When is the final payment due?

Final payment for your trip is typically due 105 days prior to departure. Thereafter, a late payment fee of $100 will be assessed.

What are the US customs regulations?

A returning US resident is allowed $800 in duty-free purchases. Gifts may be mailed to the US duty free, but are limited to $100 per person, per day.

What are the buses like?

The deluxe touring coaches are air-conditioned and usually accommodate up to 45 passengers. The average group size is 30-35.

How long is the typical touring day?

On most days, you will depart the hotel between 7:30-8:30 AM and will return late afternoon, around 5:00-6:00 PM. Your guide will announce the daily schedule.

What airline will be used?

We have contracts with many IATA carriers. Your flight schedule will be available approximately 30 days prior to departure.

What about travel insurance?

Contact your travel advisor to discuss your Travel Protection plan options.

What If my luggage is lost or damaged?

File a claim at the airport before you leave the baggage claim area. It is the airline’s responsibility to get lost luggage to you or compensate you for damages.

Will I need vaccinations?

None are required, but you may wish to contact your personal physician before traveling.

What meals are included?

Unless otherwise stated on your brochure, buffet breakfast and dinner at the hotel are included daily. Lunch will be on your own. Coffee, tea, and water will be available at breakfast. Water will be available during dinner. Other beverages may be available at a small charge.

How can I call home?

Calls may be made from your hotel room phone for a fee. You may also either rent an international cell phone or bring your own cell phone with you. If you are able to make calls using WiFi, we recommend simply putting your phone on airplane mode in order to avoid international calling charges.

NOTE: Contact your wireless carrier to find out if your phone will work overseas and, if so, what the rates will be. 

What are the hotel rooms like, and what amenities do they offer? Are hair dryers and washcloths available in the rooms?

We use hotels that have 4-stars or similar. Each room will have a private bath, TV, and phone. Most rooms will have a hair dryer. Most hotels will not provide washcloths, while some may do so only upon request. Therefore, we recommend packing your own.

What can I expect upon arrival?

After going through customs, you will be met by our representative just inside the baggage claim area, who will give you instructions. Collect your luggage and pay attention to the directions. En route to the hotel, you will also be told the procedures for luggage & checking in. Porters will only handle your primary piece of luggage. You are responsible for your carry-ons and personal items. Please make sure to wear your name badge so that our representative can identify you!

Will a company representative meet us at the airport?

YES. Our personnel will meet you upon arrival at your final destination and will accompany you to the airport at the end of your tour. There will not be a representative at US airports.

Are there restrooms on the bus?

There are no restrooms on the bus; however, sufficient stops will be made for your comfort.

Will my tour schedule change?

We do allow flexibility for your tour guide to alter the schedule to give you the best experience.

What about frequent flier miles?

Unfortunately, we are not able to process miles towards your flights and/or up-grades. However, you may earn miles for your flights. To do so, please provide a gate agent with your frequent flier number at check-in. Information about your airline’s frequent flier program is available on the airline’s website.

What is the difference in our time zones?

Israel is 7 hours ahead of US Eastern Standard Time.

May I request special seating and/or meals on my flights?

YES. Requests should be submitted to our office in writing at least 105 days prior to departure. However, we cannot guarantee that your requests will be honored. It is ultimately the airline’s decision.

What If I miss my flight or it is cancelled on the day of departure?

Contact us immediately. After that, speak to a gate agent to see when the next available flight will be. It is the airline’s responsibility to get you to your destination as soon as possible. Once you have your new schedule, be sure to call our office so we can let our overseas staff know when to expect you and so we can arrange a new transfer time for your group if necessary.

Have any lectures or special services been planned?

Please refer to your brochure and/or detailed itinerary, which will be in your final document booklet PDF.

How early should I arrive at the airport?

Due to the increased security at airports, we recommend arriving at least three hours prior to departure for domestic flights and at least three hours prior for international flights.

Who is responsible for any airline schedule changes and/or expenses?

All flight times are subject to change by the airlines without advance notice. We are not responsible for changes and/or delays in airline schedules or any expenses associated with such changes.

NOTE: Should you incur any expenses due to a scheduling change, make sure to keep your receipts as you may be able to be reimbursed through your travel protection policy if you chose to purchase one. 

When may I receive my flight information?

Flight information is available approximately 30 days prior to departure. Your travel advisor will remit your final documents to you. Please contact your advisor for questions about their standard way of remittance.

