Top 10 Things To Pack For Your Vacation to Israel

March 24, 2015
Top 10 Things To Pack For Your Vacation to Israel

I am going home to the States in a week for Passover vacation. Needless to say I have been counting down the days for about a month now. I’m not sure what I will do first, but my trip will definitely include lounging around with my English bulldog, shopping with my mom, and making our ritualistic visit to Chinatown.

I have been thinking about what to pack for my return vacation to Israel. While living in Israel, there are definitely some comforts from home I have missed, along with some essentials I wish I had brought with me from the start.

For anyone planning a trip to Israel, whether it is for a week or a year, here are the top ten products you’ll need to pack:

Top 10 Things To Pack For Your Vacation to Israel

1. Toiletries

Definitely bring as many toiletries as you can fit in your suitcase. Some important ones to remember:

Stock up on your favorite toothpaste before you come because you probably won’t be able to find the exact same flavor here.

Shampoo brands like Pantene are more expensive here, as are popular face washes.

Bring doubles of perfume so you don’t have to worry about running out and finding a new scent.

If you wear contacts, bring enough contact solution to last you for your stay. Apparently the contact solution in Israel uses different ingredients than name brands in America, so if you have sensitive eyes, this could affect you.

Cold medicine, cough drops, and Advil are all essentials. Also, you of course need to bring enough of your prescription medicine to last the entire stay.

And for women: doubles and triples of your make up.

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2. Extra phone chargers (especially for iPhones)

When you go to buy your adapters, buy a few extra phone chargers. I’m not sure if there is something different with the voltage here, but I’ve already had to buy three new iPhone chargers. Some of the ones that broke were even purchased in Israel, leaving me to assume something with the phone battery doesn’t mesh well with the outlets here.

Also, I would throw in some extra headphones just to be safe. Good, reliable headphones can be rather expensive here.

3. Comfortable walking shoes

Israel is a small country (about the size of New Jersey), and while you’re visiting you’ll likely be walking you way through the holy land.  Pack comfortable walking shoes. Sandals or sneakers should do the trick. Birkenstock shoes are extremely popular, so if you like to be “in” with the crowd, order a pair before your trip.

If you’re concerned about nightlife in Israel, you can bring a pair of heels. It’s not necessary though. Even the trendiest of women in Israel tend to wear a stylish flat or low heel when going out. Most importantly, bring what you’ll feel best in.

5. Casual clothing

Dress is casual in Israel. Israeli’s tend to dress down and still manage to look stylish. To give you an example, it’s typical to find Israelis wearing jeans to a wedding. So dress for the heat and keep it simple. No need to pack any formal clothing on this trip.

If you plan to go to very stylish places, you might want to dress up — but dressing up in Israel is still much casual than North America or most of Europe. It’s the middle east, and it’s hot.

Top 10 Things To Pack For Your Vacation to Israel

Top 10 Things To Pack For Your Vacation to Israel

6. Power Adapters & Converters

Don’t forget your adapters otherwise you won’t be able to use anything you bring that’s electronic. Israel has different outlets so it’s important to get the adapters so your electronics work.  If you have things such as blow dryers, hair straighteners, electric buzzers, etc. a power converter will be necessary in order to use these items.

The electrical current in Israel differs from America, you will want a converter that will change the electric current from 110 volts to 220 volts.

7. Books

I love to read. I think I have read more books during my last seven months in Israel than at any other time in my life. However, English books are expensive here, and the selection is never that great. While there are English books in the book store — the chance of find the book you want to slim,

I brought about six books with me and finished them within the first three months. Since then, I have ordered many online from Amazon and the Book Depository. This can take a while though If you have the room, pack as many good reads as you can.

8. Water bottles

The sun is much stronger in the Middle East than most places even in the U.S. I highly recommend carrying a water bottle at all times.  Your body will require much more frequent hydration (unless you are form the region) than you are probably used to around 2-4 liters of water per day. Do not make the mistake on not drinking enough water — many tourist end up in hospital for dehydration each year, especially in the summer months.

9. Extra socks and underwear

Bring at least five extra pairs of underwear and socks than you were originally going to pack. Most apartments in Israel don’t have dryers, so if you wait to do laundry until you are down to one pair of underwear, you are going to have to wait about two days for your clothes to dry. Don’t get stuck without clean underwear and socks, just pack a few extra.

