Time zone: GMT + 2 (GMT + 3 during the summer)
Telephone services: Country Code: 972 Outgoing Code: 00
Emergency telephone numbers: Fire / Police – 100, Ambulance – 101
Tourist information: Ministry of Tourism, PO Box 1018, 24 King George Street, Jerusalem 91009, Israel Tel: (2) 675 4811 Fax: (2) 56 25 34 07 or 56 25 08 90.
Passport information: Valid passport required by all. They must be valid for 6 months after the intended date of arrival. Return Ticket required. Requirements may be subject to short-term change. Contact the relevant authority before departure.
Visa information: All nationals require a stamp on arrival. Visas are required by all except: Nationals of Australia, Canada, USA, and EU countries (except Germany if born before 1928 and nationals of Spain who have to pay a stamp fee). Nationals of Argentina, Bahamas, Barbados, Bolivia, Brazil, Central African Republic, Chile, Columbia, Costa Rica, Cyprus, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Fiji, Gibraltar, Guatemala, Haiti, Hungary, Iceland, Jamaica, South Korea, Lesotho, Liechtenstein, Malawi, Malta, Mauritius, Mexico, Monaco, Netherlands Antilles, New Zealand, Norway, Paraguay, Philippines, St Kitts & Nevis, San Marino, Slovenia, South Africa, Suriname, Swaziland, Switzerland, Trinidad & Tobago, and Uruguay. All other nationals must obtain visas prior to arrival.
Health information: Polio, Typhoid: Vaccination recommended
Other Health Risks: Rabies
Food & drink: Water is untreated and not safe to drink.
Currency: New Israeli Shekel (NIS) = 100 new agorot.
Exchange: Foreign currency can only be exchanged at authorised banks and hotels. Payment in foreign currency exempts tourists from VAT on certain purchases.
All major credit cards and travellers cheques are accepted.
ATM availability: Over 1000 locations.
Cost of living: Relatively expensive when compared with other middle Eastern countries, excluding Kibbutz.
Languages: Hebrew and Arabic. English is spoken in most major centres. French, Spanish, German, Yiddish, Russian, Polish and Hungarian may also be spoken.
Weather: Summers are hot with winds from the Mediterranean. Winters can be cool in the North. Spring and autumn are usually pleasant.
Electricity: 220 volts Ac, 50 Hz. 3 pin plugs are standard.
Post: Airmail to Europe takes up to a week.
Transport: RAIL: Regular services provided between Tel Aviv and other major centres. All services are closed between sunset on Fridays and sunset on Saturday and during religious holidays. ROAD: There is a good road network. BUS: Services are cheap, quick and efficient. DOCUMENTATION: Full national driving licence and insurance is required. IDP is recommended.
Special information: HIGH RISK: THE FCO ADVISE AGAINST TRAVEL TO THE WEST BANK AND GAZA WE ALSO ADVISE AGAINST ALL HOLIDAY AND OTHER NON-ESSENTIAL TRAVEL TO JURUSALEM. Visitors to Israel whould be extremely vigilant. The northern border with Lebanon (Western and Upper Galilee) should be avoided. In general because the regional security situation can change rapidly, you should keep aware of events and check the FCO travel website. Visitors should always be vigilant with personal possessions, travel documents and valuables especially on the beaches. There are restrictions on movement in and out of the Gaza strip. Dress is casual except in Holy places. In many restaurants and hotels it is considered an insult to smoke. SPECIAL PRECAUTIONS: Do not drive through the occupied territories. Do not hitch-hike. Avoid the centre of Hebron.