January 19, 2021

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Poppin Fresh Travel

The Phantom Airline That Flies Airbus A220s Among Cairo & Tel Aviv

If you have to have to fly among Cairo and Tel Aviv, you will likely discover yourself on an unmarked white Airbus A220, operated by very little acknowledged Air Sinai. The airline has quietly operated considering the fact that 1982 as portion of the peace offer involving Egypt and Israel.

Just one of the two Air Sinai A220 aircraft. Image: Anna Zvereva by way of Flickr

‘Paper company’ for EgyptAir

Air Sinai is an airline based in Cairo but in fact, it is just a ‘paper company’ operating flights for its mum or dad, EgyptAir. Thanks to political sensitivities in the region, EgyptAir prefers to distance itself from the flights, with Air Sinai showing as the operator. Air Sinai has its individual airline code – 4D (EgyptAir utilizes the code MS).

Air Sinai commonly flies as soon as a day in each direction involving Cairo and Tel Aviv. It operates two Airbus A220 aircraft, less than a damp-lease settlement with EgyptAir. This 244-mile flight is the only route Air Sinai has continuously operated, whilst there had been some domestic flights within just Egypt previously.

CAI to TLV route
Cairo to Tel Aviv is the only route operated by Air Sinai (considering the fact that 1982). Picture: GCMap

Operated with unmarked plane

The airline operates just two plane, both of those simple white Airbus A220 aircraft (registrations SU-GFA and SU-GFD). As discussed, these are soaked-leased from Egyptair, so whilst they are unmarked externally, all the fittings and goods inside of are EgyptAir branded. And they are crewed and operated by EgyptAir crew.

These A220 plane ended up only launched in 2019. EgyptAir has purchased 12 A220 aircraft, with the very first plane shipped in September 2019.

Prior to that, Air Sinai operated two Embraer 170 plane. These ended up once more owned by EgyptAir and operated without having EgyptAir markings.

Embraer 170 Air Sinai
An Embraer 170, without the regular airways marking of EgyptAir. Photo: Oyoyoy by way of Wikimedia

Going back to its commence, however, Air Sinai did have markings and its possess livery. From 1982 it operated a Boeing 737-200 plane, painted in the airline’s have yellow and blue livery (which now doesn’t look to be used, even on its agent’s internet site).

Air Sinai 737
The Air Sinai Boeing 737-200. Image: G B_NZ by means of Wikimedia

Component of the Egypt and Israel peace deal

So why does Air Sinai exist? It came about subsequent the peace deal involving Egypt and Israel, signed in 1979. This led to the normalization of relations among the two nations around the world, and the removal of Israeli troops and civilians from the Sinai peninsula. Part of the phrases of the offer demanded air back links to be founded amongst the capitals.

Shortly following the peace offer was signed an additional airline, Nefertiti Airlines, was established up to function this route. This only operated until finally 1982 when Air Sinai, with its backlinks to EgyptAir, was established. There was also a time period in the 2000s when El Al had an intermittent operation on the route, but mainly it has been dealt with totally by Air Sinai considering the fact that 1982.

Not a inexpensive route

Till not too long ago, it has not been that simple to guide on to Air Sinai. It has not experienced a web-site and does not publish fares as a result of on the web travel agents. Nor can flights be booked as a result of EgyptAir. Flights experienced to be booked with vacation agents in Egypt or Israel.

This has transformed a short while ago, with the start of a web site. Travellers can now e-book flights on the internet, paid out by credit score card. Apparently, this internet site lists contacts in the British isles and United states of america, but not locally, and operates as a United kingdom primarily based agent.

Egyptair A220
It is now less difficult to pay a visit to Cairo with Air Sinai thanks to online reserving. Image: Bombardier

It is not a cheap route even though. Irrespective of getting only 244 miles, it commands a quality fare. A check on the web page in May well 2020 reveals a rate of €643.85 ($790) for a return flight two months in advance. But with the only alternatives becoming a lengthy flight with connections (Turkish Airlines or Royal Jordanian offer possibilities), it appears they have a captive, quality market place.

Have you at any time flown with Air Sinai? On the new A220 or any of its previous plane? Let us know your encounters in the comments.