Travel Tips & Answers

What is Living Stones Tour Service U.S.A. telephone and email?
949-910-5699 – michael [at] livingstones dot co (not com)

What are our hotels like?
The Hotels we use are 4 or 5 stars, depending on the budget and the request by the group. Generally speaking, we find that the 3 and 4 star lodging is sufficient for your needs and is budget-friendly. Rimonim and Leonardo are 2 of several brands we use. Remember, you are out touring all day, so your room stay is minimal

What are the busses / vans like?
We use modern, clean and comfortable, air-conditioned motor coaches equipped with complimentary wi-fi.

What is Travel insurance and do I need it? Travel insurance is insurance that is intended to cover medical expenses, trip cancellation, lost luggage, flight accident and other losses incurred while traveling, either internationally or within one’s own country. Understand what it covers and what is doesn’t cover. Here’s a great article by Rick Steves. Please visit: .

This following is provided by the Israeli Ministry of Tourism and is not comprehensive.

Do I need a visa to travel to Israel?
Americans, Canadians and citizens of most western countries* need just a passport to come to Israel: no visa is required. Your passport must be valid for at least six months from the date you enter the country.

*For more information and a list of countries that do not need a visa, visit .

Stateless persons must hold a valid laissez-passer as well as a visa back to the issuing country.

Is it safe to travel to Israel?
Israel is an extremely safe country to visit and tour. In 2012, close to four million tourists came to Israel, an all-time record, and all of them went back home again safe and sound. We would not encourage tourists to come if we felt they would be in the slightest danger.

Are tourists allowed to enter areas outside of the Israeli responsibility (Palestinian areas)?
Crossing from Jerusalem to Bethlehem is direct, easy and no prior authorization is required. Hundreds of tourists make the crossing in both directions every day. As always, it’s wise to check on the political situation before entering the Palestinian Authority.

Please note to take your passport with you, you’ll need to present it to re-enter Israeli-controlled territory.

Do I need to receive any special vaccination before my trip to Israel?
Not at all. Israel is an entirely western country with an advanced level of hygiene, health care, diagnosis and medicine that is the envy of much of the world and on a par with the best of North America and Western Europe.

Can you drink tap water in Israel?
Absolutely: tap water in Israel is safe and delicious. But, you will also find bottled mineral water everywhere. (It’s important to make sure you drink a lot, especially if you are walking, hiking or exercising during hot weather.)

Where can I find information about accessibility?
Considerable efforts and resources have been invested in Israel to enable disabled persons to access any destination and to receive service equal to that received by the rest of the public.

For downloading the accessible Israel booklet, visit: .

For downloading the old city (Jerusalem) accessible tour booklet, visit:

Will I need an adapter for my appliances in Israel?
The electric current in Israel is 220 volts, C, single phase, 50 Hertz, the same as in Europe. Most Israeli sockets are three-pronged but most accept European two-pronged plugs. If your appliance does not work on 220 volts, you will need an adaptor.

Your hotels should have adapters available. Most hotel bathrooms have hair-dryers as well as low-wattage American-style sockets for electric shavers in which you can usually charge your cell-phone or tablet.​

Will I have easy internet access?
Most hotels in Israel have Wi-Fi available for hotel guests at customary prices. Many cafes and restaurants offer a complementary Wi-Fi service. Since September 2013, Tel Aviv offers a citywide free Wi-Fi network which provides 80 free Internet “hot spots” across the city.

Will I be able to use my cell phone in Israel?
If you have an international plan, your cell phone may work in Israel, please check with your local provider.

Can I rent a cellular phone in Israel?
Certainly. You can rent a phone when you arrive at any time during your visit. Read about renting a cellular phone visit: .

What is the country code to dial to Israel?
+ 972

What is the weather like in Israel?
Israel is a year round destination. Israel enjoys long, warm, dry summers and generally mild winters with somewhat drier, cooler weather in hilly regions, such as Jerusalem and Safed. Temperatures can vary widely so just pack for the “right” weather and you’ll be fine. For more specific information, visit: .​

What kind of clothing should I pack?
In Summer, lightweight T-shirts, sleeveless shirts, shorts, and a bathing suit are recommended. Pack a sweater or a jacket for nights in the mountains or the desert,

In Winter, bring long sleeve shirts, sweaters and a scarf, gloves, a warm coat, and a raincoat and an umbrella. Some religious sites require long pants for men and clothing that covers the shoulders and knees for women.​

What is the currency in Israel?
The Shekel; you’ll find it abbreviated as NIS (New Israeli Shekel). Exchange rates of the Shekel to all foreign currencies as well as other information can be found here: .

What credit cards are accepted?
You can use your ATM card to obtain Shekels at ATM’s throughout Israel. You can also use American Express, MasterCard and Visa cards at most Israeli hotels, restaurants and stores.

Is everything closed on Shabbat in Israel?
Shabbat (the Sabbath) is the Jewish holy day of the week observed every Saturday. Shabbat starts at sunset on Friday and ends at sundown on Saturday evening.

All public offices are closed on Shabbat, as are banks, most stores and businesses; throughout Israel there is a growing number of shops open on Shabbat.

​In most cities, public transportation (trains and buses) do not operate on Shabbat.

​​Most non-kosher restaurants are open on Shabbat.

​It is recommended to check in advance if you are planning on visiting a specific location.

​​Radio and TV broadcasts operate as usual.

Are all the restaurants in Israel kosher?
Not all of the restaurants in Israel are kosher. Places offering kosher food usually display a kashrut certificate granted to them by the local rabbinate. Most hotels serve kosher food, as well as some restaurants. But there is no binding law. So if kashrut is important to you, you must check it out at each separate place where you dine.