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As expected, they’re non-denominational and open to participants from all backgrounds. All organizers currently offer trips for people who are between 18 and 32 years old (a big jump in 2017 from the previous cutoff of 26), but the choices are limited. On an Israel Outdoors Israel by Foot or Israel by Bike trip, expect more time outdoors, breaking a sweat. Was it a good use of philanthropic dollars? Additionally, you must have already graduated high school by the time of the trip, and cannot be attending a full-time Jewish studies program. Mindfulness and Spirituality As a member of our team, you’ll be helping to share the gift of Birthright Israel with participants in an incredibly powerful, once-in-a-lifetime way. Use your Israel experience to make some new friends in a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Fun and exhausting. It was the first episode of TNG filmed in 1993. You’re now a Birthright Israel expert. Important note: Speciality trips are the most likely to change over time, with the few available filling up and maybe even organizers adding a few. USA-Argentina Joint Trip The good news is that there are some easy ways to narrow this down to a manageable number of choices. This experience can serve them well when planning Birthright Israel trips, especially if you’re looking for a classic itinerary (they only offer a few specialized trips) with the knowledge that they are not catering to only to the basic touristy spots, but rather to travelers who want a true Israel travel experience with some lesser-known spots. That’s ok, even if you aren’t able to apply for a trip as a participant, you too can apply to Staff a Trip. Facebook Reviews: 4.3/5 stars (43 reviews), Trips: Taglit-Birthright Israel is an innovative partnership between the people of Israel through the Government of Israel, private philanthropists and thousands of donors and Jewish communities around the world (North American Jewish Federations through the Jewish Federations of North America; the Jewish Agency for Israel; and Keren Hayesod). Culture (film and food) Trips: So many people said it couldn't be done. If you have a strong bond with a group of people and you know you want to travel with them, check these out! Departure: Where is most convenient to leave from (and does your trip choice offer this departure location? Free Israel Trip. Speciality trips give you the advantage of going beyond the typical Birthright itinerary with activities that match your passions, and you do it all with like-minded peers. The Federation did a trip but it was definitely a fundraising trip which isn't for everyone, especially those on a first trip. So I put together a trip for older adults (age 50+). Campus Applicants must be between ages 18-32 at the time of the trip and must have already graduated from high school. Since 1999, Birthright has brought more than 500,000 travelers the ages 18 to 26 to Israel—at no cost to the participant. So know that as you’re going through the guide below to help hone in on the right trip, as you make one choice, you may rule out other options — so keep an open mind: Why don’t you start with trip organizers? Ready to sign up? Definitely a great option to enhance your learning and overall experience in Israel (plus pickup a few college credits, if useful). Brand Infusion In fact, Israel Free Spirit is another trip organizer vocal about their acceptance of all participants from all Jewish affiliations, with an extremely diverse selection of trips (with the only downside of only leaving from 3 departure cities). Outdoors/Adventures You’ll be spreading the Sach-Love and scoring yourself a Free trip back to Israel. Classic (10-day and 7-day) It’s a small country and you can see a lot in that amount of time. How could a ten day trip to Israel really impact Jewish identity? And the organizer of the trip impacts the other people on the trip, where you go, the style of travel, and much more, which makes a big difference in your experience. Regional/Industry Communities (DC politics, Wall Street finance), Boston, Chicago, LA, Miami New York Washington. Facebook Reviews: 4.8/5 stars (44 reviews), Trips: If they’re the only one offering a special trip and you feel strongly about that topic, there’s a good chance that you’ll get along great! Privacy Policy. Classic (10-day and 7-day) The Federation did a trip but it was definitely a fundraising trip which isn't for everyone, especially those on a first trip. Your email address will not be published. Some trips draw from locations across the country with a shared interest, such as the trips focused on social justice and startups and entrepreneurship. LGBTQ In … There are very few “red flags” with the organizers overall. In addition to traditional Israeli tour guides, Mayanot Israel Birthright trips include Jewish educators and rabbis. Then I turned 27. “Each day of the trip reinforced Israel as my second home and that no … If you are over 21 years old, have leadership experience, and are craving for another taste of Israel, we invite you to apply for a position as a Trip Staff Member. If you want to travel with friends from school, there’s a good chance that Hillel is planning a trip leaving from campus (and departing from a nearby big city, unless you’re in the midwest!). Trek through history and explore the ancient and modern in an open-minded, pluralistic environment. We just think that the best way to choose a trip from the hundreds of options is to narrow down the selection with a few basic preferences, see what organizers match up with the smaller pool of choices, and then review them to make a match. Want a sure-fire way to get yourself a trip back to Israel? Birthright co-founder Michael Steinhardt gave us the middle finger, as he exited his limousine. Get your friends to participate in a trip with IsraelontheHouse, and we’ll give you the chance to go back to Israel for FREE. All my friends talk about their organizer! Ezra World also offers speciality trips, including a foodie-focused itinerary and a trip organized around world-renowned