Regarding the Sabbath in Israel

Below please find some basic information about the Sabbath

Remember we are the foreigners.

• The Sabbath starts at sundown on Friday and ends on sundown Saturday.

• During the Sabbath, religious Jews are not permitted to work (stores are closed, as well as public transportation, they can’t handle money, or use phones (except for an emergency). They are also not permitted to create a fire (if a fire is lit prior to the Sabbath it is permitted to be used – such as a stove, oven and heating) – in modern times this has been expanded to using electricity and driving a car (same as a before, if an electrical item was turned on prior to the Sabbath it can remain on but it cannot be adjusted or turned off.) Therefore if you arrive in your hotel prior to the start of the Sabbath, you may want to adjust the heating, lighting, air-conditioning and fans in their rooms before the Sabbath commences. ( Not all the hotels in Israel are Sabbath Observant.)

• Hotel elevator: during the Sabbath, the elevator is set to automatic and will simply run the entire Sabbath and open and close on every floor – allowing anyone to use it but they cannot control it.

• Additionally, being Sabbath Observant does not apply to anyone who is not Jewish, therefore you may be able to make adjustments to electrical or heating items.

Leave a Reply