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Currency and Cost of Living

Israel - Currency and Cost of Living

The currency used in Israel is the Israeli New Shekel (ILS). The country has a reasonable cost of living but it is not as low as you might expect. Out of an assessment of 282 countries it is ranked as the 126th most expensive place for expats to go and live.

The assessment has been made on a number of basic expense groups. The first of these is alcohol and tobacco and the cost of these actually ranks the country as the 75th most expensive in the world. When it comes to buying clothing the country is one of the cheapest in the world, ranked at 238th out of 282.

Household costs such as communications give the country an average ranking of 140th. This includes both mobile and landline line rentals and call costs as well as the use of the internet. Purchasing furniture and appliances for the home is extremely expensive, with the country ranked as the 27th most expensive in the world for these items. This is due to the high cost of importation and the lack of items manufactured in the country itself. Grocery costs balance this out, however, as the country is the 231st on the listing of 282. Israel only has an average ranking for utilities and the cost of running a home.

The cost of education is also an average expense, with a rank of 111th. This is mainly due to the number of expats who choose to educate their children privately rather than using state facilities. The cost of healthcare is average. All citizens have access to reasonably priced healthcare but the recommendation that expats have medical insurance means that costs for them are quite high.

When purchasing non essential items such as stationery, the costs are quite high compared with most other countries, as are the prices of personal care items such as cosmetics and baby care, yet the cost of buying a CD, DVD or going to the cinema is reasonable compared with most countries. However, if you want to have a meal out at a restaurant this will set you back a bit, as Israel is the 48th most expensive country for this.

As many goods are imported into the country this means that the price of some things are inevitably higher than in other countries. For those items that you miss from home and cannot readily buy in Israel, it is possible to order items over the internet, but this can be costly.

Read more about this country

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Bupa Global

At Bupa we have been helping individuals and families live longer, healthier, happier lives for over 60 years. We are trusted by expats in 190 different countries and have links with healthcare organisations throughout the world. So whether you're moving abroad for a change of career or a change of scene, with our international private health insurance you will always be in safe hands.


Cigna has worked in international health insurance for more than 30 years. Today, Cigna has over 71 million customer relationships around the world. Looking after them is an international workforce of 31,000 people, plus a network of over 1 million hospitals, physicians, clinics and health and wellness specialists worldwide, meaning you have easy access to treatment.