2021 PASTORS FAMILIARIZATION TOUR

Date: January 05, 2021 - January 12, 2021
Guided by: Erez Berkovitz
Base Price for:
Land Only: $1,195.00

Join This Tour


Welcome to our annual Pastors Familiarization Tour. This tour is officially open to all pastors, clergy, missionaries and evangelists who have never been to Israel.

The tour's cost is highly subsidized, and you may bring a spouse or assistant for a supplement above the cost. 

Best of all. The entire trip is free if you return with your own group within 3 years.

Download Brochure

Day 1 - Monday - January 4th, 2021

  • In the evening, depart at your leisure from your home city. (There are several evening/night flights from JFK to Israel, ensuring you can both preach Sunday morning and arrive by Monday eve. Flights are also more affordable on these days, and flights sync with pastors who may wish to come from the UK).

Day 2 - Tuesday - January 5th, 2021 - (B/D)

  • Arrive to Israel - We suggest afternoon/early eve (no later than 6pm) arrivals
  • For all afternoon/evening arrivals we’ll have a free group transfer from the airport to the hotel. Reminder: You are welcome to choose from a variety of affordable add-ons for earlier arrivals or later, or simply contact us so that we can serve your best interests for your budget.
  • Overnight & Dinner: Leonardo Art, Tel Aviv or similar

Day 3 - Wednesday - January 6th, 2021 - (B/D)

En-route to Galilee we will be visiting the following Biblical sites: Caesarea (Acts 10), Megiddo (Armageddon; 1 Kings 9:15; Rev. 16:16), and Mt. Carmel (1 Kings 18). We complete our tour overlooking the Jezreel Valley from Mt. Precipice, Nazareth

Day 4 - Thursday - January 7th, 2021 - (B/D)

Our day begins on the modern day Israeli northern border at Tel Dan where we will tour extensively the ancient northern border of Israel, and include a visit at the Canaanite – Bronze era - mud brick gate that has been nicknamed the "Gate of Abraham". At the foot of Mount Hermon we will visit the springs of Banias and the site of Caesarea Philippi. This is where Peter made his declaration about Jesus (Matt. 16). Returning to the Sea of Galilee we start our day atop the Mount of Beatitudes and read from Matthew 5, the Sermon on the Mount. We continue on to Capernaum, the center of ministry for Jesus in Galilee. Next, we visit Tabgha, remembering the story of the feeding of the 5,000 and John 21 with Jesus calling out to Peter to cast the fishing net on the right side. Following our stop for a St. Peters Fish optional lunch we will conclude our touring around the Sea of Galilee. First visiting the 1st Century remains of Magdala including the greatest highlight of all: A 2000 years old Synagogue. We travel to an overview of the Valley of Bethsaida, which is the hometown of Peter, Andrew, and Philip. We will end our day at the Jordan River where baptism is carried out and commemorated. 

Day 5 - Friday - January 8th, 2021 - (B/D)

After breakfast, we conclude our time in Galilee with an amazing boat ride on the Sea of Galilee, where we will have time for worship. Afterwards, we visit the “Jesus boat" from the first century, a vessel found here along the shores of Galilee in 1986. Today we leave the Galilee and make our way southwards along the Jordan Valley. The highway takes us to the Biblical site of Beit Shean, a well-preserved Decapolis Roman city. Here the bodies of King Saul and his sons were hung from the city walls after they were defeated by the Philistines (1 Samuel 31:10-12). We continue our drive through the Wilderness of Judah for Jericho, where we view from outside the ancient city where the wall came tumbling down (Joshua 2-6; Mark 10:46; Luke 19:1). We then continue to Kaser-El Yahud Baptismal site where tradition believes Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist. We make our way to our hotel at the Dead Sea, where we have an opportunity to go swim/float (included) or enjoy a spa treatment on your own at the hotel. 

Day 6 - Saturday - January 9th, 2021 - (B/D)

After breakfast, we depart the Dead Sea and make our way to Masada. Here we ascend high upon the wilderness mountain, by way of the cable car, to the fortress built by King Herod. We survey the ruins of the fortifications, waterworks, the synagogue, temples and palaces. We have an optional walk back down the snake path. We then continue our drive for Ein Gedi, where David hid from King Saul. We enjoy a walk back to the waterfalls, hopefully seeing ibex and coneys along the way. In the afternoon, we drive back north to Qumran and the settlement of the Dead Sea Scrolls community. We then begin our ascent of 4,000 feet in 13 miles to the majestic city of Jerusalem. Upon entering Jerusalem we begin our sightseeing with a visit to the Mt. of Olives, beholding a breath-taking panorama of the Holy City. We visit Pater Noster and then walk down the “Palm Sunday” route to the Garden of Gethsemane for private prayer.

  • Overnight & Dinner: Leonardo, Jerusalem or similar

 

Day 7 - Sunday - January 10th, 2021 - (B/D)

This morning we visit Mt. Zion and the Jewish Quarter where we will pick up the events of Holy Week that we left off in the Garden of Gethsemane when we arrive at the traditional place for the house and courtyard of Caiaphas the high priest. The traditional room of the Last Supper is also here and this will lead us into the Jewish quarter to explore some of the excavations here that are now part of the streets of the modern Jewish quarter that has been rebuilt since the 1967 Six Day War. Having visited the traditional site for weeping over the destruction of Jerusalem on the Mt. Olives, we will continue by witnessing the destruction at first hand that highlights "not one rock left upon another" at the Southern Wall and Ophel excavations and the Davidson Visitor Center. From here we will continue to Bethlehem and tour the church of the Nativity and the Shepherds Fields. We will also visit a local Christian family and see their olive wood carvings that the local Christian population are famous for.

