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Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Israel to offer international airlines use of Eilat's Uvda airport

I know that many of you think that we have only one international airport, but in fact we have two. Uvda Airport outside of Eilat has been used by charter flights from Europe in the winter for many years and is capable of handling many commercial passenger jets (that's a Boeing 737 in the picture). From Noon on Wednesday Israel time (around when this post will go live), the State of Israel is offering the use of Uvda to foreign airlines who are afraid to use Ben Gurion.
Speaking to reporters at Ben-Gurion Airport, Katz said that Uvda would begin operating at noon local time. The minister said that efforts are also being made to provide service to some 4,000 Israelis who were left stranded in Istanbul after their airlines refused to fly into Lod in light of the FAA ban announced on Tuesday.
Katz said that his ministry had urged Turkish aviation officials to transport the Israelis back home, but that the Turks are hesitant to land their aircraft in Uvda.
Israel Radio reported on Wednesday that US Airways will renew its regular fights to Israel beginning on Thursday.
Well, maybe. If the FAA doesn't renew the ban. But we won't know that until about 7:15 tonight Israel time. In the meantime, you can find statistics on Uvda (or Ovda) here. I note that it says that the airport cannot operate at night. If that's true, it won't be much of a solution for the foreign airlines.

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