Your questions about everything REALITY, answered.
You’ve applied to join a REALITY Israel journey...now what? You will join a group of 30 of your peers for an 8-day transformative and immersive journey in Israel. Below you can find information about registration and travel logistics as well as an overview of our health and safety policies.
If you have questions not answered below, send us a message!
Use the following links to quickly locate your desired information:
What to expect after receiving your invitation to a 2023 REALITY Israel journey.
Is there a registration fee?
Yes. There is a highly subsidized registration fee of $1,180. This fee covers:
- A round-trip, coach-class plane ticket which must be booked by a REALITY travel agent (within the parameters outlined in the travel form you will receive)
- Single occupancy hotel accommodations
- Three meals per day
- A sum dedicated to offsetting the environmental impact of your international travel and journey while in Israel; REALITY invests that sum in carbon-reduction projects to mitigate unavoidable carbon emissions caused by travel and reduce the journey’s carbon footprint
Is financial aid available?
REALITY is committed to ensuring equitable access to our community. Accordingly, limited need-based subsidies are available upon acceptance to the program. We understand that each person’s financial situation is unique, so if you believe your circumstances may qualify for financial assistance, please reach out to [email protected] before submitting the registration fee in order to get information on qualifying factors and required documentation.
If I withdraw from a journey, can the registration fee be refunded?
No, the registration fee is non-refundable and cannot be transferred to a different REALITY participant or used for another year.
However, should cancellation happen due to the following reasons, your registration fee will be refunded in full:
- If you contract COVID-19 within two weeks of your departure
- If you test positive for COVID-19 via a PCR or antigen test within 24-48 hours of your departure (required by REALITY to board your flight)
- REALITY is unable to run your journey due to new COVID-19 travel restrictions
All other COVID-19-related cancellations will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis.
If I withdraw from a journey, can I defer my acceptance to next year?
No. We cannot automatically defer acceptance to a future journey, but you can reapply.
Is there a way that I can connect with other participants before the journey starts?
Yes! We highly encourage you to connect with other members of your cohort. About a month before the journey, you will receive an email inviting you to join a WhatsApp group for your journey’s participants.
Everything you need to know about getting to and from Israel.
What documents do I need to travel to Israel?
All REALITY participants need to have a valid passport. You must renew your passport if it expires less than six months from the start of your REALITY Israel journey.
U.S. citizens do not need a visa to travel to Israel. If you are traveling from outside the U.S., please check visa requirements with your local Israel consulate as soon as you have been accepted on a REALITY journey to ensure you can obtain any documents necessary to travel to Israel. We can provide you with proof of the REALITY invitation and relevant REALITY documents you may need to obtain the visa. However, we cannot contact a government office on your behalf.
How does my flight get booked?
REALITY partners with a travel agent to book participants’ flights to and from Israel. Participants may not book their own flights and if they do so, it is entirely at their expense (there will be no refunds for flights booked on your own). Every journey has an international group flight that departs from John F. Kennedy International Airport or Newark Liberty International Airport, and U.S.-based participants are expected to fly on the group flight. If you live outside of the New York area, our travel agent will book your domestic flights to and from New York or Newark, with enough time to connect to the group flight. If you do not live in the US and therefore the group flight does not make sense for you, the travel agent will book your flights separately. Detailed travel information will be sent upon acceptance and completion of registration for the journey.
Can I arrive after the program begins or depart before it ends?
No. Participants must join the journey for its entirety and cannot arrive late or leave early. We do not make exceptions because each aspect of the program is crucial to your REALITY experience.
Am I responsible for any flight costs?
Ideally, no. If you complete your travel form by the deadline and fly on a group flight coach-class ticket that was booked by the REALITY travel agent, you will not incur flight costs. Additional fees may be incurred if you submit your travel form after the deadline, plan to extend your time in Israel, change your flight at the last minute, or do not fly on the group flight. The travel agent will communicate these costs to you prior to confirming your flight itinerary.
I want to extend my time in Israel (before/after) REALITY. What should I do?
After completing your registration, you will receive a travel form that allows you to request to extend your stay in Israel. The travel agent will communicate any additional costs with you prior to booking. Please note that you will be responsible for your own accommodations as well as any transportation in Israel prior to the start of the journey and after the journey ends.
I need to return to a different destination from where I departed for REALITY. How can I make those arrangements?
If you need to return to a different destination for any reason, communicate these plans in your travel form prior to the deadline. The travel agent will then communicate any additional costs with you before booking.
Can I make a last-minute change to my flight?
Any changes after the travel form deadline will be at the expense of the participant. We strongly encourage participants to finalize flight arrangements with our provided travel agent as soon as possible. You will be responsible for any additional fees that may be incurred by the changes.
Health and Safety
Please note that we request pertinent medical information via our registration form including allergies, health conditions and special considerations.
Do I need to be vaccinated against COVID-19 to attend a REALITY journey?
Yes. Although the Israeli government does not require tourists to be vaccinated to enter Israel, to prioritize the safety of our participants and the communities we visit, REALITY adheres to the following COVID-19 protocols.
We ask that participants use the CDC self-assessment before traveling AND take a COVID test 24 hours before their flight departure. Participants do not need to supply REALITY with physical results of the test. However, if you test positive, please alert us immediately via [email protected] and DO NOT board your flight.
We require all participants and staff to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 defined by the CDC (U.S. Center for Disease Control) as a completed primary series – examples of primary series are below.
2 doses of Pfizer-BioNTech
2 doses of Moderna
2 doses of Novavax
1 dose of Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen (J&J/Janssen)
Please note that any alternate vaccination situations will require a letter of medical exemption by a licensed physician or a certificate of recovery within the six-month period prior to the end date of the journey.
