The Customs Role in the Aliyah Process
The Customs Authority provides discounts or exemption of taxes on shipping household items, vehicle purchase and import of business equipment. The Customs regulations are subject to the law; therefore, there is less flexibility in special cases. Nevertheless, one can always appeal a decision made by the Customs Authority.
- Oleh Chadash – Eligible by the Law of Return
- Ezrach Oleh (Born Abroad to an Israeli parent)
- Katin Chozer (Returning Minor)
- Returning Resident (limited Customs benefits only)
Spouses of Different Status (Katin Chozer and Ezrach Oleh)
- If a person of one status (for example, an Oleh Chadash) marries a person of another status (for example, a Toshav Chozer), the family will be eligible to the benefits of the spouse with a higher entitlement. Although if one spouse used part of their entitlement this affects both spouse’s remaining entitlements. If one member of the family has used his or her benefits, check with Customs to determine what rights are still available to the family.
- A Katin Chozer and Ezrach Oleh have the same rights as an Oleh Chadash.
The benefits apply to any type of import – via sea, air or postal packages. A file will be opened for you automatically by the Customs authority within 3 days of your Aliyah.
For more info: Customs@nbn.org.il
If you are shipping via sea, and the shipment is larger than a full container, it will count as two shipments, unless both shipments come on the same ship and are cleared through Customs at the same time. Your shipments can come from any country, not only from the country from which you are making Aliyah.
If you are importing via air, you will need to declare your goods at the Customs line at the airport.
For Olim who have not yet opened a file and who are bringing items with them on a flight (Aliyah or other), it is possible to open at file at Ben Gurion Airport. When you arrive, you need to go through the red line and declare that you wish to release your goods as an Oleh. You will leave a deposit, go to the customs office (located opposite terminal 1), open a file and then return to claim your goods with the Oleh benefit.
Please note that the customs office will only open a file for goods that are waiting to be released at Ben Gurion.
In addition, the sum of cash allowed on an Aliyah flight is up to 1,250,000 NIS although any amount above 50,000 NIS must be declared but will not be taxed.
Via postal packages:
Please note: If you send via registered mail services (such as UPS, FEDEX, DHL etc.) please be in touch with the service you are using prior to shipping your package to ensure that you can go through customs on your own using your Aliyah benefit. You may be required to go in person to Ben Gurion Airport. In most cases, if the courier service pays the customs fee on your behalf you will NOT be able to get a refund.
Below are the tax free items that may be imported:
- Books, clothing, linens, kitchen utensils, pictures, decorations, media, and general personal effects
- Furniture for household use
- One of each type of appliance or electronic equipment, for household use only, i.e., not office or manufacturing equipment
- Two computers per family
- Two televisions per family
- Five cell phones per family
- Carpeting for up to 25% of the area of the Oleh’s home in Israel
- Air conditioners, fans and heaters relative to the number of rooms in the family’s new home in Israel
Please note: In addition to the two-computer allowance, each family is entitled to bring a third computer but will be charged full import taxes on the third device.
The import of many types of goods is conditioned on meeting the criteria set from time to time by the certified authorities. For example: if you import more than 5 mobile phones you will need approval by the Ministry of Communications or if you import a Motorized Scooter you will need approval by the Ministry of Transportation and an standard from the Israeli Standards Institute. In some cases, an approval will be sufficient in other cases an individual license will be required.
The requirements for an authorization to import should be checked before importing with the relevant certified authority, and the need for approval / import license.
*As of January 1, 2013 Misrad Hakalkala (Ministry of Industry, Trade and Labor) have decided that import of gas grills and gas stoves will need a Teken (standard) given by the Machon Hatkanim (Standards Institute of Israel). Please be in touch with your shipper if you would like to import a gas grill.
On December 4th, 2017, a law was passed updating the law prohibiting money laundering:
The total sum of cash value which Olim need to report upon exiting or entering Israel has been reduced to 50,000 NIS.
Practically speaking, this means signing a waiver. The signee is not questioned or investigated, rather the information serves the purpose of being able to assist the authorities (nationally and internationally) to reduce international money laundering attempts to Israel.
Below are the cases where an Oleh may receive an extension on the period of the Customs benefits:
|Army Service |
Service during period of benefits
|Benefit freezes during period of army service|
• Began studies within 18 months of the Aliyah date at a recognized institution of higher learning
• Length of the academic program does not exceed 5 years (exceptions can be made for law and medical students)
|The period of rights will be extended for one year from the end of your academic studies. |
This period does not freeze and is not carried over, even if the student traveled abroad immediately following his/her studies.
|Traveling Abroad |
Traveling abroad for 6 consecutive months
(does not apply to a returning minor)
|Benefits extended for remaining time once the Oleh returns|
In order to release your import by using your Customs benefits you will need an open file with the Customs authority. A file will be opened for you automatically by the Customs authority within 3 days of your Aliyah.
For more info: Customs@nbn.org.il
Note: If you were a former A-1 temporary resident, you may be asked to present additional documentation, including any of the following documents:
- Teudat Zehut (Israeli ID card)
- Old and New Teudat Oleh
- Current passports
- All original documents provided to your Shaliach (Old Teudat Oleh and all passports since you left Israel as a temporary resident)
- “Tamzit Rishum Murchevet” from Misrad Hapnim
- Transcript from Misrad Hapnim with your entries and exits
- Signed declaration from the Beit Mishpat HaShalom that you did not use car benefits in the past
- Your spouse’s passport and Teudat Zehut
There are other cases you will need to go a Customs office for:
- To extend eligibility period for using your benefits.
You can also request an extension in the following ways.
For an extension based on travel abroad, use the following link: https://forms.gov.il/globaldata/getsequence/getHtmlForm.aspx?formType=SOen902%40taxes.gov.il
For an extension based on Studies or Army Service, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
- For issues related to the vehicle benefits:
- Passport to Passport – see Purchasing a Car in Israel
- Tax Payments – if applicable
- Removing car restriction – once the 4 year restriction is over, if you would like to sell your car or would like other people to drive it, you will need to release the Customs restriction on your car. To do this you will need your car license and Teudat Oleh. In order to release the restriction, fill out the Customs Removal of Oleh Benefit Restriction form and email it to the Customs authority.
For more information:
Customs office locations:
|Jerusalem||66 Kanfei Nesharim St.(Kanfei Haela Building)||02-654-5555||02-654-5575|
|Rishon Le’Zion – Center||3A Yisrael Galili St.||03-942-1666||03-518-1577|
|Haifa||3 Sha’ar Ha’Namal St.||04-835-4811||04-862-8469|
|Ashdod||2 Habana’im St. (Forum Building)||08-851-0610||08-852-8856|
|Be’er Sheva||31 Shazar St. (Oshira Building)||08-623-0115|
|Lod||Ben Gurion Airport (Maman Building)||03-975-1170||03-975-1183|
Last updated on February 14, 2019