Flights to Israel - international flight tickets and hacker fares

Israel is open to international tourism

Visitors from all around the world can now enter Israel, regardless of their vaccination status. Foreign travelers are not required to quarantine, or present evidence of a negative Covid test result. However, health insurance with coverage for Covid treatment is necessary for the duration of the trip.

Most flights to Isreal have been resumed. Transiting via Israeli airports in order to travel on to other destinations is not currently permitted.

Arriving in Israel

  • If you are flying to Israel from abroad, you will most likely land at one of its biggest international airportsits main international airportBen Gurion Airport TLV in Tel Aviv. It is a relatively small airport that handles 16 million passengers a year (around 20% of London's Heathrow International Airport's travel traffic). Baggage collection and passport control are in Terminal 3 - the main terminal which handles most international flights. The airport train station is located on level S.

    These are also the best (and the cheapest) airports to fly into Israel. As they are used by many airlines serving the same routes, the competition for passengers is fierce – with decreased airfare as a result.
  • Once in Israel, take advantage of frequent intercity flights operated by domestic airlines such as El Al Israel Airlines, Arkia, Israir, and Ayit Aviation. Those in-country carriers typically offer lower fares, operate from smaller airports located closer to city centers (you save on ground transportation), and provide flexible schedules – with a wide range of departure times.
  • Planning to explore the region? Popular destinations near Israel can be easily reached with regional low-cost carriers (LCCs) by the likes of AirBaltic, Air Europa, Corendon Airlines, easyJet, Norwegian Air, Pegasus Airlines, Smartwings, SunExpress, Wizz Air, Transavia, and Vueling. If you have a layover in Israel and plan to fly only a short distance to one of its neighboring countries, these budget airlines are an excellent way to save money. However, the “no-frills” carrier may not provide free checked baggage allowance, complimentary food, in-flight entertainment systems, and fast customer support. You may not even get to choose your seats, unless you pay extra.

Airports of Israel

Best airports to fly into Israel: Ben Gurion Airport (TLV) in Tel Aviv, Haifa Airport (HFA) in Haifa, Ramon Airport in Eilat
Israel has 3 main commercial airports – Ben Gurion Airport TLV in Tel Aviv, Haifa Airport HFA in Haifa, and Ramon Airport ETM in Eilat.
Things to know before flying to Israel
Airlines flying to IsraelAegan Airlines, Aeroflot, Aerolineas Argentinas, AeroMexico, Air Baltic, Air Canada, Air Europa, Air France, Air India, Air Malta, Air Moldova, Air Serbia, Air Seychelles, ANA, AnadoluJet, American Airlines, Azerbaijan Airlines, Azimuth Airlines, Blue Air, Blue Bird Airways, British Airways, Brussels Airlines, Bulgaria Air, Cathay Pacific, Corendon Air, Cyprus Airways, Delta Air Lines, EasyJet, EgyptAir, El Al Israel Airlines, Emirates, Ethiopian Airlines, Etihad Airways, Finnair, Flexflight, Fly One, FlyDubai, Georgian Airways, Gulf Air, Hisky, Iberia, Israir, ITA Airways, JetBlue, Kemya Airways, KLM, Korean Air, LOT, Lufthansa, Neos Air, Norwegian Air, Pegasus Airlines, Qantas, Red Wings, Royal Air Maroc, Royal Jordanian, RyanAir, S7 Airlines, Smartwings, SunExpress, SWISS, Tap Air Portugal, Tarom, Thai Airways, TransAvia France, Turkish Airlines, TUS Airways, Ukraine International Airlines, United Airlines, Uzbekistan Airways, Aerolíneas Vietnamitas, Virgin Australia, Virgin Atlantic, Vueling, Wizz Air
Airlines of IsraelEl Al Israel Airlines, Arkia, Israir, Ayit Aviation
Regular price (roundtrip)✈ €100 – €250 (from Europe)
✈ $450 – $700 (from USA)
Flight hacks 40% — 80% off regular fare
Main airports in IsraelBen Gurion Airport (TLV) — Tel Aviv
Haifa Airport (HFA) — Haifa
Ramon Airport (ETM) — Eilat
Herzliya Airport — Herzliya
Rosh Pina Airport (RPN) — Rosh Pinna
Airline discountsDiscounted airline tickets to Israel (student/family/seniors/military)

Low-cost flights from Israel

Stay ahead of the game. Fly to popular destinations at a fraction of the regular fare.

