When you’re visiting Israel, the best way to get around is by renting a car. There are hundreds of attractions scattered all throughout Israel, so rather than trying to work out which trains, buses or coaches to get, hopping in a rental car and navigating the roads is much more convenient and can also work out cheaper.
Although driving in Israel can be exciting, it’s also challenging, so patience is a virtue. You drive Israeli cars on their left side, so this is something you’ll have to get used to, depending on where you live.
Most of the road signs are in English, but just like in any unfamiliar area, you can get a bit lost. If you decide to go for a car rental in Israel, remember to add a GPS so you can avoid getting lost and arrive in good timing to all of your holiday plans.
Car Rental Israel – Guidelines and Tips
Whenever you drive somewhere that is not your home country, you can expect things to be a little different. Laws and rules differ wherever you go so make sure you know what’s prohibited and what’s not.
Here are some tips and guidelines for driving around Israel:
- A valid driver’s license is essential for renting out a car in Israel. It doesn’t have to be an international license, just the one from your country.
- You need to be 21 years old or over to rent a car.
- Just like in any country, you must legally wear a seat-belt.
- Babies and toddlers must have the correct seating. Your car rental company can provide these.
- If you’re there on a business trip, and you need to be able to take calls, make sure your rental car has a hand’s free system.
- Your headlights must be on at all times, even during the day.
- In the event of a car accident, you must call the police by dialing 100. You should then call your rental company to inform them of the details.
- If you get your car towed away, dial the number 106, and they’ll direct you.
- Many of the street lights record speed. If you’re going over the limit, they can photograph your license plate and ticket you. Make sure to keep an eye on your speed as it’s easy to get caught.
- The highway speed is 90 km/p/hr (56 miles), and in urban areas, the limit is 50 km/p/hr (31 miles).
- If there isn’t a separate light for making a right turn, don’t make a right turn – it’s prohibited to do so. On large interactions, you’ll see separate lanes made specifically for cars turning right.
- In Israel, don’t park on red and white, it’s forbidden. You can park on blue and white, but that does come with a parking fee. Most parking lots charge you by the hour, although some of them do refund you the money if you show them some proof that you’ve shopped at the center. All you need to do is show them a receipt from the center.
- Avoid Ayalon Highway in Tel Aviv during rush hour or you’ll be there for hours. Rush hour times are Sunday to Thursday, 7:00 am to 10:00 pm and 15:30 pm to 18:30 pm.