Bike Riding Flies on El Al

Bike riders like El Al. The Israeli airline is the only known international carrier to allow passengers to fly with their bicycles free of charge.

Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu, | updated: 09:14

bicyclist rests on Mediterranean beach
bicyclist rests on Mediterranean beach
Israel news photo: Flash 90

Bike riders like El Al. The Israeli airline is the only known international carrier to allow passengers to travel with their bicycles free of charge.

“Israel is passionate about cycling and, as Israel’s national carrier, so are we,” says Uri Danor, EL Al’s senior executive in Britain and Northern Europe. He points out that Israel’s varied nature, its Biblical heritage and the climate attract cycling tours.

In order to encourage bicycling, El Al has hooked up with a mountain biking club to offer a discount on bike rentals for the airline’s passengers. Tours include cycle paths in Judea and Samaria and an “Israel Heritage" charity bike trek.

Israel has invested in bicycle paths in major cities, while the “Nature Trail” extending from the northern to southern border has attracted thousands of hikers, although many of the paths are not suitable for bicycles.

Taglit-Birthright Israel offers 10-day “Israel by Bike” tours that include the Western Wall, Tel Aviv, the Golan Heights, Masada, the Dead Sea, camel riding and rafting down the Jordan River.

Unlike other Middle East countries, women are free to bicycle in Israel without fear of Muslim restrictions on dress when appearing in public. In Saudi Arabia, women are even are forbidden to drive, but the kingdom has said it will lift the ban by the end of year following intense pressure by women’s rights groups.




top