Didn’t buy a plane ticket before closing? You can buy from someone next door


Once it has been decided that Only those who purchased flight tickets before the start of the closure will be able to take off abroad during it, The Israeli public has found a creative way to circumvent the directive. This is done through flight speculations and flight packages from private individuals in groups on Facebook. A peek at the social network brings up a variety of offers from customers who offer for sale plane tickets or packages of flights and a hotel for an entire family, because they cannot fly on their own for various reasons.

While it is not possible to purchase flight tickets directly, dangerous or satisfying, it is not a bad option at all for those who want to visit abroad and do not have tickets.

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Israelis at Ben Gurion Airport before the closure begins

Among the posts on Facebook you can find ads such as: “For sale one adult ticket to Thessaloniki that was purchased before the closure at Israir for 420 euros, at a discounted cost of only 350 euros in this sand group here. It pays off!” The announcement stated that “there is a need to arrange a name change with the airline.”

But a check with the airline shows that for a name change up to 24 hours before the flight, $ 150 must be added to the ticket. This is an addition that cost almost as much as an additional flight ticket, however, it seems to be the way to bypass the guidelines and fly during the closure period with a ticket purchased before the closure takes effect.

There are quite a few such ads, which offer airline tickets and packages to various destinations. For example: “A holiday package to Thessaloniki on Sukkot between the dates 2 / 10-9 / 10, which includes round-trip flights (couple + 2 teenagers-child including 2 large suitcases, trolley and seating) at a cost of 350 euros per ticket including name change !!!”

We also found an offer for two round-trip flights to Bulgaria, priced at 280 euros per ticket. The seller explained in his offer that the high price is due to the cost charged by the airlines for the name change, which lied especially on low cost flights.

But is it really possible to trust that in this way it will be possible to circumvent the guidelines? The answer is yes. A ticket purchased by one person can be transferred to another person, and no one has been banned from doing so since the closure went into effect.

Is it worth it? This is another question. Usually, as mentioned, this is an operation that costs money. The price for a name change can range from 45 euros in a company like Visair, for example, and can even reach 150 dollars. For example, with Israir, if the operation was performed up to 24 hours before the flight date. If it is a last-minute name change, which means less than 24 hours until the flight itself, then it is a full cancellation fee. Under the terms of the agreement in purchasing a plane ticket from the flying carpet company, for example, there is no special charge for a name change.

Reminder: The war on Ben Gurion Airport just before the closure took effect

(Photo: Barel Ephraim, Nadav Abs)

And what about the rights of the customer who purchased a ticket from another person? Does it have protection from the actual airline / carrier in case of flight cancellation, delay, etc.? According to Adv. Yael Cohen Shawat, Deputy Spokesman for the Israel Consumer Council: “A passenger who was issued a flight ticket following a change in the passenger’s details is entitled to the same protection as if the ticket had been issued in his name in the first place. By law.

“At the same time, it should be noted that when it comes to excessive cost charged for renaming a flight ticket it is definitely a kind of exploitation of a customer’s desire to fly at all costs. “If at all, in order not to pay any price to anyone who tries to sell in speculation. Please note that you will not be fined, especially these days.”

During the closure period, is it possible to actually perform a name change operation with the airline provider or the airline?
“I say this with caution,” says Advocate Cohen Shawat, “If the company makes the change without the company being sure that the passenger is allowed to travel – then it is a deception. Therefore, the airline must check in advance with the airport authorities whether the passenger who purchased the ticket is indeed allowed to fly, otherwise the company may mislead the consumer in a material matter – the right to travel. ”

Upon arrival at the field, it is advisable to obtain the name change confirmation as well as the actual purchase of the tickets by the customer who sold you the tickets. This is so that you can prove that the purchase of the ticket itself was indeed made before the closure.

The Amsalem Tourism Group stated that “this is a case in itself. On a regular flight it is not possible to change a name and charter flights can usually be changed. It is entirely up to the airline. It is their decision and not ours, so in any case one has to check the matter.”

Israir stated in response that “Anyone who purchased a flight ticket with Israir is entitled to cancel and change the ticket according to the conditions stated on the ticket he purchased. Israir is obligated to meet the ticket conditions. In the event of a name change when booking abroad up to 24 hours before the return flight date, each passenger will be charged a fee of $ 150 per passenger. Less than 24 hours before the date of the return flight, this will be considered as cancellation of an existing reservation and execution of a new reservation. “

The flying carpet company said: “From the moment the sky opened we left on favorable cancellation terms out of a desire to facilitate customers during this complex period and allowed us to cancel the package up to seven days before departure without cancellation fee and did not charge extra for name change. If we encounter a large number of requests, we will consider changing the conditions. “

Ms. Torres stated that “it is also possible to change the name on closing days and it costs $ 25 per person in the case of low-cost flights that are the company’s home product. If it is a regular flight of foreign airlines purchased through Ms. Tours, a transfer to another passenger will be done according to company terms. “From which the ticket was purchased, usually at no cost.”

Meanwhile, Israir will petition the High Court tomorrow (Wednesday) against the government’s decision to prevent the sale of airline tickets to green countries on existing flights.

The company’s CEO, Uri Sirkis, told Ynet that the only thing behind the Corona cabinet’s decision is visibility: “Let them not say why the synagogue is not and abroad yes. The decision means restricting Israeli aviation and asking the companies themselves to pay the bill, because They know that the companies are obligated to the ticket holders.The companies can not now sell new tickets, so some of the flights left the country at low occupancy rates.Israir flew in September about 30,000 people with an occupancy rate of about 50%, while now in this closure stands at less than “This is a loss of about 10,000 passengers and damage of $ 1.5 million.”

Sirkis said that at the legal level, the ban on purchasing tickets is inconsistent with the provision of section 4 of the Corona Virus Special Powers Act, and that the ban on flying outside Israel is not necessary to prevent infection because people leave the country. “I think we will not consider the extent of the harm to the public itself, which wants to vacation in countries where the morbidity rate is at least 20 times lower than in the State of Israel. We did not ask to add new flights but to sell to flights that have already been approved.” According to him, the competing companies did not block the purchase of tickets for customers – but the responsibility is on the passenger himself.

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