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Joe's Israel Trip Report Hey guys! I finally got around to complete my Israel TR from back in January. I hope you enjoy it. There's no mileage shtick involved in this TR as I was just starting out on this game when we did this trip, so I didn't have anything to burn at that time. But hopefully that won't be the case with my future TR's.


Israel 8 Day Trip Report – A Trip of Firsts


Arrangements:


We scored tickets at the Widroe glitch @ $410 per RT EWR-TLV direct with United. I didn't even have a non forex fee CC at the time, so it was an additional $11.40 per ticket for the 2.7% forex fee bringing it to a total of $422 per ticket (still a good deal, don't you think? :P). This was the first time visiting Israel for the both of us, and being new to the game and not having points yet meant that we probably wouldn't visit Israel this winter if it wasn't for this glitch (and Dan… Thanks!).

Being that I planned on renting a car in Israel and didn't want to pay for rental insurance, I decided to get a Chase CC (don’t ask me why I didn't have one already. It’s embarrassing…) and if I was going to apply for 1, there was no reason not to get a second one. So I ended up doing a 2BM on the Freedom and SP and was instantly approved for both with a surprisingly large CL (Wanted to start with a no annual fee card that I can keep active for eternity (+ it was during the 20,000 signup bonus period) = Freedom. And the SP seemed to be my best choice for a 2'nd card, 1) I could use my Freedom points as UR. 2) No forex fee. 3) 2 PPD on travel - a category that I was about to use a lot in Israel).

I did a lot of reading during the month and a half prior to our trip, mostly online (DDF, TripAdvisor (very n00b friendly forum), WikiTravel etc.) but I also followed Dan’s suggestion in his trip notes and got myself a copy of Lonely Planet’s travel guide, which turned out to be quite helpful in helping me breakdown Israel by the regions.

I did all our hotel bookings through Booking.com. They offered free cancellation up to a day or two before the reservation at all the hotels we were booked in, and I actually paid at the hotel and not through their site, so I could use a different form of payment or other CC if I needed to.


Getting to Israel:


I don't really have much to report on the actual flying experience as we flew economy :(. It was just the typical (stinky) coach flying experience (Something like this…).

I don't think this is the usual speed for a 777...


Upon arrival, while still taxiing, I popped the Golan SIM I brought along, into my Verizon Galaxy S4 – comes unlocked out of the box - and voice/text was available right away, while I just had to change the APN settings on my phone to access the internet as well.  I used an app APN Israel that guides you through the process of changing the APN settings. Takes 2 minutes, it’s in Hebrew though.  (A relative of mine travels there frequently, so he maintains an active SIM - with the cheapest available plan – throughout the year, and when need be, he upgrades the plan to include unlimited talk, text, and data – including calls to the US. You even get to set up a US number that forwards to your Israeli one).

We had reservations with Dollar Thrifty (Done by DDF member Hocker - $206 for 8 days including mandatory liability insurance, excluding CDW which was covered by my Chase SP) and the pickup went pretty smooth (they didn't even ask for the visa letter stating that my Chase SP is providing CDW in Israel), they had a shuttle waiting for us to take us to the car rental parking lot (approx. 5 minute drive from the terminal), we got a Citroen C-Elysee which I believe is considered a quite spacious car in Israel, and off we went…

Day 1, Monday – Caesarea and Haifa:

I didn't plan a lot for this day, and boy was I glad I didn't!  As most of you here probably don’t know :P you're quite jet-lagged after flying 10-11 hours in couch. So it was great to just take it easy and not miss anything on the itinerary.

We started off driving north to Caesarea, the drive took us about an hour and we arrived at Caesarea national park around 1:00 (Or should I say 13:00…). The park is quite big and there are several parking lots available for the public, but I had read somewhere  online that there have been reports of car break-ins (Stolen luggage, etc.) and to only park across the ticket booth at the roman theatre so your car is always in someone’s sight (this may not always be an option, as there are only a few parking spots there).  Luckily, there was one available parking spot waiting for us and so we could enjoy the next few hours without the fear of being stripped in a foreign country.

We planned on visiting a couple of national parks on our visit, so we purchased the 2 weeks - unlimited national park tickets for 150 NIS PP (Turned out we should've bought the 2 weeks – 6 parks tickets for 110 NIS PP. #FirstDayAmbitions).

The park itself is as huge as it is magnificent. I’ll let you do your own homework on the history of this city - built by King Herod, but even if you're not a history buff it’s just amazing to see these majestic structures. They also have a short (10-20 minutes) film on the history of the city, which is great on recapping all of the empires that have ruled here. We spent about 2 hours walking through all the major structures while enjoying the breeze of the Mediterranean. We then returned to our car and drove to the north end of the park with the aqueduct as its main attraction (You can walk through the trail, but it’s a 20-30 minute walk), spent a couple of minutes at the aqueduct (You can usually park right in front of the aqueduct, so you can always keep an eye on your car), and then left to Haifa.

Caesarea Roman Amphitheater:


We drove approx. 30 minutes further north to Haifa.  We stopped at the Bahai gardens. Since we were there in the late afternoon we could only see part of the gardens, which wasn't that spectacular to me (there is a free guided tour of the inner gardens every day at 12:00). We then went up to the top of Mount Carmel for spectacular views of the city and the Mediterranean. Our timing was perfect as we arrived a few minutes before sundown so we could experience this amazing view, both, at day and night.

I couldn't find any mehadrin restaurants in Haifa, so we had to drive 15 minutes back south to Atlit where I found a mehadrin restaurant, Ben Ezra Hadayag. They started off with the typical Israeli salads and some spicy bread which was pretty tasty. We then had the salmon fillet off the grill (mediocre) and finally some fudge with vanilla ice cream for dessert. We also ordered a pitcher of freshly squeezed lemonade which never made its way to us. (At this point I was pretty knocked out, so I didn't care that much about the food, just wanted to get moving). We paid 150 NIS in total. Their service wasn't the fastest and the food wasn't the best, but considering there’s no other mehadrin restaurant in the area I would’ve returned for a dinner had I been in the area again. 2/5.

Finally we were en route to our final destination for the day; Akko. I figured since we were there in the winter, it’d be best if we could do the most travel possible at night so we can maximize our day hours on actual sightseeing, hence the drive to Akko.

In Akko, we were booked at the Akkotel, a boutique hotel situated within the old city walls, making it very unique. At $185 USD for the night (which ended up being $190, as they charged my CC in Shekels) it was our most expensive hotel stay throughout our visit. I wasn't blown away as I expected from the online reviews, but it was a pretty comfy experience. The hotel has 5-6 free parking spots right up front and since it’s a considerably small hotel, I would guess that there’s basically always parking available. Wi-Fi was free as well, had it only worked in my room… The hotel isn't kosher though, and since it’s built into the city walls, it doesn't have that much natural light (If that gets you going…).

