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Essential Things to Know Before Going on a Trip to Israel

Israel is a small country in the Middle East. It remains to be one of the top destinations for tourists due to its rich history and culture. Jerusalem, its capital city, offers historic and modern attractions and wonderful picture taking opportunities. Tel Aviv, on the other hand, has breathtaking beaches and a vibrant culinary scene. You can easily book Flights to Tel Aviv online.  A well-planned trip to this amazing country would help you get the most out of your visit. Here, we list the things you need to know before you embark on a journey to Israel.

Passport and Visa Requirements

First, you must possess a passport that is valid for at least six months from the date of your departure. Visitors have up to three months of stay in the country, in accordance with the guidelines specified in the visa. Some countries are given visa exemption by Israel; otherwise, you need to apply for a visa.  Currently, Israel provides an “Electronic Gate Pass” to its visitors in place of stamping passports. A card is issued upon arrival at the airport or the Border control station. This will serve as your official identification form while you stay in Israel.

Shabbat in Israel

Shabbat or Sabbath in Israel is a holy day for the Jewish religion. About three-fourths of the population of Israel is Jewish. As a result, all government offices and most businesses close every Friday afternoon until Saturday evening. Also, buses and trains do not operate during this time. Thus, it is best to design your trip to be able to work around these considerations. Most importantly, visiting Israel on the Shabbat will allow you to take part in their culture and tradition.

Local Food

In Israel, most hotels and restaurants offer ‘kosher’ food. Kosher foods are those that abide by the Jewish religious dietary laws. Basically, certain animals are forbidden to be eaten. However, in some cities such as Tel Aviv, most restaurants are not kosher. Moreover, Israel is known to be the home of superior chefs serving innovative and delicious dishes.

Payment System

You can pay through cash or credit card. Their currency is the New Israeli Shekel (NIS).  There are also ATMs spread across the cities. Those that belong to Bank Hapoalim and Bank Leumi are the most common. You can choose to dispense cash in dollars, euros, or NIS.

Safety Concerns

Safety remains to be the main concern for most potential tourists to Israel. Terrorism in the region has been a long withstanding issue. However, in the process, Israelis have been able to adapt and develop a culture of vigilance in terms of safety and security. Moreover, all establishments have full-time security guards that ensure people’s safety.

Israel is definitely a must-visit country for any tourist. It offers a one-of-a-kind experience through its diversity, history, and culture. You can read more about Israel in travel books to help you choose tourist destinations to visit. Most Israelis use the English language, so it will be easier for you to communicate with the locals. However, knowing a few Hebrew words and phrases will also prove helpful in your travels.