THIS TRIP HAS BEEN CANCELLED
This Holy Land tour is a physically demanding experience. Participants must be physically and psychologically able to walk at a brisk pace 3–5+ miles per day on rugged hilly terrain with very few American style sidewalks in sunny, dry, hot weather. June temperatures in Israel average in the high 80s and 90s (Fahrenheit), and can exceed 100 some days. Be sure to pack a hat, a water bottle, sunscreen, and comfortable shoes!
Pre-Trip Check List
- Make a least 2 least copies of your passport.
- Give one copy to your emergency contact in the U.S.
- Keep one copy on your person, separate from your passport when traveling.
- Passports must be valid until at least December 16, 2024 (six months after the date of departure from Israel).
- Click here if you need to apply for or renew your passport.
- See Your Physician
- Make sure you return the required MEDICAL CLEARANCE FORM signed by your physician.
- Make sure you have sufficient medications for the trip.
- Make sure you take all your medications as prescribed while on the trip.
- Ambien or similar sleep aid for the trans-Atlantic flights.
- Flu shot, prophylactic medicines for influenza, antibiotics, etc.
- Register Your Travel
- Register with the U.S. State Department's SMART TRAVELER ENROLLMENT (STEP) Program.
- Share Your Itinerary and Emergency Contact Details
- Give a copy to your emergency contact and keep one for yourself.
- Credit & Debit Cards
- Call your bank to let them know that you plan to travel.
- Make photo copies of the front and back of the cards you plan to take and leave a copy with your emergency contact.
- Record the phone numbers that are on the back of the cards in case they are lost or stolen.
- The currency in Israel is the New Israeli Shekel (NIS). The exchange rate is roughly 3.6 shekels = $1.00.
- You will need shekels for lunches, drinks, snacks, and spending money.
- Also, you will need shekels to use the rest rooms at most Christian sites.
- American ATM cards usually work in Israel and are an easy way to change money once we arrive.
- You can use your credit card for many (but not all) purchases at souvenir shops. Some businesses will take U.S. dollars as well.
- All bus drivers in Israel sell bottles of water on their buses. The standard price is 5 shekels per bottle. Hence it is a good idea to keep a few 5-shekel coins on you each day.
- We recommend that you purchase ca. $200.00 of shekels from your bank prior to departure.
Suggested Packing List
- Carry-on Luggage (Things you cannot do without. Checked bags do get lost.)
- Passport (Keep this on your person; this is the one thing you DO NOT want to lose!)
- Change of clothes
- All medications
- Copy of prescriptions
- Phones, cameras, laptops, iPads, chargers, eternal battery charger, etc.
- 110/220 plug adapters (Cell phones, laptops, iPads, etc. run on both 110 and 220)
- Any valuables (It is recommended that you not take valuables)
- Cash (Keep this on your person)
- Credit Cards (Keep these on your person)
- Insurance Cards (Keep these on your person)
- Crushable Hat
- Empty water bottle
- Extra plastic bag for wet items
- Hand wipes
- Hygiene kit
- Scarf and wrap-around skirt for holy sites
- Checked Bag
- Casual, yet modest clothing
- Comfortable walking shoes
- Jacket/wind breaker
- Pants, knee-length shorts
- Skirts longer than knee-length
- Small day trip bag/backpack
- Swimsuit (our hotels will have pools)
- UV blocking sun umbrella
- Water shoes/sandals
- Headlamp for Hezekiah's Tunnel
Using Your Cell Phone Abroad
Israel’s Time Zone
- Check with your cell phone carrier to learn what your carrier's fees are for its international plan. You will want to make sure you understand all of the potential charges before you travel.
- To avoid inadvertent charges, disable the Data Enabled or Data Roaming option on your phone and keep it in Airplane Mode until you are back in the U.S.
- Also, you can make WhatsApp, Facetime, etc. calls via the hotel Wi-Fi.
Israel’s Time Zone
- When communicating with friends & family at home, remember that Israel is nine hours ahead of Mountain Time (seven Eastern; eight Central; ten Pacific). This means evenings in Israel are equivalent to the morning/afternoon in North America. Mornings in Israel are equivalent to late night in North America.
What to Wear
- Shorts, tank tops, sleeveless shirts, etc. are acceptable in most parts of the country.
- Bethlehem and Jerusalem (especially East Jerusalem & the Old City) are more conservative. Please dress modestly in these areas.
- When visiting churches and holy sites, both men and women will need to cover their legs and shoulders—that is, no tank tops, sleeveless shirts, short shorts, tight-fitting slacks, or leggings. Women will need to cover their hair and shoulders with a scarf; men will need to remove their hats.
- Ladies: Bring a scarf to carry in your day bag to cover your hair and shoulders as needed. Also, bring a light-weight skirt or second scarf to carry in your day bag to cover your legs as needed.
- Men: Make sure that your shorts are at least knee-length.
General Situation Awareness
- It is recommended that you leave valuables at home and that you not carry large sums of cash on your person.
- Keep all credit cards, cash, and your passport in a money belt or inside pocket. The inside pocket of a messenger style bag is also a safe place.
- Keep photo copies of important documents in a separate location from your passport and credit/debit cards.
- Keep a close eye on your luggage and belongings, especially when at the airport.
- Keep a close eye on your backpack, day bag, etc. when we are out an about.
- When you go out exploring at night, it is strongly recommended that you travel in groups of three or more and that your group include at least one man.
U.S. Embassy Jerusalem
14 David Flusser
Branch Office Tel Aviv
71 HaYarkon Street
Tel Aviv 6313229
Click here if you need to apply for or renew your passport.