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ETA IL: How to Apply and Everything You Need to Know! [Guide]

Following our March announcement, the ETA-IL system has now entered its first pilot phase for German and American passport holders. This article provides a step-by-step guide on how to apply for the electronic travel authorization, along with important details about the pilot phases and the full launch timelines of the new system.

Under the new ETA-IL regulation, tourists from visa-exempt countries will need to obtain electronic travel authorization before traveling to Israel. Applications will have to be submitted at least 72 hours before departure, but it is highly recommended to apply well in advance. If granted, the authorization will be valid for two years and can be used multiple times without reapplying. This system aims to reduce entry denials at the border and is scheduled to become fully operational on August 1, 2024.

The TL;DR

  1. ETA-IL is scheduled to become fully operational and mandatory for all visa-exempt tourists, including minors, on August 1st, 2024.
  2. June 1st to June 30th, 2024 – pilot for German and American tourists only – OPTIONAL USE.
  3. July 1st to July 31st, 2024 – pilot for all visa-exempt tourists – OPTIONAL USE.
  4. Only during the pilot phases, ETA-IL application will be free.
  5. Holders of valid Israeli visas (B1, A5, etc.) don’t need an ETA-IL to travel to Israel.
  6. Border control in Israel still has the final say. An approved ETA does not guarantee your entry to Israel.
  7. How to apply? Find our guide below!

How to Apply for ETA-IL

Step 1: Confirm your eligibility

Only passport holders from visa-exempt countries planning to visit Israel are eligible for ETA-IL. Citizens from non-exempt countries or individuals intending to enter Israel for work, long term study, or volunteering purposes must apply for the appropriate visa in advance, via the Israeli embassy in their place of residence.

Click here to check your eligibility using a quick and simple tool, created by PIBA (The Israeli Population and Immigration Authority).

Step 2: Apply for ETA-IL through the online system

Use the online ETA-IL application form.

Note! Always use the official form linked below (gov.il address). It’s quick and easy. Never use 3rd-party websites or agents to apply for ETA-IL.

Before applying, make sure you have with you:

  1. A working email address that you can access now and later
  2. Planned arrival date and length of stay (no need for exact flight numbers or tickets)
  3. Personal information
  4. Valid passport details (the passport that will be used to fly and enter Israel)

Click “Start application” and follow the comprehensive instructions and information provided in the form. Note that you have 30 minutes to complete the form.

Information required for the ETA-IL application – Step-by-step guide

  1. Step 1: Choose if you apply for yourself or for someone else.

  2. Step 2: Verify your email address. A 6-digit code will be sent to the email address.

  3. Step 3: Fill in your travel information:
    • Choose the main purpose of your visit (Visit (tourism), Business, Short term study, Work, Volunteering, Culture/Sport up to 30 days, Taglit Birthright Israel / Masa Israel, Short term foreign experts, Journalism).
    • Expected arrival date
    • Expected length of stay (Up to 7/14/30/60/90 days or above 90 days).

  4. Step 4: Fill in your travel document information:
    • Type (national passport (regular), diplomatic/service/official passports, Laissez Passer)
    • Country code and nationality
    • Document number (passport number)
    • Issue and expiry dates
    • First name(s) and last name(s)
    • Date of birth and place of birth
    • Gender

  5. Step 5: Fill in your personal information:
    • Additional nationalities
    • Marital status (Single, Married, Divorced, Widower)
    • Father’s full name and mother’s full name
    • Mobile phone number(s)
    • Home country and city
    • Occupation status (Employed, Unemployed, Student, Retired)
      • If employed > fill in your workplace name, phone number and role (work email address optional)

  6. Step 6: Travel history
    • Choose if you ever visited Israel before. If yes, indicate the year of your most recent visit.
    • Choose if you ever applied for an Israeli visa, an ETA-IL, or a permit to visit, live, work, or study in Israel. If yes, provide additional information.

  7. Step 7: Review and confirm the information you submitted and confirm the declaration. Then submit the application. A confirmation email will be sent to your email address.

Step 3: Results of your ETA-IL application

Your ETA-IL application will be processed, and an update will be sent to the email address you submitted.

Most applicants will get a response immediately. In certain cases, it may take up to 72 hours. If you didn’t get a response email, check your inbox, including your spam/junk folder.

ETA-IL Approved

If your application is approved, you will receive the following confirmation to your email:

The authorization should be automatically synced in to the API system (advanced passenger information), allowing your airline to access the information without further action on your part. However, we highly recommend to have the application number or a printed copy of the confirmation with you.

Follow-up Questions

In case follow-up questions arise, PIBA will contact you via email. The email will include instructions on how you can provide the additional information required to process your application.

ETA-IL Denied

An ETA-IL application should be denied if there is a history of immigration violations, a previous deportation from Israel, or a security threat. Additionally, it should be denied if the purpose of visit or length of stay that were indicated in the application require a dedicated visa.

If your application is denied, you will receive an email notification, stating the application has been denied. You will be advised to contact the ETA-IL help center for additional information. According to PIBA, submitting an additional application will not change the result.

Without an approved ETA-IL, you will not be allowed to board a flight to Israel. To overcome this, you will have to apply for a tourist visa through the Israeli embassy at your place of residence, or to be invited to Israel as a tourist by an Israeli inviter.

Step 4: Fly to Israel!

If your application has been approved, you can go ahead and buy your flight to Israel.

You will not be required to show the confirmation in Israel, however internal guidelines of airline companies may vary, so it is advisable to have a copy of the confirmation with you.

Remember! Having a valid ETA-IL travel authorization does not guarantee your entry to Israel. All travelers arriving at the border are subject to border control checks. Israel’s border control officers maintain broad discretion and are authorized to deny entry of any non-Israeli person.

FAQ

Please visit the elaborate, official ETA-IL FAQ page.

AIC is a volunteer based, non-profit organization in Israel that supports Israeli-international couples and families. Many volunteer hours were invested in writing this article, collecting the information and making it easily accessible. If this article helped you, please consider making a donation to our association.

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The Israeli Association for International Couples (R.A.)
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