Tel Aviv can truly be defined as a city that never sleeps and neither does its transportation. Whether you need to get to work early in the morning or your coming home from a night out (also early in the morning), there will always be multiple ways for you to get to your desired destination. Let’s break it down.
What: You have your taxi cabs (‘monit special’), your minibuses (‘monit sherut’), Dan buses, and of course, rent-a-bike.
When: Just like in any city, you’re always in a rush to get somewhere. There is always transportation in Tel-Aviv for when you’re on the go.
Where: You’ll never find yourself in a part of this city stuck without a ride.
Beginning with the quickest way to get anywhere, anytime there are your run-of-the-mill taxis crawling all over the streets of Tel-Aviv, not to mention the numerous cab companies that you can order a ‘special’ from for door to door service. While being most convenient, this means of transportation will definitely not be as convenient on your wallet. Any true Tel-Avivi will tell you to only take a taxi cab when it is necessary. A cab will cost you anywhere between 25-40 shekels, depending on where you want to go in the city, not to mention cab drivers are notorious for taking advantage of tourists by telling them they are giving them a “deal” when they don’t use the meter and charge you a flat price. Save the bucks for a beer or an overpriced salad at a coffee shop. It’s worth it now and then, but don’t make riding in ‘specials’ a habit.
On to buses!
Dan bus line is the main line running through Tel-Aviv. Like our monit sheruts you have 5 and 4, which take basically the same path from one end of the city to the other, only with specific bus stops. Other than that there are a plethora of lines to ride all through the city and you can even call *3456 or check out their site www.dan.co.il before hand to ask which line can take you closest to where you need to be.
The other bus lines that run in Tel-Aviv are Egged, Metropolitan and Kavim, which run through the city and to surrounding cities, just in case you may want to leave, for more information visit their websites. Other than that Dan also offers night bus lines (kavei layla) which run from 12:00 a.m. (when the regular buses stop) until the wee hours of the morning, for hours and bus routes check out www.kav-layla.co.il , make sure you do this with a Hebrew speaker, the site has no translation! To sum up buses in Tel-Aviv, for the most part they are alright, pretty convenient location wise and definitely cheap, but a word to the wise, they are not always reliable and can be quite the time suck with their long drawn out routes, also if you’re a claustrophobic, stay away, buses have no passenger limit and you can find yourself jammed in there like a sardine at peak traffic hours.
The best way to see the city however is by bike! There are a number of spots to rent a bike all over the city and now you can even rent a bike from the city! With different stations in different neighborhood Tel-Aviv decided to set up some brand new bikes and all you have to do is swipe your credit card and you can rent one by the hour, a pay as you go sort of thing, either locking it up at one of the many other stations all over the city or using your own lock so you ride as you please. It’s not always easy to navigate the busy street/sidewalks of the city but well worth it, good exercise, fresh air, and a fun way to really get to know Tel-Aviv. Be warned however, riding in the hot summer sun is no picnic, stay hydrated!
So now you’re armed with all the tools you need to get around our fair city, no excuses! Now get out there and explore and remember if for some odd reason none of the above work out for you, just walk, you can pretty much get from one end of the city to the other using your legs within an hour…thats the beauty of living in the smallest big city in the world.