It’s official: El Al Israel Airlines Ltd. is launching credit cards. Yesterday, the company announced that it had signed agreements with three credit card companies to issue cards jointly for members of the Matmid frequent flyers’ club. The cards will carry preferential terms for redeeming points towards airline tickets. The primary agreement is with Diners Club, which is owned by Cal-Israel Credit Cards Ltd. El Al will offer two types of cards – Bronze and Premium. The Bronze card will be issued by Diners, and the Premium cards will be issued by all the credit card companies: Isracard Ltd. will issue the card through American Express, and Cal through Leumi Card and Diners.
According to estimates, Diners will offer a conversion rate of NIS 250 per Matmid frequent flyer point, while in the Premium category, the rate will be approximately NIS 200 per point. The Premium category is suitable for cards with monthly spending over NIS 10,000, and the fees are expected to be high – tens of shekels each month. The conversion rates in both categories are significantly higher than those currently offered by credit card companies, of NIS 350 per point, at best.