Getting from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem can be a challenge for both tourists and locals unfamiliar with the public transportation. The most preferable, and most used method is by bus, but visitors might also want to take advantage of a tour group, or a private transfer.
The bus is a direct line, cutting straight across the land on the highways, and while the train might appear to be a good option, it meanders a bit south, with several stops along the way, providing a more scenic route. For those traveling from the airport, one may want to turn to a more private form of transportation (shuttle, sherut or taxi) as one will be burdened with luggage and may not know exactly where to go upon arrival.
High Speed Train
A new high-speed train is running between Jerusalem and Tel Aviv. The train currently only stops at the Hagana railway station in south Tel Aviv, but will soon be extended to Savidor Central Tel Aviv railway station, other stations in Tel Aviv, and Herzliyah. The travel time between the two cities takes just 32-34 minutes. Two trains an hour will run in each direction from Sunday to Thursday, from 6:20-21:30. On Saturday nights, one train an hour will run in each direction from 9:56-midnight. The frequency of trains are expected to increase in the future and will be updated here accordingly.
Bus from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem
From Tel Aviv:
The best way to get a Tel Aviv to Jerusalem bus is from Tel Aviv’s Arlozorov terminal. Just outside the Tel Aviv Savidor Mercaz train station, the Arlozorov terminal is NOT Tel Aviv’s Central Bus Station and should not be confused as such. In Arlozorov’s open-air terminal a direct bus ride to Jerusalem can be purchased and the bus’s final stop is Jerusalem’s Central Bus Station.
The best way to get a Jerusalem to Tel Aviv bus is from Jerusalem’s Central Bus Station which is known as “Tachana Mercazit” (beside the Bridge of Strings landmark). From there, on the third floor of the mall, direct buses can be taken. The Tel Aviv-headed bus’s final stop is at the Arlozorov terminal (Savidor Mercaz train station) and does not reach Tel Aviv’s Central Bus Station.
Price for a bus ticket, either way, is approximately NIS 18. The trip takes about 45 mins to an hour, depending on traffic.
TAKE A TOUR (AND END IN THE OPPOSITE CITY)
Of course, a tour from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem is a simple way to get from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, but what is often forgotten is that you can start a tour in Tel Aviv and end it in Jerusalem, being a convenient way to bring your luggage with.
Of course, this applies to the Jerusalem tour from Tel Aviv, but is applicable with most daily tours in Israel, including those to Masada and the Dead Sea, the Galilee, Northern Israel, and even some tours to Petra and Jordan!
Other ways to get from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem
Private transfers are by far the most comfortable way to travel between Tel Aviv and Jerusalem. Transfers are done in a modern, quality car. You can schedule your transfer in advance. You don’t have to worry about planning or organizing any part of your trip, as the transfers pick you up from exactly where you are and take you to where you need to go.
Monit sheruts, or shared taxis, travel between Tel Aviv and Jerusalem. Pick-up and drop-off is at the central bus station in both cities. There are no schedule departure times, rather they leave when the van fills up. The vans cost around NIS 50 per trip.
If you do not wish to take your luggage with you while traveling around, there are options to store your luggage in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem.