Manama, Kingdom of Bahrain - 30 September 2021: Gulf Air, the national carrier of the Kingdom of Bahrain, has commenced its commercial service between Bahrain and Tel Aviv as its flight GF972 took off from Bahrain International Airport at 10:40am on 30 September 2021 and arrived at Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion Airport. The inaugural flight carried officials from Bahrain Tourism and Exhibitions Authority, the National Communications Centre, Bahrain’s Civil Aviation Affairs, members of Gulf Air’s executive management as well as commercial passengers. The flight is the start of Gulf Air’s two weekly service between Bahrain and Israel, deploying the airline’s newest Airbus fleet.
An event at Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion Airport was held where the aircraft was welcomed with a classic water cannon salute and passengers were welcomed by the airport authorities, media and TAL Aviation, Gulf Air’s general sales agent in Tel Aviv.
During the arrival event at Ben Gurion Airport, Gulf Air’s Acting Chief Executive Officer Captain Waleed AlAlawi said: “Today we are making history by connecting the Kingdom of Bahrain and the State of Israel with scheduled commercial flights. We welcome our friends in Israel to fly on Gulf Air and visit Bahrain and fly beyond to our extended network. The double weekly flights are just the start and we will periodically assess the commercial performance to upgrade frequencies whenever feasible and required”. He added: “I thank all the authorities here in Israel for making this inaugural flight as smooth as possible and for all the assistance offered to celebrate this special flight”.
Back in December 2020, Gulf Air signed five commercial agreements with five different Israeli aviation-related companies; a comprehensive MOU for a potential joint codeshare and commercial cooperation with El Al, a general sales agent agreement with TAL Aviation, a line maintenance agreement with Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) Aviation Group, a ground handling agreement with Q.A.S. Israel Ltd and an agreement with Newrest Israel for on-board catering.