The cheapest time to fly to Israel

The cheapest time to fly to Israel is during the winter – from November to March (excluding dates around Christmas and New Year). During these cooler months, Tel Aviv and Jerusalem take a break from the massive summer tourist crowds. With fewer tourists, the prices for flights, accommodation, attractions, and food dramatically decrease. If you are looking to save money, this is the best time to fly to Israel.

If you prefer warmer temperatures, the shoulder season is also a period with low tourist traffic, offering the opportunity to find discounted flights. The shoulder season happens twice a year: in the spring – March to May – and again in the fall – September to November.

Tight security checks at Ben Gurion Airport

Israel’s Ben Gurion International Airport near Tel Aviv is considered to be one of the safest airports in the world. It is also infamous amongst travelers for being seriously heavy with security. The internet is full of horror stories of intrusive luggage checks, innocent travelers being detained for hours, and forced to miss flights. However, it is important to understand that Israel has had a lot of issues in the past, and there is a history of tension in the region.

The truth is, with thousands of passengers coming in and out of the country every day, the airport employs a whole range of screening techniques (including an advanced luggage screening machine known as HBS) to make sure that they check everyone without causing delays and too much hassle. In practice for the majority of passengers, the airport security experience will be absolutely not that different from any other airport.

As there’s no way to avoid tight airport security checks, make sure you arrive at the airport at least three hours before departure.

Questioning by Israeli airport security

All arriving passengers are interviewed by security personnel. The questioning is polite and friendly, and the whole process seems like a simple informal chat. Interviewers look for such warning signs as nervousness, lack of a concrete reason for traveling to Israel, and suspicious travel history (some Arabic countries or countries with Muslim majority such as Indonesia and Malaysia). “Risky” passengers may be sent to private rooms for questioning and searches. In rare cases, the officials might ask you to open your email or Facebook for inspection.

Try to have your answers ready for this process. If you have hosts in Israel, make sure you know their names and contact details (they might be called to validate this information). If you will be staying in a hotel, have the reservation details. Tell the truth, stay calm and relaxed – nothing is personal, and you are not a suspect.

On completion of the interview, a sticker with a barcode will be stamped on the back of your passport. It will start with a number from “1” to “6”. Travelers who aren’t considered a threat at all by Israeli security are given numbers from “1” to “4”. Number “5” is for foreign visitors who raise some red flags (they may be questioned again). Number “6” is considered a high-security risk and such travelers would be subjected to further stringent questioning and screening.

Long waiting times when calling the helpline?

Social media is usually a faster way to reach the airline when a problem arises. Use Twitter or Facebook Messenger to contact the airline customer service and get a response and solution within minutes (see detailed guides for American Airlines, Delta, United Airlines, and others.

When it comes to Twitter, there’s one more trick to get in touch with the airline faster: mention the airline in a tweet about your issue (add “@airline_handle”, for example: @EL_AL_AIRLINES” if contacting Israeli national carrier EL AL Airlines). The social media team will often notice it immediately, ask you for a direct message, and respond privately.

Next tips

Flights to Israel from United States and Canada

  • There are no direct flights from the US or Canada to Israel. However, most major hubs in Asia have non-stop flights to Israel, as do some larger airports in the Middle East – your journey will have at least one stop. There are multiple options for direct flights from United States to Israel. American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, EL AL Israel Airlines, JetBlue, Lufthansa, and United Airlines offer non-stop flights to Tel Aviv's Ben Gurion Airport from Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, San Francisco and Washington. Prices start at $500 one-way for 11-14 hours long flight.

