Are Holy Land Tours Safe?
Updated: Aug 21
Traveling abroad can be a wonderful opportunity to learn about different cultures and experience something far removed from your everyday life. When you sign up for Holy Land tours in the Middle East, prepare for an amazing journey through Biblical history full of breathtaking landscapes and unforgettable sights. For many first-time tourists, though, the one question lingering in the back of the mind may be “Are Holy Land tours safe?”
It’s a fair question any time you’re visiting a new place, especially one that is overseas. No matter how great a destination may be, you don’t want to risk your health or safety for a vacation. (If you do, well, we hope you have great insurance.) In order to help you feel more confident in booking Holy Land tours, we want to walk through the answer to this question with you. Here are a few things to keep in mind when asking whether Holy Land tours are safe.
Do Bad Things Happen in the Middle East?
We all watch the news. Terrorist bombings, wars, ethnic cleansings and all other kinds of evil are what drive our understanding of the Middle East. It’s no wonder so many people associate the region with turmoil. Do these things happen? Of course, but what we have to keep in mind is that the Middle East is made up of more than a dozen countries, each with their own governments and sets of issues. You wouldn’t want a foreigner to see coverage of a mass shooting in the United States and believe that is an everyday occurrence. In the same way, we need to understand that bad things happen all over the world.
It’s rarely the good events that make the international news. For every ugly incident happening near Israel or Egypt that we see on the news, there are months worth of days where nothing of note took place. At the same time, episodes of violence often take place within a certain area. Much like the murder rate of New Orleans or Chicago, there are certain neighborhoods that damage the reputation of an entire city.
The Benefit of Local Guides on Holy Land Tours
Now that we’ve acknowledged the reasons why people sometimes fear traveling to the Middle East, let’s discuss why Holy Land tours are the safest bet for tourists. First off, the guides employed by these tour companies are essential for both a safe time and the best overall experience. Not only do travel guides help you bypass security concerns, but they can also assist you in overcoming language barriers and finding the best routes or stops to enjoy.
If you were visiting your friend in an American city you had never seen, would you ask for their opinions about where to go and what to do? Or would you just bumble around the city from place to place? While the latter could lead to an interesting adventure, getting advice from locals is almost always the better bet. Toss in the complications which arise when overseas and you’re going to want that local knowledge.
How Tours Differ From Just Going on Your Own
Some people don’t understand the differences between booking Holy Land tours through a company and just flying over there on your own. With a touring company, you’re partnering with professionals who know the area and are accustomed to efficiently showing guests around on a routine basis. Even if you’re a good researcher, planning your own trip won’t have the same peace of mind that can be offered with an established tour group. If you’re someone with safety concerns about visiting the Holy Land, your fears can be managed so much better when you know someone else has planned the experience around such worries.
Safety in Numbers
Now you must know that large crowds can be somewhat dangerous for a solo traveler, as it’s hard to maintain your distance from anyone who may pose a threat. What we mean by safety in numbers is that you can guard against certain problems by taking a trip with a group of people, whether it be a church, tour group, or your friends. When you see the Middle East with a tour full of people, you are likely to have more than a dozen fellow travelers nearby who are going to be mindful of your best interests. This is a great way to ensure safety in just about any vacation spot. Just travel in groups and be aware of your surroundings and you’ll reduce most of your potential problems.
Good Places vs. Not-So-Good Places
As we mentioned before, there are good places in the Middle East and then there are places Westerners shouldn’t travel to with any group. When booking Holy Land tours, you’ll find that any outfit worth your time is going to avoid those dangerous spots like the plague. Think about it: Why would they risk their business by taking you somewhere you might get hurt? This may sound cynically capitalist of us, but it’s just one of the many reasons why Holy Land tours are safe.
Holy Land Tours Are Designed for the Optimal Experience
One of the greatest benefits of booking Holy Land tours is that you don’t have to plan the trip yourself. These companies have been leading groups through the birthplace of several religions for a long time and they know what works. Tours are designed to appeal to guests on a tourism level, a spiritual realm, and in overall functionality. If you’re traveling with a reputable company, not only are they going to do everything they can to keep you away from trouble, they’ll have plans in place just in case something ever did happen. That alone is a great reason to book your trip through a professional group.
How to Make Holy Land Tours Even More Safe
The sad truth is that some of us are just worriers. Even with all the precautions taken, we’re going to think about the worst case scenario. That’s something you’re going to have to get over if you want to travel internationally. One way you can help yourself is by being smart when visiting the Holy Land. Here are a few ways you can make your trip even safer.
First, practice common sense. Don’t go anywhere completely alone. Try to avoid highly congested areas that would make for an ideal setting for an attack of any kind. Second, read up on any travel advisories posted by the United States or the country where you are headed. These governments want to protect tourists and citizens alike. Third, keep money and identification in a safe, but reachable, place. You will often need to show your papers in some areas. Lastly, avoid the Gaza Strip. This is a dangerous spot where there have been some issues for a while. Fortunately, you won’t miss anything by crossing out this spot.
We hope these tips and arguments have helped you to realize the safety of Holy Land tours and how you can visit this area without too many headaches. If you do decide to tour this historic region, we hope you have the time of your life.
Premier Israel has been taking groups to the Holy Land for years and we always travel with great company. See the birthplace of Christianity with us and learn more about the Bible than you ever could have hoped by witnessing its setting in person. Learn how you can join us for the most amazing journey by clicking on the banner below.