Akkotel:


Our Room:


Day 2, Tuesday – Akko, Rosh Hanikra and Meron:

We checked out about 10:00 and drove 2-3 minutes into the new city, where we stopped at a supermarket and got ourselves some food for the day. Had something to eat and drove right back to the visitor center in the old city, where we purchased tickets including all Akko old city sights and Rosh Hanikra entrance fee (including the cable car) for 75 NIS PP. Their CC machine was out of order, and after wasting 5 minutes listening to the old lady selling the tickets complaining about their computers never working properly, I was happy to pay her in cash and just get going.

Entrance tickets included an audio guide that we picked up right next to the ticket booth (Have to leave an ID with them), and was very informative, getting you to understand what you're actually looking at throughout your self-guided tour. In short, we visited the crusader citadel, Templar tunnel, knight’s hall (Archaeological ruins, mostly from the crusader period), treasures in the wall (A museum built into the old city walls, not far from Akkotel) and the Turkish bath (A walk through a 200 year old bathhouse) as well as some shopping in the shuk (With all types of things being sold there, from fresh fish – and loads of them – to all kinds of clothing and souvenirs. We bought a complete nargila set including tobacco for 50 NIS, but of course it didn't work even once. You get what you pay for, I suppose). We also went to the Ramchal Synagogue, but it was closed.

While exiting the Templar tunnels we were very close to the pier. We went over and had a local fisherman take us for a 15-20 minute boat ride (50 NIS), to see the sea walls surrounding the old city. It was a bit foggy, but we could still see Mount Carmel in the horizon.

Knights Hall:


We then drove about 30 minutes north to Rosh Hanikra. Took the cable car (claimed to be the steepest cable car ride in the world) down to the grottos, where we started off with the short history film (It shows in a pretty unique room carved into the rocks) and continued onto the pathway surrounding the grottos, which finally turns into a sea promenade with great views of the Mediterranean and the mountain rocks housing the grottos. From a nature perspective, this is one of the nicest places in Israel.

Rosh Hanikrah:


360 @ Rosh Hanikrah:


After returning to the top of the mountain rock, we watched sunset over the Mediterranean. Amazing view. We then headed to Meron to kever Rashbi. It’s about a 45 minute drive and from the curves of the road we could see that the darkness has us missing out on some amazing views.

After Maariv and some tehilim at Reb Shimon, we continued to Amuka to kever Rebbi Yonasan Ben Izziel. The roads are very curvy heading to the kever.  It was pitch dark and a quite scary drive, but DW wanted to go for a relative that is in need of a shidduch.

Our final destination for the day was Tzfas. We went straight to Mendi's restaurant (Eida supervision) for dinner. The food was okay, but nothing more than that. I don't remember exactly what we ordered, but we paid about $50 USD total.  2/5.

Finally, we headed to the Ruth Rimonim hotel where we had reservations ($110 USD). The hotel consists of two buildings and they upgraded us to a mountain view room in the – IIRC – new building. The two buildings are not connected to each other, so you need to go outside to access the other building, but they had someone take our luggage so it wasn't that big of a deal. The room was very spacious and had an awesome view of mount Meron. Overall, it was pretty good for an Israeli hotel room and my main and only issue was that it wasn't 100% clean (some minor spots).

View from our room at the Ruth Rimonim:



Day 3, Wednesday – Tzfas and the Golan Heights:


After davening, I exchanged some dollars at the Gabbai for a quite decent rate of 3.46 NIS while the official rate was 3.48 (I was told that most Gaboim will exchange at a good rate), and headed back to the hotel for a scrumptious breakfast with a huge variety of eggs, cheeses, vegetables, pastries, cereals, jams, and more. They also make you cappuccinos, hot chocolates etc. Since we’re not used to eating breakfast at hotels it was a pretty neat experience. The hotel is under the rabbanut and is not mehadrin. However, I had a chat with the mashgiach – I believe he's there every day past 8:00 – and he showed me the food that is actually under mehadrin hashgachas, which amounted to 90-95% of the food served as well as all the drinks.

This was the only day we booked a private tour guide, mainly due to the impression I got while researching our trip on the internet that Tzfas would be quite difficult to cover in a few hours on our own. It was also nice – for a change – to just follow someone else’s lead and not have to figure everything out on our own. Based on a few Trip Advisor recommendations and after some correspondence, we ended up using Arye Buznah, a native who has lived there most of his life and knows the place inside out. It turned out to be a really good choice, we had a full and fun day and his pricing was pretty fair – at least to my knowledge - at 900 NIS for the day. (You can contact Aryeh at: lilach188@gmail.com)

We started with the Jewish quarter. As we walked by the narrow streets, he taught us a lot of history on the city and stories of his childhood in the city. In 3-4 hours we went to both Ari synagogues (Ashkanazi and Sefardi), Avuhav Shul, Rebbe Yosef Karo’s house (Outside only. It has limited open hours), old cemetery, Ari's mikvah (No. I couldn’t get myself to take a dip in January…), some archaeological excavations from the old city, Safed candle factory – featuring some amazing models made out of wax, and the gallery street with quite a few artistic judaica galleries. Even though we moved pretty fast, we didn't feel like we’re missing out on anything as Aryeh gave us all the important info served on a silver platter.

Avuhav Shul:


Rebbe Yosef Karo’s house:


Ari's Mikvah:


Safed Candle Factory wax models:


Noach's Ark:




David and Goliath:


The Largest Havdalah I've ever seen... Aryeh told us it's in the Guinness Book of World Records:


(We initially planned on doing a jeep tour of the Golan, but it would've totaled approx. $400 for a 5-6 hour tour and that was more than we were prepared to spend. Though if you can get other people to join, it might be worth it as the price is per jeep and can generally accommodate up to 7 people)

We drove to the Golan and started off with Banias waterfalls (Free entry with our unlimited national park tickets). This is no big waterfall (We have been to Iguazu falls less than a year ago, so we really couldn't enjoy this as a waterfall), but it did make for a short, and quite easy hike. We then crossed the river and visited the archeological ruins of the old city of Pan that was settled by a cult over 2,000 years ago (The area name “Banias” actually derived from that cult) and Aryeh explained their weird lifestyle/religion.

Next stop was Nimrod Fortress, built about 800 years ago (Free entry with our tickets as well). It’s situated on a ridge, giving it amazing views to enjoy. The fortress is pretty large and there are some magnificent ruins to see. We then continued south to mount Bental, we didn't have much time left, so Aryeh suggested we skip the top of the mountain lookout, and rather stop at some lookout point in middle of the road surrounding the mountain. We could see Al Qunaitra, Syria, and Aryeh promised we didn't really miss anything on that top of the mountain lookout.

View from the ridge at Nimrod Fortress:


Overlooking Al Qunaitra, Syria:


We continued to Katzrin and went to the olive oil mill, an olive oil factory producing olive oil from Golan grown olives. We were supposed to have a tour of the factory, but as soon as we started the introductory video, they had a blackout and decided to close up early.

