Israel-Hamas war: El Al to adjust flight schedule amid Gaza war


El Al Airlines announced Friday that it will be making adjustments to its flight schedule on active routes due to the ongoing war with Hamas in Gaza.

The company is following domestic security guidelines as well as travel warnings for Israeli citizens staying abroad, as published by the National Security Council.

These adjustments come as El Al publishes its financial report for the third quarter of 2023.

How has Israel’s El Al Airlines changed its flights due to the war with Hamas in Gaza?

Some of the existing flight routes have been modified, and new routes to faraway destinations have been added to the schedule. In addition, flights to several destinations have been suspended.

Additionally, El Al has observed changes in consumer behavior among Israelis, with a preference for last-minute bookings rather than reservations months in advance. There have also been changes in destinations.

El Al employees remove passenger seats from a Boeing 777, so that the plane can be used to transport cargo to Israel during the ongoing war with Hamas in Gaza. (credit: EL AL on X)

Furthermore, the company has seen an increased demand for cargo flights and has mobilized to transport essential equipment to Israel for the IDF. Since the outbreak of the war, El Al has transported approximately 13,000 tons of cargo, including essential equipment, on numerous flights.

El Al’s CEO Dina Ben-Tal Gnansia emphasized the company’s sense of responsibility for the Israeli public during the ongoing war. She mentioned that it has hundreds of flights transporting Israelis to and from Israel and has increased its cargo flights to help with the economy and war effort.

In addition, she noted, El Al has taken numerous actions for the benefit of IDF soldiers and the families of hostages.

How much money did Israel’s flag carrier make in Q3 2023?

In terms of financial performance, the third quarter results showed an 11% increase in revenues compared to the same quarter last year, totaling approximately $696 million. Net profit, excluding a one-time accounting recognition in the corresponding quarter last year, increased by 70% to $52 million.

Cash flow from current operations also saw a significant increase of over 60% compared to the corresponding quarter, amounting to approximately $92.3 million. The increase in revenues was driven by high demand for passenger flights during the quarter.

The cash flow operating profit in the third quarter reached approximately $172 million, compared to $167 million in the same quarter last year, including the one-time accounting recognition.

El Al flights maintained a high occupancy rate during the third quarter, with 88.1% compared to 87.5% in the corresponding quarter last year. The company received its 16th Dreamliner aircraft in July, bringing its operational fleet to 44 out of 47 aircraft.

Financing expenses in the third quarter amounted to approximately $33.2 million, a slight decrease compared to the same quarter last year.

The net profit for the quarter was around $52 million, compared to $67 million in the same quarter last year, which included a one-time income of approximately $38 million.

El Al’s CFO Ya’acov Shahar attributed the strong performance in the third quarter to high demand, effective aircraft fleet management, quality service, proper pricing, and the efficiency measures implemented in the last two years. He expressed confidence that despite the ongoing war and adjustments to commercial activities, the company will overcome the challenges in the fourth quarter of 2023.