This list of tips for traveling to Israel will help you plan your trip to one of the fascinating places in the world.
Considered one of the places with the most history in the world, in which the thousand-year-old Jerusalem stands out; founded in 1004 BC by King David and is one of the most magical cities you can visit; you can also visit Bethlehem, Nazareth, and Galilee, Biblical cities as well as the impressive fortress of Masada, the fascinating Dead Sea and the Roman Caesarea, as well as other places that we are sure, as a whole, will make this an unforgettable trip.
Based on the experience of our trip to Israel and Palestine for free, we want to leave you what we believe are the ten best essential tips for traveling to Israel.
Table of Contents
What is the best time to travel to Israel?
Although, as in many destinations, it could be said that any time is good for a trip to Israel, taking into account the weather and the places you want to visit, it is important to consider certain considerations.
- High season (July and August): Despite being the most frequented time for tourists, we believe it is the worst time to plan this trip due to the heat and high prices.
- Low season (October and November and from March to May): According to our experience, this is the best time since the weather is mild, there are not so many people (except for Easter days), and it is still a perfect time to get to know Tiberias. , Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, and the Dead Sea.
- Low season (December to February): Even though in some areas of the country the weather is cold, there are not many people, and also the prices are usually quite reasonable, except for the key dates of Christmas and New Year’s Eve.
Remember that if you travel in high season, booking flights, accommodation, and rental cars in advance is advisable to find good prices and more options to choose from.
The first thing to remember is that in most of the country, due to its geographical location and especially in Jerusalem, as the most tourist and symbolic place, religion involves practically anything, so this is a sensitive issue. And the best thing is to stay out of any circumstance you can see, even if it does not fall within your standards or customs.
This would also apply to the political issue. We understand that there are situations that can even be provocative. Still, the best thing if you travel to Israel is to focus on its tourist attractions, culture, archaeological sites, and landscapes, leaving other aspects aside as much as possible.
Currently, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs recommends avoiding Israel’s border with Syria, Lebanon, Egypt, and the Gaza Strip, being safe to visit the rest of the country, so at this time, traveling to Israel is safe.
In addition to this, and as in any other place in the world, it is important to travel with common sense, avoiding areas that you do not know at night and carrying many valuables in sight.
You will probably find more exhaustive baggage checks at the airport than in other parts of the world, and if you rent a car, at some point, the police may stop you from checking it and asking for your documentation.
It happened to us a couple of times, but at no time was it an unpleasant situation, quite the opposite.
Entry requirements to the country
If you are a Spanish citizen, to enter Israel for tourism and a maximum period of 90 days, you must carry your passport, valid for a minimum of 6 months. It is important to remember that even if you have all your documentation in order, the authorities can deny you entry if they believe that you are sympathetic to the Palestinian cause or you are traveling for political reasons. Keep this in mind since, at the airport, they will probably ask you personal and social questions and, on occasion, exhaustive checks of luggage or electronic devices.
Don’t worry; always answer the truth and try to make the procedures as easy as possible to prevent them from becoming a problem.
Another point to highlight is the issue of the Israel stamp in your passport and what this can entail when traveling to other countries. Currently, Israel does not stamp passports, as long as you arrive by air, giving you a card with your personal information, which you must keep until you leave the country and which can be requested when you rent the car or go through any military control.
Vaccines and travel insurance
As we always say, one of the most important tips for traveling to Israel, or any other country in the world, is to go to your nearest vaccination center so that they are the ones who, depending on your medical history, type of trip, and places you go visit, determine which vaccinations are required.
We can tell you that there is no compulsory vaccination to make a trip to Israel, although tetanus-diphtheria, triple viral, hepatitis A and B, and rabies are recommended.
In addition to visiting the doctor, it is very important to have the best travel insurance so that if you need it, you can have the best care in the best centers.
We always travel insured with Mondo, with whom we carry insurance that is fully adequate to the needs that we are going to have during the trip. Hiring your insurance with Mondo here, just for being a reader of Viajeros Callejeros, you have a 5% discount.
Due to the current health situation, all Mondo insurances include medical assistance in case of contagion by a coronavirus. In addition, the extra stay that you need in case of contagion due to quarantine is also included, and of course, the test in case it is necessary.
How to start the trip
Another of the most important tips for traveling to Israel is to initially consider which are the essential places to see in Israel that you want to see so that, based on this, you can determine how many days you need for your trip.
According to our experience, with about 10-12 days, you can make a very attractive route through the country, including the most tourist places, and spend a day at the Dead Sea.
The first thing you should look for is a flight to Tel Aviv, the capital and the place where trips to Israel usually start, so you can rent a car from there and start the route.
Once you have defined it, and especially if you travel in high season, it is highly recommended to book accommodation in Israel in advance to avoid high prices and have more options.
In case you do not want to make the trip on your own or do not want to drive, a highly recommended option would be to do this 5-day Circuit around Israel or base yourself in Tel Aviv or Jerusalem and, from there, go on some of the excursions and daily tours in Israel.
The currency of Israel is the new shekel, and currently, the equivalence is 1 euro = 3.93 Israeli new shekel. Therefore, even today, many people still recommend changing the exchange agencies at the airport or the city or even making the currency exchange at the bank of your country of origin after the experience of traveling to Israel. As in other countries, we believe that the best way to save commissions is to pay as much as possible with a card and, if you need cash, withdraw directly from the ATM.
We recommend using the Revolut card and the N26 card in this case. They are the ones we use; they are free and will mean a great saving.
This article provides more information about the best cards to travel without commissions.
Remember that in the case of renting a car in Israel, it is necessary to have a credit card, and in addition to these, it is, of course, necessary to carry cash to be able to make payments in shops that do not accept cards or for tips.