At this point it was already late in the afternoon, so we headed back to Tzfas to drop off Arye and continued to Tiberias. I filled my tank with gas for the first time in Israel and it was ridiculously expensive at around $8 a gallon (I spent about $175 USD for gas during this trip, for a total of around 1,000 KM).

We went to Mama Mia (Machzikei Hadas Belz supervision) for dinner and really liked their food. I don't remember exactly what we ordered, but I do remember that the food was very tasty and the fruit smoothies were excellent as well.  3.75/5.

We had reservations at the Leonardo. Our room was quite simple and rather big with a view of the kinneret ($125 USD). Once again a pretty average experience, but judging from the online reviews on Israeli hotels I would say that no complaints on a hotel, suggests that it’s a good hotel. It was Tu Bishvat, so they gave a complimentary fruit plate with a persimmon, some tangerines and dried fruit along with a bottle of wine (not my field, I don’t even know what kind of wine it was).


Day 4, Thursday – Tiberias and Jerusalem:


We decided to take a break on Thursday morning and just chill it out. We asked for a late checkout and we were given the room up to 12:00, so that's when we left. We took a stroll down the Yigal Alon promenade and then headed to Sherry's (Rav Aurbach supervision) for breakfast. We arrived at Cherry's about 1:15 and they didn't want to give us the breakfast special as it officially ends at 12:30, but as we were about to walk out they gave in, so breakfast special it was. The food was pretty good and for under $20 USD we had a full breakfast including drinks. 3/5.

Kinneret Water Level Meter:


We then went to the kivrei tzadikim in Tiberias; The Rambam and quite a few Tanoim very close by (Rebbi Yochanan ben Zakai, Rebbi Eliezer ben Hurcanus and more), Rebbi Akiva and the Ramcha"l on the hill with great views of the kineret and Rebbi Meir Baal Haness near the Chamei Teveria.

We left for Jerusalem through the 90. Amazing landscapes.  I felt completely safe throughout the way; though I did make sure my tank is full so I wouldn't have to stop for gas.

We had booked a segway tour of the old city with ZUZU Segway in advance. It is not cheap at 220 NIS PP for 1-1/2 - 2 hours, but it was worth every penny. Our tour was scheduled for 5:00, but due to rush hour traffic we arrived almost half an hour late, parked at Mamilla mall and crossed the street to start our tour. Luckily, we were the only ones on that tour so we didn't bother anyone by arriving late and we could do it at our own pace (They can have up to 4 people per tour).

The tour was terrific. It was the first time riding a segway for the both of us, but it's fairly easy to learn and we were ready to go after 10 minutes of training. Our guide was very helpful and the best part was that we got to see a lot of the old city without having to walk (duh. that's the point of the segway, isn't it). We rode through a lot of the Christian, Armenian and Jewish quarters and we made a couple of stops at important sites like Kever Duvid, Shaar Yafo, Churva square, etc. where our guide gave us some history etc. on the place.

Old City, Jerusalem:


We finished the tour around 7:00 and headed to Red Heifer (Rubin supervision) for dinner. The owner gave us a bit of a hard time because we didn't have a reservation, but after 10 minutes we were able to get a table. This was by far our best restaurant experience in Israel, although the service could've been better. We had the braised short ribs (69 NIS) for appetizer and reserve cut (240 NIS) for main. Both were very good. We also loved their lemonana drink, which is basically lemonade with fresh mint leaves in it. For dessert we had delicious pecan pie. 4/5.

For our stay in Jerusalem we decided on an apartment in Me'a Shearim so we can breathe the culture. At first we had reservations with Shisha management for a 1 bedroom apartment on Malchei Yisroel for $110 USD per night and we had to give a ($80) deposit, but then we  got a much better deal through a friend. His relative was willing to rent his - very nice according to standards there - 2 BR apartment with a balcony and 1.5 bathrooms, right off Me'a Shearim for $100 USD per night. So I canceled our reservation with Shisha management and lost the $80 deposit, but it was well worth it (we only paid $30 more in total, and had a MUCH larger apartment).


Day 5, Friday – Kever Rochel and Chevron:


We had reservations with Hoffman tours for the Kever Rochel and Chevron tour. Reason being, that we didn't want to go there on our own. We walked to their office in Geula where the tour departs from, and arranged payment ($52 USD PP, and they charge an extra 5% if you pay by CC.). The tour departed around 9:15 in a coach van (Sprinter) and we first stopped at the old city to drop off some people taking the old city tour (separate tour offered by them), and then continued to kever Rochel where the guide gave us about half an hour to spend on our own.

The tour continued south on the 60 towards Chevron, we entered Kiryat Arba and made our way to the Ma'aras Hamachpelah where we spent about 45 minutes, first at the stairs next to the building, where some believe is the Ramban's burial place (Mr Hoffman explained, that that's where Jews prayed for 700 years - IIRC - as the Arabs didn't allow them to enter the building), and then we entered the building and said some tehilim, etc. There was a huge tour group of Asians filling the place (taking pictures with their Samsung devices...) and we could barely move around, but we managed to get to all the important spots (Avraham and Sara, Yaakov and Leah. Yitzchak and Rivka as well as the entrance to the cave, are on the Arab side, and are only accessible 10 days out of the year).

The tour then made a quick stop for lunch at a pizza shop close by. We had a slice of pizza and a drink (it's not under mehadrin supervision, but the owner showed us that he's only using mehadrin products, and our tour guide assured us that he's researched the place and it's fine), and headed back to the van.

Next stop was kever Yishai and Rus, and the Jewish settlement in the old city of Chevron. We then continued to the Avraham Avinu synagogue where we saw some really old Sifrei Torah, one about 800 years old.

We headed back to Jerusalem and went to Machne Yehuda for some Shabbos goodies. We browsed through the market for more than an hour enjoying every minute in this lively shuk (seems like the established marketing tactic here is to scream. And whoever screams louder, has the sale...). We bought some olives and pastries, and experienced bargaining at its best as the market was about to close for Shabbos. We left less than an hour and a half before Shabbos, and the market was still fully operational. We then caught a bus back to Me'a Shearim.


Day 6, Shabbos - Jerusalem


Nothing much to report for Shabbos other than we enjoyed a relaxing Shabbos in Jerusalem. After the zman motzei we walked down to Migdal David to see the sound and light show (55 NIS PP). It was running for about 45 minutes and was basically an overview of the history of Jerusalem, where they use the tower for a projection screen. It wasn't so informative, but rather artistic.

Migdal David:


We then wandered around old city and finally headed back to Geulah for some pizza and ice cream.


Day 7, Sunday – Jerusalem:


We had a late start (after all we were on vacation...) and took the bus to the kotel where we had reservations for the tunnel tour at 11:20. The tour itself was incredible, our guide Batya had so much knowledge to share that she could probably do a week-long tour and not be done. The group was about 15—20 people, the cost was 30 NIS PP and it took about an hour and 15 minutes. We reserved it about a month in advance and we're thankful we did, because these tickets are always bought out by tour operators who then sell them either included in an old city tour or separately (With a healthy profit margin though - I found some website selling them for $57 USD PP!!).

