Birthright Israel is a not-for-profit organization providing the gift of a 10 day educational group trip to Israel for Jewish young adults between the ages of 18 to 26. Today, Birthright Israel is the largest educational tourism organization in the world that has given over 800,000 journeys to the magical state of Israel.
Due to the limited number of spots on each trip, we need to ensure that all chosen participants will show up. When an applicant pays the $360* USD deposit, this lets us know that you’re serious about traveling with Birthright Israel and covers any fees that we might incur in the event of a late cancellation. It also helps guarantee that you follow Birthright Israel safety and behavior standards. In extreme cases in which participants violate these guidelines, their deposit may be confiscated.
*As of September 6, 2023 the deposit amount for your Birthright Israel application will increase to $360 USD. The non-refundable processing fee will be $25.
There is a common myth that Birthright Israel programs are funded by just a few donors, but in reality, they are funded by nearly 40,000 donors annually, including tens of thousands alumni, their families, and individual donors from around the world who believe in our mission. The program is also funded by the people of Israel through the government of Israel, The Jewish Agency for Israel, and Jewish communities and Federations.
Absolutely. There is no gift too small to make a difference. The future of the Jewish people is a shared responsibility, and every dollar counts and contributes to a stronger future for us all. To make a donation in support of Birthright Israel, please click here.
A typical group has 40 participants (around half guys and half girls), 2 US staff, 2 Israeli educational staff, and an armed guard/ medic. Each group is also joined by 8 Israeli participants for half of the trip.
There’s no catch. You are only responsible for a $360* USD deposit – which you can kindly donate to support future Birthright Israel educational activities or request a refund after successfully completing the program.
The Birthright Israel: Mayanot journey begins at the airport in the United States, therefore, sorry but all participants must depart with the group from the gateway airport. Trust us, it’s worth it to make the experience better!
Accommodations will be triple-occupancy in quality hotels and guest houses. Rooming is same sex only. We will try to accommodate roommate requests upon acceptance to the program.
The Birthright Israel program covers two meals a day, which normally includes buffet Israeli breakfasts and dinners in the hotel or restaurants. For lunch, participants should budget about $12-$15 per day.
Yup, it sure is. All food provided by the program will be certified kosher. Of course, this does not include shops, restaraunts, cafes, etc, during your free time and meals on your own. please also note strict mehadrin/glatt is not always available on our trips unless otherwise specified beforehand. If this is a concern for you, please contact us to find out more.
For safety and security reasons Birthright Israel requires that all free time is spent within the confines of the group. Your staff will help you find a time for your friends/family to visit you either in the hotel after program times, or on one of the three “leisure nights” when the group will have time out together normally in Tel Aviv, Jerusalem and Tiberius. If you would like to have extended visits with your family or friends we suggest you extend your trip.
Mayanot recommends CTAS as they have years of experience, are affordable and are familiar with the ins and outs of the Birthright Israel system and medical care all over Israel. They are located in Israel and know the language, the hospitals, medical centers, pharmacies etc. Also, in the unfortunate instance that you’ll need their assistance, they will pay for everything directly rather that you having to pay now and claim later as you would with an insurance company based in the United States.
Please see our airlines page for information about checked baggage and carry on info. Specifically, each participant should expect to be able to bring 1 large suitcase, 1 carry on and 1 personal item. We also suggest contacting the airline directly if you have any specific questions. You should also review our suggested Summer Packing List.
Once your application is complete we hope to send you an official trip offer. The only way you can officially be ticketed by the airline is by first receiving an email from Mayanot titled “Your Official Mayanot Trip Offer” and you then accepting the offer within your Mayanot application. If you have not done this, you don’t have a ticket.
You will then get an email confirming you attendance about 2 weeks before your trip which you must accept as well.
Finally, participants will receive their e-tickets at the airport near the airline check-in counter from Mayanot staff.
We suggest bringing approximately $300 to $400 USD in cash. If you do not have a credit card, you may want to bring a little more. Almost all stores in Israel accept credit cards. Do not rely on ATM machines as they can be difficult to find. Travelers Checks are also difficult to cash so we do not recommend bringing them. Please bring $100 USD, in addition to your spending money, which will be used as gratuity for your amazing Israeli staff. (Please note: If you are travelling on a 7-day trip, tip is only $70.)
A money changer will meet every group on the first day to make changing your dollars to shekels (Israeli currency) quick and easy. After that, there will be other opportunities at ATM’s or local money changers later on in the trip.
For a nominal fee most Birthright Israel plane tickets can be extended either in advance of the trip or while in Israel. Please see our flight extensions page for more details.
Yes, and why wouldn’t you!? We’ve prepared an amazing and packed itinerary for you to enjoy. Further, Birthright Israel requires as part of accepting this free gift, that participants take part in all activities.
Mayanot strongly encourages all participants to bring an unlocked cellphone to your Birthright Israel: MAYANOT trip. With an unlocked phone you will be able to use one of our providers Sim cards or E-sims once in Israel to communicate. Besides for emergencies this will be the only way family and friends will be able to reach you while you are on the trip.
Please see our Packing List for the different converter and adapters that you may need.
No – all participants must stay with the group until they depart to the airport for the return flight home. Birthright Israel requires that as part of accepting this free gift, all participants partake in all activities for the entire duration of the trip. One of the most important of these activities is the final session. If you are planning to travel on to Europe or another destination, you must make sure that your planned departure is after the departure time of your group.
Sorry, but you must return to the same airport that is on your return ticket.
Sure! Just remember, as with any valuables you choose to bring with you on the trip, Birthright Israel and Mayanot hold no responsibility for any loss or damage, and we highly encourage all participants to take out travel insurance.
No, but you are invited to participate in the many exciting post-Birthright opportunities and programs that Mayanot offers!
Please see our post trip options page for a list of exciting options including a trip to Eilat.
You can contact the Mayanot office at 1-888-MAYANOT or via email at email@example.com.
Our staff members have extensive Jewish and Israel experience. They are there to facilitate a fun, safe, inspiring, and educational experience. The educational staff consists of an Israeli certified tour educator, an Israeli social guide, an American Judaic educator, an American peer representative. Each group also has a private Israeli security guard/medic, and of course an Israeli bus driver. The combination of American and Israeli staff members allows the team to provide the most unforgettable experience for each applicant!