My trip to Israel was nothing short of amazing and the one reason that I was invited to the country was to experience it. The only thing that was asked of me by the Once In The Lifetime 2.0 Crew was that I talk about my experience in the country. They didn’t ask to talk about anything in particular they simply told me to write. I’ve talked at length about all of the great things that I experienced (still more to come), things I learned, and even the new friends that I made.
I haven’t talked about are the things that I didn’t like
Anytime you visit any country in the world there are both positive and negative experiences. There are two things that I personally didn’t like, one of which can’t be changed and is a matter of personal opinion and the other should be changed if the country really wants to support its tourism.
It seems when you mention the word Israel people drop their cookbooks and come to the dinner table to talk about how Israel is the devil or how everyone should come to Israel’s defense. It’s a very complicated problem with an extremely difficult resolution.
I’m not here to pick sides but I am here to tell all the extremists, including our very own travel blogger who decided he was going to be Vana White in this contest, to listen to the other side of the story.
Don’t just open your mouth and assume you’re right.
Most conflicts have a legitimate dispute on both sides of the story. Don’t forget to buy your beauty products Vana.
Stamping of the Passports
This is where I have some beef, some good Argentinean beef. I know of many people that have traveled to Israel and have asked the customs agent not to stamp their passport. I asked many people and googled this very topic and the end result was the following: if the customs agent was asked to not stamp the passport a paper would be given to you and that’s it. I was specifically invited by the Ministry of Tourism to tour the country and give my opinion on what I experienced.
I can’t thank everyone enough that was involved in the process
It truly was a chance of a lifetime. Knowing that I am a travel blogger and plan on traveling to countries in the Middle East you would think they would consider that when I was entering Israel. The very fact that I now may have problems entering countries I planned on visiting like Djoubti should have been a consideration, this problem could have easily been averted. I’m even going to have trouble traveling to Dubai which is one my top destinations.
It’s not that the country of Israel doesn’t have the right to stamp your passport. If you are traveling to Israel, you are to abide by their laws and regulations. What I don’t appreciate is that some people’s passports are stamped and others are not. I specifically asked to not have my passport stamped and it was stamped anyway, same with a counterpart that was on the trip to Israel with me.
As nearly as 2 years ago a close friend was traveling through the Middle East and entered Israel twice. Upon the first entry, the customs official didn’t stamp the passport, but on the second entry the official stamped the passport right after she asked not to have it stamped.
They have the right to stamp your passport but make it clear to tourists which it’s going to be. I could have easily obtained a second passport from the United States to avoid not being able to enter the countries I really wanted to visit.
Below are the countries that don’t allow you to enter with an Israeli stamp with the research I have done:
- Malaysia (Clearance permit needed from the Ministry of Internal Security
- Qatar (Clearance permit needed from the Ministry of Internal Security.)
- Saudi Arabia
- Sudan (South Sudan is ok has reached out to Israel for diplomatic relations)