Israelis run late, but love duty free shops

April 2, 2009

Israeli travellers pack at the last minute, but will do anything to secure a duty-free airport bargain and so are more likely to arrive early at the airport.

And, extraordinarily enough, despite their legendary short tempers, Israelis are apparently more tolerant than their European counterparts.

The unusual findings appear in a survey commissioned by British Airways to identify passenger travel habits in Israel and Europe.

The survey, run to mark the upcoming first anniversary of Heathrow’s Terminal Five, from where British Airways flies to Tel Aviv, discovered that: “Israelis tend to leave their packing to the last minute. Twenty-six per cent of Israelis pack on the actual day of the flight, compared to only four to 11 per cent of Europeans.”

But they love to shop and 66 per cent of them who responded to the survey said that they arrived early for flights in order to bag the best duty-free buys.

Yael Katan, BA’s commercial manager in Israel, was not surprised by the findings. “In Israel, the attitude is to leave everything to the last minute, not just packing.” BA has just announced an additional weekly flight to Tel Aviv.

Last updated: 6:34pm, April 27 2009