Israeli Visa For Indians (A DIY Guide)

Israel has been on my wishlist for quite some time now. I had not gotten an opportunity to visit Israel till now. But then a golden opportunity called TBEX presented itself and I did not waste any time in securing a pass for myself. But I needed a visa and here I outline my experience getting an Israeli visa for Indians.

This is a photo of the Dead Sea from a resort in Jordan during a pink sunset.

Dead Sea from the Jordan Side

Application Procedure for Israeli Visa for Indians:

  1. Login to Israel Visa for Indians website and download the application form. Also, download the checklist for your reference. This checklist will list down the Israel visa requirements for Indian citizens. If you are applying through a travel agent, please download a consent form as well.
  2. Make sure you have all the documents in place. Please find the list of documents I prepared:
    • A valid passport.
    • 2 passport sized photos. I went to the photo studio and asked them to give me photos for Israel visa.
    • Flight tickets showing to and fro travel from India to Israel and back.
    • Hotel accommodation for the entire duration of my stay.
    • Travel Insurance: I am an ICICI Lombard fan and I always purchase my travel insurance online.
    • A copy of your day to day itinerary in Israel and an invite letter, if applicable. Since I was going for a Travel bloggers conference, I attached documents showing that I was going to this conference and the various tours they have arranged for us.Planning_A_Trip_to_Israel_share
    • Leave letter from employer mentioning dates and no objection to the travel.
    • Personal bank statements for the past three months. You cannot use an online statement. This needs to be attested by your bank. This is to show proof of funds.
    • A cover letter mentioning why you are going to Israel and your personal details. This has to be brief and concise. If any of the above documents are missing, then you have to mention in the cover letter.
This is a photo of the Dead Sea from a resort in Jordan in the day

Dead Sea

Interview Procedure for Israeli Visa for Indians:

I applied through a travel agent and wish I had not done that. They were very lazy and they only submitted and collected my passport. It was a complete waste of time and I am going to continue applying on my own from next time.

The day after they submitted my passport, I got a call from the VFS centre asking me to call the Israeli consulate in Bangalore and schedule my interview. The VFS staff sent me the numbers and the timeframe to call the Israeli consulate. Since I was travelling then, I couldn’t get to this right away and I waited till I got back.

I called on a Monday and they gave me an interview slot for Wednesday and asked to be there at least 15 minutes in advance.

I have heard that the interview is not mandatory for all and it is at the discretion of the embassy to schedule one. There was some confusion regarding the conference and I feel that is the reason I was asked to attend the interview.

 

Israeli Visa For Indians

My Interview experience with Israel Visa for Indians:

I arrived quite early on the day of my appointment. Security is quite high here and you should not carry any laptops or other electronic items as well as all restricted items.

Once you reach the building, go to the intercom located at the side of the elevator and announce your arrival. Someone from the consulate will come personally downstairs to give you access to the elevator.

Once there, proceed for security check-in. Even though mobile phones are allowed until this point, you will have to lock your mobile phones in the lockers provided before proceeding to the interview room.

Once there, wait your turn till you are called. I was the only one there and they called me soon. There is a telephone on either side of the wall and you should use this to communicate with the interviewer.

The interview was pretty straightforward and she asked me few questions about why I was going to Israel. After I explained that I have a travel blog and that there is a travel blogging conference in Jerusalem, she asked me a few follow-up questions to that. She then went over all my documents and verified once again with me as to each and every document.

The whole interview took less than ten minutes and then she said that I will get to know the status within 3-5 working days.

Collecting the passport for Israel Tourist Visa for Indian passport holders:

Since I had done through a travel agent, I assumed that they will follow up. Next Tuesday when I called up to find out the status of my visa, the lazy travel agent asked me to contact the consulate. I called them and they confirmed that the visa is approved and asked me to collect the passport from the application centre.

I told the travel agent the same but it still took them 2 days to collect the passport and I could collect the passport only on Thursday. The approximate processing time for Israel visa for Indian citizens is around 7-10 days.

Please note that all Indian passports applied from India are stamped with an Israel visa for Indian citizens. We do not have an option to ask them for a separate slip of paper. Also, I do not think they issue a special Indian passport for travel to Israel anymore.

So, you can see how easy it is to get an Israeli Visa for Indians. Please do let me know in the comments if you have any more queries about getting a visa for Israel from India.

If you are a vegetarian, check out this post on what to eat in Israel as a vegetarian.

P.S: All photos are by my brother in law Nishanth Nottath and this is from their recent trip to Jordan in October 2016. All pictures are of the Dead Sea from the Jordan side.

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Israeli Visa For Indians

70 Comments

  1. Dismaying, to see how the travel agent was so lazy (that’s the only word I can think of for this). The agent could have and should have been more pro-active.

  2. Sounds lika a pain just to get the visa, hopefully the trip will be a lot nicer. I feel quite lucky, as I usually do not need to apply for a visa when traveling to most countries. But I’m not sure with Israel, maybe we Swedes also need to apply for one if we go.

