Have a Question?
There are three primary qualifications to go on the trip:
This trip is designed for people who are not highly engaged in the Jewish community or Jewish ritual observance.
Our participants must have children at home under the age of 18.
Participants must be physically and emotionally healthy.
Can I come on a different date with a different city?
The short answer is “No.” A vital part of the Momentum experience is creating community at home, with men in your city and each Partner Organization invests in each of its participants to make this happen.
What if I have already been to Israel?
We give priority to men who have never been to Israel, or who visited before they turned 18, but many of our participants have visited Israel in the past. Apply and speak to your Community Leader for more details.
Are there any expectations after the trip?
The Momentum experience begins with three or more Pre-Trip meetings connecting the men to each other and to Israel before the Trip. The year-long Momentum experience is designed to activate enthusiastic engagement with the beauty of Jewish life, to build a lasting connection with Israel, and a commitment to take action in one’s community towards making a better world.
Men attending the Momentum trips commit to attending a follow-up session once per month with the organization that accepts them. The Momentum team facilitates the sharing of ideas and provides continuing education to our Partner Organization staff in teaching, program ideas, leadership, and strategic planning to make the year-long experience memorable for our participants.
What does the trip cost?
For our participants, this is a heavily subsidized trip. Men’s trip participants receive a $1,350 scholarship provided by Momentum and your Partner Organization. For men, the cost is $900 if your wife, ex-wife, or parenting partner is a recent (within the past 5 years) Momentum participant, $1,200 if she is not. That price does not include airfare, a $99 application fee, tips, and some meals.
How strenuous is the trip?
This experience has a lot packed into it—the days are long and full of activity: We walk 35–40 miles on the trip, explore Jerusalem on foot, and climb a lot of steps in Tsfat. All this and just being out in the heat on Masada require a fair amount of effort. It’s also important to remember that the trip is exciting and can bring up a lot of emotions, and this will affect your energy level.
If you don’t currently exercise, consider beginning a program to increase your stamina. If you have any health problems, consult your physician about the itinerary, and make sure to discuss any concerns with your Community Leader.
Is there time to shop?
Of course! There are many opportunities to shop in Jerusalem, and in Tsfat, and time to purchase Ahava Dead Sea products before leaving Masada. Remember, every dollar you spend infuses capital into the Israeli economy.
Do I need to purchase insurance?
The Momentum purchases Israeli health insurance for all participants during the scheduled trip dates. If a participant arrives early or stays after the Trip, they are responsible for extending the health coverage at their own expense. In addition, Travelers Insurance is recommended for all participants in case of trip cancellation, trip interruption, lost/delayed baggage, flight delays, and more. Contact your Community Leader for details about both.
Where do I pick up my cell phone?
If you live in the US, your phone will be delivered to you about a week before departure. If you live outside the US, you will receive your phone before you board the bus at the airport. It will be fully charged and ready to go
Where can I exchange money?
For large purchases, you can use your credit card, but in the shuks (local markets), cash is king, and will allow you to haggle for a better price—a time-honored tradition in Israel!
The easiest way to get cash is to use your bank card at an ATM. (NIS, New Israeli Shekels). The fees will vary, but not by much. If you choose to use ATMs, it’s vital that you notify your bank before the trip to avoid your card being frozen by ATM transactions in Israel.
Also, remember that fees are charged per transaction, so you should take out larger quantities less frequently.
How can I pack most efficiently?
Packing light is key: The airlines are very strict about the weight of bags and going over can cost you extra and, more importantly, the buses can only handle ONE large bag per person.
One strategy to save space is to coordinate with other participants from your city to share the burden of communal items—one person can bring enough first aid supplies to share, one can bring Tylenol or Ibuprofen, one can bring Handi-wipes. Pairing up with your roommate to share items like toothpaste or a hair dryer also helps. You will want to buy souvenirs, so save a little extra space, or throw in an extra, small duffle bag into your suitcase for gifts to bring back home. Please see our “What to Pack” guide for specific packing suggestions.
Where should I eat in Jerusalem on my free time?
We will provide a list of restaurants in Jerusalem in your welcome packet you receive at the beginning of your Trip, or you can see a longer list at Eluna.com. They will definitely give you an idea of what is available in certain areas, but you should also explore on your own!
Will I be able to do laundry on the trip?
The hotels offer laundry services. The cost is per item and you pay the hotel directly. Some participants like to bring a small bottle of detergent and a few clothespins to wash out clothing and hang overnight.
What kind of sun protection is best?
Even people with dark-toned skin will need protection in Israel’s summer sun. Hats and sunglasses are a necessity. A sunblock with an SPF of at least 25 will protect you, as long as you reapply often during the day.
Is there WiFi?
Yes! There is WiFi in the hotels and on the buses. Depending upon the hotel, WiFi may be available in guest rooms, or in the lobby.
When do I need to dress modestly?
Some of the places we visit (such as the Kotel/Western Wall, holy sites in Tsfat) require men to wear shirts with sleeves. While you want to dress comfortably at all times, it is important to be prepared to dress more modestly at times.
Do I need to know Hebrew to be able to get around, shop, order food, etc.?
No, you do not. Most Israelis speak at least some English, some speak it quite well. Picking up a few phrases can make the trip more fun, though.
Where can I keep my valuables?
Keep your passport and money with you at all times, but all other valuables can be left in hotel safes. You may not want to bring many valuable items. Remember: Israel is a casual country, and your trip doesn’t include occasions where fancy jewelry is needed.