What if I need to cancel?

Call your advisor immediately, and they will communicate your cancellation request with ETS. Please refer to your tour brochure for information regarding cancellation fees. Beginning 105 days prior to the tour, you will be charged the single room supplement if your cancellation forces your roommate into a single room. If you have travel insurance with cancellation coverage, contact the travel protection company immediately to file your claim.

What if I can’t find a roommate?

While we will try to match you with a roommate, we cannot guarantee one will be available. If no roommate can be found, you will be responsible for the single room supplement as listed under the “Accommodations” section of The Fine Print in your brochure. This notification can come to you as late as 30 days prior to departure.

Will I need a visa?

US and Canadian citizens do not need a visa for Israel.

NOTE: If you are not an American or Canadian citizen, you will need to check with the nearest consulate to find out if visas are required and, if they are, how to obtain one.

How do I get a passport?

You can obtain an application at your nearest passport office, courthouse, post office, or online. You will need a certified birth certificate (with raised seal and file number) and 2 duplicate non-glossy photographs measuring 2x2 inches taken within 6 months of the application. For more information regarding passports you can go online to

What if I lose something on the tour?

ETS cannot assume responsibility for items lost while touring. However, if you have lost something while in the Holy Land, we may have the resources to retrieve it for you.

Any other tips?

YES, here’s a few…

• Pack light. (Save room for souvenirs!)
• Bring copies of important documents like your passport & prescriptions.
• Be on time for the bus and prepared to rotate seats each day.
• Keep all your receipts.
• Settle personal charges at the hotel the night before you check out.
• Remember: You are a guest in a foreign country. Customs and food will be different than at home. We encourage guests to embrace the new experiences.
• Your final document booklet pdf file will be available approximately 3 weeks prior to departure

How much walking is there each day?

While this will vary, expect to walk 1-3 miles daily over varying terrain (stairs, cobble-stone, etc.). This will be intermittent and often there will be somewhere to pause for rest. If you are concerned about the difficulty, please discuss this with your travel advisor.

Any last minute items I shouldn’t forget?

Passport, another form of photo ID, flight information, Bible, sunglasses, camera (with extra batteries & memory cards), electrical converter & adapter, prescriptions, money & sundry toilet items.

What about my prescription medication?

Bring your medicines in their original containers along with a copy of your prescription as well as the generic name. If you have medication which needs to be refrigerated, you must inform our office at least 105 days prior to the tour so that we can make appropriate arrangements with the airlines and hotels.

Am I fit enough to travel? What if I have mobility issues?

Passengers registered for the tour accept the responsibility for being in good health and able to walk and travel on the tour. Because many of the sites are not accessible to the physically challenged, those needing oxygen, wheelchairs or other ambulatory assistance will find the tour extremely limiting to their experience. Guides, drivers and other staff are not permitted to assist with wheelchairs or the like for liability reasons.

Will I have internet access?

Nearly all hotels will offer internet access (charges may apply). Please see the front desk for current rates. Also, many touring motorcoaches have onboard WiFi.

A Note on Electricity…
You will need an international adapter (2 round prongs, Type C or a 3 round prong Type H) & converter set to safely use your electronics. Israel uses 220 volts, vs. 110 in the USA. Note: Some devices are “dual-voltage” and do not need the converter. Check your specific device to see if a converter will be necessary for you. Use caution with devices that heat up, such as flat irons and hair dryers as they can ruin your converter and appliance. It is best to purchase the kind that can run on 220 volts with the flip of a switch.

What If I booked my own flights?

Please be advised that Educational Travel Services (ETS) has only scheduled transfers between the airport and the hotel for those who book their flights through ETS. If you elect to purchase your own flights as a “Ground Only” passenger, you are ultimately responsible for securing transportation between the airport and the hotel, both for your arrival and departure. We recommend guests discuss purchasing a separate ETS transfer package with their travel advisor. Otherwise, please be prepared to make your own transfer arrangements from the airport to the hotel on arrival and then back to the airport at the end of your trip, as we cannot guarantee there will be space for you on any of our transfer buses.

How much luggage am I allowed to bring?

Due to limited space available for luggage on the motor coach, only ONE suitcase (limited to approx. 50 lbs.), one carry-on, and one personal item (purse, laptop case, etc.) are typically allowed.