During the tour we passed by the closest place - permitted for Jews to step on - to the KODESH HAKADUSHIM, most of the kotel that is not accessible from above ground as well as some interesting ruins from the second Temple period.

We exited on the north end of the underground western wall, which I believe is in the Islamic quarter, and made our way back to the south end of the wall (western wall plaza) through the Arab shuk. To be honest, I didn't enjoy that walk as I felt the hatred towards us more than in the other Arab areas we visited throughout our stay (to add insult to injury, we passed a sign stating:  ‘וכו נרצח פה) that might just be paranoia. Not sure.

As we started our day late, we hadn't eaten yet, so we went to the Jewish quarter where we had some sandwiches and a mocacchino at Marzipan (Rubin supervision) and we bought some pastries for the day as well (was pretty tasty but then again, it's a sandwich and you need to be real qualified to screw it up...). Wasn't the cheapest (105 NIS) but the food was good.

We then walked down to the city of David where Jerusalem started as a Jewish city (5-10 minute walk), where we had reservations for the 2:00 tour. It's a 3 hour tour which ended up lasting 2-1/2 hours and it costs 57 NIS PP.

City of David Entrance:


We had a pretty big crowd scheduled for that tour (30-35 people) and our tour guide Eitan was a bit nervous at the beginning at how he's going to control the crowd. But armed with his portable speaker and wealth of knowledge he managed to keep the groups attention all throughout the tour.

The tour itself started off with a 3D movie on the history of the city(pretty damn good one, although I would appreciate the 3D glasses being cleaned from time to time). Then we started descending into the valley while passing by some ruins (believed to be King David's palace) and finally we reached the tunnels. The first part of the tunnels is done by the tour together, and at some point you can choose to either go into the water tunnels or avoid them by exiting through a dry tunnel. This water tunnel was built by Chezekiah in order to convert the water reservoirs into the city so it wouldn't be vulnerable, and it’s still flowing water today. I really wanted to walk through it, but since the water at some points reaches quite above the knee (especially if you’re short) and in the winter it's quite cold, I couldn't get myself to go through it. Out of our group of 35 people, only 4 chose the water tunnel and they were from Canada...

Exiting the tunnels, we were in the valley a short walk from the Ma’ayan Hashiloach where the tour ended. We then continued to explore some streets of ancient Jerusalem on our own.

We then took a taxi to Mount of Olives. We started at the lookout point with incredible views of Jerusalem and had a camel ride there as well (60 NIS for the camel ride. I realize I could’ve done a better job haggling). There were lots of soldiers at that point and we were told that Joe Biden was there earlier. We then continued to some Kevurim including the Ohr Ha’chaim and Zechariah Hanavi and then to Shimon Hatzadik. Finally he dropped us off in the Jewish quarter.

View from Mount of Olives:


We had planned to eat at Papagaio, but decided on a typical Israeli dinner. We went to BBQ (Rubin supervision) in the Churva square and had a falafel, shawarma and fries (or chips…) and we were stuffed! Their food was average as was the service. It was a rather inexpensive dinner at $20-$25 for the both of us. 2.5/5.


Day 8, Monday – Dead Sea Area:


We left our apartment about 9:30 and drove via the 1 and then 90 (Which I BTW loved!  With all the curves and scenic views it felt like driving on a desert track of a computer racing game…) towards the Dead Sea. First stop was at Qumran, the caves where they found the Dead Sea scrolls (On display at the Israel museum. We did not make it there though :( ). It’s a national park, so entrance was free with our unlimited tickets. We watched a short film about the history of the place, had a quick look around (not much to see IMHO as you can’t enter the caves, so you're pretty much left with some more archaeological ruins that we saw all over Israel) and enjoyed the 25-30 degree temperature difference from Jerusalem.

90 South towards the Dead Sea:


Qumran Caves (not accessible):


360 @ Qumran:


We then drove further south on the 90 for about half an hour to Ein Gedi (Also a national park = free entrance with unlimited tickets) where there are several lovely hikes to choose from. We went with the easy route that most people use, called Nachal (Wadi) David. It’s a 1-2 hour hike (Depending on how picture obsessed you are…) with gorgeous views and nice waterfalls. There's also an old Shul there (also a national park) that we didn't get to visit as we had other plans.

Ein Gedi:






We continued down the 90 to Masada. Masada is also a national park, but the cable car ride up and down the mountain is not included in the unlimited tickets so we paid approx $25 for 2 round trip tickets (I don’t remember the exact price in NIS). We started with the museum full of artifacts of this amazing place. They gave us an audio guide that automatically plays the recording when you walk into an exhibit, so there's no need to run around and look for those digits. We then took the cable car up the mountain (we initially planned on taking the snake path up and coming down with the electric car, but by the time we got there they wouldn't allow us to use the snake path as they don't want people being stuck there when they're closing. In the winter this can be quite early - IIRC after 2PM they wouldn't let you use the snake path walking up). You're supposed to get an audio guide at the information center on top of the mountain, that explains all the different ruins and sites. But the Israeli there wasn't in his best mood and so he decided that it's too late and that we couldn't get one. Thankfully, the maps of the mountain - you get with admission - have plenty of information and follow the same (or very similar) track as the audio guides, so we didn't really miss anything besides having to read it off the map.

360 @ Masada:


Dead sea was our next stop. We went to the separate men/woman beach just a few short minutes drive south of Ein Bokek. There's no mud there, but the floating was an interesting experience.

We started driving south again with the hopes of getting a look at "Lot's Wife", but since I couldn't find a lot of info online and it started getting dark, we just turned around and headed back to Jerusalem.

It was our anniversary and we went to Entrecote (Rubin supervision) for dinner. I was quite disappointed. I somehow got the impression on the internet that this is a upscale restaurant on par with let's say Red Heifer. But that is not the case. The food isn't bad, but it's nowhere near Red Heifer. Service was Israeli style. Our waiter didn’t speak English and had to go get someone every time we needed something more than a simple menu choice. At $100 USD it wasn’t cheap either. All in all it wasn’t bad, we just overestimated it. 3/5.


Day 9, Tuesday – TLV-EWR:


We left for the airport around 7:30 in the morning, filled up with gas on the way and returned the car to Thrifty. They tried screwing me over some scratch on the passenger door you had to use a magnifying glass to see. They wanted like $150 for it and I just didn't budge until the guy said "okay never mind". They then shuttled us to the terminal.

I davened Shachris in the Shul after security, got ourselves breakfast at Aroma Espresso Bar (IIRC, Chasam Sofer supervision). They're quite expensive, but it was worth getting fresh food right before boarding.

We landed in EWR smack in the middle of a heavy snow storm. Everything was moving slower than slow. We had to wait for a gate more than an hour on the tarmac. Then an hour for customs and immigration (I know, I know. Should've made Global Entry). Then a 3 hour drive home (a usual 1 hour drive). I guess it was just NY's way of saying hello...

