Taxpayers Footing Mossad Luxury Vacations

TheMarker discovers that Mossad employees are taking advantage of government subsidized vacation deals and spend significantly less to stay at some of Israel's most expensive hotels.

TheMarker has discovered that members of the Mossad benefit just as much from government subsidized vacations as do career IDF officers.

Based on information received by TheMarker, Mossad employees are entitled each year to a two-night family stay at any hotel in Israel or a three-night family stay at any Eilat hotel for just NIS 750. This means Mossad employees are paying the equivalent of only NIS 250 – NIS 375 per night for their stays at hotels where the regular price of accommodation can reach as much as thousands of shekels per night.

"I know very well the inside of hotels like the Carmel Forest Spa Resort or Mizpe Hayamim," a Mossad employee told TheMarker, noting two luxury hotels in reference to the subsidized vacations. The Prime Minister's Office refused to comment for this story.

The discovery of Mossad employees' hefty vacation perks follow the disclosure in TheMarker last week that career IDF soldiers receive cushy vacation packages largely paid by taxpayers. According to the report, career IDF soldiers pay between NIS 200 and NIS 800 per night for a family of up to seven members at most luxury hotels in Israel. Career IDF soldiers are allowed to claim these luxury vacations once every three years. The regular cost of accommodation for a family of five at such hotels is between NIS 2,500 and NIS 5,000 per night. They can also vacation at less luxurious hotels at a cost of NIS 200 per night for a family of up to seven every year. These prices do not change even during peak season at hotels. TheMarker estimates that the total annual cost of such IDF vacations benefits exceeds NIS 100 million.

The IDF Spokesperson Unit refused to comment to TheMarker on the cost of such government subsidized vacations for IDF soldiers.

David Bachar