Dos and Don’ts of Dating Israeli Men

August 19, 2015
Dos and Don’ts of Dating Israeli Men

Living abroad in another country is hard, especially when you have to adjust to cultural differences. One of the major differences I found between life in Israel verses that in America is the dating culture. Certain dating norms that are acceptable in America cannot be applied to the dating scene in Israel. If you ever find yourself in Israel, whether for a short vacation or a long-term stay, consult this list before you hit the daring scene of dating Israeli men.

Dos and Don’ts of Dating Israeli Men


Be spontaneous

Many Israelis believe in spontaneity, and rarely choose to make plans far into the future. So, there’s no need to plan dates days in advance. Although it might be tempting to make plans immediately after meeting a guy, try to be patient–chances are he will call or text. If he asks you to drinks in a few hours, embrace the spontaneity and say yes!

Israeli men are very straightforward, blunt, and truthful. Don’t worry, he will tell you his opinion about everything on his mind and won’t hold back. These are great qualities to ensure honesty in a relationship. But, you have to be straightforward also.

Be straightforward

Israeli men are very straightforward, blunt, and truthful. Don’t worry, he will tell you his opinion about everything on his mind and won’t hold back. These are great qualities to ensure honesty in a relationship. But, you have to be straightforward also. If something is bothering you, don’t be passive aggressive; he won’t be able to read your mind and he probably won’t know that something is wrong unless you say something.

Embrace the pet names

But don’t read too much into them. Israeli guys are very affectionate. Even after one or two dates, they’ll start calling you pet names and will show their affection in public. Expect to be called pet names like motek, metukah, or mammi, all pretty much the equivalent of sweetie or babe. But do not read too much into these pet names. Although they are signs of affection, they don’t signify a serious relationship. At all

It’s culturally normal and he might even begin to call you pet names on your first day. Yes, really. Overtime, if you keep dating, the pet names will likely become more meaningful and heartfelt.

Dos and Don’ts of Dating Israeli Men

Impress his mom

No matter where you are in the world, a Jewish mother is a Jewish mother and she will love her baby boy more than anything. When you do meet his mom, make sure she knows you care about him just as much as she does. If you’re in it for the long term, you are going to want her approval.

Even if she’s not your cup of tea, keep in mind, she raised him. It’s her hard work that made him that man he is. And, hopefully, you’re dating a great guy. So that deserves some respect.

Go home and meet his family

We’ve all heard the joke that when you go on a second date with an Israeli guy, the date could be with the whole family. Although this is a bit of an exaggeration, Israeli families are very close knit. You are bound to meet his entire extended family much sooner than is deemed acceptable in America.

Unlike in America meeting the family isn’t a big milestone in a relationship in Israel. But, the best part of dating an Israeli guy is getting to know their family, because once you are in, they will treat you like one of their own. So have fun and enjoy a nice Shabbat meal with his family.


 Dos and Don’ts of Dating Israeli MenDos and Don’ts of Dating Israeli Men


Use apps like Tinder

If you are looking for a serious relationship, or really anything more than a casual hookup, don’t use Tinder in Israel. Like in many other countries, Tinder is used for the one night stand, and many guys using the app have that mentality. Unlike in America, where there are various dating app options like JSwipe, Hinge, Coffee Meets Bagel, etc., there aren’t as many options in Israel. If you’re looking to date, stick to the old fashioned way and go to a bar to try to meet Israeli guys.

Play games

Israeli guys aren’t into the games that plague the dating scene in America. If you give a guy your number expect a call the next day. They’ll tell you exactly how they feel, making it very clear what they want. You’ll know right away if an Israeli guy is interested. They don’t wait three days to call or one hour to answer back a text message. So don’t play the game in Israel, because it’ll get you nowhere.

Enjoy the journey and feel free to express how you really feel. Yes, really. You may surprised to have and have a quality conversation. Not a superficial one in while you feel you can’t she what you truly feel.

Go on dates during the weekend

Because Israeli children are in school Sunday until Friday afternoon, many places are filled with children from Friday night through Saturday evening. Malls and restaurants will be packed, and parking will be slim. If you want a relaxed, quiet evening for a date, do something during the week—grab drinks or dinner on a weekday evening.

Dos and Don’ts of Dating Israeli Men

Be weirded out if he lives at home

Since there is mandatory military service for Israelis after high school, most Israeli guys don’t start studying for their undergraduate degree until they are in their twenties. Because of this, many Israel guys still live at home while they are in school. So, if you meet a nice, cute guy at a bar, don’t be freaked out if he lives at home.

He probably just finished the army and has started his studies. It’s completely normal in Israel for a guy to live at home and commute to school.

Try to be right all the time

All men hate to be wrong–Israeli men take that to a whole new level. They are very stubborn and opinionated. It’s hard to get an Israeli guy to admit that he was mistaken or wrong. Even if you know you are right about something, if it’s a trivial argument, let it go. You’re better off biting your tongue than getting into an argument.

Dating isn’t an exact science. Even though some of these dos and don’ts may not apply to every Israeli guy you meet, keep them in the back of your mind, as they will be useful in the future. Before you start dating in Israel, check this list so you know what to expect from dating an Israeli man!

Dos and Don’ts of Dating Israeli Men

Dos and Don’ts of Dating Israeli Men

Related Reading

Have you dated Israeli men? What are some other dos and don’ts that you recommend while dating Israeli men? Email us at [email protected] for information about sharing  your experience and advice with the Pink Pangea community. We can’t wait to hear from you!

Dos and Don’ts of Dating Israeli Men photo credits: Unsplash, Jessica Shen and Molly W.


dating israel men

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.

16 thoughts on “Dos and Don’ts of Dating Israeli Men

  1. Sarah
    April 24, 2022

    Well shit. This article was pretty darn accurate. I mean to the tee. I’m a white female and went on two dates and all the above happened (except meeting family). I ran the other direction. If there is one thing is tbey have this intensity and it was very overwhelming for me. Needless to say I won’t be calling him back.

  2. Ann
    November 5, 2020

    I really want to date one

  3. Ida
    August 10, 2020

    I am a recent widow in Israel. I’ve been told by a ma who I dated once refused the second date that “He doesn’t chase women”. I think this is part of the culture. I connected to the second Israeli on JWED. He really liked my profile and directed me to his website to gmail him. Anyway since I am a lot older 76 and he is 62, he would have to chase me.
    I really think that the way they behave is acceptable. They need help in developing chasing a woman skill. Perhaps they think keep a woman uncertain is healthy.
    This fellow is very driven. Divorced many years. He is in Haifa and I am in Jerusalem. We were supposed to meet at Gordon Beach in Tel Aviv. We are geographically incompatible. Israelis who live on the coast think Jerusalem is Irrelevant. After the Update at Gordon Beach, last night, I texted him the joke I told at the beach and then the translation. No Reply. Then I texted you must be too tired, sorry can’t concentrate. then he sent me a current photo where he is proudly pointing to his name, architect at the bottom of the development sign. We went on a few lines and he also commented.
    I don’t want to appear to be chasing him. In the photo he doesn’t look like his former handsome soldier self. If I don’t continue he may think I don’t like hime because he is chubby. What to do?

  4. April 3, 2019

    I love straightforward men but i am 51 years of age. Would love to meet an Israeli man. Are there dating sites that can help me meet the men?

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