5 reviews of Ben-Gurion Airport in English
Six times between 1991 and today I used the Ben Gurion airport for my journeys to Israel. Today it became a modern international airport with its typical fassilities and stores.
I love to stay in the Rotunda while waiting for the flight departure. From this place you can handle all the last minute things: the tax-refund, spending the last shekels, buying some souvenirs and enjoying the water rinsing from above. A very untypical feeling after some days, weels or months of drought and desert.
Imortant: the high security arrangements require an early appearance, at least three hours before departure. The Israeli way of security is based on interviews and not on machines. So be prepared.
Tel Aviv Ben Gurion airport is a clean and more or less modern medium sized airport. I've been there several times and never had any bad experience.
If you depart Israel, remember to arrive early, as security checks are very thorough - especially if you have a non-Israeli passport. The myriads of security personnel are usually quite polite, but remember to answer the questions in an equally polite manner. Don't try to be a wise guy by giving snippy or contradictory replies, otherwise the security check can become an unpleasant and very time consuming experience!
Once you have passed the security check, you can enjoy the shops in the center of the airport. I especially like the duty free shop which for instance offers a huge selection of Ahava cosmetics (always have to bring a bag full of their products back to Germany) and an adjacent shop that sells local Israeli foodstuff to take home as well (good opportunity to get rid of your remaining Shekels).
Ben Gurion Int’l Airport is very effectively and efficiently organized. Travelling through here is actually quite enjoyable (although I try to avoid flying whenever I can : )).
The security checks are quite extensive but also much understandable & friendly. Besides that - it made me feel safe.
Getting there by train is much recommandable: 13 shekels (around Euro 2,50) is a great price for a one-way-ticket to Tel Aviv - Merkaz (Main Station).
The duty free zone at terminal 3 is gigantic. All desires in regards to duty-free-shopping shall become true here and they even sell MAC cosmetics here! Yippie! A great place to start or end your travels.
One of the fanciest airports I’ve visited - the Ben Gurion intl. airport in Lod (yes, it’s in Lod, not Tel Aviv) is massive in size. It’s very obvious from every small detail that a lot of money was put into this airport, especially it’s terminal 3 (international arrivals/departures).
Security here is extremely tight, as it should be. Keep this well in mind when flying out from Ben Gurion and make sure to arrive at least two hours before your flight if you do not have an Israeli passport.
There’s a lot to walk between gates, but there are very expansive moving sidewalks throughout the whole terminal.
Parking is a pain here, but the first 20 minutes are free. Keep that in mind when picking someone up from Terminal 3. There are busses and taxis at the airport, and The Suburban regional train connects the airport to Tel Aviv (just a few stations in the double-decker trains).
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