See the Holy Land: How to Cross Off One of Your Biggest Resolutions
January is the time for new beginnings. Whether you believe in setting New Year’s resolutions or not, the first of the year is when we think about the things we’d like to accomplish over the next 12 months. For some people, it’s about setting a goal to lose weight or read more books. For others, our sights are set on doing something we’ve never done before. That task could be running a marathon or it could even mean traveling to see the Holy Land for the first time. If you’ve always wanted to see the Holy Land for yourself, we want to help you finally make that happen. Here are a few things you need to do in order to successfully travel to the Holy Land in the near future.
Start Saving Now
The biggest factor to consider when planning a trip to the Holy Land is money. Why do most people not visit the Middle East on a whim? Probably because they don’t have a few thousand dollars sitting around the house. Like any other remarkable vacation, seeing the Holy Land is most feasible when you save up for the trip. There are a number of ways to set aside the money necessary for an unforgettable journey. For starters, you can practice discipline when it comes to eating out at restaurants, shopping, and making entertainment purchases.
On top of the money situation, you should also think about how you’ll be saving vacation days. Depending on the demands of your workplace, the one thing keeping you from a chance to see the Holy Land may be the inability to get away from your job. Along with whatever preparations you make for the financial aspect of the trip, you should start planning out your vacation days. You may also want to look over your free airline miles or similar rewards you have possibly accumulated over time.
Research and Compare Companies
Now that you know how you’re going to afford and make time for a trip to Israel, it’s time to do your research. You can find all kinds of companies offering group tours who will take care of most, if not all, of your needs. Unless you’re willing to plan for every little detail yourself, you’ll need to enlist the help of one of these companies. This can be the difference between a five-star trip and one from which you can’t wait to return home. Beyond excellent service, another criteria to consider is what kind of clientele the company aims to please. Are you looking for a trip that focuses on local culture or Biblical significance? Do you want to have a religious experience that caters to the Christian tradition or do you just want to explore the land? Different companies have their own specialties, so know what you’re getting into.
See Who is Going to the Holy Land
While many trips to see the Holy Land are customized for individual churches or ministries, you can also find tours featuring popular musicians, pastors, and other famous figures. When you’re researching and comparing companies, you may find a few who are traveling with a personality or figure whose work you enjoy. Before you go about scheduling which touring company you’ll be hitting up the Middle East with, check to see if you can make the adventure even more amazing by having someone like Chris Tomlin or Hillsong joining you for the trip. At Premier Israel, we have been blessed to travel with both of these artists and other talented folks for a number of wonderful excursions.
Talk to People You Know Who Have Already Been
Here’s one of the most basic things you can do as you look to see the Holy Land and cross off one of your biggest resolutions in the new year: talk to people in your community and friend groups who have already made the journey. This can be a great way to learn what to pack, who to do business with, and where to travel once you have arrived. Some questions can be too complex or personal to ask online, so having a friend who knows the ropes can be a nice asset for brainstorming possibilities.
Apply for Your Passport Now
Whether you have traveled outside the United States or not, you’ll want to read up on anything to do with passports. If you already have one, make sure it doesn’t expire within six months of the end of your trip. The last thing you want to do is plan a once-in-a-lifetime vacation and then have to cancel because your paperwork is expired. You may also want to consider signing up for Global Entry. This exclusive traveler status will help you move through customs checkpoints more quickly.
Think About Where You Would Like to Go
Let’s talk about the exciting part of planning a trip to the Holy Land: thinking through all of the amazing places you want to see. If you want to get the ball rolling on one of your biggest bucket list items, you should map out in your head which locations are most important to you. Beyond the basic pilgrimage spots, you may have to come across these during your research for the trip. Still, it’s good to have an idea of what you want your trip to include before you find yourself stepping off the plane.
Pick Your Group of Fellow Travelers
“Why would I need to think about how I’ll be traveling with to see the Holy Land?” First, the size of your group is going to dictate some important choices on your trip, like overall cost and transportation needs. If you’re booking a custom adventure where you can control all of these things and money isn’t an issue, putting together your group is still something to consider. Some people may have difficulty navigating the terrain in certain spots, while younger kids may not appreciate the significance of the area’s history and culture. One of the earliest parts of your trip you’ll want to establish is what your group is going to look like.
Plan Your Own Trip
We’ve mentioned custom trips a few times, but maybe you don’t understand what that means. If you’re wanting to see the Holy Land through the simplest means and the least work on your part, you may wish to join an established tour through one of the larger travel companies. This would be like going to see your favorite band playing at the arena in the city nearest you. A custom trip to the Middle East would be more like contacting the band on your own and arranging a private concert in your home or at your wedding. While that may sound complex, churches and individual groups do this all of the time when seeing the Holy Land.
If you’re dying to see the places where Jesus walked but don’t like the options presented in some already existent tours, maybe you should consider planning your own trip. This can be done by conducting your own research on flights, hotels, and so forth. Another option is to contact a company like Premier Israel and see if you can schedule a private journey for your church or organization. This allows you to customize your adventure and work toward building the vacation of your dreams. We’ve done this with many groups in the past and we are always happy to help smaller travel parties plan the ultimate tour.
Read Your Bible and Pray Before You See the Holy Land
Just as you would do before making any important decision in your life, we believe it’s important to pray over the opportunity to travel to the Holy Land. We’re not saying that a simple prayer will lead to God dropping the perfect vacation in your lap, only that it’s good to seek out His guidance as you think through your travel possibilities. Seeing the Holy Land for yourself can be a profoundly spiritual experience, so you might as well start the process off in the same manner. Reading your Bible can also be a great source for inspiration in this area. Not only does the book offer plenty of wisdom, but it will help you think through what the area has to offer and which locations are most important to you.
We hope this has helped you get the ball rolling in your head as you envision what the ideal trip to the Holy Land would look like. If you hope to cross off one of the biggest travel resolutions out there, you’ll need to ponder over some of these important questions and begin the planning process. It can’t be overstated just how powerful it can be to see the Holy Land with your own eyes. That’s why we at Premier Israel are so eager to help prospective travelers as they navigate the many details associated with this unique experience. Whether you’re looking to plan a custom tour through your church or you wish to join us on one of our select partnerships with exciting musicians and personalities, we can help you make your travel dreams a reality. Click on the banner below to find out how.