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May 6, 2012

Israeli President Ditches El Al for Air Canada in Fare Dispute

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El Al Boeing 747-400 (4X-ELD) departing JFK's Runway 22R enroute to Tel Aviv. (Photo by Mario Craig)

Israeli President Shimon Peres has arrived in Canada on an official five day visit, but no thanks to his country’s national airline.

Israeli media reports say an unusual row erupted last week between the President’s office and El Al when the airline demanded he pay $5,000 fee to bring an oxygen tank, a charge that had not been issued before.

The tank and other medical equipment must be carried with the President under Israel’s security protocols.

Peres instead decided to fly Air Canada.

El Al has since apologized to the President.



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  • I’m an Airlines spotter at YOW and we
    were expecting from El Al a big Jumbo Jet B747 or similar like that at
    Ottawa International Airport (CYOW) while Israeli President Mr. Shimon Peres
    visit to Ottawa. But when we got the news from the sources that Mr. Shimon
    Peres ( Israeli President ) travelling with Air Canada, the company it self
    going for “wildcat” strike almost every month or a year. How come
    Israeli Prime Minister came to Canada with B767? Thank you very much to Israeli
    Prime Minister for visiting Ottawa and travelling with your own country’s carrier
    El Al. We were expecting some new and VIP Aircraft at YOW, so we can frame it
    in our camera as a “Digital Souvenir”. Anyway its heart my fellow YOW spotters and
    me. – Shah