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Mon, Apr 14, 2003

Israir Postpones New York Route Launch

Blame Drastic Drop In Pax Loads

Israir announced over the weekend that it will postpone the June launch of its Tel Aviv-New York flight service until further notice. The reason? “The economic situation and drastic plunge in passenger” numbers. After postponing flights from summer 2002 to summer 2003, Israir, found itself in the midst of a severe global aviation crisis, caused by the worldwide recession, the Iraq War and US terrorist alerts.

SARS: Straw That Broke The Camel's Back

The final blow was the SARS outbreak that further slashed air traffic on US routes. Israir believes the drop is Israeli passenger traffic since January 2003, due to the economic crisis, will intensify.

In recent months, El Al has taken a number of marketing measures against the anticipated competition from Israir this summer. El Al announced a sales campaign close to the dates of Israir’s scheduled launch, lowering ticket prices to $450 in some cases. Although El Al initially planned to offer only a few low-priced tickets, Israeli passengers were well aware of the cheap flights.

FMI: www.inisrael.com/israir/profile.htm

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