Tuesday, 23 February 2016

Finding the Resources you need when Apartment Hunting

If you are thinking of making Aliyah or have already moved here, you might be in need of finding a new apartment and / or community. Finding the right community and resources in the area that you move to is just as important as an apartment with the kind of space you might be looking for. 

If you have already selected your Kupat Cholim, knowing that healthcare is in your area might be of interest / necessity. If so, you can go onto their website to search for the location of branches. If need be, look up the phone number and call to make sure the frequency of doctors and nursing care, whether there is a pharmacy and any other medical need you might have. We are with Meuhedet and so, took a look at the Meuhedet website. You will need to read Hebrew or have someone with you who can read Hebrew as this information is not available in the English version of the Meuhedet website. The following link will take you to one of the pages for Muehedet in Jerusalem. You can of course search for whatever city or neighbourhood you might require. 

If you have a different Kupat Cholim, search on the website of your health insurance and look for the same. 

Once you have done your research about Kupat Cholim, you might want to know where the closest Mikvah is to the apartment you are considering. For women's Mikvaot, there is a Mikvah Directory which you can view on this link. Again I have clicked on Jerusalem Mikvaot but you can look for other cities if you need to. 

What other details are important for you when moving? Do you need assistance to navigate these sites or to understand the Hebrew? If you are in need of assistance, do be in touch for our personalized Aliyah assistance. We look forward to hearing from you.

Shoshanah Shear

Thursday, 18 February 2016

Another Challenging Day with Cell Phone Companies

Our saga of sorting out which cell phone company to use continues. After much difficulty with one of the companies we were recommended to contact the Consumer Rights Organization in Israel. It took quite a few tries to send the information but finally it looked like it went through on our side. In the meantime, with another billing date approaching we looked into other companies. Finally we decided to make a move. All sounded good until the SIM cards arrived and we had to begin the process to activate the SIM cards and transfer from one cell phone company to the new one. We felt like guinea pigs being sent from person to person and pillar to post. For some reason there was a problem that they could not understand.

Finally in desperation we did what perhaps we should have done to begin with. We had been at it for hours, losing precious time which we needed for work and other important tasks. So, I put some coins in a Tzeddakah box in the merit of some Tzaddikim that we might be freed to focus on what we need to do instead of this crazy distraction. At the end of the day, finally we succeeded with half of the process and have more to do next week. Giving Tzeddakah definitely helped, there was a sudden break through just after putting the coins in the Tzeddakah box. 

Our lessons for today have been: - we are not sure that any of the cell phone companies are Yashar (straight, honest) and easy to work with. Each of them have a way to waste time and charge hidden fees. Perhaps all of this is a test from Shamayim to waste our time in mundane, useless tasks that don't get us anywhere is to force us to turn to Hashem and appeal for the time to involve ourselves in Torah, Tefillah, Tzeddakah and the tasks necessary to leading a Torah lifestyle in Eretz Yisrael. After all, it is due to our turning away from the Torah path in the Holy Land that has lead to our Exile.

- Next lesson has been that when you are making Aliyah, you need to have a budget for wasted time and wasted hidden costs. The only thing that might help to reduce this is giving Tzeddakah to appropriate reliable causes with a Tefillah to be free to lead the lifestyle G-d wants us to here in the Land where we belong.

I wish everyone much success in the journey to settle in Eretz Yisrael. There are many stresses and many challenges but at the end of the day, each time that you succeed or get past one of these major road blocks, you achieve enormously. If you can manage to continue living in Eretz Yisrael despite all these frustrations, then you have really succeeded.

Have a blessed day. Looking forward to honest service providers.

Shoshanah Shear
Chessed Ve'Emet

Monday, 15 February 2016

Appreciating Israel and the Natural Beauty

Tree outside Kever Rachel

Today was a day for appreciating Israel. Where else in the world can you spend your birthday visiting and Davening at such a special and Holy Place?

These trees were photographed when admiring the view on the return from Kever Rachel. The window was blurry and the bus was moving, hence the trees are light and probably a little out of focus, but the image is beautiful all the same.

