LATAM Airlines launched operations to Tel Aviv on 12 December. Taking part in the ribbon cutting ceremony at Sao Paulo Guarulhos Airport to open the new route to Israel were: Dori Goren, Consul General of Israel to Brazil; Yossi Shelley, Ambassador of Israel to Brazil; Juan Ignacio Jofré, Captain, LATAM Airlines; Claudia Sender, President of LATAM Airlines Brazil & SVP Clients, LATAM Airlines; and João Pita, Head of Airlines Business, Sao Paulo Guarulhos Airport. The service, which originates in Santiago, will operate three times weekly using 787-8s based on OAG data.
A second ribbon cutting ceremony took place on arrival in Tel Aviv. Conducting the honour at the destination-end of the route were Claudia Sender, President of LATAM Airlines Brazil & SVP Clients, LATAM Airlines, and Yariv Levin, Israeli Minister of Tourism. No other airline links Tel Aviv with Sao Paulo or Santiago with non-stop services.
- LATAM Airlines launched flights to Tel Aviv (TLV) on 12 December, commencing a three times weekly Santiago (SCL) – Sao Paulo Guarulhos (GRU) – Tel Aviv service. No other carrier currently offers non-stop flights from the Israeli city to either Chilean or Brazilian city, with LATAM poised to use its 787-8 on the tri-city connection. Flights will leave South America on Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays, while return services will depart from Israel on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays. This routes becomes the first non-stop connection between Tel Aviv and South America. “After years of separation and as a result of the unprecedented momentum in tourism traffic into Israel, we inaugurate the first direct flight from South America,” commented Israeli Tourism Minister Yariv Levin. “The arrival in Israel of LATAM – one of the largest carriers in South America – is a breakthrough in flight connections between Israel and Brazil, and an expression of confidence in Israel’s tourism potential. And this in light of the huge increase in incoming tourism from Latin America.” This launch also marks the carrier’s only service into the Middle East based on OAG data.