Your family is considering embarking on an amazing journey to Israel — that’s exciting! But before you plan your itinerary, book your flight, and start getting all frazzled about how to wrangle your little ones across continents, you may be wondering: Is it really safe to travel to Israel? What about terrorism?
There’s no straight yes or no answer to this question. Certainly, Israel is a more fraught place than many other travel destinations, but barring any current conflicts, the majority of Israel is safe and feels nothing like a war zone. Here are some health and safety tips to consider before visiting the Jewish state.
Lookout for any safety warnings
Currently, terrorism is not a threat in Israel, but the situation is always evolving and changing. Make sure to check the U.S. Embassy and U.S. Department of State for any current warnings and travel advisories.
Plan your trip carefully
Depending on when you’re going and current travel advisories, you might want to avoid certain cities or areas. Stay away from the West Bank and Gaza if you are traveling with children.
Do I need any special vaccinations when traveling to Israel?
You don’t need any special shots to go to Israel, but do be aware that there is currently a measles outbreak in the country, which is especially pronounced in the cities of Jerusalem and Beit Shemesh. The CDC currently recommends having your MMR (measles, mumps, and rubella) shot up to date before any travel abroad. If your child is under 1 year of age, you might want to postpone your travels until they can get the MMR shot. You should always talk to your pediatrician about all your upcoming travel plans.
What do I do in case of a medical emergency in Israel?
You can call 101 from any Israeli phone to get an ambulance in case of a medical emergency. You can also drive or take a taxi to the closest emergency room. We suggest getting traveler’s insurance, especially when traveling with kids! Your insurance company will be able to provide you with urgent care centers to visits or doctors covered by your travel plan, in case of a less pressing medical situation.
Can I drink the tap water in Israel?
Israeli tap water is perfectly safe for drinking! And that’s good news, because, especially if you’re visiting in the summer, you are going to want to stay hydrated.