THANKSGIVING TOUR 2022
NEWS & UPDATES
- Download the ‘Israel Border Letter’
- Book travel insurance including COVID-19 cover.
Israel: 18 – 28 November 2022
Jordan: 28 – 30 November 2022
Time until the tour...
To help you with any questions about your visit when you are at Israel border control we have prepared a letter with tour details and your itinerary. You can download the letter here. We suggest you print it and have it available to present this to Israel border control if required.
When you enter Israel border control will give you a small blue and white piece of paper, this is your permission to stay in Israel (instead of a stamp in your passport). It is important to keep this with your passport you may be required to present it to officials while in Israel and when you leave the country.
Getting from the Airport to the Hotel
The best way for you to get to your hotel is by a small 10 passenger van, called Nesher Taxi, to Jerusalem. This is a vanpool, so it may make multiple stops. You simply need to tell the driver the name of your hotel and he will take you there. (the hotel name and address will be on your border letter). The cost is 67 shekels or $25 USD.
Finding the Nesher taxi: You will exit the arrivals hall and will come to the street just outside the airport. To your right you will see a few yellow and white vans. They go to different places, but you are looking for the one that goes to Jerusalem. There often is a man standing outside the van shouting “Jerusalem”, however, if no one is doing so you can ask the driver or anyone standing nearby. Israelis are very friendly and many speak English.
Important note: You are not taking the airport shuttle (which operates between terminals and locations within the airport) nor a ‘bus’ to Jerusalem. You are looking for a van as pictured below. On airport signs this will be referred to as the Nesher taxi to Jerusalem.
If you prefer you can take a regular taxi from the airport to the hotel. Official taxis are available to the left when you exit the terminal building directly opposite when you come out of baggage claim. There may be individuals offering taxi services as you exit the building, it is not recommended to take these.
Check-in to the hotel is from 3pm. If you arrive before 3pm, you will be able to leave your luggage with reception while you explore the city near the hotel.
We will have a tour orientation meeting on Saturday, November 19th at 8:30am. The location will be announced soon by email and/or on the WhatsApp announcements group. Please remember to bring your tips for the guide and driver to this orientation meeting. Please bring them in exact change.
We recommend having a small amount of clothes in your carry-on luggage, so that in the unfortunate event your main luggage is delayed or lost you still have something for a couple of days.
Items for packing
Comfortable walking shoes – you will be walking a lot throughout the tour, and the tour also includes two moderate hikes.
Day bag – a small bag or backpack for use during the tour. There will be some days when you will need a change of clothes with you. So we suggest you have a bag that can hold a change of clothes, water bottle, etc.
Water footwear – During the tour you will have the chance to walk through an ancient water tunnel with water that comes thigh high. You will also go to the Dead Sea and the water is very rocky. We suggest waterproof flip flops or sandals, or other waterproof footwear. You will also want shorts.
Clothes for religious sites – due to the religious sensitivity of some tour sites, females need to have some form of clothing that will cover to the ankles (skirt or pants) and also cover to the wrists (Some religious sites only require covered knees and shoulders). In some places males are also required to wear long pants. This only applies to a few days on the tour and your guide or tour leader will inform you ahead of time.
Sunscreen – the sun in Israel is quite intense and there will be some days that you will be outside all day. We encourage you to wear sunscreen.
Water bottle – you can buy bottled water, but it is convenient to have a refillable bottle.
Tips are customary and expected in Israel. This includes tips for your guide and driver. Standard rates in the tourism industry are $5/day for the guide and $4/day for the driver. Please note, in Jordan, tips are expected in additional places such as the border, hotels, etc. We have put the total amounts below. To make this easier for you, JJ Travel will collect these amounts at the orientation meeting on November 19th. We will then pass them on to the driver and guide at the end of the tour. Please have the exact amounts with you in cash. We suggest exchanging money in your home country or at the airport.
Israel Only: $85 or 300NIS
Israel and Jordan: $130 or 460NIS
COVID-19 Related Requirements
Israel currently requires health insurance as a requirement to enter the country. This must include Covid coverage including quarantine. Please note, if you contract Covid during your stay, you will be required to enter quarantine for 7 days at your own expense.
Passport and Flight Upload
Please complete the following form with your flight and passport information.
Other Helpful Information
It is required that you take out travel insurance for your trip. For further information please refer to our Terms and Conditions.
JJ Travel requires that you send us an electronic copy of your passport prior to travel. This is in the event of an emergency or loss of your passport, while on the tour. It is also a requirement that you bring a copy of your passport with you and keep it in a place separate from your actual passport.
