On October 7, 2023, hundreds of Israelis and foreigner nationals were kidnapped by Hamas – ISIS Terrorist Organization from Gaza: children and adults, women and men, grandmothers and grandfathers, soldiers and civilians, entire families – to the Gaza Strip. The Red Cross has so far been denied access to visit the hostages. Bring Them Home Now!
By KTA News Team |
In light of these recent events and the ongoing unrest in our region, we recognize the concerns and uncertainties many might be experiencing. We want to reassure our esteemed clientele and partners of our unwavering commitment during these challenging times.
Kan-Tor & Acco has always stood as a beacon of resilience, adaptability, and dedication. We are fully operational, channeling our expertise and resources to ensure our clients continue to receive the high standard of service they expect from us. With a robust contingency plans in place, coupled with additional measures, we ensure a seamless delivery of our services.
Thank you for placing your trust in Kan-Tor & Acco. Together, we will navigate these tumultuous waters and emerge stronger on the other side.
In this blog, we provide timely updates on immigration matters related to the current conflict. For the most recent information and developments, we recommend visiting this page daily. Stay informed and ahead of any changes.
Swords of Iron - Frequently Asked Questions
- 06 December 2023 | Return of Palestinian workers to the construction industry | Travel and Flights | Travel Warning for Israelis
- A shortage of approximately 30,000 workers has emerged due to many being called up for military service, foreign workers seeking to return to their home countries of origin, and workers from Palestinian Authority-controlled areas facing lockdown restrictions.
- The Israeli government is outlining a phased return of Palestinian workers to the construction industry, with an initial influx of tens of thousands. Recognizing the construction sector’s pivotal role, authorities deem its revival a matter of national economic importance. Simultaneously, the government is developing a plan to provide immediate inbound for foreign workers post-war, aiming to reduce dependence on specific labor sources for long-term economic resilience.
Israeli airlines El Al, Israir, and Arkia continue to operate flights according to a tailored schedule.
This week, Ethiopian Airlines resumed operations with 5 weekly flights from Tel Aviv to Addis Ababa. Flydubai continue its flights to Dubai. Air Europa announced its return to the Tel Aviv-Madrid route starting from January 9. Etihad Airways continues to operate 4 weekly flights from Tel Aviv to Abu Dhabi. Uzbekistan Airways maintains direct flights from Tel Aviv to Tashkent. Russian airlines Red Wings and Azimuth Airlines continue direct flights from Tel Aviv to Sochi. Hainan Airlines from China continues to operate flights between Tel Aviv and Shenzhen but has canceled flights to Beijing and Shanghai. Hi Sky operates 3 direct flights weekly from Tel Aviv to Chisinau.
- Israel raises threat level against travel to 80 countries due to Gaza war. “At the same time, there is a constant and significant rise in incitement, attempted attacks, and manifestations of antisemitism in many countries,” it explained. The United Kingdom and Australia were on that list, as were 17 countries on the European continent such as Germany, France, Sweden, and the Netherlands. For more details click here
- 04 December 2023 | Hotel Industry Foreign Workers, Work Permit Application Halt: Technical Issue Being Resolved
- The Population and Immigration Authority announces that it is extending the deadline for the enforcement of employment contracts for foreign workers residing unlawfully in hotels. Given the current security situation and to support the continued operation of hotels that have accommodated a displaced population, the Authority informs that the enforcement date for hotels regarding the employment of foreign workers residing unlawfully in Israel is extended until February 29, 2024.
- Due to technical issues with the Ministry of Interior systems, the submission of work permit applications for foreign employees is temporarily unavailable. This impacts employers seeking to submit new or extension applications for their foreign national employees. The Ministry of Interior’s technical support assures that the issue will be resolved within the next few day
03 December 2023 | Dual US and Palestinian National Travel Restrictions
Effective from October 7, the Israeli government has imposed restrictions on the entry of Palestinian Authority ID/Passport holders from the West Bank into Israel, irrespective of any other nationalities they may possess, including U.S. citizenship. Exceptions to this rule are minimal, with provisions only for humanitarian or emergency medical reasons, requiring a permit from the Israeli authorities.
Currently, U.S. citizens holding PA IDs/Passports are unable to enter Israel visa-free for short-term visits (up to 90 days) for business, tourism, or transit. Furthermore, any B2 permits issued before October 7 that have not expired are now deemed invalid.