Antigen tests will be available throughout the duration of the journey should you begin to feel unwell or want to take a test.
Masks will be optional and available.
Do I need to purchase travel health insurance?
Yes. While standard travel insurance is not required, Israeli law states that all travelers arriving in Israel must obtain an insurance policy with coverage for medical treatment of COVID-19. Therefore, we require participants to get travel medical insurance to protect themselves from the unexpected costs associated with receiving medical care in a foreign country or having to alter their travel plans due to unforeseen circumstances.
Participants are responsible for the cost of their own travel medical insurance coverage while on a REALITY journey. We recommend consulting with your existing insurance providers to purchase a policy.
What are Israel’s entry requirements?
Israel no longer requires tourists to be vaccinated or test for COVID-19 before entering or exiting the country. There is also no longer a need to complete an entry or exit form. However, please read above and below for REALITY’s vaccination and testing requirements.
What COVID-19 regulations do REALITY journeys implement?
Please note that regulations are subject to change.
REALITY complies with the Israeli government’s COVID-19 regulations as we strive to ensure a safe environment for participants and the communities we visit throughout the journey. Our team will provide disinfectants, masks, rapid antigen tests, and participants will sleep in single-occupancy rooms. Our team may also request that participants perform rapid antigen tests at different points throughout the journey, depending on the circumstances.
There is no longer a mandatory mask mandate in Israel (except in hospitals and en route to isolate), but participants are free to wear a mask at their discretion.
To prioritize your health and safety, REALITY requires all participants to take a rapid antigen (at-home) COVID test 24 hours before your flight departure to Israel. Participants do not need to supply REALITY with physical results of the test. However, if you test positive, please alert us immediately via [email protected] and DO NOT board your flight or join the REALITY journey.
Please note, if you recently recovered from COVID-19, you are considered recovered from COVID-19 per CDC guidelines if you are no longer experiencing symptoms and at least 7 days have passed since you first tested positive. In this instance, if you are still testing positive you are cleared to join the REALITY journey.
Important: Tourists who present a fake document or who have a confirmed COVID-19 case but refuse to be transported to a managed isolation facility or violate the isolation requirements will be denied entry to Israel for five years.
What happens if I test positive for COVID-19 during my REALITY Israel journey?
Tourists who receive a positive COVID-19 test result must isolate in a non-public place such as an Airbnb apartment or hotel. You are required to stay in isolation for at least five days (the day of your positive test is the first day of isolation). You must take a rapid antigen test on the fifth evening of isolation.
- If the antigen test produces a negative result and no symptoms have appeared for 24 hours, you may leave the isolation site at the end of your fifth day of isolation once you receive a certificate of recovery from a physician or a health maintenance organization (HMO).
- If the antigen test produces a positive result and you are still experiencing symptoms, you are required to stay in isolation until the end of the seventh day but are not required to take another test. You can leave the isolation site after receiving a certificate of recovery from your physician or HMO.
- If the antigen test produces a positive result and no symptoms have appeared in 24 hours, you may leave the isolation site at the end of your fifth day of isolation once you receive a certificate of recovery from a physician or HMO. We may require you to wear a mask until you test negative.
What happens if someone in my group tests positive for COVID-19?
Upon notice of a positive test result, the participant that tested positive will immediately isolate and we will inform the group that a participant has tested positive for COVID-19. We will ask all participants to take a rapid antigen test, inform REALITY staff of their results and we will ask that you monitor yourself for symptoms. Additionally, we may request participants to wear a mask and perform rapid antigen tests at different points throughout the journey, depending on the circumstances. Please note that we cannot share the identity of the participant that tested positive without their permission.
How physically demanding is the journey?
The REALITY experience includes an intensive, thoughtfully developed itinerary of speakers, activities, and experiences with little downtime. The group is on the move from morning until night. Many activities are outdoors with high temperatures and include touring, walking and long bus rides. A typical day begins at 8 am and the evening programs typically conclude around 11 pm.
The REALITY experience is physically rigorous; however, we strive to welcome and accommodate individuals who are differently abled including those with invisible disabilities. Please be in touch with us as soon as possible via [email protected] if you have any specific questions or needs.
I have allergies. Are you able to accommodate?
We do our best to accommodate allergies throughout the journey experience. It is important that you share your allergy information with us as early as possible so we can do our best to make reasonable accommodations with our travel partner and vendors in advance of your group’s arrival.
For food allergies or dietary restrictions, we inform all food vendors and restaurants at each location of any allergies and/or dietary restrictions and ask that they abide by them. However, we cannot guarantee that all food-related requests will be fully implemented. Restaurants and food vendors in Israel may be less knowledgeable than their international counterparts about accommodations for severe food allergies, especially as it relates to cross-contamination. To help, we can provide you with an allergy card written in English and Hebrew to share when necessary (please ask for this if interested).
If you have food-related allergies or dietary restrictions, we also recommend that you:
- Do your own double-checking with both REALITY and restaurant staff
- Obtain comprehensive medical insurance
- Speak with your doctor about what medications to bring
Itinerary and Packing
Leading up to your REALITY journey, you will receive several key onboarding emails that will include flight confirmations, journey itinerary, a packing list, a media resource list, and details to join your journey orientation call. We will also include our Code of Conduct that all participants must adhere to. Our emails often get filtered as spam, so please be sure to save [email protected] in your contacts to help ensure that our emails land in your inbox.
Additional Journey Information
Our weeklong journeys to Israel are curated for influencers at the forefront of societal innovation, including world-renown chefs, bestselling authors, record-breaking athletes, social justice leaders and more.
Accepted to a REALITY Journey? Our checklists will guide you through completing the necessary steps before departure, upon arrival in Israel and after your time in the country ends.