Live streaming

FAQs

General

  • Where is the Government Press Office and when are its office hours?
    The Government Press Office is located at the Jerusalem Technology Park in Jerusalem's Malha neighborhood, Building #4, 4th floor. Office hours are from 09:00-16:00, Sunday-Thursday. The GPO is closed on Fridays and the days before major holidays.
  • What is the function of a press card?
    The press card is designed to assist those involved in media work in Israel and abroad, inter alia, by facilitating entry into press conferences and courts; it is not a work license. It should be noted that a press card is not a condition for media work and that applying for one is not a requirement. Additional benefits likely to be conferred by the card are not dependent on the GPO and are the result of independent decisions by various bodies
  • What other services – besides issuing press cards – does the GPO provide for journalists?
    First, the GPO is a two-way conduit for information: It sends daily statements and updates about the schedules of the President and the Prime Minister, and statements about events, conferences, tours and various administrative matters. Every journalist may join the GPO's distribution list. In the other direction, the GPO is open to questions and requests for information by journalists, including assistance with various government offices. The GPO holds tours and briefings including for the foreign press. The GPO assists foreign correspondents and members of their families in obtaining work visas and permits to stay in Israel. The GPO assists in easing entry into, and departure from, Israel at Ben-Gurion International Airport in those problematic cases that require our intervention. The GPO collects stories about Israel in the global media and distributes them, in a daily update, to government offices (LINK to GPO website). The GPO distributes daily summary of headlines and op-eds from the Hebrew press to foreign journalists stationed in Israel.
  • May I use a drone for aerial photography in Israel and how??
    Journalism is considered a “commercial purpose” and therefore liable for license. According to the regulations of the Civil Aviation Authority of Israel (CAAI), only Israeli residents may obtain a full operator's license and as a result, foreign journalists must hire the service of a licensed Israeli drone operator (see below the link to the list). You may not fly a drone on your own anywhere, for any height or distance. If you hold foreign drone operator's license, you must still hire a licensed Israeli operator to supervise the entire operation; however, you will be allowed to operate your own drone on condition that you send a copy of your personal license to Noam Milstein, CAAI UAV Department Inspector at milsteinn@mot.gov.il , and await his confirmation. Your chosen drone operator can help with import papers so you can bring your own drone to Israel if necessary (approved frequency must be 2.4 GHz); in addition, the operator will be in charge of coordinating your flights with the Air Traffic Control (ATC) and CAAI, as well as necessary escorts throughout the mission. http://caa.gov.il/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=1286&Itemid=741&lang=he

Visa and other Documentation

  • Am I entitled to receive a B-1 working visa?
    Foreign Journalists who are stationed in Israel and follow the GPO rules (i.e., applied and were found entitled for a GPO card) - are entitled to receive a letter of recommendation from the GPO for a one year B-1 work visa. This letter may include a spouse and children less than 18 years of age for a one year B-2 visa (multiple entry visa, not allowed to work). Please note that Photographers/Cameramen must first acquire a work permit from the Population and Immigration Authority before applying for a B-1 visa.
    GPO rules
  • How do I receive a B-1 working visa?
    After filing an online application for a GPO card, stationed Journalist need to present to the GPO a designated request form, asking for a B1 visa recommendation letter, signed by their employer. The relevant GPO representative will prepare the letter of recommendation and email it to the applicant; the journalist will present this letter at the Ministry of Interior (MOI). At the MOI: Bring your passport, one passport size photo, the GPO letter of recommendation and 350 Shekels (you may pay cash or with Israeli credit card). Visas are issued on the spot. Opening hours: Sun, Mon, Tue and Thu, 08:00 – 12:00. No need to make an appointment, just take a number at the entrance. Useful addresses: Jerusalem - Shlomzion Hamalka 1; Tel-Aviv - Begin Boulevard 125. B-1 visa may be renewed four times for a total period of five years. For renewal, repeat the same process. It is the journalist's responsibility to have a valid health insurance in Israel.
    Request Form
  • I am a Photographer/Cameramen. How do I go about acquiring a Work Permit?
    You must first present a letter to the GPO from your agency requesting the permit in which it must show that it employs at least one full time Photographer/Cameraman who is a resident of the State of Israel, and specifying the time remaining in your stay in Israel. A request form for a foreign resident work permit must be filled by your employer and presented, together with a payment fee receipt of 1,150 Shekels, to the GPO. This in turn will be submitted for approval to the Population and Immigration Authority. The approval process takes about two-three weeks. Upon receiving the work permit, the GPO will then provide you with a letter of recommendation, to be submitted along with the permit, in order that you may apply for a B-1 visa.
    Request form
  • How do I receive a local driving license?
    If you are a foreign national without an Israeli resident card/ID, your foreign Driver's License is valid for driving in Israel for a period of 1 year. After a year you will need to convert it to an Israeli Driver's License – a procedure mainly involved with a road test (but not a theory test) and an eye check. While journalists should contact the Ministry of Transportation for the conversion process, the GPO's Foreign Press department can assist with scheduling an expedited road test for you. At the end of the process, your converted Israeli license (made of plastic and bare your photo) will be issued for a period of up to 1 year - in accordance with your B1 visa. Renewals afterwards are easy and are done at the Ministry of Transportation for a small fee. Please note that only a consecutive stay of at least 3 months outside of Israel resets the 1 year count for using your foreign Driver's License (a rule applying since September 2014).

