Is Turkish Airlines safe for frum Jews?

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    is it safe with a stop in istanbul then a flight to tel aviv




    I flew on Turkish Airlines this past summer from Tel Aviv to the States and back, and there was no problem whatsoever. Spoke with others who also flew with them and everyone was fine with it. You are only in the airport in Istanbul for a short time and the airport is fine–just make sure you get from one gate to the other as fast as you can because there can be a very short time to make your connection and the lines for security are long.

    The airplanes are modern, the stewards and stewardesses are very nice, hospitable, and helpful. The kosher food was good. The price of tickets on Turkish is quite competitive, and the best part–two pieces of baggage for free, a rarity nowadays.


    I spent five hours last month in Ataturk airport in Istanbul between flights.

    I fooled them.

    I simply wore my Terkisher Talis that I wear on Shabbos (actually it is only “Kmoi Terkish”)the whole time.

    I fooled them all.

    Nobody said anything anti-semitic to me the whole time.

    They thought I was one of them !!!


    Holymoe! My shabbos talis is a Munkaczer Turkish, woven when they were still on Division street. We once flew out of BG on a really early flight. It was a squashed tight flying bus. At Istanbul, there were so many varieties of foreign costumes passing through, I figured no one would notice me davening, and so it was. The security was somewhat long, my interviewer was blue in the face before I cut through his poor English and figured out he was asking me for a Green Card. My US passports fixed that. On the long flight, it was thankfully a roomy 747, a few small ceiling panels fell off, but otherwise unremarkable flight.

    always striving

    What about Austrian Airlines stopping over in Vienna? Anyone ever do that?

    They have decently priced tickets and was debating if its a smart choice to make….


    It’s safer to take a boat.

    🐵 ⌨ Gamanit

    always striving- Austrian Airlines is a decent airlines. Their planes are older than most airlines, but are clean and in decent shape. The crew was very helpful and nice. In Vienna though, the stop isn’t fun because they make you wait before going through security for the next flight, so you can’t sit in the waiting area right before the plane for a while. If you get a short stopover though, it’s worth it.


    What was the question? Is Turkish Air safe from Jews? Not anymore, more Jews are traveling with them.


    A friend and I once had like a 6 hour layover in Istanbul on the way back to Israel and we had bought tickets on a normal flight (not chartered) so we were the only frum Jews around and we didn’t feel so comfortable davening in the middle of the terminal. We figured that Ben Gurion has a shul so Istanbul Intl must have a mosque and indeed it did. It was almost neitz which I think is also one of the times the muslims pray at so we went in and they were all going in for their morning prayers. We asked a security guard there if it would be ok if we could use the mosque to pray in and he was a little shocked by the request. He was trying to decide whether to give us permission or not and an old man standing next to him who knew English started telling us, “Yes! Yes! Come it’s the time to pray!” The security guard told us he thought it might be a bit safer if we waited till everyone finished and left so I think we just went back to the terminal and davened on the plane but it was a funny experience.

    As far as the airline I’ve only flown on it twice and that was a few years back but it was a decent experience. The airplanes are clean enough and the staff is courteous. Though the politics get a little nasty at times between the countries, I think Turks themselves as a people always strive to be more European and less middle eastern (at least the ones at the airport and on the planes dealing with international travelers) and are just fine on the courtesy. One of the airline people even helped me with directions once at the airport and then smiled and told me “G-d bless you.” I would have no problem booking a ticket with them again and almost did for a recent trip. That being said, always watch your back when flying through a Muslim country, or any non-western country if you are dressing as recognizably Jewish. A little bit of situational awareness goes a long way.


    I know of people who fly from London via Dubai to Australia, so Turkish is tame compared to that. (at least Turkey as officially at peace with Israel)


    A friend of mine flew to Israel on Turkish Air and he told me that the security guards in the airport in Turkey all wear sandals.

    How do you chase crooks if you’re wearing sandals?!

    I want to go to Turkey in sneakers and rob the whole airport.


    I don’t know if you remember the 1st gulf war, but i remember seeing pictures of abandoned shoes and boots. when the Iraqis fled the advancing American troops, they threw off there boots and shoes and ran barefoot trough the desert.

    They are uncivilised arabs, they are brought up without shoes so may be quicker than your sneakers


    “they threw off there boots and shoes”

    Did you know that in their culture, throwing their shoes is considered the biggest possible insult? That cant be stressed enough.


    Living in London we have flown to Eretz Yisroel a number of times. We flew with Turkish airlines. Twice my husband had minyan there (French Russian and American men)

    We have also flown through Austria. B”H no trouble


    Several years ago, my wife and I flew Turkish Airlines from TLV to Copenhagen via Istanbul. Security before boarding the connecting flight was such that they insisted that my wife remove her hair covering and steered her to a booth where female inspectors were working. She found it icky but benign.

    Also, flight crews may not be familiar with the rules for microwaving sealed kosher meals.


    does anyone have any updates due to the current climate.

    Shopping613 🌠

    I know someone who just flew on it. It’s safe and good.


    The Young Turks are for sure not safe for frum Jews.

    🍫Syag Lchochma

    its probably safe but dont expect your luggage to come with you.


    Also, flight crews may not be familiar with the rules for microwaving sealed kosher meals.

    Perhaps that’s because commercial planes rarely have microwaves, and airline meals are never heated by microwave.

    The Queen

    I wouldn’t chance it.

    Shopping613 🌠

    It’s really safe right now. For the past 2 years it was rocky but now its okay.


    My attitude with Turkish Air is, it’s safe until it isn’t! I’ll pay more to fly El Al any day.

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