Public Transportation in Israel As of my knowledge cutoff in 2023, public transportation in Israel consisted of buses, trams, and trains, and they played an essential role in the everyday life of people living and working in this country.
Buses: Buses are the most widely available mode of public transport in Israel. The national bus company is called Egged, and it operates the majority of intercity and urban routes. There are also city-based bus companies, like Dan in Tel Aviv, that offer extensive services within those specific areas.
Trains: Israel Railways is the national train company and operates from
Nahariya in the north to Be'er Sheva in the south, with lines running through major cities like Haifa, Tel Aviv, and Jerusalem. The trains are particularly useful for travel between coastal cities.
Trams/Light rail: There are tram services in Jerusalem (known as the Jerusalem Light Rail) and construction of a light rail system in Tel Aviv (the Tel Aviv Light Rail) was in progress as of my last update in 2021.
Shared taxis: In addition to the regular bus and train services, Israel also has a service known as 'Sherut'. These are shared taxi vans that run along certain bus routes, usually operating seven days a week (unlike most public transportation which ceases operations from Friday afternoon until Saturday night due to the Sabbath).
Bicycle sharing: In Tel Aviv and some other cities, there are bike-sharing services such as Tel-O-Fun in Tel Aviv.
Ferries: For coastal and aquatic travel, ferries operate in several areas. There's a regular service between Eilat and Aqaba, for example, and around the Sea of Galilee.
As for payment, many public transportation services in Israel use the Rav-Kav card, a rechargeable smart card that can be used on buses, trams, and trains throughout the country. Please note that the status of these services may have changed since my last update in 2021, and you should check for the most recent information before planning your travel.