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Drinking water

Singapore
Level Contributor
46 posts
6 reviews
Drinking water

Is tap water safe to drink in Israel? Or should we stick to bottled?

We will be staying mostly in 4 or 5 star hotels, so do they usually provide boiled tap water at meal times in the hotels?

Any advice would be appreciated, thanks!

Israel
Level Contributor
2,870 posts
65 reviews
1. Re: Drinking water

The tap water is safe (as far as I know) but not very tasty. Hotels and restaurants almost always provide filtered water, as opposed to boiled. The problem is not bacterial, so the boiling is usually not necessary.

Mineral water (bottled spring water) is available everywhere, although if you buy it in the hotel, you'll probably be charged far in excess of what you would pay in a supermarket or kiosk (which are plentiful).

Singapore
Level Contributor
46 posts
6 reviews
2. Re: Drinking water

Hi Indigogrrl

Thanks for your reply. May I know how much does a 500ml bottle of mineral water cost in the supermart or kiosk? US$1?

Thanks.

Israel
Level Contributor
2,870 posts
65 reviews
3. Re: Drinking water

At a kiosk it will cost ~NIS3.5-6 (they charge more for refrigerated bottles)

At a supermarket you can often buy a 6-pack of 1.5-liter bottles for twice the price of a single bottle at a kiosk. So if you are going to be based in a single hotel for a while, you can stash a few big bottles in your room (they sell them at kiosks and mini-markets too) and refill your little bottles.

Granted, if you are staying in 4- to 5-star hotels you can probably afford a few overpriced small bottles of water, but I suppose it is a better choice, environmentally.

My in-laws were visiting last summer, and even with them trying to be environmentally conscientious about refilling bottles, those little 1/2-liter bottles were multiplying in their apartment like rabbits.

israel
Destination Expert
for Tel Aviv, Galilee, Israel
Level Contributor
15,720 posts
63 reviews
4. Re: Drinking water

You can drink the tap water. Taste is a persoanl matter, I hate the mineral water and recent studies indicate that being bottled for a long time in that plastic is not healthy either. Bottles go 250 cc, 350 cc and 1.5 liter. At a kiosk a 250-350 botlle costs 5-10 shekels, not cheap...

Israel
Level Contributor
1,947 posts
3 reviews
5. Re: Drinking water

I am happy to be able to give you an answer that is fully based on research. My husband is one of the Israeli experts on this matters and deals with it daily.

Tap water in Israel is good and safe to drink. We had a major tap water in the town of Ramat Hasharon water. This was a local problem that arose from the fact that Ramat Hasharon got its water from local wells that in the past used to be water of very high quality, and in the last decade suddenly became contaminated by a local plant that dumped residues into the ground which contaminated the ground water. Once this problem was discovered, the wells were shut down and since then this town gets its water from the main Israeli water supply, like Tel Aviv, for example. Other than that local problem that made big headlines here in Israel, the water in Israel is as good as in the U.S. and safe to drink. There absolutely no need to spend money on bottled water.

The taste is a matter of personal preference, but safe it is.

NYC/Israel
Destination Expert
for Israel
Level Contributor
41,664 posts
41 reviews
6. Re: Drinking water

I drink a mixture of bottled and tap while in Israel. I find that water tastes differently in different parts of the country. However, tap water is 100% safe. AND I agree--if you are going to do mineral buy it in a supermarket. I can get 12 1.5 liter bottles for 12-15NIS ( then refill a small bottle) A large bottle in a hotel can cost 15NIS--small bottles are likewise insanely high. Boiling is not necessary--filtering is more to take out some of the minerals--Israeli water has a high mineral content than it is to take out any impurities that can harm you.

Cincinnati, Ohio
Destination Expert
for Israel
Level Contributor
15,591 posts
239 reviews
7. Re: Drinking water

Water tastes differently wherever you go. Save money, and drink from the tap.

The bottled water industry has convinced millions of people in highly developed countries (including Israel) that they should spend ridiculous amounts of money for what is free and safe from the tap. I suggest: "Just say no."

:-)

Douglas Duckett

Los Angeles
Level Contributor
83 posts
20 reviews
8. Re: Drinking water

We found that the best tasting water on our trip was Jerusalem tap water. It beat out the Ein Gedi bottled water we got in resturants. The tap water in Tel Aviv or Metulla wasn't so good.

israel
Destination Expert
for Tel Aviv, Galilee, Israel
Level Contributor
15,720 posts
63 reviews
9. Re: Drinking water

Best tap water in Israel is in Holon, a small town near Tel Aviv.

NYC/Israel
Destination Expert
for Israel
Level Contributor
41,664 posts
41 reviews
10. Re: Drinking water

If I had a choice between Netanya water ( whose taste I hate) and Ein Gedi bottled, I'd go with Netanya. That is, IMO, the worst tasting bottled there is. ( there IS a reason why it is usually less expensive to buy in the supermarket!)