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December 20, 2014 / 28 Kislev, 5775
 
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘tourism’

Arab Terror Hits Hard at Jerusalem Hotel Occupancy Rate

Sunday, November 23rd, 2014

The occupancy rate in Jerusalem hotels has plummeted by nearly 50 percent in the wake of recent Arab terror.

“Thirty percent of our clients, Israelis and foreigners already in Israel, called following the running over of bystanders by a terrorist driving a car and asked to move their tour route from central Jerusalem to the Biblical Zoo, which is fenced in and secured at the entrance, or to Tel Aviv,” Yossi Griver, co-owner of Zuzu Motoric Tourism, told the Globes business newspaper.

A veteran tour guide told The Jewish Press Sunday, “Tourists are cancelling trips they scheduled with me. They don’t even come from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.”

The war in Gaza last summer was a financially deadly strike at tourism, which had been at record highs before Hamas started pummeling Israel with missiles as far north as metropolitan Tel Aviv and Jerusalem.

“The escalating security situation in the city has dealt another blow to tourism, already hit hard by Operation Protective Edge,” said Alfred Akirov, owner of Alrov, which operates David Citadel and Mamilla Hotels in Jerusalem.

Occupancy rates at Jerusalem hotels now are 35-40 percent, compared with the usual seasonal rate of 65-70 percent.

The city of Jerusalem and businesses are trying to attract business with free tours and discounts, but it is difficult to overcome a mood of fear, exactly what terrorists want to drive in the hearts of Jews.

Jerusalem tour guide Ron Peled told Globes, “There is a dramatic plunge of 80-90 percent in the number of Israeli tourists visiting Jerusalem. Would you take your kids on a trip to Jerusalem now? If you were invited to a bar mitzvah at the Western Wall, would you go? It’s not a sure thing.

“A large number of the tour guides in the city have no work because of the situation that has prevailed since Operation Protective Edge. There is a more moderate decline. You can still see tourists in the city.”

Guy Klaiman, general manager of the recently opened Waldorf Astoria Jerusalem Hotel, is more optimistic, if for no other reason than radical Islamists have attacked throughout the world.

“Tourists regard these things differently these days,” he told Globes. “They understand that there is no safe place in the world, and that part of life today is taking some risks. It’s not safe in London, either. When I worked there, we had to deal with terrorist explosions. Being a Jew in Antwerp is not exactly safe now, either.”

How Does One Say ‘Israeli Anime’ in Japanese?

Tuesday, November 4th, 2014

How does one say “Israeli anime” in Japanese? More than a few locals and most of the foreign service staff at Israel’s Embassy to Japan are going to find out very shortly.

For those readers familiar with Miyazaki, Israel’s newest and most novel effort at outreach to the Far East will entrance and amuse.

For those who have no idea what Miyazaki is, it is best to simply click on the video clip below – the first of seven to be produced — and watch. (Ed. – Turn on the closed captioning so you know what they’re saying.)

‘Shalom Chan’ hops in and out of the colorful, airbrushed animated series to provide quick facts about Israel for the viewers as the animated sisters, Saki and Noriko take their trip through the Holy Land.

Embassy spokesperson Ronen Mezdinni told Ynet the feedback from the project has been “unprecedented” and said the video has received “massive media attention all across Japan. The main goal is to showcase the lighter and original aspects of Israeli society all the while paying homage and respect to Japanese popular culture.”

Japanese pilgrims have been coming to Israel for many years. This is the first time, however, the foreign ministry has made a concerted effort to attract tourism from Japan, whose heritage is ancient, like that of Israel.

Israel Labor Job Actions Spread to Transportation, Tourism

Tuesday, September 30th, 2014

Israeli transportation and tourism employees will carry out a work slowdown on Wednesday in solidarity with striking postal workers, the nation’s Histadrut Labor Federation has announced.

The move comes in response to another failure in negotiations between the union and the Finance Ministry to resolve a struggle over fate of 1,500 postal workers.

Both the transportation and tourism ministries will be on strike on Wednesday. In addition, no mail will be delivered to any government ministry or embassy, and no registered mail will be delivered as well.

Postal workers will also conduct a two-hour “strike walk” outside the Tel Aviv Cinematheque as well, from 11 am to 1 pm.

Travel Advisory: Have a Safe Holiday by Staying in Israel

Monday, September 15th, 2014

Israel’s National Security Council Counter-Terrorism Bureau on Monday warned people traveling for the High Holidays of concern over attacks “against Israeli and Jewish targets around the world, especially in Western Europe, by global jihad elements, including ISIS.”

The warning comes less than a week that the U.S. State Dept. still was living in the past with its updated warning that visitors to Israel should buy gas masks. Perhaps U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is afraid that strong winds from the west will blow in to Israel the smell from Foggy Bottom.