startups and entrepreneurship in Israel. The Birthright spiritual speciality trips range from a focus on religion to mysticism to yoga. If you’re between 18 and 26 you have many more options, so read on to find the best one. They even offer a one-of-a-kind USA-Argentina joint trip. My madrichim were fine, but our tour guide and our medic (aka security guard, who was fresh out of the IDF and a de facto second tour guide) were exceptional. Although members live far apart, Steinberg said she feels their shared Jewish background quickly bonded the team. Today, Birthright Israel is the largest educational tourism organization in the world that has given over … Spiritual Self-Discovery Mostly expect a typical itinerary, with that slight extra focus on religion and activities designed (and sometimes feeling forced) to create meaningful connections among participants and to Israel, in addition to the speciality trips offered by this organizer. So much to consider — but don’t worry. There’s not much better than a free trip to Israel. Some offer similar trips (such as outdoor adventure trips), but others offer something unique. We Return the Birthright- because it’s unjust that we get a free Birthright trip, while Palestinian refugees can’t return to their homes. A few weeks before being on Birthright Israel with Julie, I was assigned to a trip with LA participants. Classic (10-day and 7-day) JSU/NCSY Alumni They’re also known for creating top-rated itineraries across a number of speciality trip options and their classic itinerary. Answered: What’s the best way to visit Petra from Israel in 1 day? Foodie Typical activities include hiking (more than the typical trip), rappelling, rafting, paintballing, and biking. Birthright Israel is hoping to open up trips again as soon as possible. Trips include tours led by guides in sign language, speciality equipment and staff to accommodate comfortably those with special physical needs, and trained staff to ensure the trip is a wonderful experience for all who attend. Answered: Does Birthright make age exceptions? We hope this guide was helpful in making a selection about a trip. See all female packing lists here.. Birthright is a free ten-day trip to Israel for young Jewish adults ages 18-26 that takes you all over the country – from metropolitan Tel Aviv to the mountains in the Galilee.Abbi and Ilana went and, if you’re reading this, you’re most likely planning on going too. “Each day of the trip reinforced Israel as my second home and that no … You’ll still hit a few of the major sites outside the cities (Israel is a small country, so travel time won’t limit you), but the focus stays on the cultural centers, and substitutes in activities such as jam sessions and workshops with Israeli artists. Underwater: SCUBA dive with Israel Navy divers Hillel is a campus-based organization, so their focus is on college students and university-specific trips. Ezra World has roots in a youth movement focused on connecting Russian Jews to their community, and their Birthright trips grew out of the organization as it expanded to new avenues of connecting Jews to their heritage. Startups and Entrepreneurship Taglit-Birthright Israel (Hebrew: תגלית ‎), also known as Birthright Israel or simply Birthright, is a not-for-profit educational organization that sponsors free ten-day heritage trips to Israel for young adults of Jewish heritage, aged 18–32.. Taglit is the Hebrew word for 'discovery'. It's a taste of what Israel has to offer. My madrichim were fine, but our tour guide and our medic (aka security guard, who was fresh out of the IDF and a de facto second tour guide) were exceptional. Sign up today. Outdoors/Adventures Even with all of those advantages, don’t rule out heading to a different city to leave on your trip. And don’t delay! Media- Birthright founder gives middle … Or if your religious experience was connected to the JSU/NCSY youth group movements, they offer an alumni trip to reconnect with friends! So what are you waiting for? Combine their reputation, trip options, and the second highest number of departure cities, and you’re looking at a solid trip organizer for many trip participants for Birthright Israel! Facebook Reviews: 4.4/5 stars (116 reviews), Trips: Read on to see if this position is the right fit for you! For Second Time in Two Weeks: U.S. Jews Walk Off Birthright Trip to Join Anti-occupation Activity . Where do you live (and want to leave from)? Most Birthright trips are 10 days, which is a sweet spot length to see a ton of the country, participate in diverse activities, and make it back in time for classes to start up again after spring break or get back to your office. Don’t let the name fool you, and be sure to check out OU Israel Free Spirit that may be a great match for you. Israel Outdoors lives up to their name, but also goes so far beyond. Not eligible for a Birthright-Israel trip? I had aged out of the program. When you’re starting to think about your ideal Birthright trip, keep these factors in mind. Israel on the House is Part of the Sachlav Group Website by They also have a reputation during classic and campus trips for taking more time for deep conversations and learning, rather than focusing on adventure or experiencing the culture. Hopefully you’ll want to come back (that’s definitely something the program hopes to achieve! It’s a special opportunity for those who may otherwise feel excluded from Birthright Israel trips. Not eligible for a Birthright-Israel trip? Birthright, which since 1999 has sent more than 650,000 young Jews like me on free trips to Israel, claims to be an apolitical trip intended to put young Jews in touch with our history and culture.Over the course of a week, however, it became clear that Birthright was advancing a political agenda, both hiding and supporting Israel’s military occupation of Palestinians. Trips: So I put together a trip for older adults (age 50+). If it’s not a good match, it might be worth waiting or changing plans to find a new trip to go on. One week before the trip, the Paris attacks happened, and out of fear, I declined. So, even if you’re 33 by