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Israel Travel Money Guide

See the Holy Land without worrying about your finances with these quick tips and easy solutions on how to best spend money in Israel.

Updated

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Spending in Israel is similar to spending at home and card payments are widely accepted. We recommend bringing a debit card for easy tap payments and withdrawals as well as making sure you have some cash on you – especially if you're heading outside of a major city.

Compare travel money options for Israel

In Israel, debit and credit cards are widely accepted and ATMs are readily available in tourist areas, but you will need cash for purchases at smaller shops, restaurants and markets. A good idea is to bring your debit card for regular purchases and to withdraw cash as needed while having a credit card as your backup.

Data indicated here is updated regularly
Name Product Foreign currency conversion fee Overseas ATM withdrawal fee Purchase rate Annual fee
Bankwest Zero Platinum Mastercard
0%
$0
17.99% p.a.
$0
Offers a $0 annual fee, 0% foreign transaction fees, complimentary international travel insurance and a balance transfer offer.
Bankwest Breeze Platinum Mastercard
0%
$0
0% for 15 months, reverts to 10.99% p.a.
$69
Get 0% interest on purchases for 15 months, complimentary travel insurance and no foreign transaction fees.
Coles Rewards Mastercard - Exclusive Offer
0%
$5
19.99% p.a.
$0 annual fee for the first year ($99 p.a. thereafter)
Finder Exclusive. Ends 29 October 2020
Save with $100 off a Coles Supermarket shop and a $0 first-year annual fee. Plus, 0% p.a. on balance transfers for 18 months (1.5% fee applies).
NAB StraightUp Card
0%
N/A
$0
Save with 0% interest charges and 0% foreign transaction fees. Plus, $0 monthly fees when you don't use the card or carry a balance.
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Data indicated here is updated regularly
$
Name Product Card access ATM Withdrawal Fee Monthly Account Fee Internatonal ATM Fee Foreign transaction fee
HSBC Everyday Global Account
Visa
$0
$0
0%
Special offer: $100 cash bonus for new HSBC customers.
Earn 2% cashback on tap and pay purchases (T&C's apply).
Enjoy no minimum ongoing balance or transaction requirements and the flexibility to hold up to 10 currencies. Apple Pay and Google Pay available.
CUA Everyday Snap Account
Visa
$0
$4.50
2.95%
Refund of international ATM withdrawal fees and international card transaction fees (conditions apply). Refund of overdrawn fees.
$0 monthly account fee. Unlimited fee-free everyday transactions.
Apple Pay, Google Pay and Samsung Pay available. Savings Top Up tool automatically transfers to linked savings account.
Citi Global Currency Account
Mastercard
$0
$0
Pay $0 international transaction fees and $0 overseas ATM fees when you use a foreign currency linked with your account in a country that uses that currency. Make sure your debit card is linked to the correct currency before using an ATM, otherwise a foreign exchange fee applies.
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Data indicated here is updated regularly
Name Product Minimum Order Amount Maximum Order Amount Delivery/Pickup Method Commission Fee
Travelex Foreign Currency
$500
$5,000
In Store,At Airport
$0
Travelex makes it easy to exchange and get the best rate on over 40 currencies so you can be prepared for your next holiday.
Foreign Xchange Travel Money
$0
$9,999
In Store,Home Delivery
$0
Order multiple currencies in one transaction and have it delivered directly to your door anywhere in Australia. No delivery fee for orders over $1,000. A $10 flat fee applies to orders less than $1,000.
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Data indicated here is updated regularly
Name Product Available Currencies ATM Withdrawal Fee Initial Load Fee Reload fee
Travelex Money Card
AUD,USD,CAD,EUR,GBP,HKD,JPY,NZD,SGD,THB

Overseas: $0

Domestic: 2.95% of the amount withdrawn

1.1% of initial load value or $15, whichever is greater
1.1% of transaction value or $15, whichever is greater
Lock in exchange rates for up to 10 currencies, pay no overseas ATM fees and get exclusive merchant offers.
Cash Passport Platinum Mastercard
AUD,USD,CAD,EUR,GBP,HKD,JPY,NZD,SGD,THB,AED
USD $2.50, EUR €2.50, GBP £2.00, NZD $3.50, THB ฿80.00, CAD $3.50, HKD $18.00, JPY ¥260.00, SGD $3.50, AUD $3.50, AED 10.00
$0
$5
Up to 11 currencies on 1 card locked in exchange rates and no load fees.
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Should I bring a pre-paid travel card, credit card or debit card to Israel?

Travel money optionProsCons
Pre-paid travel money card
  • Accepted worldwide like a credit card
  • Protected by a PIN and a chip
  • Not connected to your bank account's funds should it be stolen
  • Emergency card replacement and back-up cards
  • Exchange rates for the Israeli shekel can't be locked in when loading the card
  • Local ATM fees
Credit card
  • Widely used and accepted worldwide
  • Protected by a PIN and a chip
  • Access to funds up to your credit limit, even if it's not in your transaction account
  • Higher fees for cash advances and withdrawals
  • May have a foreign transaction fee
Debit card
  • Some cards don't charge a fee for ATM withdrawals or foreign transactions
  • Emergency cash facilities
  • ATMs are widely available
  • Subject to currency conversion and international ATM fees
  • Not always accepted at smaller stores, restaurants or markets
  • PINs longer than four digits may not work at ATMs
Cash
  • Greater payment flexibility
  • Convenient
  • Higher risk of theft
  • More difficult to manage expenses

What's the Israeli currency?

The local currency used in Israel is the shekel, which is broken down into 100 agora. Shekel bills come in denominations of 20, 50, 100 or 200. Coins come in denominations of 10 or 50 agorot or 1, 2, 5 or 10 shekels.

Over the last few years, the exchange rate has hovered between 2.6 and 3.2 shekels to 1 Australian dollar.

Travel money tips for Israel

  • Watch out for shops that advertise "commission-free" shopping. These shops may have a worse exchange rate than one you can find elsewhere.
  • Bring cash if travelling to smaller towns. ATMs aren't as widely available outside major cities such as Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, Nazareth and Haifa.
  • Don't leave it until the last minute to get shekels if you're running low. ATMs in Israel sometimes go down for international connections.
  • You may not have ATM access on Friday/Saturday. ATMs aren't stocked on Shabbat (from sunset on Friday until sunset on Saturday), so most people take money out on Friday, which could leave you without cash if the ATM runs out of money.
  • Avoid using traveller's cheques. They're pricey to cash, and that's if you can even find somewhere to cash them.
  • Exchange or withdraw your money when you get to Israel. You'll most likely find a better rate than you will in Australia. ATMs are available at the airport, so you won't be stranded without cash.

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