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Asdod to Jerusalem

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Asdod to Jerusalem

We are arriving in Ashdod on April 14 2014 and want to do the Thomsons organized excursion overnight to Jerusalem taking in all the sights.However it is fully booked up..Having read previous threads on here it looks possible to do it independently....our options are 1) In 1 day traveling to Jerusalem and Bethlehem by bus or taxi and returning to Ashdod by 10pm in time for sailing or 2) traveling to Jerusalem by bus or taxi from Ashdod and finding a hotel for 1 night then traveling to Haifa to meet with the ship the following evening.Does any one have any tips or advice please .Ashdod to Jerusalem and back seems quite do able, however don't know about finding Hotels in Jerusalem or traveling to Haifa !! Any advice would be most welcome.

Thanks.Gillian

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1. Re: Asdod to Jerusalem

Here's the short version: You won't find a hotel for one night on April 14 at such short notice. This is the first night of the Passover holiday and it is probably the single busiest day of the entire year. Pretty much everything was booked up months ago, and no hotel will take bookings for that one night.

And because of the holiday, you won't be able to take public transport in the evening, because it will stop running at about 5 p.m. on that day. You will be able to get to Jerusalem by bus. Buses from Jerusalem to Bethlehem are operated by an Arab company and are not affected by Jewish holidays, but by the time you return to Jerusalem your only option to get back to Ashdod will be a taxi.

Since the chances of finding accommodation for the night of April 14 are zero, barring a miracle, you will have to return to the ship.

On April 15 there will be no public transport until the late evening, so if you want to travel on that day again you'll need to take a taxi.

Too bad the cruise organizers timed this so badly.

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Jerusalem District, Israel
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2. Re: Asdod to Jerusalem

There may be an off chance of getting a private guide. I don't know any that would be available on Passover, but perhaps some of our Israeli guides know non-Jewish driving guides (or secular guides) who are working. You will definitely be paying a huge premium but it would get you to the sites and the guide would drive you. Still doesn't deal with the accommodation issue, but it is one possibility to get to Jerusalem. Can't believe your cruise ship is doing this to you. Very unfair. Do they not have any other companies they work with who are offering tours from Ashdod?

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3. Re: Asdod to Jerusalem

I suggest that you take two separate trips without an overnight if they are available. The other option is to hire a driver to take you around -- without a guide. There are non-Jewish guides which may be available for these two days, but you would have to search for such. Keep in mind that if you do arrange for a driver, he will not be allowed into the Port of Ashdod on your return in the evening, unless he is a licensed tour guide or from the taxi company that is authorized to enter the port.

Regarding hotels, you can search booking.com to see if you can find a room anywhere. If you do and you are set on doing a two day trip -- book it immediately. As mentioned above you will not be able to use public transportation, except to get to Jerusalem and up till around 5 on the 14th.

Chana

Israel

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4. Re: Asdod to Jerusalem

Thank you for that.Thomson havn't been very forthright with any info in line with what you say..Bad they advertise an excursion and then say it is sold out before you even get on the boat.That was the whole reason we booked this cruise..We desperately want to get from Ashdod to Jerusalem on 14th ! Stay the night in a Hotel there then do a tour up to Northern Israel on the 15th taking in Nazareth, galilee etc before returning to the Boat in Haifa at sundown for sailing.Any suggestions !!!!

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5. Re: Asdod to Jerusalem

MOT--you now have 3 threads with the same question and the answer hasn't changed. You have received the ONLY suggestions we have. It is not going to be inexpensive BUT it is the only choice. You really have two paths right now. Accept the reality of your days and make the most of it----or be miserable.

israel
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6. Re: Asdod to Jerusalem

I checked booking.com a minute ago and there are still rooms available for April 14th for one night. The prices are high, but they are always high in Jerusalem. Eldan and YMCA were on the lists among others, and they are a very good choice. Book NOW. Now for the trip itself - take a taxi from the dock to Jerusalem and do your guiding. It is something that many do, we could help with suggestions. In the morning take another taxi to Nazereth. Do this as early as you can after breakfast. Again plan your own day. It would be difficult to do a one day road trip in the north, so Nazereth is a good choice. Take a taxi to Haifa. If by any chance you still have some free time, go the Yefe Nof street to view the Baha'hi Gardens from the top with the whole Haifa Bay. Have dinner in the German Colony and back to your ship. It is not what the cruise offers, but is a nice trip.

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7. Re: Asdod to Jerusalem

First they told me, they use the company' Attraction world' for their tours and maybe if sold out they would put another bus on (That would be good and surely not difficult) However, no! They aren't doing that so back to the drawing board..We fly in the morning to meet our cruise ship in Limassol and are eager to sort something out...Have contacted, 'israel Tours' on line and they will do exactly the same as Thomson for twice the price AND it doesn't include the overnight Hotel or the two lunches that Thomson does........Thomson simply say, 'Wait till you board and hope someone goes sick and there is a cancellation.This does happen more than you think''' Not prepared to do this.Wanting something concrete and time is running out for us.

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8. Re: Asdod to Jerusalem

I did some rough calculations and the price for hotel+transport will be similar to the price the cruise company charges. You need extra money for the entrance fees (if any), and for food. Not so bad. You'll have a great experience I can promise you that. Taxis, commonsense and a good spirit will do it. Pack lightly, have a water bottle with you, sunscreen and huts. Enjoy. Need more info? Ask :)

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9. Re: Asdod to Jerusalem

That sounds reassuring.Thank you.trying to find an israeli tour company that does the same as Thomson and for similar price but Leo from Israel Tours is quoting double and thats without accomodation.Havn't even tried to book Hotel yet until we book the tour.By the sounds of the port restrictions for taxis etc, we need to do that first!

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10. Re: Asdod to Jerusalem

There will be taxis on the dock. You won't have a problem taking a taxi to Jerusalem. You will need to find a taxi from Jerusalem to the north and that will be more difficult but not impossible. Expect to pay around 1000 shekels for the full day of 15 April, less if you can haggle it. But first make hotel reservations NOW or risk forgoing the entire trip.

Make your plans, enjoy the trip, cime back tell us how you fared.

Chana

Israel

Edited: 08 April 2014, 20:10
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