If you’re planning on getting from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, do not take a taxi! It will cost you a bomb. There are trains that go from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, but the public bus appears to be the most convenient and comfortable option.
Taxis in Tel Aviv are on average, expensive, comparable to major cities in the world such as Tokyo or New York (with tips). A short 8 minute drive from our accommodation – Ben Yehuda apartments to the bus terminal, the Tel Aviv 2000 terminal set us back by 45 shekels (USD12, SGD17), which was quite pricey in Singapore terms. If we were to extrapolate, a 1 hour journey by taxi from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem would run into hundreds of dollars.
From the terminal, we faced some challenge in locating the bus stop for bus 480, which was the bus that would take us to the main terminal in Jerusalem. But that was settled after we asked some passers-by. Bus 480 stops at Platform 316. We did not wait long and the bus came shortly. There was sufficient space to stash away our luggage, and we found two empty seats.
The bus ride was a comfortable one and pretty quick – slightly over an hour with no major stops in between Tel Aviv and Jerusalem.
According to TouristIsrael.com, Bus 405 runs from the Tel Aviv Central Bus Station to the Jerusalem Bus Station – which is a more convenient option getting from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem if you are coming from the south of the city. It departs from platform 607 the (sixth floor).
The Travelling Squid’s Take
Unlike the multitude of chaos and cheating taxi drivers in Cairo, getting from one point to another in Israel was quite a breeze. Just take note that public transportation does not run on Sabbath (Friday sunset to Saturday sunset) and you’ve got to make your own arrangements in advance if you’re thinking of travelling during that time. Especially in Jerusalem, Sabbath is taken pretty seriously and the whole city is a dead town. More on that in a post to come.
Have you taken a train from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem? Do share your experience in the comments section below.