GENERAL ADVICE AND GUIDELINES FOR THE AL AQSA TOUR

Please note Zaarvel does not guarantee entry into Israel, this decision is with the authorities at Tel Aviv airport.

Entering via Tel Aviv:

  • Most airlines fly to Tel Aviv; and the waiting area in the airport is relatively comfortable.

  • Tel Aviv airport is prohibited to most Palestinians, which means that on arrival, most people you see are Israeli, and as a Muslim you are in a very small minority in the airport.

  • You must aim to arrive at Tel Aviv airport at least 3 hours early when departing Israel to clear all the security checks. These start en route to the airport at checkpoints, and continue from the moment one steps foot in the airport.

  • On arrival at the immigration desk, all travellers who look Muslim, have a Muslim name, or whose background is from the Middle East or the Indian subcontinent will inevitably be directed to the “waiting room” and asked to wait for an officer to come and speak to them. It is not uncommon to be in the waiting room for a few hours, and you will most likely be questioned once or twice.

Will my passport get stamped?

They dont stamp your passport, they stamp a separate paper with your visa details.

Types of questions asked at the borders:

  • Regardless of which border crossing you choose to travel to, you will inevitably be questioned by security on a number of occasions.

      The questions usually include the following:

  • Names of parents, grandparents, great grandparents?

  • Ethnic background?

  • Type of employment you work in?

  • Any association to charitable or Human Rights organisations?

  • Where do you give your zakat and sadaqah?

  • Name of Mosques you attend in your home country?

  • Reasons for visiting other countries (esp if Muslim countries)?

  • Purpose of visit to Israel?

  • Places you intend to visit in Israel?

  • Name of accommodation?

  • Any contacts in Israel?

  • Any contacts in Jordan (if travelling by King Hussein Bridge)?

  • How much money are you travelling with?

  • Occasionally Israeli security will ask for access to your email account, facebook account and other social media – and may make this a condition of entry.

  • If you mention that you will be visiting any cities in the West Bank, you will be extensively questioned on this, and will most likely have to spend more time at the border before an entry visa is granted. In addition – the Israelis may limit your visa to West Bank only, which can be problematic.

 

      More info can be found at the following website http://www.visitmasjidalaqsa.com

 

Is it safe to travel to Palestine?

As a tourist it is as dangerous as any other place, wherever you travel in the world there is a chance of danger if you don’t abide by the rules.

Palestine is no different, all the religions are living with each other and people are getting on with their normal lives.

There is trouble in Gaza and unrest in West Bank.

Gaza is very far from Jerusalem, hence the chance of trouble is less likely there.

What happens if we do encounter problems?

As British passport holders they have to treat us the same as any other tourists.

The police and soldiers are very careful around you if you are a tourist. If they mistreat a tourist they will lose their job.

The British embassy is always there for you if you are mistreated in any way.

In sha Allah you will have a safe journey.

 

 

Can we take family?

Yes you can.

We actively encourage families young to old to make this journey.

 

Can we enter Masjid al-Aqsa?

Yes. There is no age limit.There are many entrances to the Al Aqsa compound which are guarded by jewish soldiers, their job is to stop

non-muslims from entering the Masjid al-Aqsa.

 

GENERAL TERMS AND CONDITIONS FOR TRAVEL WITH ZAARVEL

  • All rates are per-person in UK sterling (£) and are subject to change.

  • Prices are subject to change at any time. WITHOUT NOTICE.

  • Tour site order, sequence are always subject to change, even on a last minute basis.

  • Flights, cruises, may not always operate on time, and are subject to last minute changes, delays, and/or cancellation, if you are

      ready to enjoy traveling to the Middle East/Near East, North Africa, then you should be ready for such possibilities.

  • Initial £100 of deposit per customer is non refundable 6 weeks prior to departure.

  • £25.00 admin fee per booking is chargeable for all cancellations.

  • We reserve the right to cancel or reschedule tours that do not meet the minimum number of passengers.

  • We advise you to confirm with us before booking your flights.

  • In case of last minute cancellation ( 30 days or more ) due to war, civil unrest and violence, then 30% administration fee will apply to all refunds.

  • We will not refund any part of the payment should natural disasters, civil unrest or war have a direct effect (cancellation of tour at very short notice) on the safety of the tour 30 days or less prior to or during the tour dates.

ADDITIONAL COSTS. Unless specifically mentioned in a tour itinerary, tour prices do not include the following:

  • Airfares

  • Meals and sightseeing

  • Insurance of any kind

  • Beverages, including bottled water

  • Departure taxes, Exit/visa fees and customs duties

  • Items of a personal nature, including laundry, mineral waters, excess baggage charges be it on the airline or for additional storage/delivery on the train, coaches, etc.

  • Extra charges for food ordered à la carte or from room service (these charges must be paid directly to the hotel or restaurant)

  • Gratuities (tips) for tour guides, lecturers, hotel and cruise ship staff are at the discretion of the traveller.

  • There is an additional fee when you pay us here in the UK for your tours by credit card. This credit card processing fee is non-refundable in the event that you need/have to cancel your tour later on after you have paid us.

TRAVELLERS’ SAFETY:

  • Many of our tours include activities which require attention, caution and discipline such as climbing into and out of boats and up and down hills; and entering and exiting ancient tombs and pyramids.

  • Our experienced guides and other staff will advise you and assist you in these activities, but you undertake all such activities at your own risk.

  • Zaarvel, its employees and agents cannot be responsible for participants who do not exercise normal and customary caution, who do not stay with the group, and/or who do not heed the advice and instructions of our guides.

  • For information regarding possible risk at international destinations, contact the Travel Advisory Section of the https://www.gov.uk/knowbeforeyougo.

  • The decision to travel is totally yours (the passenger/customer/guest).

  • For medical information on travel-related illness and vaccination please contact your doctor, local public health officials in advance of your travel.

  • The receipt of your deposit and/or final payment will indicate that you have read these Terms and Conditions and that you have agreed to them.

FITNESS TO TRAVEL:

  • Zaarvel reserves the right to refuse service and/or to terminate the participation of any tour participant whose health or mental condition or physical infirmity impedes the operation of the tour, or whose conduct is discourteous to others or incompatible with the best interests of the group.

FLIGHTS:

  •  We are ground tour operators therefore ATOL regulation is not applicable to our tours. 

TOUR AND CRUISE ITINERARIES:

  • All tours posted on our web site, all cruise schedules, whether they are seagoing or river cruise boats, may require a change in embarkation point and are subject to last minute cancellations and/or last minute changes.

  • Tours and cruises are operated by cruise lines/tour operators in their respective countries. We do not own any of these boats, coaches, firms, or operations, and same applies to any airline whether it is domestic or international.

  • In some extreme and rare cases such cruises, airlines, tour operators, may change or totally cancel the departure and offer an alternative that may or may not meet with the customer’s time frame. The customer agrees to hold us not responsible for such changes, as we only act as agents, and may wish to take out trip cancellation insurance.

PASSPORT REQUIREMENTS:

  • Each traveller must have a valid passport with at least 6 months minimum remaining validity to the date of return. The name on the passport must match the name on the ticket, otherwise you may not be able to travel and your insurance may be invalid. All children who are not already included on a valid passport will need to hold their own passports if they are to travel abroad.

SIGHTSEEING – EXCURSIONS:

  • By MPV, taxi, minibus, coach, and/or sightseeing boat on a seat sharing basis. This includes admission fees to mosque, temples, museums, etc. A minibus, MPV or taxi may be used when the total number of participants is small. Unless you are on a private tour, touring will be seat in a coach.