Israel Overview

By | July 15, 2021




Official name of the state

State of Israel.




According to ehotelat, Israel lies on the east coast of the Mediterranean Sea and borders Lebanon and Syria in the north, Jordan in the east and Egypt in the southwest. Most of the Palestinian Territories are in the West Bank and southwest in the Gaza Strip. The country extends south through the Negev desert to Eilat, the resort on the Red Sea. The fertile Sharon Plain is on the Mediterranean coast. Inland, parallel to the coast, lies the mountainous region with fertile valleys in the west and desert in the east. The large cesspool begins behind the source of the Jordan and extends south through the Dead Sea (lowest point on earth) and further south through the Red Sea to East Africa.


Republic since 1948. Individual laws for sub-areas are constitutional, not a written constitution. Unicameral Parliament (Knesset) with 120 members.

Head of state

President: Reuven Rivlin, since July 2014.

Head of government

Benjamin Netanyahu, since April 2009.


230 V, 50 Hz. Three-pole and two-pole plugs. If necessary, adapters can be purchased locally in hotels and electrical stores.

Time zone

Israel Standard Time: CET +3 (CET +4 from March 24 to October 28, 2017)



1 New Israeli Shekel = 100 Agorot. Currency abbreviation: NIS, ILS (ISO code). Banknotes are in circulation to the denomination of 200, 100, 50 and 20 NIS. Coins to the denominations of 10, 5, 2, 1 and ½ NIS as well as 10 Agorot.

Credit cards

International credit cards are accepted in major hotels, shops, and car rental companies. Further information from the issuer of the credit card in question.


ec / Maestro card / Sparcard
cards with the Cirrus or Maestro symbol are accepted throughout Europe and worldwide. Cards with the Cirrus or Maestro symbols are accepted in many ATMs in Israel, but not in stores. Further information from banks and credit institutes.

Attention: Travelers who pay with their bank card abroad and want to withdraw money should find out about the possibilities of using their card from their bank before starting their journey.

Bank opening times

Sun-Thu 8:30 a.m.-12 p.m., Sun, Tue, Thu + Sun 4 p.m.-6 p.m. The day before a Jewish holiday is usually only open in the morning. The banks around Ben Gurion Airport are open 24/7.

Foreign exchange regulations

Unlimited imports of national and foreign currencies, but there is an obligation to declare from an amount equivalent to 100,000 NIS (Form 84). For the export of local currency, a permit must be obtained from the local bank before departure (higher amounts not recommended because of high exchange rate losses abroad). Export of foreign currencies in the amount of the amount declared on entry.

Currency Exchange

Foreign currencies may only be exchanged in authorized banks and hotels. Currency exchange on site offers the best rates. There are also exchange options at the airport. Unissued local currency should be exchanged before departure. Anyone who pays the hotel bill or some purchases in a foreign currency (especially in US dollars, pounds sterling or euros) is exempt from VAT.



The official languages are New Hebrew and Arabic. English is the language of business and is widely spoken. Yiddish is also spoken and, depending on the country of origin of the immigrants, Romanian, Hungarian, French, Spanish, German and Russian, among others.



Over 300 hotels are registered with the Ministry of Tourism. During the main season (July – August) and during the religious holidays, bookings should be made in advance as soon as possible. Around 300 hotels are members of the hotel association: Israel Hotel Association, 29 Ha’mered Street, PO Box 50066, IL-Tel Aviv. Tel: (03) 517 01 31. (Internet: A list of hotels with facilities for the disabled (Travel for the Disabled) is available from the Tourist Office (see addresses).


There are tent sites in all regions. Facilities mostly include toilets, showers, electricity, restaurants / cafeterias, shops, telephones, post offices, first aid facilities, shady picnic areas and fire pits, as well as day and night security. Arriving by bus, car or caravan. Usually tents, camping huts and the necessary equipment can be rented. All offer swimming opportunities, either at the campsite or in the vicinity.

Other accommodation options

Youth hostels can consist of dormitories, family bungalows, cabins or modern sleeping cabins and are represented nationwide. Information is available from the youth hostel association IYHA, International Convention Center, 1 Sazar Street, PO Box 6001, IL-Jerusalem 91060. Tel: (02) 655 84 00. (Internet:
In the holiday villages on the Mediterranean and on the Red Sea there are often two-bed houses or small bungalows with air conditioning available as accommodation. Most of the facilities are open from April to October.



80% Jews; 15% Muslim, Christian and other minorities.

Social rules of conduct

Etiquette: Shalom literally means “peace” and means both “hello / good day” and “goodbye”. The manners are rarely particularly formal, general forms of courtesy should be observed during private visits. Israelis are usually open-minded and enjoy talking about their country, religion, and politics. Clothing is casual; However, religious sites (whether Jewish, Christian or Islamic) should not be entered with shorts or skirts and bare shoulders. In synagogues, all men wear a head covering. Business people are expected to wear more formal clothing. Good restaurants, nightclubs and the hotel restaurants sometimes expect more elegant clothes for dinner.

Smoking: Smoking is prohibited in closed public spaces such as restaurants, cafés, bars, train stations and bus stops. However, the smoking ban is not observed everywhere.

Tip: 10-15% service charge is common in restaurants, hotels and cafés. Taxi drivers do not expect tips.


Best travel time

Very different depending on the region. In the north and in Jerusalem the winter can be cool and rainy, while in Eilat in the south there is year-round bathing weather. In summer it can get very hot, especially in the south. Spring to early summer and autumn are very pleasant travel times in every region.

Average values in the coldest / warmest month

Mediterranean: 17.5 ° C February / March, 29 ° C August;

Sea of Galilee: 15 ° C January, 29.5 ° C August / September;

Dead Sea: 19 ° C February, 31 ° C September;

Red Sea: 20 ° C February, 27 ° C August / September.


Area code +972 Area (square km) 20 770 Population 8049 314 Population density (per square km) 388 Population in 2015 Member of the EU No main emergency number 101

Israel Overview