23 Jan Travel to Tel Aviv: Get Around in 4 Foolproof Ways
Tel Aviv is Israel’s largest metropolitan area. Despite this, Tel Aviv is a city that’s far from puzzling to navigate given its size. You can usually get by in most parts of the city even without a map except when you’re visiting an old area.
Tel Aviv has steadily grown over the years making it the country’s designated international metropolis. The city is filled with street signs in three different languages: Hebrew, Arabic, and as well as English. More importantly, many foreign embassies are also located in the city. All of these add to the reasons why it’s one of the most tourist-friendly cities in the world.
If you’re looking to visit Tel Aviv, there are a number of ways to get around the city. Although there are many options open to you, choosing the right one will depend on your travel plans.
To make sure you get the best out of your trip in the city, read the tips below to figure out what would suit you!
Rent a Car and Drive Yourself Around
Renting a car in Tel Aviv provides a convenient way for you to get around the city. The roads in the city are well-maintained and modern.This ensures that you pretty much have a smooth ride with hardly any difficulties along the way. The traffic police here are strict and speed limits, as well as laws in driving, are no doubt enforced. Driving conditions are also much better here compared to the rest of the Middle East.That said, Israel boasts one of the world’s lowest traffic related deaths: only 11.6 deaths per 100000 vehicles annually (in the U.S.A the rate is 15 deaths per 100000 vehicles annually).
Parking is also available in most establishments. Unless you’re out during peak hours, you’ll have no problem finding a parking slot in Tel Aviv. Compared to other big cities such as in the US or Europe, Tel Aviv isn’t that badly crowded in terms of traffic.
However, before you can rent a car, you have to be at least 24 years old. Standard driving rules apply here and traffic usually flows on the road’s right side.
The best thing about the car rental companies here is that you don’t need an international driver’s license to rent one or to drive around.
If you’re renting from the airport, rental companies will also typically charge $27 for airport tax. Elsewhere, the standard rate for car rental is as low as $5 a day. Some rental companies also rent out their GPS units separately for $10 a day. If you want to get the best deal, book at least a month before your scheduled trip.
Take a Taxi
You can easily find a lot of taxis in Tel Aviv. Many taxi drivers provide a smooth, comfortable ride and are a good choice if you don’t want to walk when transferring from place to place. The standard fare isn’t all that expensive as well so it’s a great option even if you’re on a budget.
Taxis have two different tariff rates here. A lower tariff one from 5.30am to 9pm and a higher one (around 25%) on night time travels between 9pm and 5.30am. This is also applied during Shabbat and Jewish holidays as well.
Just remember to make sure that the taxi driver starts the meter before a trip and that you get your receipt. Tipping isn’t usual here so you may skip that as well. However, make sure you exchange your money to Israeli currency because taxi drivers won’t accept anything else. If it happens that the taxi driver accepts another currency, he may charge you more for it.
Sheruts are shared taxis. This is a great way to save on your fare if you don’t mind having company. Compared to regular taxis, you might have to share the ride with anywhere from seven to 12 passengers. These are shuttle-like minivans that ride in some of the same routes as buses do. There isn’t much difference between the fare between the two but you’ll definitely have a much faster trip.
There are also sheruts in the airport and are a convenient way to get to your destination without being too costly.
Travel Tel Aviv Via Bus
Tel Aviv has a great public transportation system that you could easily travel in between places using it. You have two choices if you plan on getting around: take the bus or train.
If you take the bus, a standard one-way ticket price is around $2, give or take. You can also just buy a bus card, which gets you 10 rides and a discount. However, buying the one-day pass requires a Rav Kav travel card. You can get it at the Dan information counter (Bus Line) at theArlozorov Bus Terminal or Central Bus Station for no charge during Sunday to Thursday from 8am until 6pm. On Fridays, they’re only open until 1pm. But before you do that, you have to download and fill out an application form first. Bring a passport photograph as well as your passport with you for verification purposes.
Tickets can be bought while you’re on the bus. If you’re planning on riding a bus to a destination outside Tel Aviv, it will likely cost you extra.
Taking the Train
Israel railway system is a bit undeveloped. The routes are not that extensive in some areas but taking a train is good if you’re looking to venture into Israel’s center or up north. It’s been said that there are now plans to improve Israel’s railroad structure. Included in this proposed plan is a train route that will be available in Jerusalem and Eilat.
Should your trip be in the morning, you might want to take the train instead. Israel Railways offers different available routes all over Tel Aviv as well as neighboring cities like Jerusalem. There’s also a connecting route that will take you straight to the Tel Aviv and Ben Gurion International Airport, which only costs about $4. Just like on buses, you’ll save more if you buy multi-trip passes. Train passes are about 10% cheaper than buying a ticket individually.
Trains run every day in Tel Aviv although on am much lesser frequency during Fridays and Saturdays. Rates will also vary depending on how far the distance you’re traveling. To purchase tickets, you can do so at your departure point.
Walk or Bike Around
Tel Aviv is a large city but walking around is definitely doable. There are specific neighborhoods in the area that are better to traverse on foot.
If you’re the type who doesn’t like walking around, another great alternative is to use a bicycle to get around Tel Aviv. The best thing about Tel Aviv is that its roads are wide and relatively uncongested. There are also designated bike lanes on the side of the road so you can easily bike in peace. Planning on visiting the Tayelet? Taking a bike would be ideal as you can better see the city’s scenic views.
Getting around the city using a bike is easy since Tel Aviv has a bike rental program called “Tel-O-Fun.” The program has established bike rental stations all over the city and is available to rent 24/7. The best part about it is that you can return the bike at any station situated all over Tel Aviv.
It costs about $4 a day to rent or $16 if you’re looking at a week’s worth of subscription use and then you pay by usage.
Choosing the Best Option For You
Picking the best option for you will largely depend on your travel budget and objectives. Don’t mind commuting or traveling in between districts? Why not take a train or bus. Planning on just visiting one neighborhood for a day? Walking or biking would typically suffice.
Whatever you choose to get around Tel Aviv, remember to enjoy the city and appreciate all the new things you discover. Travel to Tel Aviv now and experience the city’s wonders!
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