Israeli airport security is considered to be higher than almost anywhere else in the world. You shouldn’t let it scare you though, the purpose of the high security is to protect you as a passenger, and as a result Ben Gurion Airport in Tel Aviv is considered the world’s most secure airport, and EL AL, one of the safest airlines to fly with. Israeli Airport Security includes a few layers and procedures which you won’t find elsewhere around the world. If you know what to expect, there should be no surprises.
Israeli Airport Security when Arriving
When flying into Israel, the entry procedures are fairly similar to those you’ll find anywhere else around the world. You proceed from the plane to the border point. Expect a couple of quick questions if you are a first time visitor to Israel much like you’d get anywhere else, and you should be clear to proceed through to collect your bags, and be on your way.
Airport Security when leaving Ben Gurion Airport
When flying out of the country, Israeli airport security, particularly at Israel’s main airport, Ben Gurion Airport, is most noticeably different to elsewhere in the world. When approaching the terminal, all vehicles pass through a check-point, this is just a quick check – expect to show your passport and answer where you are flying to. Continuing into the airport is like anywhere else, but where Israeli airport security differs is at the pre-check-in stage. It is this stage which could intimidate or unnerve people not knowing what to expect.
Before checking in for a flight, airport security official speak with every passenger briefly. Unlike the attitude of most security agencies, Israeli airport security is focused on the person rather than on their luggage (it’s the person has a bad intent, not their baggage) – bear this in mind, and it can help to explain what you are likely to experience. For almost all passengers, the conversation that you’ll have will be quick and simple, lasting a couple of minutes. The key is to stay relaxed, everyone does this and it shouldn’t be a big deal. After the conversation, your bags will be passed through an x-ray machine, you’ll check in, and the procedure pretty well matches that which you’ll find anywhere else.
Ultimately, Israeli airport security is tighter than what you find in most other countries around the world, and this can seem intimidating. If you just remember the reasons for this high security and stay calm, assuming you have nothing to hide, you should have no problems.