El Al has conducted its first flight through Saudi Arabian and Omani airspace since recent agreements lifted restrictions on transit by Israeli carriers.

The airline operated its LY083 service from Tel Aviv to Bangkok on 26 February, using a Boeing 787-9 – a flight which took about 7h 30min.

Its previous operation on the route involved flying south along the Red Sea, before turning east to cross the Indian Ocean, a diversion around the Arabian peninsula which added around 2h 30min to the duration.

Israeli carriers had already been granted access to Saudi airspace last year.

But this offered only limited benefits without the ability to cross Oman, particularly given that Yemeni airspace is considered a conflict zone to be avoided.

Oman’s government declared on 23 February that it would permit Israeli flight transit.

El Al says its services to destinations in Thailand – Bangkok and Phuket – will be the first to take advantage of the shorter flight times.

“We are proud to be the first Israeli airline to fly through the skies of Saudi Arabia and Oman, and take an active role in the history of the state of Israel,” adds the carrier.

el al 787-c-el al

Source: El Al

El Al cut 2h 30min from the flight time to Bangkok