This implies that U.S. citizens residing in the West Bank who hold PA IDs/Passports are presently unable to access the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem or the Embassy Branch Office in Tel Aviv for in-person assistance with passports or Consular Report of Birth Abroad (CRBA). According to the US Embassy in Jerusalem, the embassy plans to conduct regular outreach in the West Bank for U.S. citizens who cannot travel to Jerusalem or Tel Aviv.
27 November 2023 | Lack of Construction and Agriculture Employees, Guarantees to Goreign Airlines
- Since the outbreak of the war, around 80,000 Palestinian workers, along with 20,000 illegal immigrants and several thousand foreign workers, mainly from Moldova, have left Israel. This has left the industry with approximately 17,000 foreign workers and 20,000 Israeli Arabs, enabling the sector (especially construction sites) to operate at a low productivity rate of around 30%. This problem is exacerbated by the country’s slow response, having recruited only about a thousand new workers so far, with uncertainty about when the gaps will be filled. Similily, the Israeli agriculture, primarily situated in the central and southern regions, traditionally relies on thousands of Thai and Palestinian laborers. However, many Thais left Israel after the Hamas attack on October 7, and Palestinians will no longer enter to work in Israel.
KTA Partners, leveraging various public capacities, advocates for decisive decision-making in the realm of workforce considerations. In many global regions, particularly in countries such as India, a responsive government capable of making effective decisions and swiftly implementing them is crucial. Recognizing the constraints of the private sector, it becomes imperative to engage in extensive deregulation. Additionally, affording subcontractors the flexibility to employ foreign workers is essential.
- Since October 7, thousands of flights by foreign airlines to and from Israel have been canceled. With an effors to to urger foreign airlines to resume their flights to Israel to stimulate economic activity and maintain economic ties with the country, Israel is currently considering providing significant guarantees to foreign airlines to encourage them to resume flights to Israel.
25 November 2023 | Airlines and Travel Figures
As of today, the following are the foreign airlines that continue to fly to Israel in addition to the Israeli companies (El AL, Arkia & San Dor and Israir): Uzbekistan Air, Etihad, Azimuth, Blue Bird, Hainan Airlines, Fly Dubai, Fly One and Red Wings.
23 November 2023 | Waiver from B-1 consular processing, Quota for Blue Collar Employees and Builders, US Visa Waiver.
In light of the ongoing discussions surrounding a potential temporary ceasefire for the release of hostages, Kan-Tor & Acco law firm has observed a significant trend among foreign employees considering a return to Israel. Acknowledging this evolving scenario, KTA strongly advises its clients to promptly connect with their designated case managers.
Taking a proactive stance, this engagement allows for a thorough assessment of the present status of each case, enabling the provision of personalized guidance and professional immigration legal advice.
Through this strategic collaboration, KTA aims to expedite the swift and efficient reemployment of every individual in Israel, aligning with the shifting circumstances and ensuring optimal support for its clients. Despite the aforementioned factors, it remains premature to accurately predict the near future regarding hostilities.
16 November 2023 | Waiver from B-1 consular processing, Quota for Blue Collar Employees and Builders, US Visa Waiver.
The Israeli Ministry of Interior has advised KTA that it will accept waiver applications from B-1 work visas consular processing in locations where the Israeli consulate is currently non-operational due to security concerns. In such instances, employers are required to submit a visa waiver application to the employee and dependents to the Ministry of Interior.
After obtaining work permit approval and before the anticipated entry date to Israel. One key location where this waiver process may be essential is Turkey, a country from which numerous foreign experts travel to Israel for work.
Among the required documents are the normal consular processing documentation: police clarence, medical checks, etc. The Ministry will review these applications, and if approved, an official entry approval letter will be issued, mirroring the procedure implemented during the consulate closures amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Proactively addressing this potential challenge, Kan-Tor & Acco Partners have recommended this solution to their relevant clients. This accomplishment stems from constructive discussions held by KTA with high-level officials at the Ministry of Interior.
- Since the Hamas attack on October 7th, a closure has been imposed on the West Bank, resulting in Palestinian-Americans living in the West Bank being prohibited from entering Israel, contrary to the agreement between the two countries. The U.S. ambassador has reached out to the Prime Minister’s office, urging a prompt resolution to the issue. Prolonged Israeli violation may lead to the suspension of the visa waiver for the United States.
