Israel Airports Authority (IAA) has recorded a 33 percent rise in the number of international passengers flying into Ovda Airport, Eilat since the start of 2017, in addition to a 27 increase in flights. Low-cost airlines account for the majority of carriers operating to and from the airport, with Ryanair holding the largest market share at 31.7 percent, followed by Ural Airlines with almost 19 percent, Russian Airlines with 8.1 percent, Wizz Air with 7.1 percent, Transavia with 5.7 percent, Finnair with 5.1 percent, and Monarch with 4.1 percent. The IAA has attributed the rise in traffic to a number of factors, including an increase in airline competition, exemption from airport fees for flights landing and taking off at Ovda Airport, and a subsidy to airlines for transporting international visitors.
Eilat’s upcoming winter season will see 88 weekly frequencies, including new routes that are to be launched. Scandinavian airline SAS is introducing direct flights from Stockholm (reported in ITN #395); Ukraine Air is operating Kiev flights, and Russian’s Rossiya Airlines is offering Moscow-Ovda flights.