Washington routinely inflates every Arab riot in eastern Jerusalem into a full-fledged intifada, but media hype notwithstanding, virtually every tourist spot place in Israel is safer than the streets of Washington.

The Israel agency noted, “There is at this time an increasing potential threat as a result of the recent Operation Protective Edge during which there were many demonstrations at Israeli embassies and consulates around the world. There has also been an increase in anti-Semitic incidents. These trends are likely to continue during the holiday period….

“The global terrorist campaign by Iran and Hezbollah continues to threaten Israeli and Jewish targets around the world, especially ‘soft’ targets, i.e. tourists and Jewish symbols,” such as rabbis, community leaders and Chabad houses.

Officials there is a “concrete threat” regarding travel to Egypt and Jordan, both of which have peace treaties with Israel, as well as the Gulf States, southern Thailand, Chechnua, some parts of northern India and the Sinai Peninsula..

It also is ill-advised to travel to Azerbaijan, Kenya, Morocco, Nigeria, Oman and Turkey.

IDF Takes You On a Guided Tour of Terror Tunnel

Wednesday, September 3rd, 2014

Hamas terror tunnels, destroyed by the IDF war against Hamas terror, have become more popular than the Western Wall tunnel, where thousands of tourists walk daily.

Lt. Libby Weiss from the IDF Spokesperson’s Unit gives an exclusive look into the tunnel that ended near Kibbutz Ein HaShlosha. The discovery of the tunnel foiled what would have been a mass slaughter of Jews on the kibbutz at the hands of Hamas murderers. But how could the IDF spokeswoman have led a virtual tour of the tunnel if the IDF destroyed all of them? An IDF spokesman explained to The Jewish Press that the military left the Israeli side of the tunnel in tact so that it could be used for military training as well as for the media to see how Hamas used the humanitarian aid.

Perhaps the kibbutz or the IDF could encourage tourism in the south by opening the tunnel for public tours. An “Israel tunnel tour” could take people to the terror tunnel to understand the demented brain of Hamas and then could take them to Jerusalem to walk through the Western Wall tunnel and experience the site where Herod expanded the Second Temple.

In the Wake of ‘Protective Edge’: Israeli Tourism Takes a Hit

Tuesday, August 12th, 2014

JERUSALEM – Operation ‘Protective Edge’ has generated various financial challenges for Israel’s economy, as the financial activity slowed down during the operation and the costs of the military campaign will weigh heavily on Israel’s upcoming annual budget. One of the Israel’s most known financial segments, its tourism, has taken a big hit as a result of the operation. According to data presented by the Tourism Ministry, tourist entries were down by 21% during July, the height of the season in Israel.

According to the Central Bureau of Statistics, 218,000 visitor entries were recorded in Israel in July 2014. This number is lower than all the July statistics from 2008-2013.

Nearly all European countries have issued travel warnings, advising their citizens to stay at least 40 kilometers away from Gaza, the range most vulnerable to Hamas rocket attacks, as well as from the Judea and Samaria and the Arab neighborhoods of Jerusalem. The United States also issued several travel warnings urging US citizens to be cautious and avoid “areas of unrest.”

The Ministry points out that thanks to the momentum in tourism since the beginning of 2014 up to Operation ‘Protective Edge’, a positive trend remains: From January-July 2014, 1.9 million tourists entered Israel, 13% more than the same period in 2013, 12% more than 2012 and 15% more than 2011.

Tourism Minister Dr. Uzi Landau stated: “Israel is preparing for the ‘day after’. The Tourism Ministry is planning to invest in marketing campaigns in target countries around the world in order to encourage incoming tourism.”

The Ministry has already launched a broadly publicized campaign in Israel to encourage internal tourism.

4.8 Million Israelis Traveled Overseas in 2013

Thursday, June 12th, 2014

4.8 million Israelis traveled overseas in 2013, according to a report in Yisrael Hayom.

That’s an amazing number, considering there are only 8 million citizens in Israel. It’s also the highest ratio of travelers to citizens in the world.

It’s was a 11.6% increase from 2012, up from 4.3 million. The average traveler’s age is 40, and 900,000 Israelis traveled out more than once.

July and August accounted for 1.7 million Israelis abroad. If you add in the holidays in September and October, that number jumps to 2.7 million. An astounding one-third of the country was overseas at the same time.

With numbers like that, it’s no wonder Israel never feels crowded.

Quite interesting, the time when most Israelis stop flying out of Israel are during wars and national emergencies, when the number of travelers out of the country drops dramatically and people choose to stay in Israel.

Go figure.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/4-8-million-israelis-traveled-overseas-in-2013/2014/06/12/

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