Less than two months after President Donald Trump helped broker a peace deal between the United Arab Emirates and Israel, Etihad Airways – the national airline of the UAE – made a historic flight on Monday.
Etihad became the first Gulf Coast Council member to operate a commercial passenger flight to and from Israel
The historic flight, flown in partnership with the Maman Group, departed Tel Aviv on Monday, operated by an Etihad Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft. The three-and-a-half-hour journey ended in Abu Dhabi and will return to Israel on Wednesday.
The plane brought Israel’s top travel and tourism leaders to the UAE, including tourism industry leaders, key corporate decision makers, travel agents and cargo agents, along with media to experience Abu Dhabi and the wider UAE.
"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,” Mohamed Mubarak Fadhel Al Mazrouei, Chairman, Etihad Aviation Group, said. “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.”
As an important facilitator of trade, the flights between Tel Aviv and Abu Dhabi will also carry commercial cargo sourced from, and destined for, points across Etihad’s global network, in addition to commercial guests.
Coinciding with the first commercial flight and in celebration of the recent peace accords between the UAE and Israel, Etihad has become the first non-Israeli airline in the Middle East to launch a dedicated website for the Israeli market in Hebrew. Also available in English, the Israeli version of the airline’s official website contains digital content including extensive information on Etihad’s operations, product, services and network.