ATMs are the fastest easiest way to change money at the best rates look for ATMs adorned with international flag decals that accept foreign debit cards; you’ll often need 4-digit PIN.

Area Codes

The telephone country code for Israel is 972. Telephone area codes are, (02) For Jerusalem / (03) For Tel Aviv / (04) For Haifa, Caesarea and Galilee / (08) For Eilat, Negev, Rehovot and the Dead Sea / (09) for Netanya.


You can bring 200$ worth of tax-free gifts into the country you can also bring in 250 grams of tobacco, one bottle of liquor, and a reasonable amount of film. When you leave you convert up to $3,000 back into foreign currency at the airport, so keep your bank receipts. Note that you cannot take antiquities or archaeological artifacts out of Israel unless you have certificate identifying the object which will be provided to you by any licensed antiquities dealer.

Health Concerns

Sun burn and dehydration are problems throughout the region but especially in the desert during summer. Force yourself to drink a minimum of four 1.5 liter bottles of water day as you travel the area in summer, more if you are in the desert. Sunscreen is must though you need less of it at the Dead Sea because the thicker atmosphere screens out the sun.


Official languages are Hebrew and Arabic. English is very widely spoken and understood in all hotels and most restaurants. In big cities and on major roads, most signs are in Hebrew, English, and Arabic.


The Israeli postal service is dependable.

Postal rates are similar to those in the United States and the U.K. packages must be brought to the post office unsealed for security inspection, and you must present your passport to the postal clerk.

Internet & WiFi

Downtown west Jerusalem, Tel Aviv are heavily covered with free Wi-Fi zones filled with cafes and restaurants where you can bring your laptop and connect without charge. Most budget and moderate hotels offer free Wi-Fi.


Pharmacies are well-stocked, and you’ll encounter many international name brands, but drug prices outside of Israeli insurance plans even for nonprescription medicines are comparatively high.

Women’s travelers

It’s important to remember to dress modestly when visiting holy places like churches, mosques, or Synagogues.


Terrorism is a consideration everywhere in the world, and Israelis have become experts in dealing with it. Guards conduct bag and body checks at the entrance to shopping malls, markets, shops, cafes, restaurants, Transportation hubs and hotels. You’ll find security guards at the most major restaurants.

Business Hours

Government offices are open on weekdays, usually from 7:30 or 8 am. Most are closed to the public on Fridays, and all are closed on Saturdays. In summer, they are open until 1 or 3pm; in winter, they remain open until 2 or 4pm. Banks are open Sundays, Tuesdays, and Thursday 8:30 to 12:30pm and 4 to 5:30pm; on Monday and Wednesday 8:30 to 12:30pm only; and on Friday 8:30am to noon. Remember that in Jerusalem’s Old City in places such as Nazareth and Akko’s Old City Muslim owned shops are closed either half the day or all day on Fridays, and Christian owned shops close on Sunday.


The electric current used in Israel is 220 volts AC (50 cycles) as opposed to the 110-volt system used in America. If your appliance doesn’t have the right plug, you can buy a plug adapter in Israel quite easily, or your hotel may have one to lend to you.


All Israeli doctors speak English. Your hotel can refer you to an appropriate physician or the nearest Magan David Adom (Red Star of David, Israeli equivalent of the Red Cross) emergency station.


Smoking is against the law in all public places, including restaurants, trains, buses and taxis.


It is important to check that you have at least 6 months left before your passport’s expiration; without that cushion, you won’t be allowed into the country.


Tap water is safe and drinkable in Israel, except at The Dead Sea. There, even luxury hotels have special taps on each floor that provide drinking water, Although Israeli water is safe.


The basic unit of currency is the New Israel Shekel (NIS). The shekel is divided into 100 agorot. The smallest denomination you will encounter are 10-agorot copper-colored coins, and large, copper 50-agorot (half-shekel) coins, all useful for bus fares, but both may soon phased out. The 1-shekel coin is a tiny silver button like object that is extremely easy to lose. There are also 2, 5, and 10-shekel coins, as well as 20, 50, 100, and 200-shekel notes.

US$ 1 Dollar is 3.5 Shekels Approximately.

EU€ 1 Euro is 4.3 Shekels Approximately.

Packing Tips

Israel is a very informal country, so casual, practical clothing is acceptable everywhere. In winter, warm socks and sturdy, rubber-sole walking shoes are helpful. A folding umbrella, and fleece liners and medium-weight jackets that can be layered are essential. Woman should pack a multiuse, easy to carry shawl for chilly nights in mountain cities such as Jerusalem, and to warp over shorts, bare shoulders, or short sleeves when visiting holy sites. Men won’t need ties; sport jacket are not mandatory at expensive restaurants or at performances.

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