The Population and Immigration Authority announced the opening of a new quota for obtaining permits to employ foreign workers in industrial sectors. This decision follows the government’s resolution to increase the cap for foreign workers in this sector to 3,000 employees.
Permits will be granted for the employment of skilled workers such as technicians, electricians, welders, locksmiths, blacksmiths, mechanics, heavy equipment operators, and more.
Additionally, permits will only be issued for full-time employment, and the number of foreign workers employed by a single employer must not exceed 10% of the total Israeli workforce in that establishment. The list of countries from which employers can hire foreign workers will be published by the authority.
The permit application process requires a preliminary recommendation from the Ministry of Economy. Requests for recommendations can be submitted until November 30, 2023.
After receiving the recommendation, employers should apply to the Population and Immigration Authority to obtain the permit and arrange for the workers to come to Israel.
Employers interested in obtaining permits for hiring foreign workers are urged to expedite the process and contact KTA ASAP.
Clients who re interested in such company structure and submission, can contact our Industry Department at firstname.lastname@example.org
- The Ministry of Construction and Housing, decided to expedite an immediate solution to the severe shortage of laborers in the construction industry before the end of 2023. This solution will undergo a rapid process, not through bilateral agreements but while maintaining the principles of such agreements. Within this framework, 10,000 foreign workers will be brought into the country from the approved expanded quota.
- In light of the ongoing conflict, the Ministry of Interior announced the extension of the application deadline for obtaining a new permit to operate as an HR Company dedicated to hiring foreign workers in the construction industry for the year 2024. Application new dead line is 31 December 2023. Clients who re interested in such company structure and submission, can contact our Construction Department at email@example.com
15 November 2023 | HR license, Aviation Traffics Drop
- The operating hours of Israel’s immigration authorities are variable, as several offices across the country are either operating on a reduced schedule or temporarily closed. Click here for additional information before travel to the Ministry.
- In light of prevailing security concerns, government officials have decided to extend the application submission deadline for companies seeking authorization as Human Resource Organizations to employ foreign workers in the construction industry. The new deadline for submission is December 31, 2023.
- The conflict in Israel and Gaza is affecting the aviation industry, with global flight bookings down by 20% compared to 2019 levels. In the three weeks following the Oct. 7 attacks by Hamas in Israel, which resulted in 1,400 casualties and the kidnapping of more than 239 Israelis, bookings dropped an additional 5 percentage points compared to the corresponding period before the attacks.
14 November 2023 | Work Visas in the Construction Sector
In response to the closure imposed on construction employees in the West Bank and Gaza starting October 7, the Israeli government has authorized the Population and Immigration Authority to admit up to 10,000 construction foreign workers into Israel.
This decision, grounded in the necessity to maintain the operational continuity of the construction industry during the “Iron Swords” war, supplements the existing bilateral agreements with China and Moldova, which brought in approximately 10,000 workers in 2023.
In accordance with the recent decision, licensed Human Resources companies for foreign employees in the construction sector, will now have the authorization to recruit these 10,000 foreign worker not necessitate bilateral agreements with the respective countries of origin for the workers. It is important to emphasize that this framework will remain effective for a period of 90 days.
13 November 2023 | B/1 B/2 US Visa Processing | Israel Agricultural B-2 Work Visas
Although the visa exemption has gone into effect, many Israelis cannot benefit from it for various reasons and need to issue a visa, this is mainly due to to the fact that Israelis do not hold a biometric passport, which makes it impossible for them to take part in the visa waiver program or due to the negative response to ESTA application.
Due to the ongoing security situation, the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem and the Embassy Branch Office in Tel Aviv, the US Embassy in Jerusalem announced that they are currently UNABLE to provide immigrant and nonimmigrant visa services.
In the event of an urgent need to travel to the United States individuals are advised to contact a U.S. Embassy or Consulate other than those in Jerusalem or Tel Aviv.
Consular Sections at U.S. Embassies and Consulates worldwide can assist in arranging expedited appointments for emergency travel. To expedite the process, individuals are advised to schedule an appointment and request priority status in the respective country.
Applicants who held a visa that expired within the 48 months prior to the application date may qualify for an interview exemption for a visa application of the same classification until December 31, 2023.
