al as no one else is reliable


We’re planning a trip for Sukkot. Obviously ElAl is the only airline that you know for sure you’ll get there- but the prices are just so beyond insane, it’s nearly $3,000 a ticket. So we’re going to go with LOT- if I’m not mistaken they have actually been flying pretty much the whole time since January. They have short connection times on the flight to/from Toronto, so we’ll drive from Cleveland to there. I”YH we’ll make it but if something happens and it’s cancelled, we’ll go another time- we simply can’t afford ElAl right now. Hopefully the carriers return soon, and prices return to normal.


My wife and I are booked with United, next Thursday, their first day back. Holding our breath….


will they rebook you if they cancel?


They rebooked me on the way over last week, to Europe and then on Lufthansa. I had a lot more notice however than if they cancel me for this Sunday.


Ide always prefer to fly ELAL, but i do wish the other carries were flying . For some people, such as my family. the new $2000 a flight is very unaffordable. I dont think we are going back to the days of $799 but something like $1200 would certainly help a family of 6. B’H, a lot of peoples wages have been able to keep up to the times. For some of, not so lucky.


Booked 3 tickets with United for beginning of July. Hope they fly, if not, hope they put us on Swiss Air. difference of fare was $1,900 vs $1,140 /ticket.


Does United rebook in case of cancellation?

Yoni B

Yes, you may have to fight or HUCA.




Planning a weekend trip to Jerusalem next week, Which Points Program can I get ElAl tickets these days?


Qantas, transfer from chase or amex


Tnx much!
Always having problems on my computer with the Qantas portal but I’ll try to figure it out.


I am booked in September with ELAL.COM to fly with Delta which sells 30% cheaper than Delta.com.
In case that Delta doesn’t fly, what is ELAL gonna do with me?


They made improvements regarding shabbos and made record profits


Bringing my daughter home from her year in Israel on United in 2 weeks (if they are flying). Have booked a ticket on El Al for her the same day with LY-protect. This is an ELAL offering for $29, so can cancel up to 24 hours before the flight and get an EL AL credit for the ticket price.. seemed like a good insurance policy if United doesn’t start flying again.

Overnight potato kugel

I like that strategy – BUT!… I went to try it now and I see they give a CREDIT only, and not a refund. So you will potentially be out of pocket now for both tickets!


elal to melbourne june 2024 ??


Air canada did operate since October 7. Although they barely operated since October 7, Air Canada did operate 2 or 3 round trips starting April 9th.

I flew with them, and none of the crew were forced to fly, and they were actually happy to operate the flight. I’m surprised that they haven’t resumed?


I agree, it is hard to understand why they cancelled after the Iranian attack and haven’t come back yet, considering they did come back earlier while the war in Gaza has been ongoing. After all, the Iranian attack was kind of a one-time thing and isn’t really ongoing anymore, unlike the Gaza War. Same question goes for United- why have they not resumed since the Iranian attack given that there isn’t an ongoing conflict right now?


I know someone who works with Air Canada and took one of those April flights as well- although they were Air Canada planes- they were not Air Canada cabin crew- AC had used an outside agency for those flights. I am guessing there likely is still an issue regarding the union and a combination of the Govt having travel warnings about traveling to Israel at this time. Lets hope things turn around soon!

Phil DDF

It is basic supply and demand. In order to ensure supply in Israel dire situation, El al must raise prices. This is not El al price gouging, as others are accusing them of doing.


Just because one can use economic principles to explain it doesn’t mean it isn’t price-gouging… after all, basic economic theory states that when one has a monopoly with no competition- like ElAl has right now- they are going to charge inflated prices simply because they can, which is price-gouging if you think about it. I understand the economic argument, but I also understand the argument of someone who says that given the situation Israel is going through, and the good will of Jews around the world to support and visit, that Israel should be accessible right now- and that they should be thinking of this and not ONLY about getting every possible dollar. Some increase would be more than understandable but in my mind ElAl has gone too far.


How close to the departure date does United cancel the flights?


They cancelled my flight in May 2 days before scheduled departure. That was not fun. Not planning to fly united in the future.


Did they at least book you with other airlines?

Yoni B

Way to close, could’ve been 24 hours- don’t recall. united never actually cancelled my flight but rather “rescheduled” it. So we never got official notice of cancellation and had to actually call them so that they cancel the ticket and then they rebooked me, Never cancel the flight yourself otherwise united is not liable..

tom bradley

looking to book ly-aa codeshare through lhr, just flew it in jan
did they break codeshare?
if yes why arent they codesharing with delta
except for ib they have no codeshare to usa

Always the Loser

The only way I could only afford a ticket is by winning a Chinese raffle, but by now, the amount of raffles I entered so far probably could’ve paid for a few economy seats.


