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National Young Leadership Summer Trip to Israel
June 30 - July 7, 2014

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What is this trip all about? Put a little soul in your summer! This year our Israel trip is getting personal. Experience the incredible sights and smells of the Jerusalem market, enjoy a bonfire in the desert with young Israelis and feel the energy of Tel Aviv. And for the first time, spend a day focused on a track of your choice: arts & culture, food & wine, politics or start-up nation. Plus, visit incredible sites where Federation is changing lives every day. From the city to the desert, touch Israel's history, get inspired and have the time of your life. It's good for the soul.

Who attends this trip? The National Young Leadership Summer Trip to Israel will include hundreds of young professionals, ages 22 to 45. We expect a diverse group – people from all across North America, from many backgrounds, involved in a myriad of professions and volunteer activities, married and single, etc. There is no typical participant – all are unique and welcome!

What are the dates of this year’s trip? The trip will take place from June 30 to July 7, 2014. The closing dinner will take place on July 6 in Jerusalem and you will have your hotel room through that evening. We encourage all participants who book their own flights to not leave on the evening of July 6 so you don't miss the closing dinner and last evening together.


For the first time on the NYL Summer Trip, you will have the opportunity to customize your experience! On day three, Wednesday, July 2, you will participate on a "track day" and explore your interests further. You will choose a track option when you register for the trip. You will not be able to switch your track option during the trip. For any questions, contact Julia Malkin. The track options are as follows (and see the itinerary for more details!).

  1. Adventure - Do you live for the great outdoors? Does sitting inside sound like torture? Then you belong on the adventure track! Participants who choose this track will have the opportunity to visit Masada for sunrise, hike and visit one of Israel's beautiful secret springs. This track involves a very early wake up.
  2. Food & Wine - Foodies rejoice! There are few places in the world with fresher and more delicious food than Israel. Join the food & wine track to experience amazing and unique Tel Aviv food markets, Israeli breweries and have some of the best food of your life.
  3. Hi-Tech - Israel is known as the Start Up Nation for a reason. Israel, a 60-year old nation of only 7.1 million people, has reached astounding economic growth. At the start of 2009, 63 Israeli companies were listed on the NASDAQ, more than any other foreign country. Join this track to learn about some of the coolest innovations coming out of Israel and try to discover just what makes Israel so special.
  4. Politics - As Israel's first Prime Minister, David Ben-Gurion observed, where there are two Jews, you'll get three opinions. So, how did a nation of Jews build a political machine that gets anything done? Join the Politics track for inside access to Israeli lawmakers and a behind-the-scenes tour of Israel's parliament, the Knesset and see for yourself.


What are the registration fees for the trip? Registration is $2,899 for a double room, $3,849 for a single room. The trip registration fee covers all program costs, buses, transfers, most meals, etc. This does not include airfare. Most Federations require a minimum gift.

Please contact your local Jewish Federation for more information about local subsidies.

*For information about flights, please contact Gil Travel at (212) 284-6668. Don't forget to mention the National Young Leadership Summer Trip to Israel to get the best flight dates and times.

*When you register for this trip you are NOT automatically booked on a flight. Please make sure you note on the registration that you require assistance with flights. If you plan to book your own flights you must note this on the registration site so that we know when to expect your arrival in Israel. If you book your flights after you register, please email your flight itinerary to us.

What is the cancellation policy? 

  • Participants cancelling their participation by May 7 will be subject to a $50 penalty.
  • Participants cancelling their participation between May 8 and May 24 will be subject to  $500 penalty.
  • Participants cancelling their participation between May 25- June 22 will be subject to a $1000 penalty.
  • Participants cancelling after June 23 will not be refunded. 


What are the hotels for this trip? We will be staying at the Hilton in Tel Aviv, the Ayalim Student Village in Beer Sheva, and the Leonardo Plaza Hotel in Jerusalem. When you register for this trip you are automatically booked in a hotel.

June 30 - July 2
Hilton Tel Aviv
Independence Park, Tel Aviv, 63405
Phone: 972.3.520.2222

July 2 - July 3
Adiel Student Village
Beer Sheva

July 3 - July 7 
Leonardo Plaza Hotel
47 King George Street, Jerusalem, 91076
Phone: 1-866-599-6674

Can I register for a hotel room pre- or post-trip? If you want us to book you a hotel in Israel either prior to or after the trip, please contact Ora Merin at Giant Leaps. If you would like to book nights at our first hotel, the Hilton in Tel Aviv, please book through Ora to get our special group rate.

Ora Merin, Giant Leaps
Tel:+972 2 6553236

Can I share a room? If you wish to share a hotel room, you will be asked to name your roommate when registering (each person should indicate the name of the roommate). Please note that if one roommate cancels, the other person will be charged for a single-person room. The Jewish Federations of North America will not assign roommates. Please contact your local Federation professional for help in finding roommates.   

What if I plan to share a room on this trip, but I do not have a roommate at the time I register? If you wish to share a hotel room for the trip, you should contact your local Federation professional about finding a roommate. The Jewish Federations of North America is not responsible for arranging roommates. 