    If you are departing from Canada, Air Canada flies direct to Tel Aviv from Toronto (flight time: 10 hours 30 min).
  • Israel is well-served via one-stop flights from North America. Flights to Israel with one layover depart from most major North American airports, including Atlanta ATL, Dallas DFW, Denver DEN, Chicago ORD, Los Angeles LAX, Las Vegas DFW, Miami MIA, Seattle SEA, Houston IAH, New York JFK, and San Francisco SFO in the United States and Toronto YYZ, Vancouver YVR, Calgary LAS, and Montreal YUL in Canada.
  • The best airlines to fly to Israel from the US and Canada are: Air Canada, American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, Turkish Airlines, Air France, British Airways, KLM, and Lufthansa. They are top full-service carriers, offering exceptional customer service, in-flight comfort, a generous checked baggage allowance, and reliable customer support channels – all included in the ticket price.

Israel from US & Canada.
Ticket prices in April 2024.

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Avoid currency exchange kiosks at Israeli airports

It is always a good idea to bring some cash with you to Israel. The official currency of Israel is the New Israel Shekel or shekel for short (usually abbreviated “NIS”), subdivided into 100 agorot.

Airports are infamous for making an exuberant amount of money from their currency exchanges due to the extremely high margins, and Israeli airports are no exception. Airport kiosks usually charge higher fees which are sometimes hidden within the poorer exchange rates they offer – their business is based on charging extra for being a convenient, last-minute option.

Plan ahead and bring a significant proportion of your spending money in cash. You may also try to exchange some money for the Israeli shekel at one of the plentiful ATMs located at the airports, and all over the country. Virtually all of them accept foreign Visa and MasterCards.

Long waiting times when calling the helpline?

Social media is usually a faster way to reach the airline when a problem arises. Use Twitter or Facebook Messenger to contact the airline customer service and get a response and solution within minutes (see detailed guides for American Airlines, Delta, United Airlines, and others.

When it comes to Twitter, there’s one more trick to get in touch with the airline faster: mention the airline in a tweet about your issue (add “@airline_handle”, for example: @EL_AL_AIRLINES” if contacting Israeli national carrier EL AL Airlines). The social media team will often notice it immediately, ask you for a direct message, and respond privately.

Next tips

Flights to Israel from UK, Germany, France, Netherlands and other countries in Europe

  • There are no direct flights from Europe to Israel — you’ll need to get a connecting flight from elsewhere in the Middle East or in Asia. Direct flights from Europe to Israel are just 2-5 hours long. Most large European hubs have a nonstop connection to Tel Aviv's Ben Gurion Airport - including Amsterdam, Athens, Frankfurt, London, Paris, Rome, Vienna, Warsaw, and Zurich. You can fly non-stop from Europe to Israel with popular low-cost airlines such as easyJet, Pegasus Airlines, Ryanair, Smartwings, and Wizz Air.
  • Airlines that frequently fly from the UK, Germany, France, and other European countries to Israel include Aegean Airlines, Air France, Air Malta, Air Serbia, Cyprus Airways, Austrian Airlines, Brussels Airlines, Iberia, LOT, Neos Air, SWISS, TAP, Tarom, and Virgin Atlantic.
  • Consider departure airports in neighboring countries to increase your chance of spotting the best deal. Especially look for large airports that serve as hubs for multiple airlines. For example, if you live in Western Europe, check air tickets to Israel from Amsterdam, Frankfurt, London, Madrid, Paris, and Rome. Leverage frequent promotions from European budget carriers like RyanAir, EasyJet, and Eurowings to reach a major hub; from there, take a cheaper long-haul flight to your final destination, potentially saving hundreds of euros.
  • These major European airports are excellent departure points for trips to Israel: London LHR and Manchester MAN in the United Kingdom, Frankfurt FRA and Munich MUC in Germany, Paris CDG and Nice NCE in France, Amsterdam AMS in the Netherlands, Madrid MAD and Barcelona BCN in Spain, Rome FCO and Milano MXP in Italy, Brussels BRU in Belgium, Copenhagen OSL in Denmark, Oslo OSL in Norway, Stockholm ARN in Sweden, Zurich ZRH in Switzerland, Lisbon LIS in Portugal, Vienna VIE in Austria, Warsaw WAW in Poland, Prague PRG in the Czech Republic, and Dublin DUB in Ireland.

Israel from Europe.Flight schedule and ticket prices.