Work Visas in Israel Agriculture Sector: The Israeli government decided to permit the entry and employment in Israel, in the agricultural sector, of up to 5,000 foreign workers at most through licensed foreign human resource organizations for the agricultural sector. This includes foreign workers who have previously worked in Israel under a recognized agricultural training program, provided that these foreign workers enter Israel and commence their employment within a period not exceeding 90 days from the effective date of this decision. This applies even if such workers were recruited outside the framework of a bilateral agreement. Agriculture:
09 November 2023 | No Automatic Work Visa Extensions to Foreign Experts Employees
As of today, November 9th, 2023, the Israeli Ministry of Interior has not released additional automatic work visa extension for foreign employees in the foreign expert sector, nor published an official guidelines concerning the extension of those work visas during the war.
The lack of automatic extension nor published guidelines related to foreign experts has given rise to a sense of confusion and uncertainty among foreign experts and their respective employers.
Foreign experts who have already departed Israel and their visa expired before return travel: Current regulations stipulate that their visa extensions must be processed at Israeli consulates before the expiry of their current visas. However, it’s worth noting that several Israeli consulates worldwide are not operating on a regular basis, and some are even completely closed.
How to extend the B-1 Work Visa?
In the absence of a clear and general government guidelines for visa extensions during the ongoing conflict, it is recommend to address each case on an individual basis.
This approach should involves professional understanding of the various options combined with careful evaluation of various factors, including the employee’s nationality, physical location, visa expiration date, dependents, and other relevant considerations.
In some cases, at the company request, there is an option to submit a special request for waiver from the consular processing. If successful applied, the employee will be able to return to Israel skipping the consular processing abroad – and the process will be completed upon return Israel. This will save time and efforts from the employee, however the employee will NOT be able to work in Israel upon return until the visa process will be completed (processing time of1-2 work days).
Future Work Permit Extensions: KTA continue with the recommendation by which employers of foreign experts begin the application process for visa extensions three months prior to their visa expiration date to allow for flexible processing of the work visa.
07 November 2023 | Ben Gurion Airport and Available Flights
- Since the beginning of the war on October 7th, approximately 300,000 travelers have entered Israel as of Thursday.
- Ben Gurion airport flights cut by 80%. An average of 100 flights are landing daily at Ben Gurion airport during the war compared with the usual 500 flights.
- Most of the air traffic in and out of Israel is dominated by the three Israeli carriers: El Al, Arkia, and Israir, all of which are insured by the government-owned Insurance agency with state guarantees.
- Some foreign airlines continue to operate flights to and from Israel, including Etihad (Abu Dhabi), flyDubai (Dubai), BlueBird (Larnaca and Athens), Uzbekistan Airways (Tashkent), Hainan Airlines (Shenzen), FlyOne (Kishinev), as well as Azimuth and Red Wings for routes to Russia.
- Estimated 50 other carriers have canceled all their scheduled flights to and from Israel.
06 November 2023 | Ben Gurion Airport and Available Flights
- Tus Airways, which operated routes to Athens and Larnaca, stops flying to Israel.
- Israir will start flying next week to Rome and Budapest.
- After the unprecedented travel warning to Israeli, the decrease in the number of passengers in Israel continues and today only about 15,300 passengers will pass through the airport.
- The foreign companies that still fly to Israel are Blue Bird that flies to Athens once a week, Fly Dubai that flies to Dubai, Etihad Airways that operates a daily flight to Abu Dhabi, Georgian Airways that operates a line to Tbilisi, Azimut Airlines that flies to Russia, Red Wings that flies to Sochi and China’s Hainan Airlines flying to Shenzhen.
- Sri Lanka agrees to send 10,000 agriculture workers to Israel
05 November 2023 | Ben Gurion Airport and Available Flights
- Israel is experiencing a significant drop in air traffic. The daily passenger count, which initially surged to over 74,000, has since dwindled to approximately 16,000 per day.
- Israeli National Security have issued an unprecedented travel advisory, urges individuals to exercise increased caution when traveling abroad and to reconsider the necessity of such trips. It also advises against displaying Israeli and Jewish symbols due to a global rise in anti-Semitism and violent incidents targeting Israelis and Jews.