  3. Gosh, that doesn’t sound easy to me! I would have been nervous and very angry that I was paying the agent to do nothing. Hope TBEX is wonderful!

  4. Israel is a beautiful and enigmatic country. The history and culture of Israel is at the same time fascinating and intriguing. Your shared experience of getting a visa for entry to this lovely country is really useful and is a good resource to refer to for planning a visit to Israel.

  5. Wow, I had no idea it was such a pain to get a Visa. I’ve never had to apply for one before, but if I do hoping it goes a bit more smoothly for me. Will definitely have to check Israel though if/when I go. Nice article with helpful tips!

  6. You have well explained procedure of the visa application in your post. It is really a pain in neck as well as so irritating when your travel agent behaves like that. Hope after that your experience was great at TBEX.

  7. Sucks that you had such an annoying experience with the travel agent. I mean, that;s their job right? Wow, anyways, glad you learned from that and was able to get a visa no problem! Was the interview a little intimidating or no?

  8. I shall wait to read about your TBEX experience. I have always wanted to attend but I was not sure if it would be of any help. Now, about the process for Visa. Looks like it is not much of an hassle to get it done on our own without any agent. Any way, they were not of much help for you. Btw, love the pictures.

  9. I didn’t know there was so much involved in getting an Israeli visa. Do you think this would be the same for Canadians? I’ve never really looked into going to Irael but I know a few people that went to Tel Aviv and really enjoyed all the vegan food there.

  10. Well, not very useful piece for me . but I would say these are some good news for the indians. they have a great chance to explore this part of the world. Cheers.

  11. Thanks a lot for such an informative post. I have great interest in Israel. So much hstory and soo much conflict! May not be mmmediately but someday I will make it to that country and this post will then be useful.

  12. I am not Indian but I can see ow this article can be very useful for people who want to travel to Israel. I was thinking of going to Tbex myself but I think I will go to the one in Dublin as it’s much closer (and cheaper to get to) to home. Have fun there, I heard it’s an amazing conference!

  13. Hi Soumya,

    I found some articles online (in news prints in March 2017) which say that you can request to have the visa stamped/pasted on a different piece of paper; could you tell me when you had your process done? And did you request for a paper-based visa and were denied or never even asked? Thanks!

    1. Hi Akansha, I went in March 2017. When you are entering or exiting the country, they don’t stamp your passport. They give you a paper slip.
      But the initial visa is stamped for us, Indians. I did ask but that option was not available for us.

        1. It took me 10 days to get the Israeli visa. The visa fees is approximately 1700Rs for a tourist visa. I am not sure about ECR passport and you may have to check directly with the consulate. Best of luck with your visa process, Suresh.

  14. Soumya,

    Loved your detailed instructions. Thank you very much. I am wondering what is the harm in getting Israeli Visa stamped on my passport, or am I missing something!? Pls share your thoughts

    1. Hi Shilpa, The only concern is that some countries like Saudi may not allow you to enter with an Israeli stamp.

  15. my friend had an interview, they kept his passport, 4 hours after interview they updated his application status that say to come collect passport.
    that mean he got the visa or not??

    1. Only the visa consulate can answer that question. Good luck to your friend and hopefully he got his visa.

    1. I booked all my hotels online on my own. You don’t have to apply through a travel agency if you are based in India.

  16. HI, could you please tell me how much funds do i need to show them while submitting the bank statements? Since I am booking tour for my mom, I want to know the procedure of how to show my bank statements as a sponsor of funds for her. Thanks

    1. I had kept a balance of a little more than Rs 1 Lakh while applying for a visa. In your case, you may need to show documents to show that your mom is dependent on you for funds and you can mention the same in your cover letter.

  17. Hi soumya, im travelling to israel this month end. My visa is processed and it is exactly the way you have described here, except i filed it directly… even the travel agent i first approached proved to be lazy and unaware so i took my docs and filed. However i was not aware of the restriction of entry/travel to other countries if you travel to israel. Now that my visa is already stamped, i am worried about how or whether i will be allowed to travel to dubai/uae now?

      1. Hi Sowmya, I also have the same concern about travelling to the Middle East while having an Israel Stamp on your passport . So You used the same passport which had israeli stamp to travel to UAE ? The UAE immigration did not have any issues as in they did not see the stamp or they saw and did not have any issues with it ?

        1. Yes, I have gone thrice to UAE after that and the immigration officers didn’t say anything about my Israeli visa. They glance through all your visas everytime.

          1. Hi Soumya , Thanks for sharing your experience. Like you have mentioned paper Visa is not am option for Indians, then is there any way to avoid getting a Israeli Visa stamp on my passport ? As I have read Arab countries like Egypt may have a problem with Israeili Visa stamp. ANy thought on this from you will help.

  18. I am sorry, your comment “Also, I do not think they issue a special Indian passport for travel to Israel anymore.” is NOT true.

    My wife and I applied for a 2nd Indian passport for Israel visit today in Pune and were granted. It will have a validity of 1 year and our current passports are NOT CANCELED.

