Reported by medias24.com on 14 December, 2020
A few days after the royal announcement of Morocco’s decision to allow direct flights with Israel, three Israeli companies have already expressed their interest in serving the Kingdom. According to several official sources, these links will be operational at the end of March 2021 and will initially transport 200,000 tourists from next year.
Faced with the worst crisis in its history, Morocco’s tourism industry has greeted with surprise and satisfaction the news of the upcoming authorisation of direct flights between Morocco and Israel. Indeed, this unexpected decision will provide a new source market.
Preferring to speak on condition of anonymity, a tourism industry spokesperson affirmed that the arrival of the Israeli outbound market is unimaginable good news since the onset of the pandemic.
“Receiving 200,000 visitors from the end of 2021 is perfectly manageable with the airlines, not to mention the promotional actions that will soon be carried out.
“Indeed, the 70,000 Israelis who currently visit Morocco each year come without any organisation or structuring of their market, whereas from 2021, there will be contractors such as tour operators or airlines who will manage these air flows.
“With three Israeli carriers who have said they are ready to quickly serve the Moroccan market and the national carrier (RAM) which should also provide the reciprocal service, it is therefore likely that we could reach the figure of 200,000 Israeli tourists by the end of next year.
“It’s a great start, considering that it took four years of work to reach the figure of 140,000 Chinese visitors in 2019.
“In fact, it is true that we are not starting from the same base because Morocco has a very large Moroccan diaspora in Israel which numbers over a million people.
“Once we reach the target of 200,000, we will have to work a lot before we can switch to another strategy that will allow us to enter the millionaire club in the medium term.
“After the vaccination campaign which should put an end to the terrible health crisis that we have been experiencing for 10 months, this is one of the most beautiful news that Moroccan tourism has known.
“First of all, it will be necessary to sign air agreements so that Moroccan and Israeli airlines can operate in each of the two countries, but as instructions in high places have already been given, this step should be done very quickly.
“Knowing that there is a whole lot of logistics involved, opening a line for a single airline can take at least a year.
Airlines will be operational in February or March 2021
“If it is difficult to say exactly when the flights will start, everything will depend on the responsiveness of the 3 Israeli companies (El Al, Israir Airlines, Arkia) but in view of their recent statements, the launch will be operational in 2 or 3 months”, concludes our air expert who adds that it will take 10 to 15 days to have more visibility.
In an interview with the newspaper “Le Monde”, Nasser Bourita, Minister of Foreign Affairs was just as optimistic by declaring that “the direct connections will be inaugurated very soon”.
Tel Aviv-Casa: $ 450 in 5 hours instead of $ 850 in 12 hours
In several statements to the press, the CEOs of the companies El Al Israel Airlines and Israir Airlines have announced their intention to operate direct flights from next March which will last 5 hours instead of 12 with stopovers with an average price of 450 dollars. against 850 currently.
Regarding the frequencies to come, the Israeli company Israir announced to the daily “The Jerusalem Post” that it would start with 20 flights per week between the two countries including at least one daily flight between Tel Aviv and Casablanca.
Knowing that many Moroccans aspire to travel to Israel, RAM should also serve its airports even though it has so far received no visibility from the Moroccan government.