- Dealings with the shortage of employees in the market, Israeli Government approved the entry of 5,000 foreign workers into the agricultural sector, and in the future, into additional sectors of the economy, as building and Health Care.
- Most foreign airlines have ceased operations to Israel. The foreign airlines still operating flights to Israel include Blue Bird, Tus Airways, Fly Dubai, Etihad Airways, Georgian Airways, Azimut Airlines, and Inan Airlines.
- EL AL currently operates flights to numerous destinations including Vienna, Dubai, Venice, Milan, Naples, Rome, Boston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, Sofia, London, Tbilisi, Berlin, Munich, Frankfurt, Johannesburg, Amsterdam, Budapest, Athens, Barcelona, Madrid, Lisbon, Porto, Prague, Paris, Larnaca, Zagreb, Bucharest, Moscow, Zurich, and Bangkok.
- Dor airline offers flights to Warsaw, Chişinău (Moldova), Larnaca, Tbilisi, and Thessaloniki.
- Arkia is operating flights to six destinations – Larnaca, Athens, Paris, Chisinau, Warsaw, and Belgrade
- Israir is flying to Eilat and six international destinations – Athens, Baku, Larnaca, Batumi, Varna, and Chisinau.
02 November 2023 | Israel i Consulates, Apostile services, Flights To/From Israel, Thai Citizens
Israeli Consulate Operations Worldwide: The Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs regularly assesses the status of its consulates, taking into account factors like visa regulations in the host country, security considerations, staff availability, diplomatic relations with the host nations, and other pertinent criteria. Hence, we strongly advise individuals to verify the operational status of the specific consulate when planning their travel for visa processing.
In addition, at KTA, we are actively engaged in fostering robust communication with the relevant consulates and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on behalf of our valued clients, aiming to facilitate a more seamless consular procedure, while avoiding bottle necks.
Apostile Services in Israel: Due to the war, The Ministry of Foreign Affairs advised that they will authenticate original Israeli public documents, via Israel Post, by posting the documents to the Ministry. Processing time is 21 business days. Multiple documents may require a longer.
US Carriers: Delta Air Lines is extending flight cancellations between Tel Aviv and New York until November 21 due to Middle East tensions. Other major airlines like United and American have also halted direct flights to Israel.
Emirates extends suspension of flights to and from Tel Aviv until November 30.
El AL: Israel’s national airline, El Al, altered its Tel Aviv to Bangkok flight route this week due to the current security situation in Israel. This change, which extended the flight duration to 11 hours and 30 minutes. The extended route was to avoid Saudi Arabian and Omani airspace. Additionally, the airline has indefinitely postponed the resumption of its direct flights to Mumbai and New Delhi, with no further details provided.
Thai citizens: Extra charter flights have been scheduled for today and tomorrow to facilitate the repatriation of Thai citizens from Israel. The Thai embassy in Tel Aviv strongly encourages all Thais wishing to return home to promptly register at the evacuation center located in a hotel within the Israeli capital.
To date, 8,602 Thais, including some students, have been repatriated, he said, adding that about 15,000 Thai workers are still in Israel.Israeli Consulates:
30 October 2023 | Israel Faces Worker Shortage | Automatic Visa Extension for Health Care and Agriculture Employees
Due to the security situation in Israel, the Population and Immigration Authority has extended the work permits of all foreign workers in the fields of health care and agriculture currently in Israel. For those whose work permits have expired or will expire between October 7, 2023, and January 7, 2024, the permits have been extended by an additional three months from their original expiration date.
Following this period, and in the absence of any other notice, the extension of permits and licenses should be arranged with the Foreign Workers Administration according to standard procedures regarding the matter.
Foreign workers are leaving Israel due to the war while new ones are not arriving. The departure of 12,000 workers from Israel has plunged the Industry (Foreign experts category) agriculture, caregiving, and construction sectors into crisis. The Ministry of Interior is planning to recruit workers from Georgia and is in the process of finalizing work agreements with other countries, which will take a considerable amount of time.
Based on assessments from professionals in the Ministry of Housing and Construction, and given the worker shortage in the construction industry, several immediate measures have been decided upon. These include increasing the maximum quota of foreign workers in the construction sector and expanding the number of workers for foreign contracting companies to engage them in residential construction projects.
Another 810 Thai workers returned home from Israel on Monday, on four flights, raising the total number of evacuees to 7,415.