Will there be WiFi at the hotels? There will be free WiFi at the Hilton Tel Aviv and the Leonardo Plaza. There will always be WiFi on your bus.


The Jewish Federations of North America (JFNA) is dedicated to giving you an Israel experience that is exciting, meaningful and memorable with an optimum degree of comfort and security.

  • Itineraries are reviewed before each mission's arrival by the JFNA Director of Security and a Security Consultant in Israel. A recommendation is made as to the level of security and where a guard is necessary to accompany the trip, and forwarded to the company that supplies us with top-grade experienced guards.
  • In addition, the trip itinerary is also registered with the "Tourism Authority," who also monitor in real-time what is happening on the roads and areas that are being visited.
  • The JFNA Security Consultant, guards and the Tourism Authority are well connected at all times with the Police and other sources so that missions may be redirected, if necessary, at any given moment according to the information recieved.
  • Buses are checked each morning before boarding and are rechecked throughout the day.

Rest assured, your peace of mind is paramount in our minds. We want you to relax and enjoy your time in Israel, concerning yourself only with how much fun you are having.


Will I be charged a deposit when I register for this trip? Yes. If you choose to pay "in two installments," a deposit of $1000 will be deducted from your credit card upon registration. Final payment, minus subsidies, will be deducted from your credit card on or about May 21. If you choose the "payment plan" option, a deposit of $500 will be deducted from your credit card upon registration. Each month a prorated rate, minus subsidies, will be deducted until on or about May 21.

How much cash should we have on hand when we arrive and are there places to change money that are convenient to where we will be going? The shekel (NIS - New Israeli Shekel) is Israel's legal tender; you can change money at the airport. Many stores and hotels will gladly accept your dollars, and may give you a discount when you pay in dollars. Bring a lot of small bills. In Israel, singles and fives are easy to change. Credit cards are widely accepted. Your bank ATM card is also accepted at many Israeli bank ATMs. You do not need to change a lot of money into shekels. American money is accepted almost everywhere. Don’t forget to call your credit card companies to tell them you are travelling to Israel and your ATM pin must be 4 digits. Right now, 1 US dollar = 3.50 NIS.

How do I book my flight? You have several options. You can call JFNA's Travel Agent, Gil Travel, at (212) 284-6668 or you can email You can also use a travel agent of your choosing. 

Plan to land in Israel by June 30 at 12pm. Please do not book a departure flight out of Israel on the evening of July 6, as that is the evening of our closing dinner. You will have a hotel room until the morning of July 7. JFNA recommends the following flight to Israel from New York:

   United Airlines Flight #84
   Departs: 29 June from Newark at 4:45pm
   Arrives: 30 June in Tel Aviv at 10:15am

   United AIrlines Flight #85
   Departs: 7 July from Tel Aviv at 11:45am
   Arrives: 7 July in Newark at 4:45pm

How will I get to and from Ben Gurion International Airport? The flights with the largest number of Summer Trip participants, and especially the recommended flight above, will have a bus waiting for you at the airport. It is important that you email us your flight information as soon as you book it so we can know which flights should have buses waiting. We will email all participants which flights will have a bus. You can either wait for the bus if you arrive early, or take a taxi from the airport to the Hilton Tel Aviv. Feel free to email us with any questions.

On July 7 airport transfers will be provided for participants traveling on the recommended group flight. Otherwise, transfers to the airport are available by taxi or shuttle.

How do I get a phone that works in Israel? We have a partnership with IsraelPhones to provide discounted mobile phones, smart phones and SIM cards to NYL Summer Trip participants. We will be sending information about IsraelPhones to all registered trip participants closer to the trip date. For any questions until then please contact Julia Malkin.

Can I extend my trip? For those who wish to create pre/post trip extensions, please contact our Giant Leaps representative Ora Merin. She will be able to assist you with this. You can find the itinerary for their popular Petra extension here.  

Minimum Gift Requirement

All participants will be asked to contribute to Jewish social services at home, in Israel and around the world by making a suggested minimum gift of $500 to the annual campaign of your local Jewish Federation. Pursuant to the Internal Revenue Code, the amount of payments that may be claimed as a charitable contribution are reduced by the fair market value of benefits deemed to have been received by the contributor. The cost of the trip is the fair market value of the trip, and, as a general rule, is not deductible as a charitable gift. In addition, as a general rule, the value of any subsidy received represents a benefit, which must be subtracted from the amount of payments made by the donor in determining the allowable charitable deduction. The Jewish Federations of North America does not render tax or legal advice; this statement of general principles should be reviewed with your own tax preparer.


For all questions regarding this trip, please contact Julia Malkin at (212) 284-6636.

2014 Trip Fast Facts

Dates: June 30 - July 7, 2014

Cost: $2899 for a double room
$3849 for a single room.

Please contact your local Jewish Federation for more information about local subsidies.

For more information, please contact Julia Malkin at 212.284.6636.

For questions related to flights and travel, contact Gil Travel at 212.284.6668.

For questions related to Trip & Travel insurance, please see JFNA's Mission Resources page.

Check this page regularly to read updates about registration, availability, the itinerary and more details.