I posted the following in the discussion about the new Israeli visa fees. It appears even more relevant here.
With so many airlines cancelling on/off flights to Israel. What would be the best cc strategy to accumulate miles to fly on ELAL? Is Alaskan Airlines cc the best choice? Can you transfer Chase points to that airline?


Alaska has no transfer partners. Other options are Qantas, Etihad and Delta.


Now that Alaska is ending their El Al partnership and Amex already ended theirs a couple of years ago, is there any way to travel on El Al with points (besides Matmid earned on actual El Al travel)?


Same question nobody answered…


Qantas, Etihad, Delta

UA Premier

Qantas, availability is rare to find for business, economy and premium is easier.


ELAL has new owners

ELAL still losing money

Hamas attacks Israel

ELAL makes most money ever



Since when do robots get to comment on dansdeals?


JR is right. This reeks of foreign propaganda.


As a satmer chusid I can’t see myself flying Elal.
This is the airline that was originally opened by the state of Israel.


You’re probably not..but nice try to stir up hatred towards chasidim here.
That comment accomplishes nothing, other than say look at satmar chasidim who just hate Israel..
No point, especially during a war..

Chaim Green

I have met plenty Satmer’s on ElAl, maybe ElAl should stop buying regal which benefits Satmer’s fleish and hisachdus as well. Otherwise you have the choice to swim


Considering that the chasidus was saved by the zionists when they saved the Rebbe ZT”L from the concentration camps maybe you shouldn’t be a satmer chusid either…


Air Canada cancelled our flights for a party of 6 and left us scrambling to re-book. The final price was 1 1/2 times the Air Canada price and we ended up with a missed connection in the middle. We could have driven to New York and flown El Al. It would have cost a little more but peace of mind is worth something.


I’d like to buy a ticket from lax to tlv through Newark round trip is that advisable the Ella tickets are about 2500


United stewardess (who usually worked the Tel Aviv route) on a Newark-Athens flight told me this week that the Captain told her they likely aren’t restarting the Tel Aviv route until at least October.


I have a friend who’s uncle works with a guy who’s cousin’s neighbor’s grandfather works at EL-AL and he said…..


ly21 fort lauderdale is going to arrive min before sahbbos


We seldom fly direct. Prices for direct flights around Yom Tovim are prohibitive. For the leg between Europe and TLV, I’d fly El Al or anyone else who happens to be flying. Prices for short to medium flights are pretty consistent between different airlines.


I am not a Satmar Chasid, but after witnessing in Meron wild beasts in Magav uniforms I hear you.
I feel safer as a Frum Jew in America, than in Israel (YES EVEN WITH ALL THE COLLEGE PROTESTS)
I witnessed anti Charedi hatred to the next level


Meron was a closed military zone and anyone going there was breaking the law. I agree that the police brutality was completely out of hand but I am living in Eretz Yisroel for 5 years and have yet to see police aggression to people following the law.
As a law abiding person I feel much safer living in Eretz yisroel.


I suggest you watch some of the videos of the police in Meron this year, and maybe you will reconsider.


Meron was a closed military zone and anyone going there was breaking the law. I agree that the police brutality was completely out of hand but I am living in Eretz Yisroel for 5 years and have yet to see police aggression to people following the law.
As a law abiding person I feel much safer living in Eretz yisroel.


charge $1,900 a ticket when you book 5 weeks in advance of course youll make record profit

Laurie Schreiber

My daughter’s round trip flight home for Pesach from seminary cost a fortune. Chutzpah!!!!


Apparently Maldives shutting it’s borders to Israelis. May be worth noting anyone with Israeli ties or visibly Jewish may want to avoid traveling there right now…


Did you read the law that was passed in the Knesset regarding Meron?
It seems like not, because legally it was not a closed military zone.
pls read the law
(do you know how many permits were given out?)
Also, law experts were very skeptical if they legally had the right to throw out people from apartments they LEGALLY rented before the law was enacted.

Was it illegal to drive to Tzfat on Lag Bomer?
Was it illegal to walk in the woods near Meron?
Was it illegal to be in Moshav Bar Yochai?
Was it legal to beat up people in the forests outside Meron?

Sorry read the law again. to me it seems like Israel is a third world country that the police do whatever they want.

Food for thought, they wanted to close off Kever Shmuel Hanavi on the Yahrtzeit citing security concerns.
Yet the Yom Yerushalayim parade is scheduled to go through Shar Schem.
Does this make sense to you?

Barbara Arfe

If one is flying to Israel in August, is there a need for a visa?


I just went TLV to NY, Premium economy – for 1300$….

Simple: take a Israeli airline outbound to Athens (can be LY, Israir, Arkia) and catch the AA to NY. Way back with BA to Larnaca and the same story (LY to TLV). No reason to pay through the roof (LY TLV to JFK was 4K….)


Can you cancel elal flights for refunds or only for a year-long voucher?