El Al Israel Airlines

Check-in pointers

El Al requires passengers flying coach class to check in at least 3 hours before boarding. Business-class and VIP passengers should check in at least 2.5 hours in advance. Those with First Class tickets should check in 90 minutes before boarding.

El Al operates a pre-flight check-in service in Tel Aviv, allowing passengers to check baggage and get a boarding pass the day before a flight. This enables them to arrive at the airport just an hour and 15 minutes before the scheduled departure time and proceed directly to Passport Control.

El Al has e-ticket check-in kiosks at Ben Gurion Airport, near the business counter (31-34).

Hub

Tel Aviv: Ben Gurion

Frequent-flier program

Members of El Al's Matmid Frequent Flyer Club can earn points with a variety of airline partners, including Aeromexico, American, Delta, Qantas and SAA.

Airport club or lounge

King David club services are available for free to Gold and Platinum members of the Matmid club. Lounges also are open to Matmid frequent fliers who have accumulated a minimum of 1600 points in a year and paid a $290 fee.

King David Lounges are available before El Al flights at Ben-Gurion, De Gaulle (Paris), JFK (New York), Heathrow (London) and Los Angeles.

Carry-on policy

Carry-on baggage may not exceed total dimensions of 49.5 inches (126 cm), with a maximum length of 22 inches (56 cm), 17.5 inches (45 cm) or depth 10 inches (25 cm).

These dimensions include wheels, handles, side pockets, etc. Passengers are allowed one bag plus a personal item such as a purse, briefcase, laptop or backpack.

In-flight meal options

All meals served on El Al are kosher, and many special meals -- tailored to health or religious requirements or personal preferences -- are available upon request.

Unaccompanied children

Children ages 5-12 can fly unaccompanied by a parent or guardian, and qualify for unaccompanied minor service (supervision by an El Al escort or steward).

Unaccompanied minor service also is available for children up to 18 traveling alone, upon the parent or guardian's request. A fee is charged for the service.

Pets

El Al enforces strict rules related to animals. Pets weighing up to 18 lbs (8 kg) are accepted in the cabin, provided the container can be stowed under the passenger's seat or in front of him or her. The reservations office must be advised well in advance.

Live animals weighing more than 18 lbs (8 kg) are accepted for transport in the cargo hold.

Cool or useful amenities

El Al passengers with WAP-supported devices (such as cell phones or PDAs) can receive up-to-the-minute information including departure and arrival updates and frequent-flier club point status.