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Moving to Israel

June 24, 2023 3249 Time to read: 15 min. Comments: 3

Immigration to Israel attracts not only residents of the post-Soviet space. Immigrants from Germany, France, or Austria also aspire to move to Israel for permanent residence. There are numerous reasons for this: here you can study and find a well-paid job, provide yourself and your family with high-quality medical care and a carefree old age.

Do not think that the Israeli state accepts only Jews. Here, in a single space, more than 70 nationalities coexist perfectly. Residents are tolerant towards foreigners and peacefully treat representatives of not only different nationalities, but also other religions.

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    Every year, Israeli land becomes a new home for 20-30 thousand foreigners, of which 1/5 are repatriates. Next, we will tell you in detail where to start, how to move to Israel and what benefits you can get from it.

    Who can move to Israel: fastest ways to move to Israel

    The circle of persons who can become Israeli citizens under a simplified procedure was determined back in the period of the formation of Israel—in 1948. At that moment, when the Declaration of Independence was signed, it was determined that Jews, regardless of their place of residence, can automatically count on Israeli citizenship. In this case, the main condition is the presence of documentary evidence of Jewish nationality.

    The following citizens are eligible to apply for permanent residence in Israel under the accelerated procedure:

    • Jews and persons who have Jewish roots and can document this, as well as members of their families;
    • Spouse of a citizen of the country;
    • Departure for permanent residence in Israel for employment.

    Departure for employment is possible only on a B1 visa. Only people of young and middle age (23-51 years) can apply for it. This requires a formal contract with an Israeli employer. The visa is renewed annually as long as the person works for an Israeli company.

    Aliyah for jewish migrants

    The right to return to their homeland under the repatriation program can be used by:

    • Direct descendants of Jews, whose parents were Jews;
    • Persons who have evidence that their grandparents are Jewish;
    • Spouses of deceased Jews, unless they remarried;
    • The closest relatives are husbands, wives, and children (including adopted ones).

    Any person born to a Jewish parent, or those who have formally converted to Judaism can immigrate to Israel under a process known as ‘Aliyah’. As a Jewish person, under the Law of Return, you can return to Israel and receive all the rights of an Israeli citizen. That is, the “Law of Return” establishes that the right to aliyah is assigned to foreigners who can prove Jewishness in the first, second and third generations.

    It should be borne in mind that generations are considered differently, depending on which line the nationality is passed on. If maternal, then the child of a Jewess is a Jew of the 1st generation, since the Jewish race starts from the great-grandmother. If Jewishness is determined by the paternal line, then the children of a Jew are already considered the 2nd generation, that is, the relationship is from the grandfather.

    It should be understood that if a foreigner is a Jew in the 3rd generation, then his children under the age of 18 can use the right of repatriation.


    How to apply for repatriation

    All initial actions must be carried out in the state of residence, although the country’s authorities allow direct application for citizenship to the Israeli Ministry of Internal Affairs. Repatriates rarely use this method.

    Registration of repatriation in the country of origin should begin with a search for documents confirming the presence of Jewish roots. The process is not easy, and often you have to draw a real family tree. For example, if evidence is found that your grandmother is Jewish, and there is no such entry in the mother’s documents, then you will first have to confirm the relationship between your grandmother and mother, and then prove your belonging to this family line.

    If you are not sure of the correctness of the paperwork or are not sure of the significance of the evidence, ask us for help. We will not only check the collected papers, but also connect experienced archivists to search for missing documents. With our help you will be 100% ready to pass the consular inspection.

    In order to successfully pass the consular check for immigrate to israel you will need to provide a list of documents. It will be individual for each case. Approximate list of required documents:

    • A Birth certificate—yours and those of your relatives, a USSR passport, military IDs of those times, diplomas of education and other documents in which nationality may be indicated;
    • Marriage certificates: own, parents, grandparents;
    • Medical certificates, postcards, photographs, etc. It is important to understand that if it is necessary to confirm Jewish origin, all evidence universally is significant.

    If all the documents are collected, and you are sure of their authenticity, it remains to go through just a few steps before obtaining Israeli citizenship:

    1. Sign up at the Repatriation Department for an interview with the consul;
    2. Prepare personal documents for yourself and family members;
    3. Pass an interview with the Consul;
    4. Get a repatriate visa;
    5. Enter Israel during the period of its validity (6 months from the date of issue);
    6. Obtain Israeli citizenship.

    Note that a conversation with the consul is one of the most critical life exams, the passing of which determines whether a new life will begin in the Holy Land.