 The Landscape is just glorious. Such stunning rambling hills.

A ruin in the middle but it does not spoil the picture, not at all, it reminds us that there is building to be done and work in order for all Yidden to return to the Land where we belong

I love these trees and the contrast of the geography. Notice the beautiful blue sky, it's supposed to be winter going into spring but the day was just perfect. 

The images above for me are a reminder of what is special about being in Eretz Yisrael. What a perfect way to refocus and reconnect to the purpose of creation and in deed of every Jew.

May you all enjoy the most special day. If you have not yet come home, what is keeping you from returning? If you are here in Eretz Yisrael, do you take the time to appreciate the special land G-d gave to us?

What do you enjoy doing for your birthday? Where do you like to go?

Hope your day is very special. With blessings

Shoshanah Shear
Chessed Ve'Emet

Sunday, 14 February 2016

Exploring Cell Phone Contracts in Israel

We have had a little difficulty with our cell phone package and hence have been looking into other options. These are our findings so far.

Golan gives a number of options for packages, their big draw card for many is that it gives a service to 56 countries and 10 Giga. They do offer unlimited SMS and calls within Israel too. The contract is supposed to be for a year. If you sign up as a couple there are times that they suddenly alter one of the contracts to be only 5 months and you will have to pay NIS 49 to have a rate that suits you and you then lose being linked to the other party in the couple. About a month before the contract is due to expire you have to go online, check any special deals and call many times to find out the best price for a contract. In order to have the contract price that you want you have to pay a fee of NIS 49. If you go with Golan, calling to speak to a representative can take hours. They give an option to have a representative call you back but this can take days before you get the phone call. Golan at times has a limit of a few days to activate your card. If you do not activate on time, your contract is automatically put up to NIS 99 and you have to pay a penalty of NIS 120 in order to get the contract you originally arranged.  At the end of a year contract there is a fee of NIS 49 per line. However, this often ends up being at all different times of the year, not together if you sign up as a family. Hence you have to be well organized in documenting the time of the year and spend time constantly checking special deals. Every time you wish to switch to a special deal is at a fee of NIS 49

There is a company called Annatel that offers contracts of NIS 49 per month for a year and at the end of the year you are locked into paying NIS 99 per month with no option to alter this from what I understand.

Rami Levi offers unlimited phone calls and SMS in Israel and the option of either 1Giga, 5 Giga or 10 Giga. There are no overseas calling options. There are also no family deal options. The 5 Giga will be a cost of NIS 25 a month and the 10 Giga at a cost of NIS 50 a month. At the end of the year, in order to keep to the contract price you have arranged you have to pay a one time NIS 29 per line.
To call Rami Lavi took about 5 minutes to have someone answer.

Hot Mobile offers unlimited calls, SMS and MMS in Israel; 5 Giga and options for calls to 31 countries. They have a special deal for a couple and if you are a couple plus another family member there is a further special package rate. Hot Mobile offers delivery of SIM cards to your door at no extra charge and gives you a month to activate the SIM. At the end of the year there is the same need to check packages about a month before the contract will end. The one time fee to keep the contract you are on is NIS 39 per line. Hot was quite easy to get through to and the person was very kind and helpful. That part was a pleasure. When I told her I am an Olah and speak Hebrew but request her to speak slowly, she was happy to do so.

These are our findings thus far. If anyone has other info to add, please do so in the comments below. Please note, comments are moderated to prevent SPAM.

Tuesday, 9 February 2016

Searching for the 10 Best Aliyah Blogs

I've been managing this blog for quite a few years and pretty much providing useful posts that I thought might be helpful to fellow Olim. Recently I began to take a look at other blogs for Olim and thought it might be quite fun to come up with a list of the 10 best Aliyah / Olim blogs. I started to do a google search and then decided to get some opinions from fellow readers, Olim and want to be Olim. What do you look for in a blog about Aliyah? What would be YOUR criteria for the top 10 Aliyah / Olim blogs? Is it consistency in posting? Is it the name of the blog? Is it that it ranks highly in google? What about ease of navigating a blog? What type of content are you looking for?

