Israel postpones reopening for tourism until August 1 due to new Delta variant
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  • Post published:01/07/2021
  • Post last modified:01/07/2021

Israel plans to reopen for international “individual” tourism on August 1. But for now, only returning nationals, residents and small groups of special tourists are allowed to enter.

All travelers are required to bring a negative PCR coronavirus test taken no more than 72 hours prior to take-off. They can also show proof of having been vaccinated against COVID-19. 

All arrivals must undergo a mandatory 10/14-day quarantine at an Israel-established quarantine center. 

Local tourists who have received two doses of the vaccine now have access to multiple tourist and entertainment venues by presenting a “Green Pass”, displayed on a Health Ministry app linked to their medical files.

Israel reopening – Latest Updates

Israel beach

June 29 – Israel put off borders reopening to tourism until August 1 due to the new Delta variant

Israel was set to reopen borders to international vaccinated travelers on July 1. 

Unfortunately, due to an increase in coronavirus outbreaks linked to the new so-called Delta variant the government had to postpone the reopening until August 1. 

“We have decided to treat this as a new outbreak. We intend to cut it off here, take a pail of water and douse the flames while they are still small,” said Prime Minister Naftali Bennett last week. 

Bennet also approved the renewal of the coronavirus cabinet to monitor the response against this new threat. 

(Source: Times of Israel)

June 14 – Israel to reopen to individual fully vaccinated travelers on July 1. 

Back in May, Israel started a pilot program that still allows small groups of fully vaccinated travelers to visit the country after quarantining for 14 days. 

The country was supposed to reopen for international tourism on June 15 but the government has put off the reopening date to July 1.

Effective July 1, fully vaccinated international “individual” travelers from some nations will be granted entry. What is not clear so far is what countries are invited and what other restrictions Israel will enforce.  

The government “decided to allow vaccinated people, from countries which will be defined by the Ministry of Health, to enter Israel, through a shortened process which is currently being formulated,” said Aryeh Deri, Israel Minister of Interior in a letter. 

(Source)

May 31 – Israel reopened to tourists on May 23 but they won’t be allowed to arrive until June 15. 

Israel had announced that it would reopen to around 14 countries on May 23, and in fact it did it, but only on paper as of now. 

The country has been running a pilot program to allow entry to small groups of 5-30 US, UK and Germany tourists at a time. Now, the program is scheduled to continue until June 15. 

“It is unlikely that the first groups will arrive before the beginning of June,” said a Tourism Ministry spokeswoman.

Also, the Tourism Minister Orit Farkash-Hacohen said they were working to bring in more tourists and so they can rehire thousands of tourism industry workers. 

(Source: Reuters)

April 16 – Limited groups of vaccinated tourists will be allowed entry to Israel beginning May 23. 

Effective May 23 -limited groups of fully vaccinated international tourists- will have the privilege to come visit and do tourism in Israel. 

All arrivals will need to bring a negative COVID-19 test result, take a serological test to prove the existence of COVID-19 antibodies. This means, the authorities will be checking if the traveler is actually vaccinated against COVID-19. 

As of now, the country is reportedly working on a mutual-recognition vaccination passport to reopen travel corridors with a number of countries. 

Additionally, given its incredibly successful vaccination campaign, the country announced people won’t need to wear a face mask at a public space anymore starting tomorrow.

April 3 – Israel reopens its border with Egypt

After a year of closure, the Israel government has decided to reopen its border with Sinai, Egypt. Effective April 12, up to 300 vaccinated citizens will be allowed to cross the Taba land border daily. 

Travelers need to present a vaccination certificate or proof of having recovered from the virus. Additionally, Israel nationals must also pay the exit fee for leaving the country. Non-citizens in possession of a permit from the Exemptions Committee will also be allowed to visit Sinai.

March 16

A couple of weeks ago, the Israeli government reopened its skies to 3,000 local citizens per day. Many business owners pinned their hopes on a potential reopening for foreign tourists but it has not been the case. 

December 15 – Israel first to officially announce COVID travel passports

Israeli Ministry of Health announced that the country will be the first in the world to issue so-called “green passports” for citizens with COVID-19 vaccination. These passports will allow them to attend cultural events, visit restaurants, avoid quarantine and other travel restrictions.

Airlines currently flying to Israel 

(Current at June 29, this list may change with little to no previous notice)

  • Aegean Airlines
  • Air Baltic
  • Air Canada
  • Air Europa
  • Air France
  • Airmoldova
  • American Airlines
  • Arkia Israel
  • Austrian Airlines
  • Belavia
  • British airways
  • Brussels Airlines
  • Cyprus airways
  • Delta
  • Easyjet
  • El al
  • Emirates
  • Ethiopian Airlines
  • Flydubai
  • Gulf air
  • Iberia
  • Israir
  • Lufthansa
  • Pegasus Airlines
  • Philippine Airlines
  • Ryanair
  • Swiss international Airlines
  • Tap air Portugal
  • Turkish Airlines
  • Ukraine international Airlines
  • United Airlines
  • Virgin
  • Wizz

(Source)

The 7-step exit strategy (Reopening plan) – How does it work?

  • 1st step: Businesses and schools for ages up to six will be allowed to reopen (Unclear when it will occur).
  • 2nd step to 4th step: Reopening of professional sports, gyms, hotels, clubs and public swimming pools.
  • 5th step: Reopening of Ben Gurion International Airport, plus restaurants and cafes.
  • 7th step: Returning to the original color-coded “Traffic Light” plan designed by pandemic czar Prof Ronni Gamzu.

What is open in Israel?

The government has partially reopened business venues like nightclubs, bars, amusement parks, and cultural sites. 

Public events, such as parties and organized trips have also been restricted.

Who is allowed to enter Israel?

Israel international airport

Only nationals and permanent residents.

Is it safe to visit Israel during COVID-19?

Israel is considered a very safe place to visit during COVID and all non-essential travel should be postponed. (CDC.gov warning level 1).

COVID-19 situation in Israel

COVID-19 in Israel
Source

As of June 29, Israel has reported 841,196 cases and 6,430 deaths.

When will Israel be open for tourism?

Israel

COVID-19 pandemic has proven to be unpredictable. However, the country expects to be able to open for international tourism as soon as they have vaccinated the majority of its population. 

This milestone may be achieved by summer 2021. 

Disclaimer: Travel restrictions and governmental regulations can change rapidly and the information below might be outdated within a few hours. Therefore, double-check all information with your embassy or on official websites. Traveling Lifestyle does not take any responsibility for your decision to travel.

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