In order to see all the sites and get the maximum from the itinerary the tour must maintain a certain pace. In the interest of everyone on the tour we ask that you cooperate with the tour guide and tour leader to keep the schedule.
Unless otherwise agreed pre-payment is required by bank wire or credit card.
Check-in time is usually around 15:00. If you arrive significantly before this time and want access to your room it may be that you have to pay for an additional night. Check-in times on the Sabbath (Saturday) can be significantly later than 15:00.
It is your responsibility to settle the bill for any ‘extras’ (drinks, WiFi, additional meals etc.) upon checking out of the hotel. If for any reason a bill is not settled JJ Travel will request payment from you and add a 5% handling fee.
Unless otherwise stated, all tour prices are based on two people sharing a room. If you are travelling alone you have the option of paying a ‘single supplement’ for sole occupancy of a room. If you are unable to pay the single supplement we strongly encourage you to find someone to accompany you on the tour.
If neither of those are an option, we will do our best to place you in a room with another participant on the tour of the same gender. However, we cannot guarantee that this will be an option. If we are able to find a roommate for you, this will be your roommate for the duration of the tour as changes to room arrangements during the tour are not typically possible.
At some hotels, it may be possible to request an upgraded room. If the option is not available to you at the time of booking please contact us for more information.
The Sabbath and Religious Holidays
The Sabbath begins just before sunset on Fridays and ends just after sunset on Saturdays. Stores and some restaurants begin closing on Friday afternoon and will not open again until Saturday night or Sunday morning. Similarly, public transport is also very limited during this time. The extent of this depends on the location, for example, it is most noticeable in Jerusalem, but it applies across Israel. Similar circumstances apply to some of the religious holidays. If you are in Israel when this happens you will be informed beforehand.
JJ Travel provides each participant a tour book - Touring Israel According to God's Economy - to accompany the tour. The tour book brings to life the Biblical sites and puts each place into the context of our daily Christian experience.
The electrical supply in Israel is 220V AC. The plug type is a 2-pin (European) style. It is advisable to purchase an adapter prior to your trip if you need one. Most hotels provide hairdryers and have 110/220 electric shaver outlets. Please be aware if you are traveling from the USA or another country that uses 110V you will need to bring appliances that can be switched to 220V or bring a transformer. Chargers for laptops, phones, cameras etc. are generally fine as they have the transformer built-in. If you are in any doubt about your appliances check before you leave.
Wifi and Internet
Most hotels provide free Wi-Fi and Wi-Fi will be available on JJ Travel tour buses. During the tour there may be WiFi access at various restaurants and coffee shops, but when out of the bus during the day access to Wi-Fi will be limited.
The national currency in Israel is the New Israeli Shekel (NIS). Each Shekel is divided into 100 Agurot (singular Agura). NIS bills are in denominations of 20, 50, 100 and 200. Coins are in denominations of 1, 2, 5 and 10 Shekels and 10 and 50 Agurot.
Standard international credit cards are accepted throughout Israel. There will be some small vendors that do not accept credit cards and will require cash. To ensure your card will work while in Israel contact your card provider prior to departure.
Money Exchange and ATM’s
It is advisable to have your money needs taken care of before the start of the tour, although money can be changed at the airport on arrival. However, if you are arriving in a large group please be aware that this can take time. There will also be opportunities to change money at the hotel (this can be expensive) or in the cities you are staying in. The most simple and convenient way to get Shekels is to use a bank ATM machine with a credit card. The rates at these are often favorable. However, please note that tour itineraries are full and time is very limited. You can calculate the value of your currency in Israeli Shekels at www.xe.com. We recommend that you have at least 350 Shekels (approximately $100) before the start of the tour.
We strongly recommend that you have you have access to an emergency fund of approximately $200 while on your trip.
It is recommended and customary to tip the guides and drivers for the tour. We suggest $5 per person per day for the guide and $4 per person per day for the driver. This can be in USD ($) or Shekels. Our suggestion is that this is organized and collected as a group. It can be given daily or as a lump sum at the end of the tour. JJ Travel or your tour leader may help facilitate this by collecting the money, but it is paid directly to the guide and driver.
The tour transport will be an air-conditioned bus. Significant amounts of time will be spent on the bus and the driver, who works in coordination with the guide, is an important part of the tour. Depending on the size of the tour there may be very few empty seats so you should expect to sit next to someone. If you suffer from travel sickness please bring appropriate medication with you.
