Israel to welcome international tourists from March

After almost two years, the Middle Eastern country will once again open its arms to travellers eager to visit its historic lands.

By Chris Ashton, February 21 2022
Israel to welcome international tourists from March

Like a beautiful cascade of dominos, an increasing number of countries around the world are all sharing plans to welcome visitors back to their shores. The latest to join the party is Israel, which has revealed it will reopen to all travellers – yes, vaccinated or not – from March 1.

It’s an announcement tourists have waited almost two years for, after the Middle Eastern country closed its borders in response to the pandemic in March 2020.

Shared by Prime Minister Naftali Bennett and Health Minister Nitzan Horowitz on Sunday, the latest plan will see travellers from all countries invited to return, provided they take a PCR test on arrival at the airport and quarantine for up to 24 hours until a negative result is received.

Results are said to take 6-12 hours, meaning the quarantine period could be considerably less.

Non-vaccinated Israeli citizens returning from overseas will be required to take a PCR test at the airport, and then quarantine for up to 14 days. After seven days, and receiving a negative result on an additional PCR test, they may be released from quarantine.

Israeli flag-carrier El Al was gearing up to launch direct flights between Melbourne to Tel Aviv in early 2020. However, aside from a one-off April 2020 repatriation flight that clocked in at 17 hours and 15 minutes – making it El Al’s longest ever flight – this was put on hold.

Etihad currently flies to Israel from its hub at Abu Dhabi. Emirates announced in November 2021 the planned start of flights to Tel Aviv starting 6 December, but suspended the route before it launched citing the Omicron outbreak and travel restrictions imposed by Israel;at the time of writing the route remains paused. However, Flydubai continues to connect Dubai to Israel.

Israel joins a growing list of once locked-down nations – among them VietnamThailandThe Philippines and Singapore – which have all made recent changes to their travel restrictions. Japan will also welcome business travellers and students from March, and Malaysia is tipped to roll out the welcome mat in April.

With vibrant Mediterranean cities like Tel Aviv and Haifa, revered pilgrimage destinations including Jerusalem, and natural wonders such as The Dead Sea and Masada National Park, it likely won’t require much convincing to tourists to return to Israel.

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12 Sep 2011

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Can't wait!   Maybe I'll  be there for Hannukah/Christmas?  Lets see what COVID does this year


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