Trains, Tel Aviv-Yafo
I advice on taking the train to get from the airport to the city especially when you leave Tel aviv to get to the airport. I had to wait the bus 222 one hour and 45 minutes!! Thank god i gave myself enough time to check in.
Updated 2007: This time round i did not take a train as i arrived on a saturday and the ticket machines were not working and no one was at the ticket desk. When i asked a nearby security woman, she just told me to wait for he next train.. I waited for about 30 minutes and even though the trains were sheduled to run every 15 minutes, i did not see a single train. So i basically did what other people opted for: take a taxi. The fare is NIS 130 and the journey painless and quick.
If you can afford it, take a taxi, and don't bother with public transportation from/to the airport to Tel Aviv.
Maybe your best way to get to Tel aviv from another cities of Israel is by train. one of the most biggest problems in Tel aviv is the traffic jams and almost all the hours of the day can be called rush hours in Tel Aviv so getting there by car sometimes can be unpleasent.
The train is going faster, stops for a few minouts in every station on the way example from Netanya it takes 17 minouts to get to Tel aviv and from Hadera 28 minouts. there are many trains that are new and very comftarble, there are also express trains that stop just in a few central stations.
In Tel aviv there are 4 stations (the "University", the "Shalom", the "Central" and the "Hagana"), they all come in row one after the other because the railway goes stright trough the city. stations are new or renovated, not too crowded and very comftarble, you can buy tickets or by machine or in the cash box. Some of the stations situated just in the middle of a highway and you get out of them by tunnels and outside there are connections to the city by buses.
The stations in Tel aviv and in whole Israel are somehow different then the huge stations in Europe, here it will be hard to find stations with more then 4 lines, they built to be very effective so they are used most of all to transportation and there is almost no business activities around them.
One of the comfortable ways to travel around is by Train.
The trains are quite new and comfortable.
They still do not have routs all over the country but they do get to many areas.
Check all details in the following website.
There is a good train service running to Haifa. The taxi driver who took me to the train station ( for about 20 NIS) thought I was crazy to take the train and kept pointing out that the buses were faster. Out of a sense of Israeli taxi driver duty ( though not seeming too keen to have a toddler in the back of his car for an hour) he offered me a "special taxi" for 200NIS (about £30 back then ). I politely refused having already decided the train would be easier on my son (more room to move in). He cheered up a bit when I gave him some duty free Benson and Hedges having noticed his over flowing ashtray.
For some reason I was stopped outside the station by two soldiers asking to see my passport. I don't know if this is because mostly soldiers and commuters use the trains or because of my large rucksack and the fact I had a child with me.
The train was smart and modern and the taxi driver wrong - it was half an hour faster than the bus and 3 NIS cheaper. On the coastal side the scenery was very pretty, all date palms and fields. The other side looked like a demolition site for most of the way. Lots of people stopped to help me with my sons buggy at the station as there was lots of stairs and no ramps. I couldn't help wondering how wheelchairs fare in Israel.
A word of warning; there seems to be two Haifa stops. I later discovered if I'd stayed on the train until Haifa Central I'd have been around the corner from my hostel and saved a 12 NIS taxi fare.