At the end of the day, we spent a lovely week in Israel and really enjoyed our first visit there. And all for just under $4,000 everything included.

Thanks for reading. And I hope people will find it helpful in planning future trips, as the motivation for writing this came from the lack of Israel trip reports here (you'd figure a place like Israel would have the most reports on a forum like this, where most requests in this thread is for tickets NYC-TLV...). If you have any questions ask away.

June 22, 2014, 08:31:35 PM
1
Business and First Class Products Master Thread I think this would be a good place for people to ask questions about and review specific airline products.

I'll start.

Flying LX J from MIA-ZRH-TLV. Equipment is A330 and A340. 2 adults, 1 toddler and an infant, 3 seats total.

Where would be the best location on the plane for us to sit that would provide the most privacy and allow us to be as close together as possible?

From the seatmap, it looks like there are 2 rows (4,5) ahead of the forward galley that looks removed from the rest of the cabin and looks less staggered than other rows in the cabin. I'm inclined to take it.

Anyone with experience with this aircraft with some input?

July 09, 2014, 08:53:34 PM
1
Re: Chase Sapphire Reserve
and all the pre-approvals? Just seems deceptive if you are writing a definitive statement to not hold by it.

I assume in branch pre-approvals won't have this language on them. Kind of like how some AmEx targeted offers don't have their limiting language. Should make it easier to know with Chase!

Hey, @doctorofcredit, we added a 'like' system over here. You gotta try to get likes so people will know you are reliable.

Thanks for the tip, I will add a desperate plea for likes at the end of each post.

If you thought this post was helpful, push that LIKE button
  8) 8) 8) 8) 8) 8) 8) 8) 8) 8)

September 01, 2016, 12:48:46 AM
1
Re: Elal buying/merging Israir
Looks like they are trying to get into the Buisness of low cost carriers...
Imagine a poor service version of elal

July 02, 2017, 09:51:35 AM
1
Re: Has This Ever Happened To You With IBeria Airlines-Minors Bumped?
Is it illegal to bump minors?  I really want to publicize this so that this situation does not happen to other mothers.
I doubt there's a law, but it take a brain-dead agent to bump minors.
Did they tell the agent in MAD that they were all under 18?

August 28, 2017, 04:22:26 PM
1
Re: Rubashkin freed from prison. What's absolutely mind-boggling to consider is if the judge had not been such a zealot, and sentenced him to, say, 16 years (which would have been both (i) far more consistent with comparable sentences and (ii) not more than the 25 years the prosecutors had asked for!), the outcry would not have been as big, the support to free him not as widespread, and the unity among klal yisroel not as strong.

It was precisely because of the unprecedented 27-year sentence that he's out after "only" eight, and not sitting for double that.

I think there's a relevant lesson here. Not often are people in this world afforded the opportunity to see the maxim of "gam zu letovah" come to vibrant life, that if the hand of God is moving, it is only doing so for the best. 

An analogy that has always struck me is embroidery.  As you may know, the bottom of an embroidered picture is a chaotic, haphazard mess.  However, from the perspective of the creator, everything is in deliberate, beautiful, harmonized order.

Too many times in life we look up, shake our heads, and wonder "How could this happen?" "What did we do to deserve this?"

In those trying times, think of Shalom Rubashkin and the embroidered picture, and know that although it may look ugly from our humanly vantage (from the bottom), that is not so in true reality--from above, this, that, or whatever, is deliberate, beautiful, and for the best.






December 20, 2017, 08:01:01 PM
1
Re: Thank you Mr President for ... Being as far away from Obama  as possible.
December 24, 2017, 06:16:39 PM
1
Re: US Politics/2016 Election Pick Your Poison Master Thread

In case you forget he apologized and said he supports the president 100%.
And you call others gullible?

January 16, 2018, 11:10:20 PM
1
Re: US Politics/2016 Election Pick Your Poison Master Thread
does this weaken our position in the world more or less than the way the media has this obsession with disparaging the president.
or is that somehow unimportant?
Great point. Prepare to be transformed into a Hannity gullible

February 01, 2018, 12:52:53 PM
1
Re: US Politics/2016 Election Pick Your Poison Master Thread
That has also been the primary response if the Republicans leadership throughout the Obama years. Surely you didn't expect anything different from Trump.

I actually expected him to say that illegal immigrants are responsible for more deaths than AR15s.  But he had to go with the tired old mental illness response.

February 15, 2018, 06:54:32 PM
1
Re: US Politics/2016 Election Pick Your Poison Master Thread
Try and spin it any way you want but you should finish the all the crow she can't eat. Also left out of this story is how she mocked his speech on air.

He deserves to be mocked. 

March 30, 2018, 05:51:39 PM
1
Re: US Politics/2016 Election Pick Your Poison Master Thread
To accept a despicable person like Trump is unacceptable. That is just the way I was raised. You can have the same SCOTUS picks and other things with Pence. You don't need this scumbag for that.
You really need to ask yourself why racist and anti-Semite groups are drawn to Trump.
Have no idea what you are talking about in 2008.
I doubt you could have the same results with Pence. Sometimes you need the despicable individual there in order to get the good outcomes. We should be thankful that those outcomes are good.

September 02, 2018, 11:42:24 PM
1
Re: The funny/strange/interesting/random pictures thread
What if it's all just one big conspiracy?
 :o


@ChaimMoskowitz @elit @SuperFlyer @PlatinumGuy @Alexsei @KidOOO  @chff @as2 @12HRS @Hatastah @mileagejunkie @pixi @elya @ericchavez91 @teetle @mochjas @Raymondkay

 ;D

so who do you know in real life from this group?

January 02, 2019, 05:02:34 PM
1
Re: What grade do you give Trump so far for his handling of COVID-19? I give him a B for the speech just now.
He looks like someone that has not slept for days. That is not a negative comment.

March 17, 2020, 11:49:57 AM
1
Re: COVID-19 (Wuhan Novel Coronavirus) Pandemic Master Thread
Crematoriums. There are reports about about China burning live people during the virus.
Give me a break


https://www.politifact.com/factchecks/2020/feb/26/facebook-posts/chinese-billionaire-floats-conspiracy-about-corona/

March 20, 2020, 12:22:58 AM
1
Re: COVID-19 (Wuhan Novel Coronavirus) Pandemic Master Thread 1) Generally, once someone has been exposed to a virus, their immune system develops antibodies geared towards fighting that particular strain of virus. Sometimes those antibodies can last a lifetime other times they only last months or (most often) many years. Regardless, once you've been sick with a particular virus you are immune to the virus for some time. Which is why you won;t get the flu twice in one season (exception being if there are two strains of flu going around in one season).

2) The flu changes every year. It evolves. That's why your immunity to last year's flu won't help you. The yearly flu shot is the best guess of scientists as to what the new flu will be like. Which is why the shot is not even close to 100% effective. Some years it's 35% effective, some years 75%. Because it's only a guess as to the composition of that year's flu strain.