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Check different departure airports

Consider neighboring cities when choosing the departure airport – especially look for larger cities with airports that serve as hubs for multiple airlines.

For example, if you live in West Europe, check prices for flights departing from Paris, London, Amsterdam, Frankfurt, Rome, or Vienna. In 9 out of 10 cases, the cheapest flight to Israel will depart from one of these hubs, and it may be €500 less or more than your first choice. Yes, you may have to fly a few hundred kilometers to this hub, but low-cost airlines like EasyJet, RyanAir, or WizzAir will happily take you there for €50 – €100.

Use a similar tactic if you depart from the US or another region. It’s one of the best ways to save hundreds on trips.

Book flights from many departure airports
By entering more than one departure city in the flight search engine (at the top of this page), you can quickly find the airport with the cheapest flights to your destination

Last-minute flights to Israel. The real cost of convenience.

Last-minute flights are often touted as a great way to save money, but the reality is far from it. Booking last-minute flights to Israel almost always never works out.

Based on years of research, the airlines know what people are willing to pay for specific flights and dates. To make the most money, they will sell their cheapest fares first and then increase the prices right before the flight to take advantage of these travelers who are willing to pay the premium price for late booking.

Occasionally, airlines can offer last-minute deals to fill the remaining seats, but these are for unusual times and unpopular places. Popular destinations and dates tend to sell out quickly.

Planning ahead is key to securing a good deal on your flight. Last-minute flight deals are hard to come by, so as soon as you have a tentative travel timeline, book your flight. The earlier you book, the more likely you are to save money. If you are looking for a good deal, the best time to book your flight to Israel is 2-8 months before the takeoff.

Airlines of Israel

Israel’s national flag carrier is EL AL Israel Airlines operating from its base in Ben Gurion Airport. “El Al” comes from a Hebrew word that mean‎s “upwards” or “to the skies”. EL AL offers the largest choice of non-stop and indirect flights to Israel from more than 50 countries in Europe, the Middle East, Asia and North America. El Al is considered one of the world’s safest airlines – thanks to stringent security procedures, a plainclothed security guard on board every flight, and aircraft equipped with missile defense systems.

The three other Israeli airlines are Arkia, IsrAir, and Ayit Aviation. These smaller carriers are mostly focusing on short-haul routes, offering flights at lower prices in comparison to full-service EL AL. However, because they manage affordable tickets by cutting down on their operation costs, they may not provide free baggage allowance, inflight refreshments, meals, or onboard entertainment. In most cases, their tickets are fixed and non-refundable in case of no show-up or cancellation.

Flights to Israel from Australia and New Zealand

  • Australia and New Zealand offer robust flight networks to key APAC locations, Israel included. While domestic carriers like Qantas, Jetstar Airways, Virgin Australia, and Air New Zealand provide solid options, several major international airlines also serve these routes. These include ANA, Cathay Pacific, EmiratesGaruda Indonesia, Japan Airlines, Korean Air, Malaysia Airlines, Philippine Airlines, Qatar Airways, Singapore Airlines, and Thai Airways — expanding your choices for travel between Australasia and Asia.

    There are no direct flights from Australia or New Zealand to Israel. You’ll need a layover in one of the major hubs in Asia.
    However, El Al Israel Airlines plans to launch a direct flight route between Melbourne and Tel Aviv sometime in 2023.
  • Airlines have different pricing strategies for different routes. A flight to Israel could be significantly cheaper from Sydney than from Melbourne, depending on airline partnerships, demand, and even time of year. Compare fares from different international airports in Australia: Sydney SYD, Brisbane BNE, Melbourne MEL, Perth PER, Adelaide ADL, Cairns CNS, Gold Coast OOL, Canberra CBR, Darwin DRW, Hobart HBA, Alice Springs ASP, and in New Zealand: Auckland AKL, Wellington WLG, Christchurch CHC, Queenstown ZQN, Dunedin DUD, and Hamilton HLZ.
  • If you’re looking to save, consider flying from Australia or New Zealand to a primary Asian hub, then catch a connecting flight to Israel with a regional budget airline such as AirBaltic, Air Europa, Corendon Airlines, easyJet, Norwegian Air, Pegasus Airlines, Smartwings, SunExpress, Wizz Air, Transavia, and Vueling.

