Aliyah is the immigration of Jews to the lands of Israel. The large-scale immigration of Jews to the Palestine region began in 1882. It is estimated that since the establishment of the State of Israel in 1948, more than three million Jews have moved to Israel and that Israel and the Palestinian territories together contain around forty-three percent of the world’s Jewish population. People generally find moving to a new home to be a stressful and time-consuming process, however, it can be much more difficult if you are moving to a new country! Planning effectively for Aliyah can be very difficult for individuals and families if they are unsure of what the costs of living in Israel are. The cost of living has risen in the past years, as it has globally, and it is now more expensive to complete Aliyah today than it was several years ago.
The steady increase in the cost of living is not the only change in recent years to keep in mind. Currency fluctuations is another very important factor people should consider when beginning a new life in Israel because years ago one pound was worth around 8 shekels. And now, things have changed and a pound is now worth less than 5 shekels. Therefore, the exchange rate is making it more expensive for people who want to make Aliyah.
Fortunately, if you already have experience with personal finance, and use a monthly or weekly budget, budgeting for your trip to Aliyah will be a lot easier. You will have to determine what your savings on hand are, and your sources of income (if any). Then you will have to keep an estimated budget for your monthly living needs such as rent/living expenses, food, transportation, insurance, internet, phone plans, hydro, cable, among others. It is important to keep some extra money on hand to cover any additional school, health, entertainment and any other items you may have missed. If you have never completed a major move like this before, then you will very likely incur additional costs that were unforeseen.
Of course, if you are moving by yourself the costs will be much less than a family or extended families. Families and retirees will have a much different budget than a couple. The city or location you choose to live in will also have a very large impact too. For example, living expenses can be considerably higher in Tel Aviv when compared to other cities or regions in Israel. If you are fortunate to live with a friend or family member for the first few months of your stay in Israel this can help you tremendously in transitioning in your move to Israel, and not just from a financial perspective. Having friends in family in Israel can be a great help for you because they can help tell you where you can shop, save money, get a job, and what programs can be of assistance to you.
In conclusion, Aliyah can be a very exciting experience for individuals, couples, and families, but it is important that you do your work and preparation beforehand. It is essential that you maintain a monthly and/or weekly budget too. Yes, this process can be difficult and a new experience, but it will be worth the effort.