    I received SMS in few minutes that Passport printing is initiate and it will be couriered soon.

    1. Good to know, Anil. I applied over a year ago and it was not applicable back then. It looks like the circumstances have changed. Please do let us know the procedure for the same so that future readers can find it helpful.

  19. These are a few basic questions for Anil Hirlekar above. I live in Mumbai, and am travelling to London, middle of May this year, for 6 months. From there, I would like to visit Israel in June, as a tourist, for about 3 weeks, and return to London. I do NOT wish to have the Israel visa stamped on my passport, and therefore would like to have a 2nd passport, for the purpose of visiting Israel. If a 2nd passport is issued to me, can I retain my original passport also, in order to travel to London on it? 2ndly, what is the procedure for the application of the 2nd passport (is it very tedious?), and how long does it take to get one?

  20. Hi Soumya,
    Lovely article and you’ve clearly mentioned each and every detail which is very helpful.
    I want to know what is exact amount of funds that I need to deposit in my bank account
    to support myself financially in Israel. I want to know the minimum amount required for this.

    And visa once I reach Israel I will be extending it for 3 more months. So, it will be 6 months stay in Israel, whereas visa is for 3 months when I start from India. Is it mandatory regarding flight tickets that I need to book the return journey after 3 months, or is it ok if I book the return ticket for my arrival in India at the end of 6 months. My concern is that if I book the flight tickets for arrival and return only for three months, thats a huge damage to my pocket If
    i am extending it for 3 more months. I am sure that I will be extending it for three more months.

    Thank you for everything else the procedure you have shown are really helpful to me, I was following everything and these were the only doubts in my head.

    Hoping to hear from you and It will really helpful for me if your share your thoughtd regarding
    these concerns.

    1. Hi,
      buy open ticket with validity of one year ..so that you can change your return date easily over phone call..

  21. Hi im an indian and I want to know if an indian citizen can get a visa for 3 months. Is it applicable for indians?

  22. I AM HOLDING SCHENJEN VISA AND FREQUENT TRAVELLER. NOW I WANT TO VISIT TO ISRAEL FOR BUSINESS MEET.
    IS THERE WILL BE ANY PROBLEM IN FUTURE IF I WANT TO TRAVEL EUROPEAN COUNTRIES AND USA. I KNOW THAT ARAB LEAGUE WILL NOT ALLOW ME TO ENTER IN THEIR COUNTRIES.

    PLEASE COMMENT.

    1. I have been to more than 10 European countries after my visit to Israel. USA should also not be a problem. I also frequently visit UAE. You will face problems only in countries like Iraq, Iran or Saudi.

  23. Hi Soumya,
    Lovely article and you’ve clearly mentioned each and every detail which is very helpful.
    I want to know that i deposited 3laks rupees in my account which is iam not using this account frequently if i give this bank statement is it ok to give visa process or they check each transaction of last 3months.
    thanks in advance for your valuable answer.

      1. iam sorry..
        last minut deposit means…
        they check only last one or two weeks transactions or what?
        actually i use this account rarley but now transfed ammount to this account recently because it’s have international services so i want to use this account on my visit to Israel…is it fine?
        thank you

      2. Hi soumya I wish to visit Israel and I have NRE account since nine month there is no transaction and I can deposit enough money but how much I have to deposit for visit visa

  24. hi soumya,
    Two years back i went to Singapore on visit visa but due to insuficiant funds they refused my entry into singapoe they did not stamp on my passport does it effect on my visit to Israel at immigration point.

  25. hi, this is very good ob done by you,and use full to me.my small dbouts pls , how can iget a tourist visa trhou any travel agents.how much total cost will be,iam an hindu religion can i get a visa ..

  26. hi soumya…
    my small doubt…
    is it manadatory to attend the interview for visit visa…
    some agents r saying not require and some are saying…it’s mandatory. and some of them asking occupation proof is it also mandatory for visit visa.
    iam getting confused,for the visa processing.
    please give ur suggestion…

    1. Hi Vikram
      It is dependent on the consulate. I had to attend the interview while a few of my friends didn’t have to. I submitted proof of my occupation and they did ask me about my business when I went for the interview.

  27. How many days before I apply for Israel visa ? I am retired person bank account is good have any problems for visa ?

    1. Sir, you should ideally apply at least 4 weeks before the intended day of travel.If your papers are all proper, then there should be no grounds for getting the visa approved. But it depends on the visa officers.

  28. I have applied for B2 tourist visa at Kolkata visa application centre (with a well planned itinerary, confirmed flight tickets, hotel bookings, travel insurance and bank statement with more than 4 lakhs balance); and now I have been called at new delhi embassy for personal appearance with a notice of 2 days in between. This is ridiculous and not at all justified! Now I am worried about the loss of workday/travel expense from kolkata-delhi and of course time. I wish I shouldn’t have applied for the visa only! Not worth such hassle I guess

    1. This is one reality of traveling with an Indian passport. We do not have it easy. I had to go for an interview too at last moment’s notice but for me, it was in the same city.

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