Allyson Altit

Go to Israel? Why Israel, is it safe?

Go to Israel? Why Israel, is it Safe?

I feel that I have been asked and answered those questions and similar ones probably my entire married life, (Working on 32 years.)

Of course it’s not right to judge. However I believe reasonable and reliable opinions should be heard. Often, when asked, I am happy to give my professional as well as personal opinion when it comes to the world of traveling; particularly since my opinion has proven valuable to a variety of people.

Now to the point. When it comes to travel I have a lot to say and even more so when the destination on the table is Israel. It is not easy for me to hold back my thoughts when at times people will question or ponder whether or not to make a family trip or encourage their children and grandchildren to travel there. Since sending travelers around the world is my profession, I have to guide them carefully and I feel a serious responsibility; but, ultimately the decision is theirs to make.

There are those who have always been reluctant to travel to Israel, even in good times and in quiet times, they have issues and excuses that are mostly in their heads. Naturally, the times of unrest in Israel are when I am more than understanding. During those times it may not be suitable or appropriate for one to travel for a first time visit to any country. However, when things quiet down, and in Israel they always do, when the country, the people and the places are all in full swing- (believe it or not) then it is among the safest places to be.

I find it ironic that over this summer tourists, including Israeli tourists, traveled to Turkey; why? Turkey is one country that not only Israelis should not be going to, but also one that Americans should avoid, as they are equally detested over there. In my opinion, it was not a smart choice for those who flew there; talk about putting yourself in harm’s way. Not everyone pays close attention to the news (an honest accurate report at that,)and in some cases even if they do, perhaps it was the price point that enticed them to travel to Turkey, while putting the reality of serious warnings on their back burner. It is interesting yet frustrating that when it comes to traveling to Israel antennas go up. At that point those same travelers seem to believe that they know it all.

What about Paris, they ask. Paris being a top destination of mine for many years is a trip I particularly love. But in all honesty and reality, the Paris trip for Americans and particularly for Jews has always been the same scene; please know that there is hatred in abundance over there. But go there too. And when you do, remember that you’re going for the beauty of the city NOT the people. Different still from the danger in Turkey (for now), the threats and protests in Paris are real yet tourists go and I go too. The difference is that Israel is on my top list of destinations also and you should consider it being on your list too.

Israel has been regarded as a special and fulfilling destination. It is a country where the people are welcoming and the many sites have plenty to offer for everyone in the world, similar in caliber to an Italian journey; (also a top choice which I have too much to say therefore I will not.) The point- you must put ISRAEL on your list. I would even guarantee the enjoyment of that trip! You will have zero regret.

I am delighted to report on clients that did not cancel during the recent war in Israel. Tourists that did travel to Israel for Bar and Bat Mitzvah trips, Birthright, summer fun, and family visits will tell you that they are thrilled they went. Did they question and consult with me? Quite naturally, yes, there was a lot of that. They made their decision and were happy with it every day of their trip.

Rave reviews despite the events of the summer of 2014.

Need I say more?

About the Author
Allyson Altit is from New York. She has worked in the travel industry for over 30 years as a leisure specialist. Her area of expertise is in European destinations and Israel. She has been involved with charity work for the Hadassah organization as well. In 2009 she graduated from Queens College majoring in Jewish studies. She has just completed writing her first novel...