Most airlines will accept a maximum of 72 linear inches (length + width + depth) for checked luggage. Please review your specific airline’s current luggage requirements on their website. Carry-ons & personal items must fit under your seat or in the overhead compartment of the plane and under your seat or in your lap while on the motor coach. We will provide you with a luggage tag for your checked item; however, we strongly recommend that you attach your own tags on each item you carry as well.

Will I be able to hear my guide?

For your convenience, we are providing headsets to your group (if 20 or more are traveling on the tour). These will allow you to stay connected to your guide, even in crowded or noisy areas. For your comfort ,you may use your own headphones if you do not find the provided set to be comfortable.

What type of clothing should I bring?

Your best option is to bring clothing you can layer that is loose-fitting and casual. A hat, sunglasses and a rain poncho are also a good idea. Some days will involve long rides and/or a lot of walking. So, comfortable shoes are a must!

NOTE: At many holy sites, both men and women are expected to have their shoulders and knees covered. Please check with your guide for any clothing restrictions for the following day. 

Is the water safe to drink?

Please ask your guide upon arrival if your destination has safe, potable water. As many of our guests visit Israel during their travels, we can say that Israel has safe drinking water.

What will the weather be like?

There is no way to predict the weather; therefore, we recommend checking www. before your departure to get an idea of current temperatures and conditions for the cities you will be visiting. Although the climates we visit are typically dry during spring, summer, and fall, we recommend packing rain protection.

What is VAT?

VAT (Value Added Tax) is a sales tax of at least 17% that is charged for most goods in Israel. This amount is part of the price and, is not added at the register. It is possible to claim back most of this tax for Israel. The best way to do this is to see if the retailer you are buying from is affiliated with tax-free shopping. If so, they will give you instructions for your refund. Generally, all you have to do is collect a completed form from the store, which lists your purchases. You MUST have this form stamped by customs when you leave the country. 

Will I be able to shop while on the tour?

Yes, time will be allotted for shopping during the tour. Please be courteous of others while shopping, and be aware of when the group and bus are ready to leave.

NOTE: Any purchases made are at your own risk. We are not responsible for your dissatisfaction with any purchases. Guides are not authorized to recommend any stores or shops on our behalf. 

What about using traveler’s checks and credit cards while traveling?

We do not recommend the use of traveler’s checks as you may experience difficulty using and/or cashing them. You may also be subject to significant handling fees. Credit cards can be used for most purchases.

IMPORTANT: Before you travel, contact your bank or credit card company to notify them about your travel plans to avoid difficulty using your card overseas. 

Will ATM machines be available?

ATMs are available at local banks and at most hotels. You will receive funds in the local currency.

NOTE: You will likely be charged a fee and may be subject to daily withdrawal limits.

Should I exchange money before I go?

This may or may not be necessary, depending on your destination, but if you prefer to have local currency, you can exchange it at your local bank or the airport. Currency exchange may not be available at the hotel, so if you plan to exchange, do so before you leave.

What type of currency is used?

Please check your destinations’ currency on their ministry of tourism website. If traveling to Israel, Shekels are used; however, in Israel, US currency is widely accepted. We suggest you take a good supply of small bills: $1s, $5s, $10s, etc.

Guide & Driver Tipping

Unless specified otherwise on your brochure, there will be a voluntary tip collected for your guide and driver. While in Israel, the suggested amount is $6 per person per day for your guide and $3 per person per day for your driver. Your group leader will pass around an envelope for this collection near the end of the tour.

What about tipping?

Unless otherwise stated on your brochure, prepaid gratuities have been collected for the porters as well as the hotel dining, housekeeping, and front desk staff. However, if you request any special services from the staff, an additional tip of $1 or so would also be appropriate for your lunches and occasional other services (such as using the restroom at a church). Your guide will let you know when this is appropriate.

How much money should I bring?

Not included in your tour package are the following: lunches, spending money, optional tipping, and tips for the guide and driver. We suggest at least $500 USD to cover these and any miscellaneous expenses, but it is a personal decision.

Do I need a passport?

YES. A valid passport is required for international travel. It must be valid for a minimum of 6 months after your return date. If you do not have a passport, please keep in mind, in low volume seasons, it normally takes 4-6 weeks to process, and in high volume seasons, it can take several months. Once you have your passport, you must submit the information to your advisor by sending a photocopy of the picture page of your passport.