Air Seychelles has become the first airline to receive permission from the Saudi Arabian authorities to overfly Saudi territory on flights between Seychelles and Israel.
This occurred after Saudi Arabia announced last month that flights operating to and from Israel would be allowed to use this airspace, which previously was highly restricted with few exemptions.
Sandy Benoiton, acting CEO of Air Seychelles, said the granting of overflying rights was significant for the airline, allowing it to fly on a more direct route and at higher altitude, which meant a reduction in fuel burn of 500kg-1 000kg per flight. “In addition to this important environmental benefit, it means the aircraft can now carry an additional twenty passengers per flight and eliminates the payload restriction previously employed. This ultimately will have a positive impact on the number of Israelis implementing their dream of a holiday in Seychelles – rightly perceived as Paradise on earth.”
The first flight to access this new route was the Seychelles-bound HM21 yesterday, Wednesday, August 3.
Air Seychelles currently flies three times a week between Seychelles and Tel Aviv non-stop, with an additional weekly flight via Malé, Maldives.