Your home currency may be exchanged at the airport, your hotel, one of the local money changers, or at one of the many ATMs throughout Israel that will give you shekels for your transaction. Exchange rates vary depending on what you use in the exchange: cash, check, travelers check or credit card. Be sure to check with your hotel for the exchange rates as it can fluctuate daily. At all larger stores and restaurants you may use either your credit card or debit card.
-Dress in Israel is casual, but be prepared at tour sites to cover your shoulders and arms. Some sites will require those wearing shorts to cover their legs.
-No matter the season you are in Jerusalem, the evenings can be cool due to the elevation so a light jacket is always advisable.
-Be sure to include: good walking shoes, water shoes for swimming, small flashlight, travel packages of tissues, sleeping mask, earplugs, and washcloths.
-The only time of year that you need to be prepared for rain is during the winter months, usually November to early March.
-Though Israel is a small country, it has a widely diverse climate from one section to another. Once your itinerary and dates are set we will give to you the exact clothing needs for your trip.
STAYING IN TOUCH
Communication with your home country is easy from Israel. If you would like to rent a cell phone during your stay you may do so at the airport on arrival. International calling cards are also a convenient way of staying in touch and can be purchased in many locations throughout Israel. If you want to check with family, friends, or business associates via the internet you may do so from your own laptop, or most hotels offer their guests internet service. You will also find many local internet cafes scattered throughout the country.
Israel has a standard VAT (Value Added Tax) tax on all purchases. You may receive a refund on Israel’s VAT tax if your purchase is made at a shop authorized by the Israel Tax Authority and the Ministry of Tourism to participate in the refunding arrangement (a sticker noting the shop's participation should be placed on the door or window of the shop), and you receive a special VAT invoice ("Refund Invoice"). The price of the purchase, including VAT, (per tax invoice) must exceed $100 US. The goods purchased must be intended for your personal use only and are in non-commercial quantities. The goods purchased do not include: food, drink, or tobacco products (VAT will not be refunded for those goods). When departing from Ben Gurion Airport, you must go to the VAT refund counter and present both your tax form and the item(s) purchased along with your passport and airline ticket. Refund requests are only accepted in Israel, prior to your departure as refunds will not be sent to you abroad.
Hebrew Words and Expressions:
Hello, goodbye, peace
How are you?
I love Israel!
Please or you’re welcome
Thank you very much!
Ma nishma? (ma neeshma)
A-nee ohev et Israel!
Beseder (b'se der)
Todah rabbah (to-dah ra-bah)
Hag sameach! (Hag sa-may-ach)
Is it safe to visit Israel? What about all the things I read in the news?
Simply put, drama sells! But the truth of the matter is that while you are in Israel you will be statistically safer than you are in your home country! As with every city in every country on the planet, there are areas that the locals know not to go near, however in Israel those are the areas in the world's press. During your time in Israel you can rest assured that you will see Israel and her people for what they really are, warm, caring and extraordinarily beautiful.
What does single supplement mean?
Quotes are normally given with the understanding that there will be two in a room, should someone want a room to themselves they will need to pay the "single supplement."
I want to bring my children, is that possible?
Of course it is! In general, children under the age of 2 stay in hotels for free, while children from 2-12 tend to get a 50% discount on their hotel price. This does not apply to all services so be sure to check with us for details as they apply to your Tailor Made trip. You will find Israel to be a more "child friendly" country than most others with many hotels/sites/restaurants providing special facilities, chairs, meals, etc. for your little ones.
What should I wear when I am in Israel?
Pack like you would for a trip in your home country. In Israel you will find people from all over the world, each with their own style of dress, so you will quite probably find someone that is dressed like you. When on tour, you should be respectful to the various religious sites you will be visiting and their particular demands. Shorts and revealing shirts, on men or women, can lead to you not being allowed to enter certain holy sites. Your guide will advise you the evening before if there is a need to dress more conservatively or not. For men that means pants, T-shirts are fine. For women, shirts that cover the shoulder (some travel with a shawl that they can throw over their shoulders at the proper time) and pants/dresses that come past the knee.
As with anywhere else in the world, what you wear also depends on the season. Be sure to check with your Tailor Made agent what is advised for your group's needs depending on the season and the sites that you will be visiting.
What kind of food can we expect in Israel?
Healthy and tasty! Breakfast and dinner are normally buffet style in your hotel, so you will always have a wide range of options to choose from. We can of course Tailor to your needs or desires.
Will we still be able to tour on Shabbat?
Out of respect for the Sabbath, Saturday, most businesses in Israel cease operations Friday afternoon and do not open again until Saturday night. Different cities have different levels of observance, you will find more restaurants open in Tel Aviv on Friday than in Jerusalem, for example. As you plan your tour, we can keep your group moving and touring on Saturday or should your group be Sabbath keepers we will make sure that their religious needs are met.
Is it safe to drink the water in Israel?
Without a doubt, yes, the standards are the same as the US and most European countries, so drinking the water in restaurants or in hotels is perfectly safe. Also as you travel, we at Tailor Made Tours provide bottled water for the tour group.
Can I use my credit/debit card in Israel?
Yes. ATMs and businesses take standard credit and debit cards. You should of course check with your bank before you travel.
Who is really in charge of my group, the tour guide or me, the tour leader?
Good question. In short, you. The guide is just that, a guide, while you are the "leader." He will go over with you the plan for the following day, giving his expert advice on how much time will be needed at the various sites but will of course defer to you should you have any last minute suggestions, as applicable. Should you wish to say something to your group at a particular site, or lead a prayer, he will oblige you. His job is to provide detailed information on the sites that you visit, routes traveled and be able to answer all of your questions on Israel and her people.
I want to come to Israel but would like more flexibility than being on a tour group's schedule, can I make my own itinerary?
Of course. At Tailor Made Tours we have a special department that does just that, works with individuals and small groups to help arrange their travel around Israel.