    During the interview, the consul may ask the most unexpected questions, which you should be prepared to answer. Therefore, we advise you to prepare for the consular inspection in the Israeli counseling center. Our specialists will advise you how to conduct yourself at the interview, how to answer tricky questions from the consul, as well as help you deal with other difficulties in repatriation.

    Other ways to move to Israel

    Do not think that only Jews can obtain permanent residence in Israel. The Promised Land is rightly called the country of emigrants. At the time of the formation of the state (1948), almost 900 thousand people lived here, of which a little more than 700 thousand were Jews. Now it is a state of many millions (the number according to the last census is approaching 9 million). A little more than 6.6 million Jews live here. That is, over 70 years of repatriation (aliyah), the number of Jews alone has increased almost 10 times.

    Other immigration routes are not very popular due to the complexity of execution. However, repatriates who do not have Jewish roots should not refuse to obtain Israeli citizenship.

    Via naturalization

    This is the most difficult path and may not lead to Israeli citizenship. The term “naturalization” implies rooting in the state. The application is being considered by the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Israel, where it is difficult to get a positive answer. When deciding, employees are guided by the articles of the Law “On Citizenship” (1952).

    The right to apply for Israeli citizenship appears after 5 years of legal residence in the country, while the last 3 years the applicant must be on Israeli soil on a permanent basis.

    The repatriate must fulfill the following conditions:

    • At the time of application, he must be in Israel;
    • Entry into the country is made on legal grounds;
    • The presence of permanent residence status;
    • Good knowledge of Hebrew;
    • Having a permanent place of residence;
    • The presence of a permanent source of income and real estate in most cases;
    • Integration into Israeli society. It is expressed in the payment of taxes, utility bills, the presence of friendly relations with the indigenous people and other circumstances;
    • Renunciation of previous allegiance.

    Those wishing to obtain citizenship must pass an interview at the Israeli Ministry of Internal Affairs. During the conversation, an employee of the ministry will find out the reasons that prompted the foreigner to move to Israel for permanent residence. Among other circumstances, the representative of the authorities must have the impression that Israel is the center of the applicant’s life, the place where all his thoughts and desires are concentrated. In this case, you can count on a positive consideration of the application. After the approval of the petition, the applicant goes through something similar to taking the state oath. He declares his allegiance to the Israeli state.


    This is one of the easiest ways to move to Israel. Marriages between a Jew and a non-Jew usually take place on the territory of another state, but are recognized by the Israeli authorities. A married couple should be prepared for the fact that representatives of the migration authorities will not take their word for it in the sincerity of their relationship.

    After arriving in Israel, the husband (wife) must obtain a temporary residence permit, which must be renewed annually for 5 years. Every time you send a request for an extension, it must be supplemented with facts proving the authenticity of the marriage. These can be family photos, checks from places of joint recreation, papers proving joint housekeeping, and so on.

    The best confirmation of the sincerity of feelings are children born in such a marriage. After 5 years, the wife (husband) of an Israeli is entitled to obtain permanent residence, and a year later to apply for citizenship. That is, the whole rooting process will take six years, and sometimes more.

    Employment: moving to israel without a job

    Legalization on Israeli soil through employment is an acceptable way.  But you should be prepared for the fact that preference is given to residents. Israel has a low unemployment rate of 4.6%. However, since all actions for the legalization of a foreign specialist fall on the shoulders of the employer, he should be genuinely interested in such an employee.

    Therefore, moving to Israel based on employment should begin with the search for a company that is ready to take citizens to work. If one is found, the documents of the foreign worker are sent to the management for approval of his candidacy in the Israeli Ministry of Internal Affairs.

    If the application is approved, a citizen can apply to the Israeli Embassy for a work visa. Upon entering the country, you must contact the Israeli Ministry of Internal Affairs to obtain a residence permit with the right to extend it.

    The most popular visa for employment in Israel is the B/1 work visa. You’ll already need a job offer (and work permit for jobs longer than 30 days) from an Israeli employer in order to be eligible for this type of visa, and you’ll have to be working in one of the qualifying fields. These include:

    • Specialist work in academic and non-academic fields;
    • Vocational experts working short-term positions;
    • High-tech workers;
    • Post-doctoral research fellows;
    • Foreign journalists;
    • Foreign scientists;

    A temporary residence permit is issued for 12 months. There will be no problems with prolongation, given the working contract is valid. If a person needs to change jobs, they must obtain a permit and register with the Ministry of Industry and Trade. Five years after obtaining a residence permit, the right to request a long-term residence (permanent residence) appears, and then citizenship.

