2,546,153 travelers in Tel Aviv's airport

Ben Gurion Airport reaches record high, with far more passengers during August than authorities expected.

Eliran Aharon ,

Travelers in Ben Gurion Airport
Travelers in Ben Gurion Airport
Hezki Baruch

The number of travelers in August surpassed the Israel Airports Authority's (IAA) expectations, with over 2.5 million people passing through Tel Aviv's Ben Gurion Airport in a single month.

At the beginning of August, it was expected that 2.3 million passengers would depart and arrive at Ben Gurion Airport.

However,according to the IAA, August saw 2,546,153 travelers pass through the airport, on 15,857 international and local flights. Over two million international passengers are expected to pass through the airport in September, representing a 12% rise.

Since January, the number of international tourists has risen 18%, reaching a record high of 20 million travelers since the beginning of the year.

According to the IAA, part of the reason for the rise is Israel's "Open Skies" agreement, and part is the 25% increase in the number of low-cost flights.

1.5 million passengers traveled via low-cost flights, representing a full 15% of the total number.

"The Open Skies reform has completely changed Israel's flight industry," Transportation Minister Yisrael Katz (Likud) said. "There are 50% more flight options, and they are more varied, than we had before the Open Skies agreement was signed."

On September 17, just before the holiday of Rosh Hashana (the Jewish New Year), 100,000 Jews are expected to leave Israel for the Ukraine. There, they will spend the holiday praying at the gravesite of Rabbi Nachman of Breslov.

Israel's Ben Gurion Airport is one of the best in the world. Its previous record was set in July 2017, when 2,180,738 international travelers passed through Ben Gurion Airport.