The State of Israel requires entry visas from the citizens of countries that are not on the list of 100 jurisdictions being the visa-exempts. Before contacting an Israeli diplomatic mission, check if you need a visa or not, assuming that you are interested in a visit of up to 90 days. For longer stays, an Israeli visa is always required. Nationals of every visa-exempt country can come to Israel holding only their passport whereas the others must apply for an entry-permission beforehand.
If you want to visit Israel for less than three months, apply for an Israel B2/ Visitor’s Visa.
Israeli Visitor’s Visa Guidelines
We are sure that you have plenty of questions about a tourist visa to Israel. Read the article below to know:
- Which countries are granted a visa-free regime to Israel
- What can you do in Israel when you come from a visa-exempt country for a short stay
- What is a B2/ Visitor’s Visa and what are its conditions
- Which are the requirements for an Israel tourist visa
- Which documents you will need to apply for an Israel Visitor’s Visa
- How long does it take to get an Israel visa
- Which visas are suitable for stays longer than 90 days
- What are the most commonly made mistakes of applicants resulting in visa refusal?
Visa-free countries to Israel
Generally speaking, all nationals of the states which are not granted a visa-free regime to Israel must hold their visa crossing the Israeli border.
If you are from one of the visa-exempt countries, you can come to Israel without a visa. The condition is having a biometric passport of one of the following countries:
- European Union countries
- Albania, Andorra, Argentina, Australia
- Bahamas, Barbados, Belarus, Belize, Botswana, Brazil
- Canada, Central African Republic, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica
- Dominican Republic, Dominica,
- Ecuador, El Salvador, Eswatini
- Georgia, Grenada, Guatemala
- Haiti, Honduras, Hong Kong
- Jamaica, Japan
- Lesotho, Liechtenstein
- Macao, Malawi, Mauritius, Mexico, Micronesia, Moldova, Monaco, Mongolia, Montenegro
- Nauru, New Zealand, North Macedonia, Norway
- Palau, Panama
- Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines
- Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, San Marino, Serbia, Singapore, Solomon Islands, South Africa, South Korea, Suriname, Switzerland
- Taiwan, Tonga, Trinidad and Tobago
- Ukraine, United Arab Emirates (from 1 July 2021), United Kingdom, United States, Uruguay
- Vanuatu, Vatican City
Short-stay Israel Visa - purposes of travel
If you are from a visa-exempt country or you have your short-stay visa to Israel, you are allowed to:
- for a visit a country, sightseeing, make tourist tours
- come for business meetings, conferences, fairs, etc.
- study in a Hebrew ulpan but no longer than 90 days
With a Visitor’s Visa to Israel you must not take a paid job, study more than 3 months, or settle down.
If you want to fulfill the clerical duties among your religious community of a recognized religious institution in Israel, you can apply for A/3 Clergy Visa. This is not forbidden when you hold a Visitor’s Visa but the Clergy Visa suits this purpose better and it is easier to get.
B2 Israel Visa (Visitor’s Visa) to Israel conditions
With a Visitor’s Visa, you can cross the Israeli border via air, land, or sea and then stay in this country for up to 90 days. This is a single-entry visa, so, once you leave Israel during the visa validity period, you are not authorized to come back with the same visa. You have to wait until your visa expires and apply for a new one.
A B/2 visa is valid for up to three months from the date of issue, not from the date of entry to Israel. Keep it in mind planning your trip. Every time the duration of the stay in Israel is determined by the Border Police officer at the port-of-entry. Be aware, that decision taken by the Border Police officer is final.
Travellers wishing to extend their stay in Israel may submit an application for an Israel visa extension at one of the regional population administration offices of the Ministry of the Interior.
Remember not to overstay your trip beyond the expiry date of your visa. Israel executes its immigration policy very restrictively and a tourist without a valid visa is considered an illegal immigrant with all consequences of this fact.
If you think that you may need more time to visit your friends, take part in some long-lasting projects (for example, Taglit-Birthright Israel or MASA, or in other projects initiated and organized by the Jewish Agency, or just explore this fascinating country, learn more about other types of visas and adjust the type of a visa you apply for to a purpose of your visit to Israel.
Requirements for a Visitor’s Visa (Tourist Visa) to Israel
The main condition of getting an Israel visa is holding a biometric passport issued within the last 10 years. Moreover, your passport must be valid for 6 months beyond the period of the stay in Israel.
