English Usage: Too many Israelis do not take English sufficiently seriously, and this lackadaisical attitude permeates the state as evidenced in official government publications and even highway signs that frequently misspell place-names or use poor grammar, syntax, etc. Some cities like Tzfat have multiple spellings that are needlessly confusing. Most tourists – not just Anglophones – use English as an intermediary language, and Israelis would do well to bolster their English skills in order to encourage greater tourism countrywide.
Customer Service: Professional customer service is not yet adequately part of Israeli culture. Government offices, banks, and phone companies are the most egregious offenders taxing the patience not only of immigrants from service-oriented countries but the native-born as well. While Israel has had bigger problems to deal with than poor service delivery, positive customer service is a marker of maturation and evinces a sophistication inhering in civilized nations.
Hopefully the coming years will see these areas benefiting from attention and action, as the State of Israel progresses toward its 100th anniversary in 2048.
Brandon Marlon is a Canadian-Israeli playwright, poet, and freelance writer. He is the author of “Judean Dreams and Inspirations of Israel: Poetry for a Land and People.”