Israel programming at Yale ranges from the political to the social and cultural. We strive to create a community where people with various viewpoints can feel comfortable and have their voices heard. Israel programming on campus is coordinated through Yale Hillel, Yale Friends of Israel (YFI), J-Street U chapter (contact Nate Swetlitz at [email protected] or Elianna Boswell at [email protected]), and an AIPAC chapter. These organizations hold weekly discussions and planning meetings and also host a wide variety of guests including speakers, musical artists, filmmakers, and writers. Additionally, Yale Friends of Israel serves as the umbrella organization for other Israel groups on campus like the Israel Policy Initiative and the Yale Israel Journal. The Israel Chair on Hillel Board acts as a liaison to all of these groups and plans programs both under the auspices of Hillel and in conjunction with these other organizations. Every year, Yale sends a student delegation to participate in a Taglit-Birthright trip to Israel. Past events hosted at Yale include a concert by Hadag Nachash, Israel-themed study breaks, a campus-wide Israel dialogue, a visit by Tzipi Livni, a talk by Alan Dershowitz, an Israeli food cookout, and lectures from Knesset members and Israeli cartoonists.

If you have any questions about Israel programming at Yale, please do not hesitate to email Hillel Israel Chair Gabby Deutch at [email protected].

Summer in Israel

Before you go to Israel

All students must register with Yale Emergency Travel Registry! ( )

Basic Introduction to Israel

Alcohol and drugs

The legal drinking age is 18. Israeli law prohibits selling or serving alcohol sale to minors (under the age of 18)
It is illegal to drive under the influence
The use and sale of marihuana is illegal


Trip advisor:


1 Shekel = 100 Agorot (pronounced ah-go-rot). Similar to dollars and cents.
Type “Israeli shekel” on Google for the current exchange rate


The local time in Israel is 7 hours ahead of Eastern Time in the US. For example, if it’s noon in New Haven, the time in Israel is 7.00 pm.

Landline phone numbers have a two digit area code, followed by 7 digit number (01-234-5678). Cell phones have a 3 digit code (based on provider rather than geographical area). All codes begin with a zero (0), which should be eliminated if you call and Israeli number from outside Israel. To call an Israeli number, you should first dial 011-972. If, for example, you want to call an Israeli number from New Haven, dial 011-972-1-234-5678. For a guide, including local area codes, see:

Phone/SIM providers: IsraelPhones ( ), talkNsave ( ), Amigo ( ), Cello (

Public Transportation

Bus information:
Railway information:
Uber (Tel Aviv):
Taxies: an easy, convenient and fast way to get around, alas, it is also the most expensive form of public transportation. Similarly to the US, you can call a taxi in advance or pull one on the street. Be sure to ask the driver to turn on the meter, unless the two of you agree on a fare before the ride begins. Setting a fare in advance is particularly recommended for out of town rides. Most taxi drivers speak at least a few words in English. Be sure to ask prior to the ride about any possible surcharges (e.g. luggage, to/from airport, additional riders).
“Sherut Taxi”: special ride-sharing taxies, usually in vans that accommodate 10-12 people. These taxies usually operate in between cities and follow major bus routes. Sherut Taxies usually have a set fare per rider (no running meter). They tend to leave their station when the van is full (which means you may have to wait a few minutes). Sherut taxies have predetermined stops on the route, and generally operate like a bus.


It is customary to give a 10-15% tip in restaurants and cafes. 10% is usually the minimum, with 12% an average tip (you can always give more, of course). Tips are usually (but not always) given in cash, and many restaurants do not allow you to add the tip to the bill when you pay with a credit card. Most Israelis do not tip taxi drivers.

Useful words

Hello – Shalom
Good Morning – Boker Tov
Good Evening – Erev Tov
Good Night – Layla Tov
See you later – L’hitra’ot
Yes – Ken
No – Lo
Please/You are welcome – B’vakasha
Thank you– Todah
Excuse me/Sorry! – S’likhah!
What’s the time?  – Ma Hasha’a?
Where is the bus?  – Eifo ha-otobus?
How are you?/What’s up?  – Ma nish-ma?
Where is the bathroom?  – Eifo Ha-sherutim?
How much does it cost?  – Kama Ze Ole?


General information:
Daily forecast:

© All rights reserved to Joseph Slifka Center for Jewish Life at Yale

Updated May 5, 2015