10. Sunscreen

Sunscreen is expensive in Israel, and if you are as pale as I am you are going to need it. In a country where the sun is so strong and I get burned after sitting outside for 15 minutes, sunscreen is extremely overpriced. Pack some with you before you come so you can explore the country without getting sunburnt.

There are definitely other products from the U.S. that would be useful for anyone coming to live in Israel, but these are the essential ten. You could add bacon to the list, but that’s not necessarily cabin approved, and can be found at specific supermarkets for a heavy price. For anyone planning on coming to Israel, add all of these items to your packing list!

11. If You Are Traveling In The Winter: Rain gear

Yes, there is a winter in Israel. Really. Everyone says it barely rains in Israel. Well, everyone is wrong. True, there are periods of draught, but there is also about a month in the winter when it doesn’t stop raining. And I’m not talking about a slight drizzle.

We’re talking torrential downpour with major flooding because of the ineffective drainage. I wish I had brought my rain boots with me, the extra weight and space in my suitcase would have been worth it. Also, bring a sturdy umbrella, I’ve gone through four so far. Please please please, add rain gear to your packing list.

Top 10 Things To Pack For Your Vacation to Israel

Related Reading

Health, Safety and Relationships in Israel: Jenna’s Tips
Visit Jerusalem in One Day
How I Conquered Israel’s Desert Fortress, Masada
Exploring Little Corners of Israel
Tel Aviv Travel Tips: Reagan’s Take on Health and Safety
72 Hours in the Upper Galilee
Dating Israeli Men: Is it Possible to be Good Enough for their Mothers?
Essential Tips for Women Traveling in Israel
The Miracles That Happened When I Traveled Israel Without A Plan
11 Best Travel Apps to Download Before Your Trip to Israel
A Tel Aviv Love/Hate Story
4 Things You’ll Need to Survive the Summer in Israel
Leaving New York for Life in Israel
One Weekend in Israel’s Negev Desert
What Not to Wear in Jerusalem
Struggling with Israel: Conflicted Feelings in the Holy Land

Have you traveled to Israel? What were your impressions? We’d love to know if there’s any important information you recommend adding to this list. Email us at for information about sharing your experience and advice with the Pink Pangea community. We can’t wait to hear from you.

Packing for a vacation to Israel


Top 10 Things To Pack For Your Vacation to Israel

About Molly Winik

A recent college graduate who chose to live and teach English abroad in Israel for a year instead of getting a 9-5 job. Born in New York, but raised in New Jersey. I have a large blended family that left me one of six kids. And I have an unhealthy obsession with my English bulldog Bubba. I love to write and can’t wait to share my experiences and challenges abroad with other women travelers! Follow my travels here.

4 thoughts on “Top 10 Things To Pack For Your Vacation to Israel

  1. September 20, 2018

    Perhaps we’ve been lucky, but nearly every apartment we’ve encountered in Israel – whether a rental or family and friends – has come equipped with a dryer! That certainly makes packing light easier.

    As for toiletries, we found *most* of our preferred items in Super-Pharm during our most recent visit. The only thing I couldn’t find was Secret deodorant, but we had no trouble getting Dove soap, Colgate toothpaste, Pantene shampoo and Laroche-Posay sunscreen (which was cheaper than in the US).

  2. September 18, 2018

    That was an interesting list to read – thank you! I’ve lived in Israel all my life, so I guess my perspective is a little bit different. A couple of things that I would add –
    Yes, there’s a different voltage in Israel. You should always use an adapter for US-made appliances. Always.

    I understand that you experienced a few rainy weeks but I really wouldn’t say that we always have a month of torrential rain. Israel doesn’t have monsoon season or anything like it.

    Winters can really vary from one day to another and also between years. A whole month of non-stop rain is actually *extremely* rare. During winter months – December through February – it can certainly rain. It can rain lightly or there can be bursts of torrential rain for a few minutes of hours. Even during those months, you’re more likely to get sunny days than rainy days. According to the meteorological service, each of the winter months has approximately 10 days of rain.

    Oh, and almost no rain between June and October. Nothing to do with drought, just typical summer in a Mediterranean climate 🙂

  3. Mercedes Sanchez
    November 21, 2017

    What about clothes for a trip towards the end of December?

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