Virgin Atlantic’s daily flights between London Heathrow and Tel Aviv will provide import and export opportunities for customers to support Israel’s buoyant economy.
The route will commence on 25 September, offering a fast cargo service from Tel Aviv for goods such as high value precious stones, fresh produce, high-tech and electrical products, pharmaceuticals and express shipments.
The daily Airbus A330-300 flights to Ben Gurion airport will offer 20 tonnes of capacity on each service, and the decision to extend Virgin’s network to Israel will meet growing demand for cargo capacity, with total volumes into Israel increasing 17% in 2018.
Shai Weiss, CEO of Virgin Atlantic says Tel Aviv represents a “fantastic opportunity” for the airline, with Israel’s economy booming and its strength as a tech hub.
He adds: “We also see a significant opportunity to increase competition in the US – Tel Aviv market, using the strength of our trans-Atlantic Joint Venture with Delta to offer customers from Tel Aviv a wide range of US destinations connecting through London Heathrow including New York and San Francisco. It also promises to be a strong route for cargo.”
2018 was a strong year for shipments of pharmaceuticals, perishables and high-tech cargo to Tel Aviv, which rose 35%, 7% and 5% year-on-year respectively, according to market data.
Dominic Kennedy, managing director of Virgin Atlantic Cargo says Tel Aviv “is a really exciting new route” to provide connections to and from the US.
He says: “We know customers will welcome not only the choice of more capacity but also the opportunity to benefit from our network reach and service levels. We expect cargo to make a significant contribution to the success of the route.”