3) No one knows if SARS-Coronovirus-2 will evolve yearly. Current best guesses are that it does not. So once infected and recovered, you will not be susceptible to it again for a long time. Once enough people have developed immunity, either naturally by being infected and recovering or by taking a vaccine (which does not yet exist), we have "herd immunity", which is when enough people are immune that on average, every sick person infects less than one other person. (The average number of people infected by every sick person is know as the R0. If the R0 is less than one, the virus dies out on its own because each person infects less than once other person on average).

4) As to knowing if you had the virus and are immune: the test being done in China would tell you that. The testing being done here in the US does not. Here in the Us we are using a PCR test. A PCR test (put very simply) is the nasal or throat swab, which is then examined for DNA of the virus. If you recovered they will not find any DNA from the virus and will not know if you had it and are immune or if you never had it. In Chine, however, they are doing an antibody test, which is a blood test. This looks for the presence of antibodies to SARS-CoV 2 which will indicate if the patient was exposed to the virus and developed antibodies, so this would show up even a year later. It's much more invasive and uncomfortable than the "drive by" swab testing, which is probably why it's not being done here.

March 23, 2020, 04:58:56 PM
1
Re: COVID-19 (Wuhan Novel Coronavirus) Pandemic Master Thread
As stated multiple times. Nobody, nobody knew whats coming.

March 24, 2020, 04:46:05 PM
1
Re: Do you have Coronavirus? Were you tested?
You've been able to do in a week what I haven't been able to do in a year!

I did the same thing. Down about 15 lbs. I hope to be able to maintain good eating habits I acquired (small portions, chewing properly, and eating slowly) so I can reach my target weight which I haven't seen in years.

March 26, 2020, 06:12:18 PM
1
Re: RIP/BDE Master Thread - COVID-19 related
I believe our communities were definitely hit pretty hard percentage wise.  Might be because of purim,  or because we visit our elders quite often. Either way enough is enough and lets hope for the geula!

Our communities were hit pretty hard because we're a community. I don't think the numbers are any different than the general population, but as a community we feel for each other much more than anyone else. A goy in Monsey doesn't have any out of the ordinary feeling for another goy in Crown Heights, but a yid feels for another yid no matter where they are.

We are harder hit simply because we care for each other more.

April 07, 2020, 11:33:13 PM
1
Re: COVID-19 (Wuhan Novel Coronavirus) Pandemic Master Thread
We never trusted WebMD, and it’s not the first time this guy Slidell is on these videos with his unconventional wisdom. I didn’t watch it once I saw who’s what, I’m too skeptical to even waste my time on it.
You may not like WebMD or Sidell, but there is loads of truth to the fact that they were mistreating the disease based on faulty data.

There is also a lot of talk that patients were not getting PTN, which is basic nutrition because the hospital was just not equipped to give 200 patients a day individualized dietary care. The dieticians, PTs, OTs that are required for keeping vent patients alive were not doing anything. Stories of patients starving to death are not far fetched.

There was a colossal mess up in preparation for this. Besides the facts that the disease was being improperly treated.

They created protocols that required ventilation when there was no need or they could have waited to ventilate. They shied away from C-pap and bi-pap when they should have utilized them more. I know of one case where the patient was on C-pap at home for 3 weeks and only went to hospital when there was no choice due to clotting issues. It will all come out eventually.   

April 26, 2020, 02:36:38 PM
1
Re: Delta to tlv opening May 8
You haven't answered not one of my points, glad you think chaikel and his boys run the TA industry, as i said you wouldn't risk your end dollar.
I did my due diligence. I did write that line in previous posts, but took it out after they pointed out the ARC ruling. Feel free to discuss with them and if the consensus is that the previous line was correct I'd be happy to add it back.

Out of curiosity, what will you tell your clients when LY files for bankruptcy and the credit card says you waited to long to chargeback?
Sorry that you lost your $$$$$, but I didn't believe the ARC was telling the truth so I didn't tell you that you should dispute or I told you not to dispute?

How many people will still use your services when they realize what a liability it is to use a TA that won't fight for them?

April 26, 2020, 04:49:07 PM
1
Re: Covid-19 and Shalom Bayis
My Mom tells her kids when we date to see if there is chemistry.. Love comes later..
Exactly.
Some girls I dated said they were looking for love. They kept looking for a long time afterward...
Shidduch dating and hollywood movies are 2 very different stories.

April 27, 2020, 04:39:09 PM
1
Re: Delta to tlv opening May 8 So, when is the headlines podcast on this?

If TAs don't want to write an op-ed, do any business halacha places want to?

April 27, 2020, 05:42:42 PM
1
Re: SBA PPP and EIDL Small Business Loans (some money is forgivable)
I did not initially apply for the EIDL and have been watching it to see if they would open for new applications but so far nothing.  I did see on one of the news sites to fill out an application and it would be submitted as of yesterday they were opening for new apps.  Filled it out and got to the last page, a request to debit my account for a fee.  I emailed the company and this is what I got in response

We bill at an hourly rate of $300 with most small businesses taking 1-2 hours.  There is a $100 deposit required for us to start the review process of any application.  Our fee is not contingent on loan approval.  The document you sign with your bank information is for the application - not to be charged.  We will reach out in regards to billing.

 
Please let me know if you are interested, as I will assign an agent to you.

Anyone know if these guys have a way of submitting an application that isn't open to the public?

Sounds like scammers to me

April 29, 2020, 12:14:24 PM
1
Re: Delta to tlv opening May 8 Travel Agent vs. OTA

Travel Agent:
 
Pros:

- The travel agent arranges everything for the passenger, from seats to meals to bassinets etc. This might not be such a big deal when booking an airline that has a functioning website (for example United), but when booking an airline without a functioning website (like Elal, Alitalia), it can be a tremendous pain to do a simple thing such as confirming a kosher meal.

- You can ask a travel agent his recommendations on which airline to fly and which ones to avoid. An agent can advise on minimum connection times, as sometimes even when a minimum connection time is valid and will be sold online, it can still be a risky connection to make (for example, 60 minutes in LHR). Some agents can also help with vacation planning and ideas. A travel agent will let you know if the country you’re visiting requires visas or other documents. I have a friend that booked Turkish Airlines online for his trip to South Africa, when he got to the airport he was not able to check in because he didn’t have his child’s birth certificate with him, which South Africa requires. Had he booked with an agent, the agent most likely would have advised him on that (as that law is very clearly written in the GDS)

- If flying with an infant and you want a bassinet, in most cases (varies by airline) a travel agent can confirm a bassinet before you pay for the ticket. If booking online, you’d have to deal with paying for the tickets, calling the airline, and if it’s not available, you’d have to cancel and start the process again. A travel agent can tell you exactly which flights have a bassinet available, confirm the bassinet, and then you can go ahead and pay for it.