It is impossible to get a visa via the Internet, all the processes can be handled only at the Israeli diplomatic mission and you must do it in-person. Besides the passport, you have to present at the embassy or consulate-general the following documents:
- A photocopy of passport/travel document
- A completed and signed application for a visa to enter Israel
- Proof of the applicant's sufficient financial means for the visit to Israel (for example, bank statements from the last three months, employment contract stating your salary, etc.)
- Confirmed order for airline tickets to and from Israel
- Two passport pictures (5 x 5 cm)
- Proof of payment of the visa fee
The consular officer may ask you for additional documents and information, for example, your itinerary, expired passports with visas, addresses of the places of your accommodation in Israel, etc.
Remember that once you pay the visa fee, it will not be refunded to you if the visa is not issued for any reason.
How long does it take to get an Israeli visa?
Generally speaking, most applications are processed by consular staff in 10 days. After that time, a consular officer processing your application can invite you for an individual appointment to interview you about the purpose of your visit to Israel, your travel plans, but also about your marital status and current job. This meeting’s purpose is to know better your situation and decide whether you are eligible to enter Israel or not.
But in most cases, visas are granted on the basis of the presented documentary, and the visa appointment is not needed.
Long-stay visas to Israel
Israeli government proposes different types of visas for different purposes of visits.
The State of Israel is a country unique on a global scale for its immigration law. The States grants the right to immigrate to Israel to every Jew in the world. The law definition of the Jew is "A person born to a Jewish mother, or who is a convert to Judaism, and is not a member of another religion." This law expresses the connection between the Jewish people who are away and whose ancestors were away and their homeland. Every Jew desiring to live in Israel is considered as a person returning to their country. The organization helping in this process is the Jewish Agency, so if you think that this is your case, contact its representative and ask about the Israel Immigration Visa.
Other types of visas are:
- A/1 Temporary Resident visa
- A/2 Student visa
- A/3 Clergy visa
- A/4 Visa for spouses and children
- B/1 Work visa
An A/1 Temporary Resident visa is given to an eligible person who has completed the examination process with the representative of the Jewish Agency, and whose application has been examined and approved by the diplomatic officer at an Israeli mission abroad.
The most frequently-issued (just after the Visitor’s Visa) is the Israel Student Visa.
To apply for this visa you have to submit the following documents:
- Completed and signed application form
- Passport must be valid beyond one year from the date of intended visit
- 2 passport pictures 5 x 5 cm, meeting the Israel visa photo requirements
- Original letter of acceptance for study signed by a representative of a recognized educational institution in Israel
- Bank statements proving that you have the funds to support the stay in Israel while you study
- Go-and-back airline tickets
- Proof of payment of the fee
An Israeli Clergy Visa can be issued to a clergyman who goes to Israel in order to serve their religious community. This type of visa may be issued only by the Ministry of the Interior. It means that the application should be submitted not in a diplomatic mission of the State of Israel but in Israel. The documentary must be submitted by the religious institution that is inviting the clergyman. This type of visa may be renewed once its holder still resides in Israel.
Visas for the spouses and children may be issued to the husbands, wives, and minor children of recipients of A/2 or A/3 visas on their request.
B/1 Israeli Work visa is created for people who stay in Israel for work, for a limited period. This visa is granted only with the approval of the Ministry of the Interior to highly-experienced experts, artists, and representatives of desired professions.
The meeting in the embassy or consulate-general is mandatory. Required documents are:
- A verified certificate of good conduct
- Certification of medical examinations performed in clinics or hospitals recognized by the mission (the certification must cover, inter alia, normal results in tests for tuberculosis, hepatitis and AIDS) and the results of blood tests
- A declaration of the taking of a fingerprint and a photograph
- A completed application for a Work visa
- Two passport pictures (5x5 cm) meeting the Israeli Work Visa photo requirements
The most common mistakes in Israeli visa applications
An Israeli tourist visa is easy to get if you are eligible, but applicants make some critical mistakes that provoke a refusal or a delay. What are these errors?
- Defective or non-signed application form. Check twice if you signed properly your form and gave all the necessary information.
- To short passport’s validity. Your passport must be valid for 6 months beyond the period of the stay in Israel.
- Lack of airline tickets. This is mandatory. You have to order your round tickets before you apply for a visa.
- Wrong photo. The visa photo must be:
- sized 5 x 5 cm
- in color
- correctly cropped
- taken against the required background
- satisfying all standards for an Israel visa photo.
There is not a requirement of taking a visa photo professionally and you can do it with your smartphone. If you are not sure whether your picture is correct or not, check the smart Visa Photo Maker. Once you pick up the document (here: Israeli visa) and upload your picture, artificial intelligence will resize, crop and adjust it to the requirements. Thanks to this technology you may be sure that this mistake will not be done.