What inspires you to follow a blog?

I have some thoughts on 3 blogs thus far. I'd love to hear from you. Can you do me a little favour, can you post a comment below and let me know what you would prefer? Do you want to hear a brief review on a number of blogs? Do you want the opportunity to vote on the blogs. 

Looking to forward to reading lots of responses so post away, comment away.

Shoshanah Shear

Sunday, 7 February 2016

Do It Yourself Plumbing - An Israel Necessity

Sunday marks the start of the week in Israel and what better way to begin the week than with a good blog post. I have a number of ideas going round in my head. I could write about the weather with the latest good rain and how much of a blessing that is. I could take a look at the progress in the level of the Kineret, always a good topic for discussion. I could write about my latest goals and ideas. But, my day began with one of those do-it-yourself tasks that are an "only in Israel" moment and my day is ending with completing the final phase of the task, so I guess, we'll chat about do-it-yourself plumbing, an Israel necessity.

Have you ever taken a bath and found your bathmat soaked from the water seeping out of the edges of those covers to the holes in the floor? If you know what I am talking about, what is your first response? Do you reach for your list of service providers, call your plumber and have him clean out your drains? Do you call your landlord, tell him that the drains are blocked again and have him come over to clear them out? Or do you open the covers to the holes to the plumbing and prepare for a good hour or a few of clearing out your drains? If you have become an expert in do-it-yourself plumbing in Israel then you might be familiar with the snake used to "snake the drain". Quite an odd term which entails taking a long metal spring and placing it in the pipes, twisting until it comes through most easily and then preparing to clean out the mess that has come free. 

It's not the most pleasant task one can imagine. Many will put down some kind of anti-kalk material or bleech or boiling water or a combination. Using something to provide a nicer aroma is a good idea too. After this time consuming task comes cleaning the snake and placing it to dry well. It's not a good idea to put away wet metal as it can result in rusting. Hence the hours and hours that this task can entail. Before you know it, the whole day has gone by as you finally put away the neatly coiled snake. 

Just another day in the life of an Olah in Israel. One of the joys to look forward to if you are considering Aliyah. Not everyone fancies the idea of clearing out their own drains. However, with the sediment that naturally builds up, cleaning out the drains every few months - approximately 6 months is a necessity to having healthy plumbing. You do have a choice of course but that choice is partly dependent on your bank account and income. If saving wherever you can is important, then this task is one of the musts to learn early on in your Aliyah. If you have a good income, then you can of course call in a plumber or a teen wanting to earn a bit of pocket money or even a fellow Oleh needing to earn a bit on the side. 

I must say that I am very relieved to have completed the task and be ready to head off for a well earned nights rest. In the next few days we can discuss some more exciting ideas. For now I'm turning in and wish you all a blessed evening and peaceful nights sleep. Pleasant dreams to all.

Shoshanah Shear
Chessed Ve'Emet

Tuesday, 2 February 2016

Supplement Your Income by Doing Surveys

About a year ago, someone mentioned signing up to do surveys for pay as a way to supplement your income, I decided to give it a try. There are many options to take online surveys. If you decide to try this too, make sure to read carefully what country you live in. For those who live in the US or have a US address even if they are in Israel, there are many more options for doing surveys.

From the few websites I signed up for in close to a year I have had about 3 surveys sent to me. All found a way not to pay. A few days ago I received the first one that promises to pay. For the survey for pay, it took approximately 15 minutes to complete the survey, possibly a little longer and for this they promise to pay $5-$8 in about 5 weeks.

Hurry all OLIM. Time to get rich quickly. Sign up for all the surveys and in a year you can earn $5-$8. The info I had read online spoke of people earning $250 and more as extra income. I have not found that, not without a US address. If anyone else is successful, please do comment below to let other Olim know that there is a way to earn a little more on the side.

Wishing you a blessed day. May you have much Hatzlachah (success) and may it come easily.

Shoshanah Shear


Related Posts with Thumbnails