- Many people (especially people flying for business) have location changes and meeting cancellations last minute or sometimes even mid-trip. A travel agent can easily change the segments and reissue the tickets. If booking online, you’d have to wait on hold and hope that a rep knows how to reissue partially used tickets.

- The GDS accurately states the baggage allowance, change fee, and cancellation fee for every ticket. You can be aware of all this information before you book and before you have to make a change and have a shock of your life when you’re told the change fee is $500 or more.

- In most cases, a travel agent is the most helpful thing you can have in case of a cancellation. For example, if there's bad weather in the winter, rather than waiting hours on hold to speak to your airline or Priceline to refund or rebook you and then when you finally get through, the rep doesn’t know if the flight was cancelled (more on that soon), you can just make a call/text to your travel agent and be done in 5 minutes. Even in the current Covid-19 situation, early in March before the non-stop flights between TLV and the US were canceled, travel agents were able to re-accommodate all their passengers from LH/LX/OS/SN to UA non-stop. Every travel agent can tell you how many calls they got in those couple of weeks from people who booked online begging for help because wait times were tremendous and the reps were beyond incompetent. I personally had someone who booked LX on United.com and when LX cancelled his flight, he called UA (the issuing airline) to rebook him, the United rep was adamant that the LX flight was still on schedule. When he finally convinced the rep that the flight was cancelled, United wanted to charge him $300 per person for the “difference in fare” from Swiss to United direct.

- Most people are not aware that having a “confirmation” alone is useless until it is “ticketed”. A travel agent will make sure that everyone on the reservation and every segment is ticket properly. It is not uncommon for OTA’s to show phantom availability and even “confirm” the space, but for it to never get ticketed. Showing up to the airport with a reservation like that is just as good as showing up with no reservation at all. I recently had a client that asked me to book him a Royal Jordanian flight. The flight was clearly sold out in the GDS. The client said it shows on an OTA and he’ll just book it there. 3 days go by and he tells me he hasn’t received an email yet and the confirmation number isn’t pulling anything up. I explained to him again what I had explained to him 3 days earlier, that it was phantom space and will never be ticketed.

- Travel agents often have special one way net fares. If you can go online and see that a one way Delta flight JFK-TLV can cost $1500, a travel agent can have nets starting at $500.

- Sometimes you need to be booked into a certain fare class for upgradeable purposes (for example, W class on United). A travel agent can book you into that fare class specifically as opposed to OTAs which will automatically book you into the lowest fare class available.

Cons:

- If you want to have the airline do a change, some airlines (such as United) will charge a small fee to “take control of the ticket” and some airlines (such as Elal) will not even touch or change an agency booking.

- In case of emergencies, not all travel agencies are available 24/7. Most airlines/OTAs have 24/7 customer service.

- Travel agents will usually add a service fee on top of the cost of the ticket, especially if it is a ticket that has no commissions.

- Disputes: As a general rule (there are exceptions which will be discussed), travel agents process your card directly with the airline through their GDS (thus earning 5x when booked with Amex Plat), not through their own merchant processor. When a passenger disputes an agency ticket, the passenger always wins and the agent has to pay for the cost of the ticket plus a small fee, thus causing the agent a loss. If he had booked online and disputed, he would only be causing the OTA/Airline a loss.
Let’s say you booked online and missed your flight. You want to dispute the charge, the chances are you will lose the dispute as it was your negligence you missed your flight. Now that you booked with an agent, would it be fair to dispute, win, get your money back and cause the agent a loss?
Let’s take a different scenario, one that is more relevant today during Covid-19. Airlines have practically cancelled every international flight and most domestic flights. Almost all airlines that fly to/from the USA are allowing refunds for cancelled flights, Elal is not. This situation, where an airline is refusing refunds for a cancelled flight is something that is unprecedented. As per the DOT, the passenger is rightfully owed a refund for his cancelled flight. If he would have booked online, he’d win the dispute and get his money back. Now that he’s booked with an agent, he is any less rightfully and legally owed a refund, should he not dispute the charge because it might cause the agent a loss? I would think he has all the right to dispute and I am even telling my clients who want their money back today to go ahead and dispute. I personally am not terribly afraid of clients disputing tickets now (where the flight is cancelled). They are owed a refund and we can’t provide it for them. Why should they lose out when they are legally owed a refund? If an airline will dare penalize agents for a flight that was cancelled, they will face a massive lawsuit. Besides, I highly doubt the DOT wouldn't protect the agents for something like that.

In summary, if he would have booked online and won, I think he has the right to dispute even when it might come at a loss to the agent. But if he would have booked online and lost, I don’t think it’s fair to dispute and make the agent eat the loss. So the next time your kosher meal tastes like cat food instead of the pre-ordered dog flavored one, please don’t dispute the charge.

There are some, but not many, travel agents who will pay for the ticket either on their own credit card or by “check payment” or with points, and then process the passenger’s credit card on their own processor. Since the charge is through a regular merchant processor, the dispute process is more legitimate. The agent will be allowed to provide documents proving the charge is legit and win the dispute. However, unless the agent has each passenger sign an authorization form, it will be very difficult for the agent to win the dispute and the passenger will come out ahead, just as I described earlier when the passenger’s credit card is charged directly with the airline via the agency.
One big difference with this scenario than the above is, in a case where the dispute is for a “legitimate” cause, for example the flight was cancelled and the airline is refusing to refund, if the agent paid for the ticket through a “check payment” or points, he will not be able to dispute his credit card charge in return and the loss will come out of his pocket. But is the passenger wrong for disputing when he is legally owed a refund? Is the passenger up the creek without a paddle because the agent decided to book him in this way thus causing him a loss with no one to turn to? I think not, but you can decide…


OTAs

Pros:

- No extra service fees

- No extra fees (besides standard change fess) if you need to make changes with the airline directly.

- 24/7 customer service

- A dispute, if you win, will not cause direct harm to another person’s pocket.

- It’s easy to quickly book with an OTA during a price glitch.

Cons:

- You might not get the seat(s) you want, the meal you want or a bassinet for your infant.

- Last minute changes, especially mid-trip can be extremely difficult.

- Many OTAs don’t offer child discounts.

- Many OTAs, especially the ones selling tickets lower than the published fare, will say “baggage allowance zero”, when in reality it is not true. They do this in order to make money on selling you a bag. Or “2nd bag fee $150” when in reality it really cost less. They do this in order to make money off selling you extras to equal out the loss they took to sell you the ticket. Sometimes they will charge you change fees that are way above the actual change fee. This is how many “fly by night OTAs” make their profits.

- You might show up to the airport with a “confirmation” only to be told it’s useless because it was not ticketed.

- I do not believe any OTAs or even airlines directly have one way nets.




P.S. Please do not turn this thread into a "Welcome back D93" thread. This thread has already underwent a drastic topic change, no need for another one :)

April 29, 2020, 03:56:23 PM
1
Re: US Politics/2016 Election Pick Your Poison Master Thread
I think it is a little more than that. You look at the guys whole history. If it was Howard Stern I would say ya that makes sense.
How is Biden's history better than Kavanaugh's?

