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Tel Aviv Guide
Know Before You Go
- You don't need to worry about getting a stamp in your passport. Israel now issues a paper visa to help travellers avoid any hassles with its neighbouring countries.
- From sunset on Friday until sunset on Saturday is Shabbat. This is a Holy day for Jews, and most shops, supermarkets, museums, tourist attractions and public transport services close for this period.
- Israel isn't the cheapest destination in the world. Hotels and food can be expensive if you aren't savvy with your money. To keep your costs down, buy food from local markets and book a hotel room with breakfast included.
- Most restaurants in Tel Aviv are not kosher. If you want kosher food, look out for restaurants displaying the kashrut certificate.
- Tel Aviv is one of the only cities in the world with free WiFi everywhere. From cafes to the beach, you'll always be able to connect and get your online fix.
Getting Around Tel Aviv
- While Tel Aviv is easy to navigate on foot, it's a large city. Rather use public transport to get to a specific neighbourhood and then spend time walking around.
- One of the best ways to explore Tel Aviv is on a bicycle. The streets are flat; there are ample bike lanes and loads of scenery to take in. Bikes are available to rent 24 hours a day, and daily subscriptions start at ILS 14 and go up to ILS 60 for a week.
- A one-way bus ride in the city centre will cost you ILS 5.30, or you can buy a 10-ride card.
- If you want to make a day trip outside of Tel Aviv, the train is your best bet if you aren't renting a car. Buy round-trip tickets to save up to 10%, and if you opt for the combo ticket, you'll get a free day pass for Dan buses.
- Before getting into a taxi in Tel Aviv, make sure the driver has turned on the meter. Rates start at LS 11 and increase based on time travelled not distance.
- If you want to save money, you can use sheruts (shared taxis). These minivans cost the same as buses but are a much faster way of getting around the city.
- Hiring a car is not for the faint of heart. Drivers in Tel Aviv don't always abide by the road rules and use them more as suggestions. If you decide to rent a car, you'll need to bring along a valid international driver's permit.
When is The Best Time to Visit Tel Aviv?
Spring is one of the best times to visit Tel Aviv. Temperatures from March to April are pleasant and the crowds of the summer months have yet to arrive. The cool weather makes exploring the city on foot comfortable and prices are affordable. The only downside for visiting the city during this time is that the Mediterranean isn't warm enough yet for swimming.
Another great time to visit the city is during autumn. From September to November temperatures are cool, and the summer crowds start to head home meaning you won't struggle to find deals on accommodation or flights.
Summer is the most popular time to visit Tel Aviv. Expect to find high hotel rates and an increase in airfare as travellers flock from all over to enjoy the city's ideal beach weather. To avoid the high season prices, book your flights and accommodation at least two months in advance.
Despite the colder weather, Tel Aviv still sees a bump in tourism from European travellers in its winter months. To make sure you get a decent price on accommodation between December to February, make a reservation at least one month in advance.
Airports in Tel Aviv
Ben Gurion International Airport
Located 19 km from Tel Aviv, Ben Gurion is the main international airport for Israel. It's considered to be one of the top airports in the Middle East due to its high levels of security. The airport is also the 48th busiest in Asia and serves as a hub for El Al, Israir Airlines, Arkia and Sun D'Or.
Getting To and From Ben Gurion International Airport
The most convenient way to get from the airport to Tel Aviv is with the airport shuttle. The service runs every hour from Terminal 1 and 3 with tickets costing ILS 60 one-way. You can also choose to get dropped off at your hotel or in the city centre.
If you want to take a taxi into the city, you'll find cabs waiting outside the arrivals hall. Fares are fixed, and divers can also charge for luggage.
The Ben Gurion Airport Railway Station is located on the lower level of Terminal 3. The ride into town takes 20 minutes, and the line operates 24 hours a day except on Shabbat.
All the major car rental companies are in the arrivals hall. Cars are a bus ride away, and you just need to follow the signs to the drop off point when returning the car.