Be Careful When Flying Erev Shabbos


elalThe Vaadat HaRabbonim Lemaan Kedushas HaShabbos in Israel has reiterated that travelers should plan any trips that are taken on erev Shabbos carefully, and they should not fly in cases where the schedule calls for the airplane to arrive close to Shabbos Kodesh.

The issue was raised by a recent case in which a flight from Germany to Israel landed after Shabbos had already begun, and dozens of religious travelers desecrated Shabbos against their will and had to spend the day at the airport.

The group had boarded a flight in Germany that was scheduled to arrive in Israel at 4 p.m., only about three-and-a-half hours before Shabbos begins in this season of the year. If the flight had proceeded as scheduled those arriving could have easily reached their destinations in Israel before Shabbos.

However, a problem in one of the wheels was spotted by a technician, after the passengers had already boarded, causing a delay of several hours. When they realized the situation, the religious travelers asked the crew to be allowed to get off the plane in Germany, but they were told that was not possible. The plane arrived in Israel only at 8:30 p.m. and the unfortunate travelers spent a Shabbos at the airport.

The Vaadat HaRabbonim Lemaan Kedushas HaShabbos wishes to remind travelers that they should allow ample time in their schedule for delays.

The Vaadat HaRabbonim Lemaan Kedushas HaShabbos says that El Al has given a commitment in the past to the Vaadat Rabbonim that if faced by a similar situation where a flight could not reach Israel before Shabbos, it would cancel the flight and would pay for the passengers to spend Shabbos at a local hotel. In view of this, the Vaadat Rabbonim says it is preferable to use El Al for flights on erev Shabbos, or to get a similar commitment from the airline or charter operator.

{L S Wasserman-Deiah veDibur/ Newscenter}


  1. Why do people need Rabonim to tell them common sense? Soon the Vaad harabanim will come out with a decleration saying , its imperative for safety reasons, that people look both ways before crossing a street.