Foreign travel advice

Israel

Important COVID-19: travel is different

To understand the risks in a country, including the latest COVID restrictions (including for entry), follow FCDO Travel Advice.

To prevent new COVID variants from entering the UK, you should not travel to red list countries.

Check what you need to do to travel abroad and return to England, or read travel guidance for Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland.

Summary

This travel advice covers Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories

The FCDO advises against all travel to:

  • Gaza
  • the Sheba’a Farms and Ghajjar
  • within 500m of the border with Lebanon (the ‘Blue Line’) east of Metula, including the northern edge of the town and east of Route 98 along the Syrian border

The FCDO advises against all but essential travel to the remainder of the Occupied Palestinian Territories (beyond East Jerusalem) based on the current assessment of COVID-19 risks.

COVID-19 entry restrictions for Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories

Before you travel, check the ‘Entry requirements’ section for Israel’s current entry restrictions and requirements. These may change with little warning. Monitor this advice for the latest updates and stay in contact with your travel provider.

Returning to the UK

Israel and Jerusalem are on the green list for entering England. The remainder of the Occupied Palestinian Territories (with the exception of East Jerusalem) are on the amber list for entering England. Check what you must do to enter England, Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland.

If you’re planning travel to Israel or the Occupied Palestinian Territories, find out what you need to know about coronavirus there in the Coronavirus section.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, it is more important than ever to get travel insurance and check it provides sufficient cover. See the FCDO’s guidance on foreign travel insurance.

For information about COVID-19 vaccines, see the Coronavirus page.

Make sure you are aware of Israeli immigration policies before you travel. Allow extra time for increased security measures and checks at airports during Israeli holidays and during the peak summer tourist season. See Entry requirements.

The security situation in Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories can be fast moving, tense and unpredictable. You should be vigilant at all times and keep up to date with local media and travel reports. You should avoid all demonstrations and large gatherings.

There have been repeated instances of rocket fire from Gaza, which may occur well beyond the Gaza border area; Israel has often responded by returning projectile fire into Gaza. If travelling in central or southern Israel, familiarise yourself with the safety actions that you should take in the event of a warning siren, follow advice from local authorities and stay informed of the security situation through the media and this travel advice. See Gaza

From 10 May 2021, Hamas and other militant groups in Gaza fired over 4000 rockets and mortars towards Israel, including southern and central Israel, Tel Aviv, and Jerusalem. The Israeli Defence Forces (IDF) responded with airstrikes into Gaza. Further rocket fire from Gaza, and IDF counterstrikes, are possible. In the event of further rocket fire, you should follow the advice of local authorities. A ceasefire came into effect on 21 May 2021.

In Israel and the West Bank, including Tel Aviv, East Jerusalem and the Old City (particularly at and around the Damascus Gate and Lions Gate areas of the Old City) and Hebron, there have been numerous violent clashes between protestors and security forces and stabbing, shooting, arson, vehicle ramming and stone throwing attacks on people and vehicles. These types of incidents also happen along Route 60 within the West Bank (the main road connecting Jerusalem with Nablus and Hebron) and along Route 443 between Tel Aviv and Jerusalem. There is a risk that tourists or bystanders could be caught up in any incident. You should avoid any demonstrations and follow instructions of local authorities.

There is a risk of increased tension around Jewish high holidays (Passover, Rosh Hashana, Yom Kippur and Succoth), after Friday prayers, and on other religious holidays and anniversaries. Demonstrations and other forms of civil unrest can occur at short notice and often turn violent. See Safety and security

In April, May and June 2021, there have been confrontations and violent clashes between Israeli and Palestinian protestors and Israeli security forces in Jerusalem. These incidents have occurred particularly in the evenings and around entrances to the Old City (including Damascus Gate, Herod’s Gate, Lions’ Gate and New Gate) and around the Haram Al-Sharif/Temple Mount. There have also been clashes in other parts of East Jerusalem including in Sheikh Jarrah, Wadi Al Joz, and Musrara, at points along Route 60, and near Jaffa Street in West Jerusalem.

Reported incidents included stone throwing, fighting between protestors, protestors temporarily blocking roads, and damage to cars and property. Security forces have deployed stun grenades, rubber-coated bullets and water cannons. Further confrontations are possible and could escalate quickly. Large gatherings on Fridays may lead to clashes. You should exercise extreme caution when moving around these areas, avoid any demonstrations, and follow instructions of local authorities.

In May 2021, Arab citizens across Israel including in Lod, Haifa, Jaffa and Beersheva have demonstrated against events in Jerusalem. These protests have escalated to violent clashes with Israeli police forces, who have used rubber-coated bullets, stun grenades and water cannons to disperse the crowds. You should exercise extreme caution and avoid any demonstrations, and follow instructions of local authorities.

In May 2021, there has been an increase in protests and security incidents in the West Bank, particularly at the boundaries between Areas A and B. Be especially vigilant and take great care at the Qalandiya checkpoint between East Jerusalem and Ramallah, in areas close to refugee camps, in and around Israeli settlements and in the cities of Jenin, Nablus, Hebron and Ramallah. There have also been several violent incidents in the northern West Bank area (north of Tappuah). Individuals carrying weapons have been arrested in Nablus.

Terrorists are very likely to try to carry out attacks in Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories. Attacks could be indiscriminate, including places frequented by foreigners, and on public transport. See Terrorism

There are significant tensions between Israel, and the Assad regime and Iranian military forces in Syria. The situation remains fragile, with attempted and actual military exchanges either side of the border. If travelling in the area remain vigilant, follow advice from local authorities and stay informed of the security situation through the media and this travel advice.

There are also continued tensions between Israel and Lebanon. The situation on the ground could change quickly. See Border with Lebanon

If you’re abroad and you need emergency help from the UK government, contact the nearest British embassy, consulate or high commission. Consular support is severely limited in parts of the Occupied Palestinian Territories and Occupied Golan Heights where the FCDO has existing advice against all travel (see above).

The Overseas Business Risk service offers information and advice for British companies operating overseas on how to manage political, economic, and business security-related risks.