Travel Restrictions

Yesterday (August 23, 2021) saw another rise in COVID-19 infections. 9,831 people have tested positive for Corona, the highest number since the last wave of infections 9 months ago. The USA as well as the European Union have issued a travel warning for Israel. On the other hand, Israel has shut it’s borders to tourists, requiring entry permissions and quarantine for non-residents (and sometimes for residents too).

About 65% of Israels population is vaccinated. There are still many eligible adults who refuse the jab. Israel is trying to encourage the “refuseniks” through information and media campaigns. The country has also implemented more severe penalties for people breaking the COVID-19 regulations. Mask-wearing in closed public spaces and on public transport is mandatory.

Children of 12 and above are also requested to vaccinate. Children age 5 to 11 are eligible for the vaccine if they are considered at risk.

Several weeks ago Israel started to issue “booster shots”, first to people above the age of 60, now to younger people too. Health officials have determined that efficacy of the vaccinations drops over time. With Israel being one of the first countries to vaccinate its population, many people have received their first two doses 8-9 months ago. As of today, 1.575 million Israelis have already received their 3rd shot.

Despite the non-vaccinated Israelis making only 35% of the entire population (including small children and babies), they make up about 50% of all new COVID-19 cases in recent days. On a per 100,000 citizens basis, the non-vaccinated patients in critical condition far outnumber the vaccinated Corona patients. The Israeli Ministry of Health provides daily statistics on vaccinations, infections, hospitalizations, severe cases, and deaths and lots of statistical data, unfortunately in Hebrew.

You can find more information and links to government websites and travel guidelines on my “COVID-19 in Israel” page.

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