Emirates' new Tel Aviv flight gets June 23 start date
Emirates' much-anticipated service to Israel now has a new start date.
Daily service between Dubai (DXB) and Tel Aviv (TLV) will begin on June 23. This is a postponement from its previous December start date when Israel temporarily closed its borders due to the omicron COVID variant.
Want more airline-specific news? Sign up for TPG's free new biweekly Aviation newsletter!
Emirates will use its Boeing 777-300ER on the route, featuring eight first-class suites, 42 business class lie-flat seats and 304 economy class seats. While Emirates' premium cabins are luxurious, you won't have much time to sleep on this route, which is scheduled at just over 3 hours.
The outbound flight, EK931, departs at 3:50 p.m., arriving in Tel Aviv at 6 p.m., all times local. The return flight, EK932, departs Tel Aviv at 7:55 p.m., arriving in Dubai at 11:59 p.m. Emirates notes that the flights are conveniently timed for connections to destinations in countries such as Thailand, India and South Africa.
Scheduled air service between the United Arab Emirates and Israel is possible as a result of the signing of the U.S.-brokered Abraham Accords in 2020, which normalized relations between the two countries. Emirates' service joins a busy market of carriers already offering service between the two cities, including UAE-based FlyDubai, and Israel's El Al, Israir and Arkia. However, Emirates will be the only carrier to fly widebodies on the relatively short route — though Etihad Airways flies the Boeing 787 Dreamliner between Tel Aviv and the neighboring emirate of Abu Dhabi. There's even a kosher airline catering facility in Dubai — a sign of how popular the destination has become for observant Jews.
More: Inside the Dubai-based company revolutionizing inflight kosher meals
“We look forward to finally welcoming customers onboard our flights to and from Tel Aviv this summer, and offer them substantial connectivity to and through our Dubai hub as COVID travel restrictions continue to ease around the world and more borders open up," Emirates Chief Commercial Officer Adnan Kazim said in a statement.
A round-trip in economy class from Dubai to Tel Aviv is currently selling for AED 1,955 (USD $532.25), with business class selling for AED 8,615 (USD $2,345.43) and first for AED 18,055 (USD $4,915.47). Business-class awards are pricing at 90,000 Emirates Skywards miles, with a pricey AED 1,525 (USD $415.18) in taxes and fees. Given the short length of this flight, it might just be worth flying economy class, where awards price out at 27,500 miles and AED 545 (USD $148.38) in taxes and fees. Using current TPG valuations of 1.2 cents per mile, this economy class redemption will still save you $54.