the time of the actual trip, you’re still eligible! Worried about missing out on some “must see” stuff in Israel? But that's the thing - it's just a taste. Once you know which trip you want to join, head over to the main Taglit Birthright Israel page and get started. Special Needs But you only get one, and there are a ton of trip options to choose from. Outdoors/Adventures “When I got to the Western Wall, at 53 years old, I started to cry,” Katz relates. YOu won’t see it all, so don’t try. And all of these trips are offered with departures from the most cities out of all trip organizers. Vegans and Vegetarians / Animal Rights 10 days is ideal because it expands the range of activities and gives more time to experience the local culture, but don’t miss out if 7 days fits best. Outdoors/Adventures My trip provider was Canada-Israel Experience and the logistics were seemless. But don’t think that all of their trips are about traditional religion and prayer. For winter trips (November, December, January, February or March), anyone who is 32 as of December 1st is eligible for the winter season of trips. Birthright trips leave from 13 different major US cities, covering both costs and the midwest: See a city close to you? Facebook Reviews: 4.7/5 stars (106 reviews), Trips: Outdoors/Adventures Easy as that. The 2 week trip was an amazing success. Yet, trip organizers hear from many who would like to go. Other trips are even more narrow, and take participants from a specific industry in a specific place, such as political insiders from DC, Wall Street bankers, and entertainment pros from Hollywood and LA. There is something here for lots of areas of interest, including diplomacy in the Middle East and counter-terrorism for those interested in geo-politics and the future of the Jewish state in a volatile region, archeology for participants looking to get their hands dirty in the soil of the State of Israel while working alongside historians and anthropologists uncovering the mysteries of the land, and innovation and entrepreneurship for budding startup founders or tech geeks who want to look to the future of Israel and it’s incredible prowess in new technology and product development. If you are over 21 years old, have leadership experience, and are craving for another taste of Israel, we invite you to apply for a position as a Trip Staff Member. And if you pick something specialized, like a trip with your campus, community, or personal passion, you’re likely to jive with the organizer too. Israel Free Spirit also offers special medical needs trips with special staff, equipment, and itineraries. Critics fault the free program for presenting a one-sided view that ignores the politics and historical narratives of Israel's Palestinian neighbors. We sold out in less than 2 weeks. Now, they points out especially that their staff are all Americans who made the choice to come to Israel, who are now immersed in Israeli society, and who attended the best Israeli tour guide educational programs. 2. All of their contact information is available from the Birthright website, and you’ll be glad you got to know them early on, whether you go on the trip or don’t. SOMETHING TO LOOK FORWARD TO: Save your spot for future Birthright Israel trips once travel is back!. Now that you know what you’re options are, consider closely the organizer planning the trip. Each participant pays for her airfare; the rest of the trip is free. Still, check out the organizer a bit more to learn how the trip will go to be sure that the specialized focus is worth any potential downsides. Classic (10-day and 7-day) You can be out of the office for just one week of work and experience a whole new world before you’re back at your desk. Birthright's free trips to Israel have become a popular rite of passage for many American Jews seeking to explore their Jewish identity and connection to Israel — or just to take a free trip. Are you ready for another free Israel trip. "I had just seen Malcolm X… Outdoors/Adventures (biking and hiking) Outdoor/Adventures (women-only). Birthright also offers support and resources for anyone supporting her journey and wanting to know how they can help. BirthrightGuru recommends not starting with the trip organizer — but don’t skip over reviewing completely. Be amazing. Shorashim is another provider to offer extended study abroad options, in this case, focused on Israeli Multiculturalism. There’s a really fast pace to it, they really want you to see everything in 10 days. In fact, their claim to fame is that they are one of the largest tour companies in Israel for Israeli schools and other institutions. Outdoors/Adventures You’ll notice that we put the trip organizer lasts in this list, and we did it on purpose. Foodie Facebook Reviews: 4.7/5 stars (57 reviews), Trips: Not to be left out, they too offer an adventurous trip and an itinerary focused on arts and culture. Required fields are marked *. Classic (10-day and 7-day) I went through the process and was lucky enough to be accepted for the second time. There’s even a SCUBA diving trip where participants dive with the Israeli Navy! You’ll definitely see this priority in their choice of staff. And if a traditional religious experience is more your speed, there are trips for Modern Orthodox men and women (single gender). Urban and Culture. Arts, Music, and Entertainment. The following female packing list for Birthright was submitted by Shoshana Gould. To join Anti-occupation Activity to see everything in 10 days 29-years-old I learned Birthright Israel deliver wonderful...., meet amazing people on your trip was a short visit with his.. About missing out on some “ must see ” stuff in Israel our organizer guide an...: see a city close to you with an update as soon as possible time and interest. Get yourself a trip match your style out our organizer guide for an unbiased snapshot of Orthodox. Being a tour company based in Jerusalem experience in Israel ( plus pickup a few college credits, if )... To choose among historical site, you also have options to go on a Israel! 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