You’re gonna love it, so why not easily extend your flight to spend more time in Israel after the trip?!

How can you extend?

There are two ways to extend your trip.

The first is by doing a Birthright Israel Plus extension program. Birthright Israel Plus allows you to join a new experience focusing on a particular area of interest (no
prior knowledge or experience needed!), following your Birthright Israel trip. BRI Plus programs are 4-5 days long, with smaller groups and slightly more relaxed schedules. You’ll have
the opportunity to meet and connect with participants from different Birthright Israel groups from around the world! If you register for BRI+, the program fee covers the cost of flight extension, accommodations and most meals. So you won’t need to pay for your extension flight! Just use your Birthright Israel deposit towards the payment of the program. This winter, sessions are offered the weeks of Dec 30, Jan 6, Jan 13, Jan 20, Jan 27, Feb 17.

The second way to extend is through Gil Travel’s extension form at least 10 business days prior to departure. This option is best if you want to extend to be on your own, etc. If you passed the deadline, then you’ll still have the opportunity to extend once you’re in Israel. The price of the extension depends on the airline (view the prices here). 

Note: Most airlines fly on Friday nights and Saturdays. We suggest you indicate in your extension notes if you do not wish to fly on Shabbat.

What should you do during your extension?

You can either visit family and friends, hang out at the beach, or extend on one of our free & subsidized options here.

Can you extend your trip and visit another country during the extension?  

Yes, here’s the way to do it: You extend your Israel trip via Gil Travel for maximum 3 months. Once you receive your extension confirmation from Gil Travel, you book a round trip ticket from Israel to another country. Make sure to return to Israel at least 6 hours prior to your scheduled return flight to the US.

Can you extend your health insurance and cell phone plan?

Sure, we strongly recommend that you extend the health insurance policy and the phone plan. The field staff in Israel can help you do both. The cost of extending the health insurance policy is $2.50-3.00/day and the cost of extending your phone depends on the plan. The coverage period is calculated starting from the day after your Birthright Israel trip ends to the day you leave Israel.

Is it possible to cancel the return ticket?

If you want to cancel your return ticket completely or you’re staying in Israel for longer than the airline allows,  you must email info@israelfreespirit.com at least 15 business days prior to departure. Once in Israel, you should contact the airline directly at least 2 days prior to the scheduled return date to cancel the return ticket.It will be your responsibility and expense to return home. If you do not contact Israel Free Spirit or the airline about cancelling the return ticket, your deposit will be forfeited.

Extension Fees & Guidelines For Each Airline

The airline for your trip is indicated on the secondary application. Please read each airline caption to understand the restrictions and cost for extensions:

EL AL Israel Airline (subject to change):

  • Maximum stay is 3 months
  • Extensions prior to departure are minimum $165.00 subject to seat availability in the same class/code fare of service. If the original class is not available and a higher airfare is available, fee is difference in airfare plus $90.
  • Once in Israel, extension/change is $50.00 service fee plus difference in airfare subject to seat availability in the same class of service. If higher class/code fare in economy is available, the fee is $50.00 plus the difference between the published airfares in economy.
  • Once in Israel contact EL AL directly for all changes. Call center open 24 hours in Tel Aviv 03-977-1111.

Austrian Airlines:

  • Maximum stay is 3 months
  • Extension prior to departure $140.00 subject to seat availability in the same class of service. Change of return date is only permitted based on same class of service.
  • Once in Israel extension/change of return is $50.00 subject to seat availability in the same class of service.
  • Limited extensions per group
  • Once in Israel, contact Austrian Airlines directly: In Tel Aviv 03-905-8049 Sunday – Thursday 9AM-5PM

Air Canada:

  • Maximum stay is 3 months.
  • Extension prior to departure $390.00 subject to seat availability in the same class/code fare of service. If original class/code fare is not available and a higher airfare is available, subject to the higher airfare.
  • Once in Israel extension/change of return is $300.00 subject to seat availability in the same class of service. Requests once in Israel must be received more than one business day before booked departure flight date out of Israel.
  • Once in Israel contact Air Canada directly: In Tel Aviv 03-607-2111 Sunday – Thursday 8:30AM-5PM

Lufthansa:

  • Maximum stay is 3 months.
  • Extension prior to departure $140.00 subject to seat availability in the same class/code fare of service.
  • Once in Israel extension/change of return is $150.00 subject to seat availability in the same class of service.
  • Limited extensions per group.
  • Change is based upon availability at the time requested.
  • Once in Israel contact Lufthansa directly: In Tel Aviv 03-905-8049 Sunday – Thursday 9AM-5PM

Brussels Airlines:

  • Maximum stay is 3 months.
  • Extension prior to departure $90.00 subject to seat availability in the same class/code fare of service. If the original class is not available and a higher airfare is available, fee is difference in airfare plus $90.
  • Once in Israel extension/change of return is $75.00 subject to seat availability in the same class of service. If the original class is not available and a higher airfare is available, fee is difference in airfare plus $75.
  • Limited extensions per group.
  • Once in Israel contact Brussels directly at least 5 business days before original departure date: Call 03-513-5629, Sunday – Thursday 10AM-1PM

United Airlines:

  • Maximum stay is 3 months.
  • Extensions prior to departure are minimum $390.00 subject to seat availability in the same class/code fare of service. If original class/code fare is not available and a higher airfare is available, subject to the higher airfare.
  • Once in Israel extension/change of return is $300.00 subject to seat availability in the same class of service. If original class/code fare is not available and a higher airfare is available, subject to the higher airfare.
  • Limited extensions per group.
  • Change is based upon availability at the time requested.
  • Once in Israel contact United Airlines from an Israel phone number directly: 809-344363. Sunday – Thursday 8:30AM-5PM

Delta Airlines:

  • Maximum stay is 3 months.
  • Extension more than 35 days prior to departure $90.00 subject to seat availability in the same class/code fare of service, afterwards $240.00 subject to seat availability in the same class/code fare of service. If original class/code fare is not available and a higher airfare is available, the fee is $240.00 plus the difference to the next class code/fare.
  • Once in Israel extension/change of return is $150.00 subject to seat availability in the same class of service. If original class/code fare is not available and a higher airfare is available, subject to the higher airfare.
  • Change is based upon availability at the time requested.
  • Once in Israel contact Delta directly: 03-5138000 extension 3. Sunday – Thursday 9AM-5PM

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