29 October 2023 | Automatic Visa Extension for 3 month
Due to the security situation in Israel, the Ministry of Interior has once again extended the residence permits for all foreigners in Israel with a valid visa whose validity is set to expire in the next three months.
Important: This automatic extension does NOT include foreign workers under B-1 work visa that are currently residing in the country. Seperate instructions or concessions are expected to be issued soon.
KTA is in active dialogue with senior officials from the Ministry of Interior and Ministry of Foreign Affairs to stablish a blueprint concerning foreign employees visas extensions whether they are in Israel or travelled abroad due to the war. This blueprint aims to streamline the process for issuing new visas and extensions, while also alleviating cumbersome bureaucratic procedures at the consulates.
28 October 2023 | Work Visa Extensions and Dependents, Travel from Gaza to Egypt
Current B-1 Expert work visa that are about to expire or already expired: visa extension process does not operate as usual. Currently there is a halt of operation at the Ministry on Interior.
The Ministry acknowledge the submission of the extension application, and automatically extend the visas automatically each time for one month. We recommend submitting extension for those whose visa is about to expire 3 month in advance of the expiry dates.
In light of these recent events and the ongoing unrest in our region, we recognize the concerns and uncertainties many might be experiencing. Numerous companies have moved their foreign nationals from Israel. Some of the foreign nationals having a valid long-term work visas, while others are approaching expiration.
KTA recommend continuing applying for extensions 3 month prior to expiry. The Ministry of Interior has communicated that employees who have left Israel due to the war and are not present for their visa renewal will be exempt from the consular process. Upon their return to Israel, there will be an option to facilitate the immediate extension of their visa.
Nevertheless, we suggest to apply for extension 3 month prior to expiry, to allow continuity as soon as they return. Regarding the dependents, once the dependent will return to Israel (unless if their are non visa waivered nationals like India that requires visitor visa process prior to travel), and in case their visa approaches expiration, they will have the provision to stay for 90 days Israel.
At that stage there will be an option to coordinate the renewal of their visa alongside the employee’s. Presently, the Ministry of Interior primary focus is addressing urgent public concerns arising from the conflict rather than dealing with future prospects of the foreign experts return, thus a delay in processing is expected.
KTA is continuously collecting information and will update this post concerning the situation in this post.
Numerous foreign nationals, including an estimated 500-600 Americans, are presently unable to leave Gaza due to Egypt’s travel restrictions at the Rafah crossing, a point fully controlled by Egypt.
Egypt’s reluctancy to permit transit arises from apprehensions about a potential surge of refugees from Gaza into their territory, as a significant number of Palestinians seek an escape from the conflict zone through Rafah. Despite international humanitarian appeals to Egypt, the crossing remains closed to these individuals:
“I see no reason why Egypt, which is hosting 9 million refugees — hosting them and providing them integration into our society at considerable burden on our economy — should have to bear solely [the] additional influx of Gazans,” said Egypt’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Sameh Shoukry on October 24, 2023.
The Philippines Department of Migrant Workers (DMW) announced today that the Philippines is preparing to repatriate an additional 62 Filipino nationals from Israel. This will be the fourth repatriation flight from Tel Aviv and will bring the total number of Filipinos evacuated from the Middle East conflict to 123.
26 October 2023 | Flights, Travel in the West Bank
The following Airlines are operating flights to/from Israel:
• El Al: New York, Bangkok, Athens, and Frankfurt.
• Israir flights operate from Athens, Larnaca, Dubai, Rome, Budapest, Prague, Tbilisi, Batumi, Varna, Frankfurt, Paris, Baku, and Istanbul.
• Arkia is operating flights to Athens, Larnaca, Amsterdam, Dubai, Tbilisi, Budapest, Warsaw, and Sofia.
• Blue Bird Airways flights to and from Israel operate at Athens, Larnaca, and Crete.
• TUS flights to and from Israel operate from Athens and Larnaca.
• Flydubai operates flights to Dubai twice daily, as well as from Dubai to Israel.
• Etihad operates flights to and from Israel out of Abu Dhabi.
• Israir is also operating a daily flight from the Ramon airport to Athens, Vienna, Oslo, Paris, and London.