To see specifically which meals are included as part of your tour package please refer to the itinerary.
Hotel breakfasts in Israel are buffet style. There will be a wide selection of salads, breads, pastries, eggs etc. along with tea, coffee, and juice.
Lunches that are included as part of your itinerary will vary in type but will be a good-sized meal. Soft drinks to accompany these meals are usually an extra to be paid for by you in cash. When lunch is not included as part of your package you will be taken to a place where you can purchase your own lunch. Lunches can vary in price depending on the type and quantity of food but it would be safe to budget the equivalent of $10-$15 (USD).
Dinners in the hotels will generally be buffet style with a choice of meats, rice, pasta and potatoes etc. and a large selection of salads. Typically water, tea, and coffee are included but other beverages such as soft drinks will be extra and charged to your room. Eating out in the evening will vary in price depending on the type of food. You can pay around $10 for street food (falafel, kebab etc.) up to $20-$30 or more for a sit down meal.
Due to the physical nature of the tour it is advisable to have snacks with you. The days start early and are active and it can feel like a long time from breakfast to lunch.
Upon departure you should plan to be at the airport three hours before your scheduled flight time. As part of the security process you will be asked some simple questions when you leave Israel. Answer truthfully, accurately and to the point. If you are travelling with others on a flight, for security reasons, it is advisable that you check-in together.
It is a legal requirement that all tours in Israel have a professional Israeli-registered guide. These guides undergo an extensive education program in history, archeology, geology, flora and fauna and more. At JJ Travel we choose the guides that we work with very carefully. Guides may be Jewish, Arab, believer or non-believer, but all guides are selected based upon our understanding of the participants of the tour and of the specialist nature of the tours we conduct. The guides fulfill two main functions. First, they take care of the group while touring, not only making sure that everyone is safe and well and that the schedule is maintained, but also that everyone is enjoying the tour. Secondly, the guide provides an explanation of the various tour sites.
What to Bring
We recommend that you travel light – one suitcase and one bag to use daily on the tour. You will move hotels during the tour and so being able to move your luggage around easily and pack and unpack quickly will be much more convenient.
- Passport and copy of passport.
- Visa (if necessary).
- Airline tickets.
- JJ Travel booking confirmation document.
- A photocopy of your passport. Keep this in a different place than your passport. In this way should you lose your passport you will have this copy.
- Travel insurance documents.
- Comfortable walking shoes.
- Day bag – a small bag or backpack for use during the tour.
- Water footwear – if you are planning to take a dip in the Dead Sea you will need footwear you can get wet. The ground in and around the Dead Sea can be very uncomfortable to walk on with bare feet.
- Umbrella or waterproof coat (winter months). Between the November and March it is possible to get caught in rain showers while on the tour.
- For other clothing items please refer to the information on the weather and climate in Israel for the time of year that you are travelling. It is important to note that a significant amount of time on the tour is spent outside.
- Due to the religious sensitivity of some tour sites, females need to have some form of clothing that will cover the knees (skirt or trousers) and also cover the shoulders. In some places males are also required to wear long trousers. This only applies to a few days on the tour and you will be informed ahead of time by your guide or tour leader.
- Insect repellent.
- Water bottle – bottled water can be bought, but it is convenient to have a refillable bottle.
- Camera/cell phone/tablet for pictures. Don’t forget the charger or spare batteries. Extra memory cards can also help – you will want to take a lot of photos.
- Electrical adapter – see the information below.
There are a number of options available to you if you would like to have cell phone access whilst in Israel.
- Rent an Israeli phone or purchase an Israeli SIM card. SIM cards can be purchased at the airport in the arrival hall or in Jerusalem or Tel Aviv.
- Use your own cell phone as it is with your current number. You may need to speak to your provider to ensure this will work and check to see if you can purchase a special plan. This is often an expensive option but maybe necessary if you need to keep your current number.
- Ask for an Israeli number from your current provider.
In general Israel enjoys warm dry summers (April-October) and mild winters. More specific information can be found in the tables below. A current weather forecast can be found on the Israel Meteorological Service website.
Monthly temperatures by region (min/max)
Average monthly rainfall (mm)
|Jerusalem||Tel-Aviv (Costal Plains)||Tiberias (Galilee)||Eilat|
As part of the registration process, you will be asked some simple medical/health-related questions. This information is treated in the strictest confidence. In some cases, JJ Travel may deem a person's health condition unsuitable for a given tour. If you have any questions regarding these matters please do not hesitate to contact us.