New York – El Al tickets have been the hottest commodity of the day as round trip tickets between New York and Tel Aviv have been selling for prices in the $350 range for travel between October 28th and March 19th, 2013.
A post that ran this morning on Dan’s Deals, which advertises sales, discounts and free items, listed the hotter than hot airfares available from JFK to Tel Aviv with a stopover, bookable through Orbitz or El Al for $336.80, including taxes and fees.
According to Sheryl Stein, Media Director at El Al, the incredibly low prices were due to a pricing error that was introduced by a third party who posts the fares for the airline.
“When any airline files fares, they get filed to an outside company who posts the fares,” Stein told VIN News. “We filed our fares and the outside company neglected to add in the fuel surcharges. The mistake was theirs, not ours.”
Stein, who didn’t learn of the pricing error until someone called her this afternoon, says she has no idea how many tickets were sold at the rock bottom fares or the legalities involved in a case like this, so whether or not El Al will honor the tickets is still unknown.
“This is a little tricky because there is a third party involved,” explained Stein. “This is all new ground for us and we will know more specifics tomorrow.”
Dan’s Deals was down for much of the day today as the server was inundated by tens of thousands of people who tried accessing the link for the low priced tickets.
“It is the lowest fare I have ever seen to Israel,” said Eleff whose site routinely posts low fares, sometimes caused by internal glitches.
According to Eleff, Department of Transportation regulations prohibit airlines from cancelling or adding to the cost of a ticket once it has been booked.
Word of the airfare, which also included full frequent flyer miles, spread rapidly via social media with Facebook fares and tweets touting the exceptionally low fares which were also found on other sites including Fly.com, Expedia and Kayak. While many were unable to obtain the promised fares, others had success.
“I booked twenty six tickets,” 27 year old Avram Zamist of Teaneck told VIN News. Zamist booked tickets for family and friends to be used during three different times during the winter.
Manhattan singer/songwriter Eli Schwebel reported that he had no difficulty at all booking his $353 tickets for Purim 2013.
“I am really excited to be going back and I shared that deal with all of my friends,” said Schwebel.
For Jewish music personality Yitzy Spinner, a White Plains resident, the rates were a pleasant surprise.
“My wife and I were talking recently about taking a trip and then this popped up,” explained Spinner who admitted to being thrilled to pay $839 for a pair of tickets. “We found a flight on Expedia with a twelve hour layover in Paris so we’ll have a nice full day there on our way to Israel.”