The Israeli – Jordan border crossing is one of the few overland borders in the Middle East which can be crossed. Jordan and Israel are not the best friends in the world but both countries signed a peace agreement some decades ago so, surprisingly, travel to Jordan from Israel (and vice-versa) is pretty easy and straightforward.
However, this is the Middle East, which means that there is a bunch of confusing rules you should know before crossing such a border.
If there is something I learned after several years traveling in the Middle East is that, when it comes to bureaucracy stuff, you can’t trust the local authorities.
The Middle East is the most chaotic, changing, and flexible region, I have ever been to.
This means that you should always take any information coming from any authority, including embassies, with a grain of salt.
For example, the Official Jordan Tourism board says that the Wadi Araba border doesn’t issue visas since January 2016.
Well, this information is totally wrong, as everybody can get a VOA.
With this, I am not saying that my information is right and theirs is wrong but, at least, I try to keep this post updated based on information from travelers who crossed the border recently.
All borders are open every day, except during some specific Jewish holidays.
On Friday and Saturday, limited times apply.
You can find a very detailed schedule here.
Israelis don’t stamp your passport anymore but the Jordanian authorities might stamp it and that Jordanian stamp will be evidence that you came from Israel..
I recommend you read this updated post
Entering Jordan from Israel (and vice-versa) in your own vehicle is possible but, if you plan to do a road trip in Jordan with an Israeli car, you might find your windows broken on the next day, so it’s definitely not a good idea.
Israeli people change their license plates to Jordanian ones at the border.
Most high-GDP countries, including EU countries, the USA, Canada and Australia can get a free visa on arrival for Israel via any port of entry.
If you are not sure about your passport, contact the Israeli embassy.
Like for Israel, most people can get their visa on arrival EXCEPT if you try to enter via King Hussein bridge, the only border that requires having a pre-arranged visa.
When you cross from Israel to Jordan, the Israeli authorities are pretty friendly and they don’t give you too much hassle.
It’s when you enter Israel from Jordan that you may be interrogated for some time.
However, there’s nothing to worry about. Just answer their questions and you won’t have any trouble.
However, some travelers have reported different experiences.
Read more about it: Avoid Israeli stamps – FAQ.
At all the borders, there will be taxis waiting for you.
At the Wadi Araba / Yitzhak Rabin border, you are not allowed to go to Aqaba City by foot (3km).
They claim it’s a military road but, in my opinion, they just say that, so you are forced to take a taxi.
Normally, the taxi fares are set at all the borders and you should find a signboard, saying the price of each destination, including Wadi Rum, Petra and places like that.
Travel tip: border taxi fares are fairly expensive. If you are on a budget, you should take a taxi to the nearest city and take a bus from there.
According to two different travelers, it’s possible today to pay by credit or debit card at different borders, at least at both Allenby and Wadi Araba borders.
For crossing from Israel to Jordan (and vice-versa) there are three open borders.
Which one should you go through? Well, each border has its own specific rules, so it will all depend on your time, money and final destination.
CLICK HERE to see the interactive map
This is the border located in Jericho, which is also very close to Amman.
Important! If you fly into Jordan, enter Israel overland (from Jordan) and plan to re-enter Jordan again, you need to know that the visas issued at Queen Aila airport are only valid for one single entry.
However, one exception applies. You’ll be allowed to re-enter Jordan on the same visa ONLY if: you exit and re-enter from Allenby / King Hussein Bridge.
How to get to Allenby / King Hussein Bridge border (from Israel):
From Damascus Gate in Jerusalem, there are direct minibusses.
Price: 40ISL (1USD1) + 5ISL (1.40USD) for luggage.
Alternatively, you can travel to Jericho (Palestine) on a local bus (it’s only a couple of kilometers from the border) and stay there for 1 or 2 days.
How to get to Allenby / King Hussein Bridge border (from Jordan)
A bus to the border costs 8JD (11.30USD) but be aware that the station is a bit far and a taxi costs 5JD (7.50USD).
Therefore, if you travel with someone else, it is more convenient to go directly by taxi the border, as the local price for a taxi is 26JD (36USD). Ask your hotel/hostel to arrange it for you.
Once you crossed the border successfully, the shuttle bus to Jerusalem costs 7.50JD per person plus 1.50JD per bag.
Read: A travel guide to Beirut
Budget Hostel – Abraham Hostel – The most famous hostel in Israel is a massive building located at the heart of the Old City of Jerusalem. The owners are great and they organize all sort of activities: from endless tours to pub crawls and much more. This is one of the greatest hostels I have ever been.
Mid-range Hotel – Hashimi Hotel – A pretty cool hotel in the heart of the Old City with stunning views to the Dome of the Rock.
Backpacker Hostel – Jordan Tower Hotel – Good for both backpackers and people who like to stay in a private room, this hotel has become a classic in Amman. Great staff, good breakfast and awesome location (in Downtown) are the reason why you should stay here.
Mid-range hotel – 7 Boys Hotel – A really good mid-range option that has hosted travelers from all over the world.
This is the southern border, shared between the Israeli city of Eilat and the Jordanian city of Aqaba.
Important information – You may have read from different sources (including the official Jordanian website) that they are not giving free visas anymore at this border. The truth is that they have been saying this since May 2017 but there is not a single traveler I know who has paid for their visa since then. As I told you at the beginning, you shouldn’t trust any official source but just facts from travelers. Further updates regarding this topic are more than welcome.
The visa is free but only if you plan to stay in Jordan for more than 2 nights.
This is what would happen if you stayed less than 3 nights:
How to get to Wadi Araba / Yitzhak Rabin border (from Israel)
There are direct buses from Jerusalem Central Bus station to the Israeli city called Eilat.
I’m not sure about the price as I traveled there from Jericho but, from Jericho, I paid 60ISL.
Read: Lebanon 2-week itinerary
How to get to Wadi Araba / Yitzhak Rabin border (from Jordan)
From Aqaba, you can take a taxi the border and, from Eilat, there are buses to many places around Israel.
Backpacker Hostel – Abraham Hostel Eilat – Excellent location and the best that you could find as it is located in Eilat’s city center.
Nicer – Amdar Holiday Apartment – A modernly furnished accommodation that is situated in the best area of Eliat and is 3-minute walk away from the beach.
Aqaba has great accommodation but it’s a little bit pricey and the cool places are meant to relax and stay, at least, for a few days, as they are right next to the beach. However, I do recommend staying in Aqaba for a few days and go snorkeling (or diving) in the Red Sea.
Beach Hostel – Darna Village Beach Hostel – One of the best-rated hostels in Aqaba and the most backpacker-friendly. Darna is just 50 meters from the beach and the coral reefs.
Budget Hotel – Aqaba Roza – A very decent budget hotel located in a very central location. I would say this is a very functional place for those just transiting in Aqaba.
This is the least transited border, located in the north.
How to get to Beit She’an / Sheikh Hussein border (from Israel)
From Jerusalem Central bus station, there are daily buses (except for Shabbat) to Beit She’an (7km away from the border). Price: 42ISL. From here to the border, you will have to take a taxi.
The nearest city is called Irbid and taxis charge around 20JD. From there, you will easily find a public bus to anywhere in Jordan.
These are the rules that apply on each border. I entered Jordan through Wadi Araba / Yitzhak Rabin border because it was visa-free. It was not the most convenient one for me, as my final destination was Amman (I had my flight to Pakistan on the next day) but, for 6JD ($9), I took a bus from Aqaba to Amman (5-6h). If you have any more up-to-date information or you think there is something wrong, let me know! Safe travels!