    For the initial leg of your trip, full-service airlines such as Qantas or Virgin Atlantic offer premium comfort and exceptional service, albeit at a premium price. However, many Asian airlines, including budget carriers, operate out of Australia and frequently feature sales and promotions. For instance, AirAsia runs deals to Jakarta, Kuala Lumpur, and Singapore; Cebu Pacific to Manila; Scoot to Singapore; VietJet Air to Ho Chi Minh City; Jetstar to Seoul, Singapore, and Tokyo; Bamboo Airways to Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, Beijing; Batik Air to Jakarta and Singapore.

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Booking group flights to Israel

Flights are cheaper when purchased in bulk rather than as individual tickets. Booking group flights to Israel can be a cost-effective option for a school trip, family reunion, or corporate group traveling to a conference.

To qualify for the special group rate, the group must usually have at least 10 passengers. Discounts depend on the airline, group size, and travel dates, and typically range from 5% to 20% off the regular airfare.

Airlines and flight search websites typically limit automatic group bookings to 10 passengers. This limit reflects the complexity of managing larger groups, which require personalized service and more time to coordinate. To get the price quote for your group, you’ll need to contact the airline or a travel agent directly.

Most airlines have a group booking form or phone number (see examples at Emirates and Qantas). Fill out the form, and the airline will come back to you with the proposed group rate. If your group is large and a scheduled flight cannot accommodate everyone, the airline may offer you a charter flight.

Additionally, there are various perks that your group may be eligible for:

  • free seats (complimentary tickets for every 10 or 20 passengers that book together)
  • free checked baggage allowance
  • dedicated group check-in counter at the airport
  • cabin crew who speak your group’s language
  • flexible booking terms (that allow changes without fees)

Booking group flights to Israel is similar to booking individual flights. The main difference is that you’ll need to provide personal information for all passengers, and the airline may request additional details, such as meal preferences or accommodations for disabled travelers. A deposit – typically 10-50% of the total cost – may be required to secure the booking. However, some airlines offer deferred payment options where you can secure a reservation with a booking fee and pay the balance later.

If you’re open to different airlines or want more personalized service, a travel agent may be a better choice. Travel agents may have access to discounted group rates to Israel and can help with logistics and scheduling.

“Hot seats” on long-haul flights

Those days seat selection is considered an optional, extra paid service – seats with extra legroom (front and exit rows) are usually priced higher. However, if you’re about to take a long-haul flight to Israel, those “hot seats” are worth considering – expect to pay $50-$100, which is much less than upgrading to Premium Economy.

If you want to choose your seats, do this early (ideally during the booking) for a more extensive selection of available options.

Booking hot seats (preffered seats with extra legroom) on plane
Choosing a hot seat during the flight booking process is usually worth it. For a reasonable price, you will get more room to stretch your legs, as well as a wider seat pitch.
Next tips

Flights to Israel from Bali, Bangkok, Delhi, Dubai, Hong Kong, Jakarta, Kuala Lumpur, Manila, Singapore, Seoul, Tokyo, and other major hubs in Asia

