Home > Uncategorized > Driving in Israel Part 3: Parking in Israel

Driving in Israel Part 3: Parking in Israel

I have to hand it to Israelis. They might not be able to park a car between the lines in a lot, but they sure can squeeze into a space. They have driving-in-reverse skills that would make Mater proud. But, like I said, they have little to no regard for the lines.

Basically, parking in the cities is so bad that eventually you are going to have to park illegally at some point. I did it blatantly last week for the first time. There are so many people parked illegally all the time that there is no way the police can ticket or tow them all. However, if you see this sign, I wouldn’t mess around. Keep looking.

Stace did get a ticket in Tel Aviv when we were legitimately trying to park legally in a blue & white spot. Unfortunately we misread the Hebrew sign and didn’t realize that times are read right-to-left just like words. For example, in the US if a store is open  from 8:00-5:00 then in Israel it would be written “5:00-8:00.” Simple right?

Well, there are a few rules. Everyone breaks them, but I’ll tell them to you anyway. It’s all about the color of  the curb .

GRAY = Free parking.
RED & WHITE = Do not park here. People do anyway when legit spaces are scarce.
BLUE &WHITE = You may have to pay to park here, or maybe not, or maybe you need a residential pass. I hope you can read Hebrew.
BLACK & WHITE = Don’t park here ever. People mostly respect this one.

A popular Israeli pastime is make-your-own-spot. This is usually done out of desperation and/or cheapness. One example is to park in a red & white spot, but to pull up on the curb so you are mostly out of the way… of the cars. Pedestrians don’t get much consideration while someone is in desperation parking mode. In Jerusalem, they’ve actually created legal pull-up-on-the-curb  spots. Another strategy is to park full-on in the middle of the sidewalk as seen below. Also note the black car across the street parked on the  red & white curb.

Sure, I can fit, why not?

4WD gives you the freedom to park wherever your high-clearance vehicle can take you.

This one is just wonderful, courtesy of my friend Fara. I’ve added notations to make sure you don’t miss anything:

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  1. January 27, 2012 at 11:40

    And if I had only got the parking in the middle of the street the other day! 😉 Which required Police assistance.

  2. January 30, 2012 at 19:26

    Oh Israel. Why do you make up crazy rules that are hard to follow?

  3. David Cohen
    April 8, 2012 at 11:37

    Driving in Israel is a real challenge indeed before I visited Israel I read a useful article about safety driving here ( http://goo.gl/lEq84 ) it actually gave me a few good tips.

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