Israel Transportation

How to Travel to Israel

Travelers can easily travel to the country by air, cruise or land. When you travel around the country, people can take train, bus, taxi or rented car.

There are regular flights from Africa, Asia, North America, Europe and the Middle East to Ben Gurion Airport and Ovda Airport in Israel. Besides, Israel Airlines have signed code-sharing agreements with other international airlines to expand its routes.

If travelers prefer sea transportation, they can take cruises from Rome, Genoa, Venice of Italy, Istanbul of Turkey, or Barcelona of Spain to the country.

It is also convenient to enter Israel through several land border crossings, including Allenby/King Hussein Bridge, Jordan River, and Yitzhak Rabin on the Jordanian border, and Nitzhana, Taba on the Egyptian border. Generally Jordan River crossing is recommended for better traffic condition. Travelers had better avoid entering via Nitzhana so as to stay away from the Gaza strip to prevent potential difficulties caused by political issues.

Domestic Transportation in Israel

1. Domestic Flights

A number of airlines have domestic routes to shuttle among Eilat, Ben Gurion Airport, Sde Dov Airport, and Haifa with relatively higher prices. Ben Gurion Airport, 15 km (9mi) southeast of Tel Aviv and 20 km (12mi) west of Jerusalem, is the largest airport in Israel.

2. Trains

Railways in Israel are state-owned, with eight lines connecting major cities. There is no cross-border railway.

The trains from Tel Aviv can reach most cities of Israel - from Nahariya in the north to Dimona in the south. The trains also have access to Jerusalem and Ben Gurion Airport, but they are suspended during the Sabbath from Friday afternoon to Saturday evening and Jewish holidays.

Passengers can buy tickets at the ticket windows and vending machines at train stations or book seats through internet.

Most trains provide drinks and foods.

3. Buses

Bus is the most popular means of transport between cities in Israel. Most intercity and incity buses are operated by Egged Bus Company.

Buses in Israel are comfortable, generally equipped with air conditioners. Passengers can buy tickets in the bus stations or on the buses. Most buses are out of service during the Sabbath and Jewish holidays.

4. Minibuses

A minibus generally can seat 8 to 15 passengers. They have fixed routes and stops, but they also can stop anytime upon passengers’ hail. Some core lines operate on the Sabbath as usual.

The departure time of minibuses is not regular – usually they set off when all the seats are taken. Therefore, travelers pressed for time are not advised to take a minibus.

5. Taxies

Taxi services are available throughout the country.

Journeys inside cities are charged in accordance with the taximeter. Intercity taxi fares are specified by the Ministry of Transport. It is recommended that travelers check the relevant fees before getting on taxies.

Travelers can make a phone call to local taxi station to book a taxi or hail one on the street. Call order charges extra 3.5 NIS. There is an extra nighttime charge of 25% of the total expense between 9 pm to 5:29 am.

6. Rental Cars

Most international and domestic car rental companies have offices in major cities and Ben Gurion Airport. Travelers can also reserve rental services through internet.

The renters must be at least 21 years old and hold a valid international driver's license and an international credit card.

In the country, traffic keeps to the right. There are three toll roads in the country, all of which require e-payment. Avoid driving on these roads because car rental companies will charge a service fee as well as toll.

The road conditions in the country are good. Most roads have English, Hebrew and Arabic traffic signs.

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