April 30, 2020, 03:26:03 PM
1
Re: US Politics/2016 Election Pick Your Poison Master Thread
It is sad when we have over 70k dead from the virus and you turn on FOX and Hannity talks the whole time about Flynn. He forgets to mention twice Flynn pleaded guilty. So he either lied to the FBI or lied to the court when he pleaded guilty TWICE!!! Hannity also forgot to mention that Trump fired him for lying.

So what were you saying about the facts?  :)
Yes, he lied to the court (plead guilty) because the THUGS threatened to prosecute his son.

May 10, 2020, 12:16:06 AM
1
Re: US Politics/2020 Election Pick Your Poison Master Thread
Are you seriously comparing Trump's character to Biden's?
You talk about hypocrisy but you make it all about the left. The right is in the same pot.
Where did he discuss anyone's character. I must have missed that.

May 10, 2020, 03:35:49 PM
1
Re: When do you think International travel will resume? Right, nobody was scared of America before Trump came and made it great.
May 12, 2020, 10:27:53 AM
1
Re: When do you think International travel will resume?
I think it’s fair to say Trump is more likely to retaliate against a country he perceives as starting up with the US than, say, Obama.
Obama only retaliated against Israel.

May 12, 2020, 10:43:33 AM
1
Re: $3 trillion coronavirus relief plan!!!
Will never come close to passing
That isn't why they did it.  ;)

May 12, 2020, 04:36:26 PM
1
Re: Dropping Antibody Levels
With all due respect, he has a degree to fall back on. You're just speculating with zero sources...

And btw... for all his crazy videos ranting about the shuls being open, he was right and probably saved a bunch of lives.
Degree not withstanding, I no longer believe a word he says. He's gone nuts.

May 14, 2020, 11:57:00 PM
1
Re: Dropping Antibody Levels
When Rav Michel ber weismandel went running around Europe trying to save lives, people said he was crazy.

He died young from heartbreak.

A doctor is working all day every day, he puts his life in danger, he is beyond breaking point.

And some nudnik's come along assuming that "God looks after fools and idiots"

You bash the doctors, you ignore what they say, you get sick and sadly many die and the doctor cries and screams "ad Masai"

He cries for the dead person, he cries for the almanos, he cries for the yesomim.

I know because I talk to these doctors, I talk to their wives who stay up all night as their husband's work 18-20 hour day's, as they pray for their husbands and patient's.

I'm not saying I have the answers, I'm saying that din v'cheshbon is needed.

History will be your judge
Such a disgusting comparison.

A couple weeks ago this doctor spread a rumor that all the Jewish camps were told that they can not open and any camp that was charging you anyways was basically stealing. When confronted about it by camp owners he tried to lie and cover it up but it was very clear that he was caught in one huge lie which could have destroyed the parnassah that some people have spent their entire lives building.

He sent a whole voice note bashing the community of Lakewood for allowing backyard minyanim even though at that point they had only allowed porch minyanim. He even said that he spoke to a doctor who didn’t want to allow such outdoor minyanim but the BMG rabbonim forced him to sign the letter.

He may be a doctor and I’m sure he is doing great work on that end but it doesn’t give him the right to be motzei laaz on camp owners that they are just stealing parents money. It doesn’t give him a right to send around a message bashing rabbonim for stuff that they didn’t permit.

We don’t bash the doctors, we bash people who so clearly have an agenda against other yidden.

May 15, 2020, 08:23:58 AM
1
Re: Dropping Antibody Levels
This is rich coming from someone who has been downplaying this from day one.
Oh so I’m downplaying it and he’s comparing it to the Holocaust. I think I’m much closer to reality then he is.

May 15, 2020, 09:26:45 AM
1
Re: Stocks
Did you click the link I posted and read through?

With a grain of salt. After all, it's Wikipedia. But the bottom line is that I doubt a really successful money manager would abandon that career to become a TV personality.

May 20, 2020, 02:29:26 PM
1
Re: So How Was Your Shul This Week? Pretty much full shul and a nice kiddush, not gonna say where! People are soo freakin fedup already
May 24, 2020, 12:34:40 PM
1
Re: Re: So How Was Your Shul This Week? Friday night in my shul in lkwd, the oilam was pretty careful, but by this morning it seems like it’s basically over. We’re just having more minyanim to keep things more spread out.
Btw, there was one guy that basically came dressed in a HazMat suit. Im pretty sure it was @S208 almost went over and said Shalom alecheim but I didn’t think you’d wanna socialize.

May 24, 2020, 12:48:01 PM
1
Re: Violent protests erupt across the country
Was that a policemen that did that? Do Jews fear for their life every time they get stopped?
No was a black guy, and yes in new york city plenty of jews fear they'll get beaten up by a black guy every time one walks by. And no the average black does not fear for his life every time he gets stopped.

June 01, 2020, 03:49:39 PM
1
Re: Who Will Win The 2020 Election?


November 03, 2020, 02:20:49 PM
1
Re: Who Will Win The 2020 Election?
Nate Silver is biased towards Trump because he's afraid of repeating his 2016 mistake.

What 2016 mistake? He went against consensus and gave Trump a real chance to win in 2016, repeatedly stating that Trump had a real path to victory in the way it turned out.

November 03, 2020, 03:14:37 PM
1
Re: Who Will Win The 2020 Election?
Invalid Tweet ID
True?
No for WI

November 04, 2020, 12:57:32 AM
1
Re: Who Will Win The 2020 Election?
I'm with you on that.  More like 65% Biden.

Remember VA. Trump had 8 point lead and all of the sudden everything changed when D strongholds came in.
נעשים אויבים זה את זה ואינם זזים משם עד שנעשים אוהבים זה את זה שנאמר (במדבר כא, יד) את והב בסופה אל תקרי בסופה אלא בסופה

November 04, 2020, 02:13:05 AM
1
Re: Who Will Win The 2020 Election?
Can it be the polls are fine 90% of the time but haven't figured out how to adjust for Trump?

If they were only wrong about Trump I could hear, but they were off badly on so many Senatorial races. And even if you want to say the R Senators picked up Trump's coattails (not sure you'd ever say such a thing though), but what about the House? The D's were supposed to gain 10-20 in the House, and now they're something like -5 and possibly worse as more races get called. Those races are much more local and shouldn't be as impacted by a purported Trump error factor.

November 04, 2020, 09:55:29 PM
1
Re: Who Will Win The 2020 Election?
Making a song about a President was part of "We’re used to election fever in the frum world, but never of this sort".
And goes against the whole Golus narrative he's wiriting. And it's not just appreciation, it was also "4 more years". And "you've been heaven sent".
Yea a President that pardoned a frum Jew a President that stopped giving money to Muslim terrorist's a President that didn't care If Israel built houses in Israel. So yes Jews should show an appreciation for such a President!

November 15, 2020, 01:29:43 PM
1