The following airlines have canceled their flights from Ben Gurion, including Delta (announced the cancellation of all flights to Israel until November 15), United, American Airlines (postponed flights until December 4), Air Canada, Air India, Lufthansa, LOT, Swiss Air Lines, Turkish Airlines, Air France, British Airways, and others.
Due to the escalating situation in the West Bank, movement restrictions have been enforced, restricting Palestinians’ ability to travel to Jordan and subsequently to other destination countries.
21 October 2023 | Thailand, Ben Gurion Airport, Rafah Border
Thailand will expedite the return of its citizens from Israel to 800 daily by tripling flights starting Monday. Two flights will be direct, while the third will transit through Dubai, serving as a connection for Thais departing Tel Aviv on charter flights from Thailand.
Ben Gurion Airport Arrivals and Departures Board – Click here
The Rafah border crossing between Gaza and Egypt opened today at 10:00 AM. Its open duration is uncertain. Given the unpredictable situation, this can be change at at given time without any prior notice. a Chaos is expected at the border crossing.
19 October 2023 | US-Israel Visa Waiver Program
Following Israel’s inclusion in the U.S. Visa Waiver Program, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced earlier today that, with immediate effect, eligible Israeli citizens can now enjoy visa-free short-term travel to the United States. This will be achieved by seeking authorization through the U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s (CBP) Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA). As a result, Israeli citizens can now visit the United States for up to 90 days without requiring a visa, streamlining the previously lengthy and costly visa application process, a step which further strengthens the security, economic and people-to-people ties between the United States and Israel. Israelis can only participate in the Visa Waiver Program with biometric passports; yet, the Population and Immigration Authority states that 1.8 million Israelis possess only the basic “optic” passport, preventing them from completing the ESTA form and entering the US for 90 days without a visa.
17 October 2023 | Services to US nationals at the US Embassy
US Nonimmigrant and immigrant visa services continue to be suspended at the US Embassy Jerusalem and Branch Office Tel Aviv. Applicants are urged to speak with KTA attorneys to find alternative Embassies to process at given the current situation
16 October 2023 | Flights, Hotels
Special flights to/from Germany are operated by Lufthansa and Condor.
Due to the severe shortage of thousands of workers in essential manufacturing plants following the extensive mobilization of reserve soldiers, the Population and Immigration Authority made an unprecedented decision to allow foreign workers, originally brought to the country for the construction sector, to be deployed in the next 30 days in industrial production, packaging lines as well as in hospitals and retail shops.
Half of Israeli hotel rooms are being used to house Israeli families evacuated from communities near the Gaza Strip, where an Oct. 7 rampage by the Hamas terrorist organization.
14 October 2023 | Flights
Dozens of planes from air forces from around the world are evacuating diplomats and foreign citizens from Israel. Alongside the many cancellations by foreign airlines, there are flights of military planes from the Danish Air Force, the Canadian Air Force , the Air Force of Brazil, the Air Force of Uruguay, Australia, Poland, Germany, Mexico, Great Britain, Argentina and more.
EL AL Limited Flights at Shabbat: Israeli airline operated a limited number of rescue flights over the weekend, despite the fact that Israeli government has a “golden share” in the El Al company that was given to the state, allowing the state to dictate to EL AL how to act in emergency situations, as mentioned, this has not happened.
UK: Two charter flights have now left Israel, as part of a UK Government effort to get British nationals out of the country amid the escalating conflict in the region. One flight was a commercial charter flight, while an RAF A400M transport plane was also used.
Australia: cancels two scheduled evacuation flights as the crisis deteriorates.
13 October 2023 | Flights, India
EL AL Israeli airline announced that it will also operate two rescue flights on Saturday in wide-body 787 aircraft to the US and the Asia in order to return to Israel IDF’s reservists and other people whose arrival in the country is essential.
India had successful launched ‘Operation Ajay’ to evacuate citizens from Israel. In the first flight 211 adults and an infant were flown back to the country. The second had 235 Indians onboard.
12 October 2023 | Flights
Reports say almost all rockets fired at Tel Aviv have been intercepted by Israel’s Iron Dome system and none have landed at the Ben Gurion airport itself, located just outside the city.
Airlines wrestled with the safety risk of evacuation operations in Israel today, with carriers including Dutch KLM cancelling flights while sister airline Air France mounted a special relief flight chartered by the French foreign ministry:
The following are among the Airlines that stopped flights to Israel:
- European: Air France, British Airways, KLM, Wizz Air, EasyJet, Lufthansa, ITA.