    Admission to the university

    In itself, studying in Israeli educational institutions is not the basis for moving to Israel for permanent residence. This is a significant reason for obtaining a temporary residence permit. The student is issued a student visa, which allows legal entry into Israel. The form is issued for a period of 12 months and does not give the right to work.

    If you want to study full-time in Israel, you can do so using an Israeli A/2 student visa. You’ll need to show proof of admission into an educational institute (also known as yeshiva), proof of payment for tuition, and a valid passport for the duration of your stay—among other things. Generally, these permits are good for up to a year.

    Based on a visa, you can apply to the Israeli Ministry of Internal Affairs to obtain a temporary residence permit. Then, through the rooting (naturalization) procedure, obtain Israeli citizenship, if the country’s authorities consider the reasons for further stay in the Holy Land to be solid

    Another option that allows you to move to Israel for permanent residence is a request for political asylum. Of course, it is important to properly substantiate such a need so that the consulate does not have any doubts about such a need. The Promised Land gives political asylum to all those in need.

    How much does it cost to move to Israel

    While this might come as little surprise, we would be doing you a disservice if we didn’t admit that moving to Israel is probably going to be on the pricier side…considering it’s got one of the highest costs of living in the world. And while you’ll get a lot more support as an Aliyah migrant, heading to the Middle East is probably going to put some pressure on your pockets either way.

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      Here’s a look at some of the things you probably have to consider once you start living in Israel:

      • Dental and vision care. Health care in Israel is universal and free, but doesn’t cover going to the dentist or eye doctor, so you’ll probably have to pay for additional coverage.
      • Renting or purchasing property. Purchasing property is difficult, you’ll need at least 25% by law for a down payment, but most banks will actually ask for closer to 40%. And rent will run you around $1,500 for a one-bedroom apartment, on average.
      • Wage gap. The difference between the cost of living and the amount workers earn is even higher in Israel than it is in North America, which means it can be hard to make ends meet—and there are limited job opportunities paying high wages outside of tech.
      • Private school for your kids. Private education in Israel is top-notch, but it’ll cost you a pretty penny—ranging from $11K-$19K. However, public education is free!

      In conclusion — benefits of moving to israel

      According to numerous reviews, the main advantages of permanent residence in the great Jewish state are the following points:

      • Pleasant climate. The climate in Israel is beautiful – it is warm and mild. Most days of the year are sunny.
      • High standard of living. The most important advantage of living in the Israeli state is a high standard of living. Also here perfectly developed social and commercial infrastructure, very well organized transport links.
      • The possibility of visa-free visits to more than 160 countries. If your work involves business travel, having an Israeli passport can seriously simplify your life. Living in Israel gives you: high quality medicine, a developed economy, high social guarantees and cities full of beauty and entertainment.


      Can americans move to israel?

      You can immigrate to Israel from the US, but it can be difficult if you are not Jewish or related to an Israeli citizen. That being said, you can visit Israel any time, and stay for up to three months without a visa.

      Can anyone move to israel?

      No. Only those of Jewish heritage and Israeli descent are allowed to immigrate to Israel freely. All other immigration circumstances are approved on a case-by-case basis.

      How to choose a city for repatriation?
      Everyone chooses a city based on their preferences. Foremost, it is important to pay attention to the availability of vacancies in your chosen specialty. Also consider that for people with cardiovascular and respiratory diseases, it is better to decide cities with a drier climate. Read more about popular cities for repatriation in a large article on our blog.
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      an Israeli citizenship specialist


        Hi. I want to move to Israel, but I don’t know Hebrew. Can you tell me if I should move? Will I be able to find a job knowing only English?

        January 27 2024, 13:23
        Aaron Cohen

        Hello, there are many global companies in Israel that accept English-speaking employees, so you are unlikely to have problems finding a job. However, Israel provides free 10 month ulpanas (Hebrew lessons) for all new immigrants, they will help you learn the language from scratch and get acclimated to the new environment.

        January 30 2024, 19:28
        Aaron Cohen

        Good day, there are many global companies in Israel that accept English-speaking employees, so you are unlikely to have problems finding a job. However, Israel provides free 10 month ulpanas (Hebrew lessons) for all new immigrants, they will help you learn the language from scratch and get acclimated to the new environment.

        February 29 2024, 18:39
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