  • Asia is probably the best continent for short-haul and mid-haul flying. The sheer scale of this most populous region on Earth is reflected in the type of aircraft operating many shorter routes: intra-Asia flyers benefit from comfortable, wide-bodied aircraft by the likes of Boeing 777, 787 or Airbus A350, A330, and A380. When booking your flight to Israel look for these bigger planes as they will almost always give you the best experience in every cabin, including better seat pitches, higher ceilings, and larger overhead bin space.
  • Asia is also home to most of the world’s best airlines. There are only ten airlines that received the prestigious 5-star mark of quality from Skytrax, and all of them are from Asia: ANA, Asiana Airlines, Cathay Pacific, EVA Air, Garuda Indonesia, Japan Airlines, Korean Air, Qatar Airways, Singapore Airlines. Choosing one of these airlines for your trip to Israel will guarantee a pleasant journey – delicious meals served during the flight, great in-flight entertainment, and above-average airline customer service.
  • Asia is extremely well served by low-cost regional airlines. If you are visiting Israel and want to see several other countries on a tight budget, they often have great sales with rock-bottom prices, while still offering a relatively comfortable flight experience. Among the best Asian budget airlines you can book without hesitation are AirAsiaCebu Pacific, Citilink, FlyDubai, Indigo, Jetstar Airways, Scoot, SpiceJet. The cons? Being no-frills airlines they may not provide free baggage allowance, inflight meals, or onboard entertainment. The departure times may also be quite inconvenient as they try to save money by flying at off-peak hours.
  • Most major Asian airports have convenient and frequent flights to Israel — including Changi (Singapore), Dubai (UAE), Hong Kong (China), Incheon (Seoul, South Korea), Indira Gandhi (New Delhi, India), KLIA (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia), Narita (Tokyo, Japan), Denpasar (Bali, Indonesia), Soekarno–Hatta (Jakarta, Indonesia), Ninoy Aquino (Manila, Philippines), Suvarnabhumi (Bangkok, Thailand), Taoyuan (Taipei, Taiwan), and others.

Israel from major Asian airports.Flight prices in April 2024.

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Lost luggage prevention: Essential tips

Every year, airlines handle millions of bags and a small percentage never make it to their final destinations. Avoid lost luggage nightmares on your trip to Israel by removing old tags from previous flights on your suitcases – they can confuse baggage handlers and conveyor belt scanners. It’s also a good idea to label your luggage with your name, address, and phone number (both inside and outside the case) and attach a GPS-tracker device like Apple AirTag or Samsung SmartTag.

For peace of mind, consider purchasing travel insurance to cover the full value of your luggage, as airline liability usually doesn’t reflect the actual value of the baggage content.

“Book Flights Now, Pay Later” — is it worth it?

Booking a flight and paying for it later has recently become a popular trend in the travel industry, with many airlines offering delayed payment plans. They will allow you to make flight reservation to Israel now and then pay the bill in installments. But should you take advantage?

Book Now Pay Later (BNPL) plans are essentially short-term personal loans. By partnering with financial companies such as Affirm, Afterpay, PayPal Credit, Fly Now Pay Later, and Uplift, airlines can offer their loan services on the checkout page. When you book the flight with the BNPL option, the company pays the airline, and you repay the loan in installments over a set period (usually up to 24 months), with a set interest rate.

BNPL providers have varying terms and fees. Some may offer interest-free loans but have fees for late payments and require forced autoplay on your bank account, while others may have high annual percentage rates (up to 30-40% APR). There may also be transaction fees, down payment requirements, and many companies even run a credit check on the traveler.

Fly now pay later - delayed payments for flight reservations
Fly Now Pay Later works with numerous popular travel brands to provide delayed payment options

Among the airlines that offer a “fly now, pay later” option are American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, Emirates, Qatar Airways, Qantas, Turkish Airlines, United Airlines, Alaska Airlines, British Airways, KLM, Lufthansa, Southwest, and Virgin Atlantic.

Is BNPL financing worth it? If paid off on time, interest-free delayed payment on your flight ticket to Israel can be a great way to free up your cash flow. However, there may be safer alternatives available – such as taking advantage of an introductory 0% interest offer on a credit card or using flight price “freezing” services like Hopper.

Proof of onward travel – a simple hack

Travelers who go on long trips often don’t have a set itinerary and fly on one-way tickets. The problem? For many APAC countries, proof of onward travel is a legal requirement. If you arrive at the airport without an onward ticket (from Israel to another country), you’ll either be forced to buy one online or forbidden from boarding the plane altogether.

The cheapest solution? Renting an onward ticket! Use the websites such as OneWayFly or OnwardTicket to get a flight reservation for a limited amount of time (usually 2 to 14 days). They work by actually booking you on a real flight out of Israel and giving you a confirmable flight reservation with a PNR (Passenger Name Record) under your name. After the time limit, your spot on the flight is automatically canceled. Such “temporary tickets” tend to cost anywhere from $10 to $20.

Confirmed flight ticket reservation
Proof of onward travel: confirmed flight ticket reservation (source: OnwardTicket)