The currency in Israel is the New Israel Shekel (NIS), known as the shekel for short.
Each shekel has 100 agorot, and bank notes are dispensed in denominations of 20, 50, 100, and 200, with coins dispensed as 1, 5, and 10 NIS, and 5, 10, and 50 agorot.
As of July 2012, the dollar is equivalent to about - 4.04 shekels and 1 Euro equivalent to about - 4.89.
Visitors to Israel should be aware of the open hours of government offices, entertainment hubs, and other facilities.
In general, business hours in Israel are Sunday through Thursday, 8-9 am until 6 pm.
Government offices are open on weekdays, from about 8 am till between 1-4 pm. In the summer, many offices close during the hottest hours of the day, generally in the early afternoon, and reopen in the late afternoon-evening.
Government offices are closed on Fridays and Saturdays and are open on Sundays.Banks are generally open from 8:30 am until 12:30 pm, reopening around 4 pm until 5:30 pm.
Some days – usually Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays – banks are open only until 12:30.
Public transportation run throughout the week from 5 am until midnight, but do not run on Saturdays (Shabbat) and stop running on Fridays before sunset.
Private movie theaters, cafes, museums and restaurants often stay open on Friday nights and Saturdays.
The two official languages in Israel are Hebrew and Arabic, but English is spoken and understood quite widely. Depending on where you are visiting, Hebrew or Arabic will be the dominant language.
Due to Israel's large immigrant population, many locals also speak Russian. In most cities and along highways, signs will be written in Hebrew, Arabic, and English.
The electrical current system used in Israel is 220 volts AC (50 cycles), differing from the U.S. 110-volt system but sharing the European system.
Electronics that are designed for 110-volt systems, such as electric shavers, blow dryers, or computers, require transformers beyond the typical cheap converters.
While most power sockets in Israel have three prong holes, most can accept plugs with either two or three round prongs, such as the double-prong plugs common in Europe.
Although Jerusalem is the capital city of Israel, foreign embassies are all located in Israel's cultural and commercial capital of Tel Aviv. A cluster of embassies are located near the beach promenade on Ha-Yarkon Street, including the American and British Embassies.