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May 3, 2019 10:51 am

Tourists Visiting Israel for Eurovision to Get Free Pre-Charged Bus Passes

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avatar by Tofi Stoler / CTech

Israel’s Netta Barzilai performs after winning the 2018 Eurovision song contest at the Altice Arena hall in Lisbon, Portugal, May 12, 2018. Photo: Reuters / Pedro Nunes.

CTech – Tourists visiting Israel for the Eurovision song contest will receive pre-charged public transportation cards at no cost, Pcentra Ltd. the company operating the country’s transportation pass card Rav-Kav, announced Thursday. The event is due to take place later this month in Tel Aviv.

The precharged Rav-Kav cards will be handed out to tourists, Eurovision participants, staff, and international reporters, by representatives of Israel’s national broadcaster Kan, which is responsible for operating the event.

Issuing a Rav-Kav card tends to be difficult as it can only be done at a limited number of locations and requires some bureaucratic hassle, which most tourists tend to avoid, especially for short visits. Israel’s transportation system shifted to a no-cash policy on buses, in December, making Rav-Kav cards essential.

In March, the country’s ministry of transportation announced an alternative payment system to accommodate tourists and non-permanent residents. Called Israel Pass, the chargeable card is currently being sold exclusively at Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion International Airport. With a price tag of between NIS 83 (approximately $23) and NIS 115 (approximately $32), the Israel Pass is significantly more expensive than Rav Kav, which is provided for free or sold for a nominal fee of NIS 10.9 (approximately $3).

Israel will be represented by theatrical vocalist Kobi Marimi at the three-day international song contest.

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