- Middle East and Asia: Gulf Air, Emirates, Cathay Pacific, Turkish Airlines.
- North American Airlines: American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, United Airlines, Air Canada.
- Airlines still flying to and from Israel
Virgin Atlantic canceled some flights but continue to operate some flights. El Al Israeli Airlines – all flights, flydubai , Hainan Airlines.
US State Department issues Level 3 advisory for travel to Israel, which means: “reconsider travel,” due to “terrorism and civil unrest”.
US Arrange Safe Departure for US citizens: The U.S. State Department announced it will arrange charter flights for Americans and immediate members of their families who have not been able to book commercial transit out of Israel after Saturday’s Hamas assault.
The government will arrange the flights starting Friday, it said in a statement. US Citizens who need assistance should fill out the crisis intake form to contact their nearest U.S. embassy or consulate.
The US State department said that it expects:
“these initial travel options to facilitate the safe departure of thousands of U.S. citizens per week. Senior State Department officials are actively working with airline carriers and international partners on how best to provide additional options to U.S. citizens seeking to depart Israel or conduct onward travel to the United States,” the statement said.
Other government Repatriation flights: Some governments arrange for repatriation flights from Israel to their own citizens: these include: Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bolivia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Cyprus, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Iceland, Italy, Kazakhstan, Mexico, Norway, Poland, Portugal, South Korea, Spain, Switzerland, Thailand, The Netherlands, Ukraine, United Kingdom, United States.
KTA recommend its foreign national clients, to contact the respective consulate to inquire regarding optional flights. We strongly advise all travelers to stay updated on their flight schedules directly with the respective airlines.
11 October 2023 | Flights
Due to the current emergency situation, several consulates in Israel are currently operating on an emergency-only basis, prioritizing the needs of their own citizens that are physically in Israel. Consequently, certain consulates, including but not limited to the South Korean Embassy in Tel Aviv, have temporarily ceased the provision of visa services and related services to Israeli nationals.
The Israeli Airport Authority has informed the public that all flights will depart from Terminal 3 until further notice. The operations at Terminal 1 have been relocated to Terminal 3 as well.
Israeli airlines have announced that they will increase their incoming flight schedules to meet the demand. Due to the current situation, flight times may be subject to changes. The Airport Authority advises passengers to check the flight schedules on its website and with the respective airlines. This content was originally published at the airports websites. Please click here.
10 October 2023 | Ministry of Interior Offices, Flights
Following an assessment conducted by the Population and Immigration Authority administration in light of the security situation, most Population and Immigration Authority units are closed and will not receive public, including the Population Administration offices and the Foreign Workers Administration. Employers should expect heavy delays in visa processing.
Safety instructions of the Home Front Command in the various languages can be found at the following link.
In addition, the Population and Immigration Authority published a letter to the foreign employees in Israel. Please click here.
Israeli airlines have announced that they will increase their incoming flight schedules to meet the demand. Due to the current situation, flight times may be subject to changes. The Airport Authority advises passengers to check the flight schedules on its website and with the respective airlines. This content was originally published at the airports websites.
9 October 2023 | Automatic Extension of Work Visa for B-1 Work Visa Holders (including Experts)
Due to the security situation in Israel, the Population and Immigration Authority has extended the work visas for all foreigners who are in Israel with a valid visa and whose validity will expire within the next month. This, including for foreign workers staying in Israel. The visas were extended until 9 November 23. At the end of this period and in the absence of any other notification.
8 October 2023 | Flights
Due to current conflict in Israel, there have been numerous flight cancellations and diversions. KTA strongly advises all travelers planning to arrive in or depart from Israel to check with their respective airlines for any last-minute changes. Airlines that have announced cancellations include: Lufthansa, Swiss, Austrian Airlines, Wizz Air, LOT, and Turkish Airlines.. As of this notice, Ben Gurion Airport remains operational. However, conditions may change rapidly. We strongly advise all travelers to stay updated on their flight schedules directly with the respective airlines.
🎯KTA will provide immigration updates in this page as the situation evolves.
☎️KTA Help Desk is available for assistance via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Our Help Desk is designed to address any immigration inquiries and concerns and provide support to everyone, regardless of whether they are KTA clients.