Do I need a visa to travel to Israel?
U.S. and Canadian citizens do not need a visa to travel as tourists who will be in the country for less than three months. You do need to hold a current passport that is valid for at least six months from the date you are departing the country.
Who do I write my check to?
All payments associated with the trip—whether the initial deposit, subsequent installments, payment for trip insurance, or anything else—should be made out to Select International Tours. Do not make any remittance payable to First United Methodist Church.
Do I have to be a member of First United Methodist Church to go on the trip?
No, we welcome travelers from beyond the First UMC congregation. Note that our itinerary is designed to be of interest primarily to a Protestant Christian group, and the flavor of the journey will be one that includes a sense of spiritual pilgrimage. Our spiritual leader is a United Methodist pastor, and our tour guide is Orthodox Christian. They will lead us in seeking to understand the Bible and the Christian faith in the light of the places that we visit, and Pastor Tommy will lead occasional times of prayer and worship along the way. If this is the kind of journey that interests you, we welcome you aboard!
Can I register if my passport needs to be renewed or if I need to apply for one?
Yes. If you are in the process of applying for or renewing a passport, you can still register. Once you are registered, you will get a reminder that you need to send your updated passport information when you receive it.
Do I need extra insurance for the Jordan extension?
Yes. I had thought that the one insurance cost stated on the registration page would cover both but it does not. There is an additional cost that will be added to your invoice from Select International Tours. If you wish to purchase insurance for the extension you may pay for it at that time.
What is the weather like in January?
The weather in the Holy Land is a lot like North Texas – unpredictable and changing from year to year. We will travel to the north to the foot of the mountains and it will be colder and may even snow. We will travel south to the Dead Sea where we will want to swim in the sea or the pool house. Watch the weather the prior month / week for better accuracy forecast.
What should I pack to wear?
I suggest taking layers from long johns / cuddle duds to shorts and a bathing suit. Be prepared for rain or snow. Most important take excellent walking shoes. We will walk a lot so be kind to your feet and bring a good pair and maybe an extra pair of shoes and lots of socks. Remember, if it rains or snows, your shoes and socks may get wet.
Casual dress / touring attire is acceptable for dinner events.
What happens when the trip is full?
When the trip is full, a wait-list will be started.
Please, send in your registration to Select International Tours (address is on the registration page) to get a seat on this trip or a spot on the wait-list. All wait list payments (reservations and insurance) will be held and not deposited. As space becomes available, those on the wait-list will be contacted by Select International Tours in the order the registrations were received.
We plan to have another trip in the not too distant future and those on the wait list will be contacted first before registration opens.
Insurance for the Jordan Extension
You can purchase the insurance for the Jordan Extension if you have not done so already.
Cancel for any reason:
- $399 (per person) for the Holy Land Trip
- $526 (per person) for the Holy Land Trip and the Jordan Extension.
Please make check payable to Select International Tours.
- Take a Pepto-Bismol tablet every day if you are not used to the food.
- Bring neutral clothes that you can layer and mix and match. This lessens your suitcase load!
- Bring a travel journal and journal what you see each night. This will help you remember your trip and your pictures.
- Take clothes/ shoes you can leave behind. To have more room for souvenirs.
- Roll your clothes when you pack to save room.
- Put a copy of your passport in your luggage. Leave a copy of your passport with family or friends at home.
- Have peanut butter crackers in your purse or carry on in case a meal is missed. Or any snack bar/ crackers.
- When there is a stop with a bathroom, use it. Rather than extra time shopping.
- Pack clothes in large storage baggies. Each baggie contain the outfit for the day. Let the air out of the baggie and pack flat. Caution – this is a fantastic tip but could also encourage you to pack more and make your luggage heavy. Don’t over pack just because you have the room.
- Hang up clothes for next day and use Downey wrinkle release to spray to get rid of wrinkles or to refresh after day of wearing.
- Inflatable lumbar pillows support your back on long flights and bus rides.
- Use Whats-app for phone calls and texts. It is free and uses wi-fi.
- Wear and bring comfy shoes with a lot of support.
- Dress in layer
- Take a piece of paper with each hotel name and address in your purse /wallet/ pocket. If you get separated, you can hand it to someone to help you get back. Please try to find Tina or the group before leaving the area.
- Pack 2 or 3 pair of slacks/ jeans and 4 or 5 tops. Then repeat – no one cares!!
- Take 2 different credit cards. If you are traveling with spouse, each can carry one card. If you are single, still carry 2 cards but put them in 2 separate locations. If one is lost you can still function with the other.
- Contact banks that you are out of town with the cards you plan to take with you.
- If you plan on taking US currency, take small bills so that the vendors do not have to make change. And you have smaller bills if you want to tip in addition to what the group will tip.
- Long johns and long sleeve shirts used for first layer are sold at Costco and Sam’s for reasonable prices for both men and women.
- Travel with people you enjoy being around
- Be flexible.
- Z bags – these are not luggage. They are interior bags that fit in luggage. Keeps your clothes from wrinkling. Keeps items organized. Very light weight and affordable. Available from Amazon and other sites.
- Wear compression hose / socks on the plane and long bus rides.
- Get your Global Entry passport cards.
- Google maps allows you to download an area so you don’t need internet access to follow where you are.
- Leave your hair dryers at home. Hotels have them in the rooms or at front desk by request.
- Take a sleeping pill (over the counter) on the plane and sleep the whole time. Then when you arrive, let your body be convinced that whatever the clock says is what time it is. No jet lag!!
- Pack early and pack light. We will be changing hotels often.
- Do not exchange currency unless absolutely necessary. Use your ATM for cash you may need. You will get a better exchange rate doing it this way.
- When using the ATM if it ask if you want to exchange currency, answer no. Just get local currency. If you answer yes, you could be charged two exchange fees.
- Wear a money pouch that fits under clothing for safely carrying cash, passport, and expensive jewelry.
- Try not to use the safe in the hotel rooms. This is where most people lose their items they want to keep safe.
- Make copies (front and back) of all credit cards, driver’s license, and passport. Not all international phone numbers for all items. Then place this in a secure place other than with the originals.
- On the itinerary, daily write description of what you wear to help identify sites in photographs and videos once home. It really helps. After a while all the sites become blurred together sometimes!
- We will request all guides to float on different buses with the leaders.
- You do not need to bring your cell phone.
- Bring your camera and all charging cords and extra batteries.
Medications. What is the best way to handle medications? Should all prescriptions be in the original bottles? What about vitamins? Or can we do something else like a printout from the pharmacy? What is your recommendation?
It’s safest to have all medications and supplements in their original containers, but if the number of medications a person is taking makes this prohibitive, we advise that at lease any type of narcotics be kept in their original bottles. The airline’s website may provide additional guidance on this matter.
Whisper sets – Can we bring our own head phones if we find them comfortable to wear with hearing aids? Should the head phones plug into a device or is there Bluetooth capability?
The whisper sets do not have Bluetooth capability. Based on other locations, we assume you may use your own standard headset with a 3.5mm jack. I advise you find a headset that is easy to use if you have hearing aids and bring it with you.
Can I use a credit card for a Taxi?
No, credit cards are not accepted with Taxis in the Holy Land or Jordan.
Do I need a visa to travel to Jordan?
Yes, However the guides will acquire these for us as we enter the country.