Tourist Tip #13 / Electricity

It's worth planning ahead to avoid being shocked by the electricity situation in Israel.

Planning to bring your hairdryer, cell phone or laptop on holiday? Stay plugged in and stress free by getting acquainted with the local electricity situation beforehand.

There are no international standards, so plug shapes, sizes and sockets vary wildly from country to country. Rather than keeping track of all the variations, the easiest solution is to purchase a universal adaptor and converter kit, which you can find in hardware stores and travel retailers.

If you prefer, you can buy separate plug adaptors or transformers specifically for Israel. But first you’re going to need to know what you’re dealing with.

The electrical current in Israel is the European standard of 220 volts AC, alternating at 50 cycles per second. If you’re coming from a European country, the only thing you’ll have to worry about is getting a plug adaptor, which changes the shape of the plug without affecting the voltage. These adapters can often be borrowed from hotel concierges or are available at hardware stores for a few shekels.

If you’re coming from somewhere like the United States, your appliances will be designed for use with a different voltage. In this case, you’ll need to a 220-volt convertor, which you can buy in hardware stores for about NIS 40. But you should be aware that many converters are not designed for continuous use. So if you're traveling with a laptop or other device that needs to remain plugged in for a while, you’ll need to invest in a heavy-duty transformer, which could run you upwards of NIS 100.