Press Cards

  • Who is eligible for press card?
    The GPO issues two types of accreditations to foreign journalists: GPO cards and Visiting Journalist cards. 1. GPO cards – issued for a period of up to 12 months (in line with the B1 work visa) to journalists whose permanent base of work is Israel. The primary conditions for foreign nationals for receiving a GPO card are: a. Those whose main profession is in the news media in the year preceding the application; b. Those who work for news media organizations that meet the GPO rules*; c. Staff must prove that it is the intention of the media organization with which they are employed, to employ them in Israel, in the news field, for a period of at least one year; Freelancers must prove that they arrived in Israel at the request of the media organization, for the performance of services in the field of news media for a period of at least one year and an express and binding work order/contract requesting these services was presented to the GPO. 2. Visiting Journalist cards – issued to journalists arriving in Israel for periods of up to 3 months. The primary conditions for receiving a Visiting Journalist card are: a. Those whose main profession is in the news media; b. Those who work for news media organizations that meet the GPO rules*; c. Staff must prove that they are employed full-time as journalists during their stay in Israel, by a news media organization; Freelancers must prove that they came to Israel in order to perform services in the field of news, and an express and binding work order/contract requesting such services was presented to the GPO.
  • How long does it take to receive a press card?
    Qualified Visiting Journalists receive their press cards on the spot. Permanent Journalists are subject to a reviewing process. The maximum period of time in which the GPO is obligated to answer an applicant is three months; however, in most cases it is completed within a few weeks. Renewal: Those seeking to renew a Permanent Press Card during the general renewal period (the end of even-numbered years) are requested to contact the GPO two months before the expiration of the card. Rejected applications may be appealed to the appeals committee.
  • Must a press card holder seeking to renew his/her card complete an application form?
    Yes. The application form for renewing a press card is the same as that for a new applicant. Card holders seeking to renew their valid press cards must complete the application form and submit the necessary documents. However, journalists seeking to renew their press cards need not submit a new passport photo unless they wish to update their existing photo or unless ten years have passed since the most recent press card was issued (in which case the applicant will be considered as an applicant for a new press card).
  • How much is the payment fee for a Press Card application?
    Receipts for payment of NIS 50 must be attached to all new and renewal applications. Payment may be made in one of two ways: By credit card on the government payments page (http://www.ecom.gov.il/homepage_he.aspx). By postal bank with a designated payment form obtained at the GPO. One form may be used for several applications. The payment is for processing costs and will not be refunded should an application be rejected.
  • How do I send a form and receive my card?
    Applications are made using the online application form only. Applicants should consult the list of GPO staff desk representatives and contact directly the one who serves their country for the purpose of following up on their application and coordinating the pickup of their card.

Passage through Crossings

  • Who is entitled to enter the Gaza Strip? Who is entitled to enter the Palestinian cities in Judea and Samaria?
    Citizens and residents of the State of Israel are – in all cases – barred from entering the Gaza Strip and Area A in Judea and Samaria. Foreign journalists who hold valid GPO cards are eligible to enter the Gaza Strip (via the Erez Crossing). There is no requirement for foreign journalists to hold GPO cards in order to enter the Palestinian Authority areas in Judea and Samaria; in most cases, foreign press credentials will be sufficient.
  • What are the hours at Erez Crossing?
    From Israel to Gaza and vise versa: Sunday-Thursday, 08:00-15:30. Fridays, Saturdays and holidays: Closed.
  • What are the hours at Allenby Crossing?
    Sunday-Thursday: 08:00-22:00. Friday-Saturday: 08:00-15:00. Friday: Arrival by 12:00. The crossing is closed on Yom Kippur and Eid Al-Adha. Please be updated on regarding hours on Jewish holidays.
  • May journalists who reside in the Palestinian Authority and hold a foreign passport enter the Gaza Strip?
    No. He is considered a Palestinian journalist and, therefore, requires a special entry permit with justifying circumstances.