Local and intercity taxi service is available to and from any point in the country. Fares within the cities are charged according to the meter. The fares for intercity taxi service are standard fares that are set by the Ministry of Transportation. It is recommended to verify what the fare will be before boarding the taxi. Taxis can be ordered by telephone from a local taxi station, or stopped by waving your hand at one on the street. The starting fare within the city is NIS 9.10. An average ride will cost around NIS 20. There is an additional charge of NIS 3.50 for telephone orders and an additional charge of NIS 2.90 for each suitcase that is not hand luggage. Night rates are 25% more than the normal fare, and begin at 9:01 pm and end at 5:29 am. These rates also apply for Sabbath and holidays. Drivers must operate the meter for trips within the city. Do not let the driver convince you to agree on a price ahead of time if you are not familiar with the rates! Intercity Taxi Service From Jerusalem to Tel Aviv, Rekhovot, Haifa, Eilat, and all the stops on the way - Taxis leave from the central bus station.

Egged Busses

Egged Customer Service and Information: 03-9694-8888 or *2800 Visit the Egged Website to find out about bus rates and bus lanes. Egged provides intercity public bus service throughout the country. Passengers can obtain information about the various bus lines on the Egged website or by phoning the computerized customer service and information center. Each central bus station has an information booth and electronic boards displaying the departure times and destinations. Travelers from abroad can purchase Israbus tickets which are valid on all Egged bus lines for a period of 7, 14, 21, or 30 days. These tickets are available at all branches of Egged Tours.

Renting a Car

Most international car rental companies and local companies have offices in the large cities and at Ben Gurion Airport. It is recommended to reserve a car in advance from abroad. To rent a car in Israel the driver must be over 21 years of age, and must hold a valid international driver�s license and an international credit card. Driving in Israel is on the right-hand side of the road. Israel has an extensive road system and clear signage in most places (in Hebrew, English, and Arabic). It is a little more difficult to find your way in the large cities, but streets and roads are marked, and you can use a map or ask for directions.


Driving in Israel is on the right-hand side of the road. Israel has an extensive road system and clear signage in most places (in Hebrew, English, and Arabic). It is a little more difficult to find your way in the large cities, but streets and roads are marked, and you can use a map or ask for directions.
Using a foreign driver's license in Israel:
Who is permitted to drive in Israel with a foreign driver�s license? New immigrants (Olim), tourists and returning Israeli residents (who have lived abroad for at least one whole consecutive year) may use their foreign driver�s license while driving in Israel. Use of the foreign license is permitted for one year from the day of arrival to the country; provided you are driving the type of vehicle specified in the license and that you have reached the required age. In case of repeated entries and departures, each case will be evaluated on its merits.
What is the �control capability test�?
The control capability test evaluates the ability to control a vehicle and appropriate behavior on the road. The waiting period and the test itself are shorter than usual, and the fee is approximately half of the usual fee. You may take the control capability test up to two times. If you fail for the second time, your must take the standard driving theory and practical driving tests.
What are the requirements for converting a foreign driving license to an Israeli one? (These requirements apply to the following types of vehicles: motorcycles, private vehicles, and commercial vehicles up to 15 tons). A valid foreign driver�s license, issued at least six months before the date of entry into the country. * Medical and eye examinations. * A control capability driving test. * If you have previously held an Israeli diver�s license you must provide: proof of the length of your stay abroad (your passport or a report of your entries and exits from the Ministry of the Interior). If you had a valid foreign driver�s license for at least two years prior to your entry into the country, you may request an exemption from the control capability driving test. * If you have never held an Israeli driver�s license you must provide your passport as proof of your residence abroad at the time your license was issued and the date of your entry into the country.
Until when can a foreign driver�s license be converted into an Israeli one? New immigrants (Olim) � may convert their license within three years from their Aliyah date or from the day they were awarded their Oleh status. Temporary residents or tourists living in Israel � may convert their license within one year from their date of arrival to the country, provided they have reach the required age for the requested license. Courtesy of

Parking: If you have rented a car, it is important to note that blue and white-painted sidewalks or the symbol indicate that parking is permitted only with the use of a parking card, which may be purchased at small markets and Post Offices. Red and white-painted sidewalks indicate parking is forbidden.
Local Time : 2 hours from GMT (7 hours from Eastern Standard Time.) (10 hours from Pacific Standard Time.)
Official Language : Hebrew,with English as the most frequently spoken foreign language
Currency : New Shekel (NIS)
Religion : Judaism, with Islamic minority
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Facts & Figures

Region : Middle East
Country : Israel
Continent : Asia
National Status : Democracy
National Population : 6,077,000 (2000 estimate, Source: United Nations Population Division, 1996) City Population : 736,000
National Capital : Jerusalem
VAT refund & foreign currency exchange services

Value added tax(17% since 1994) is levied on all goods and is included in the quoted price. Tourists who purchase goods exceeding 100$ in value (in one tax invoice including VAT) at shops included in the VAT arrangement and carrying the tax refund shopping logo,are entitled to a VAT refund at their ports of departure.
The tax refund service is operated exclusively by ''Change Place Ltd'' (Tel. 03-9730348/9 Fax 03-9730350). (Note: all goods and services purchased by tourists in Eilat are exempt from VAT, except for jewelry worth more that 100$,which will be charged 17% VAT according to law.)

Upon arrival to Israel, tourists automatically receive a tourist visa at Passport Control at the airport. This visa lasts for a period of three months. When it expires, this visa can be renewed at the Jerusalem Ministry of Interior, No. 1 Shlomtzion Hamalka St., Tel: 02-629 0231. (A tourist visa will allow you to volunteer but not receive a salary). Even though the visa is for a three-month period, don't wait until the last minute to renew your visa if you are intending to extend your stay in Israel. Remember, a lapsed visa can cause you problems, and you may be fined. If you intend to stay on in Israel, make sure you ask the Ministry of Interior for how long you can keep extending your tourist visa. (A tourist visa can usually be extended for up to 24-27 months, but in three to six month periods).


Foreign currency may be changed into New Israel Shekels (''Shekalim Hadashim'') and vice versa, at any bank branch or at ''Change'' stands located throughout the city and the country. Post office branches do not charge commission for this service. Banks open daily, except Sabbath and holidays, between 8.30 am, and 12.30 p.m. Some banks also open in the afternoons.
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Emergency Phone Numbers:

Police 100
Magen David - First Aid 101
Fire Department 102
Electric Company Hotline 103
Information services: Hotline of the Jerusalem municipality 106 (From out of the city call 02-5314600) Municipal Emergency Situation Room 02-6256202
Ministry of Tourism -
Israel's Tourism Site
Information offices: Tourism offices-Jaffa Gate- 02-6271422
Christian Information Center - Jaffa Gate- 02-6272692
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"Jerusalem, all of gold; Jerusalem, bronze and light. Within my heart, I shall treasure your song and sight."

"Yerushalayim Shel Zahav" (Jerusalem of Gold) by Naomi Shemer
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