  • Overnight & Dinner: Leonardo, Jerusalem or similar

Day 8 - Monday - January 11th, 2021 - (B/D)

This morning we are going to go underneath the city's streets and homes as we explore the entire length of the Western wall in the excavations of the Western Wall Tunnels. Exiting at the north of the Temple Mount, this leads us to the St Anne Church and the area of Bethesda Pools that we find in Jesus healing the paralyzed man in John Chapter 5. Deep in the Old City and upon the well- trodden paths of tradition and pilgrimage we will pick up the Via Dolorosa and follow most of the 14 stations as we climb to Latin Calvary, A break for lunch at the Christian Quarter and some free shopping time before we gather and visit the Church of the Holy Sepulcher – one of the traditional sites for Jesus's crucifixion and burial. The conclusion of our day is to walk in the footsteps of David and the ancient Jerusalem that is hidden in the City of David and concludes our day by walking in the flowing waters of the Siloam tunnel (Hezekiah's Tunnel – Wet or Dry route is optional) and finding the 2000-year-old Pool of Siloam!

Following dinner, we will take a short walk through the Mamilla promenade to the Sound & Light Show at the Tower of David

  • Overnight & Dinner: Leonardo, Jerusalem or similar

Day 9 - Tuesday - January 12th, 2021 - (B/D)

Rising for an early morning visit on the Temple Mount will start our day off early in an attempt to beat the crowds but be aware that queuing in line may take some time with no sitting area and only limited shade. This will allow us to tour the platform but not enter the restricted areas for Muslims only such as inside the Dome of the Rock and the Al Aqsa Mosque. From the rock of temple and sacrifice we continue to the rock of crucifixion and the empty tomb at the Garden Tomb. The climax and pinnacle of any pilgrimage tour is a visit to the Garden Tomb, where we will have worship and communion. This afternoon we will visit both the Israel Museum Shrine of the Book Museum, where the Dead Sea Scrolls are displayed, and Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial. At both exhibitions I will guide you through the display.

At approximately, 18:00 we’ll have a Farewell Dinner in Jaffa and 19:00 a group transfer to airport.

Return home with many memories to share of Pools, Springs and Streams, a Land of 7 Species and a 5th Gospel in your feet – The Land of Israel!

Day 10 - Wednesday - January 13th, 2021 - (B/)

  • Choose to stay an extra night or arrive back to your home city

We're happy to assist you with booking your airfare for a flat $50 fee.

All members are booking their own flights and may arrive whenever they'd like. Please consult with the itinerary for the main arrival and departure times we suggest.

Airfares typically range from $900-$1200 this time of year, round-trip.

Please see our helpful FAQ section and stay tuned to group emails approximately 4 months prior to departure.

 

Per person costs

Land rate for 20+ passengers

Per Person in a Shared Room

$1,195.00

Supplements & Discounts

 

Single supplement (for a single room)

+$450.00

Non-minister/spouse supplement (read more below)

+$350.00

Extra night on BB

+$100.00, per person, per night

Discount for Payment by Check

-$30.00

Airfare Booking

At cost +$50 airfare booking fee. Arrive and depart anytime you want.

Inclusions

  • Welcome and assistance after Passport Control
  • Transfers to/from Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion International Airport. Come whenever you want, we’ll take care of the rest.
  • 8 days of air-conditioned bus & driver
  • English-native Speaking, Licensed, Israeli Master Tour Guide Erez Berkovitz.
  • 7 nights in great 4-staraccommodations
  • Breakfast & Dinner Daily
  • Head-set (Whisper) system for 15 or more passengers
  • All park fees & scheduled activities and entertainment
  • Gratuities for hotel staff and baggage handlers
  • All debit and credit card fees.
  • Traveler’s Kit (hat, map of Israel, water bottle and more…)

Exclusions

  • Round-trip Airfare from NYC (approx. $900-$1200). We are happy to assist you with finding the lowest cost flight with the fastest flight times for a flat $50 fee, or you are welcome to book yourself online for maximum flexibility.
  • Lunches (average $12 per meal)
  • Gratuities for guide & driver
  • Personal expenses such as telephone calls from room, mini bar, room service, etc.
  • Any transportation deviations from the main group departure and arrival times.
  • Optional Traveler’s Insurance through World Nomads
  • Final Itinerary & Hotels: The itinerary may be updated from time to time at the discretion of Samson Tours, its guide and its tour leader. Final Hotel Arrangements will be posted no later than 100 days before departure. In the event of a hotel change, Samson Tours will guarantee a replacement at the same quality or provide an upgrade to a higher class of accommodations at no extra charge.
  • Group Minimum: If a group minimum of at least 10 passengers is not reached by 4 months before departure, Samson Tours or its tour leader will have the right to either a.) request that all tour members pay a supplement for the increase in costs of no greater than $300.00 per person and operate the group at the same quality; b.) lower the hotel class by at least 1 star to offset the increased costs; or c.) postpone the dates until a minimum number of participants are achieved.
  • Group Maximum: A maximum 45 paying participants will be allowed to join this unique tour program.
  • Group Airfare: Samson Tours works alongside the tour leader to find the best airfare and best price for the group. In order to request a group airfare price, there must be at least 10 passengers on the group flight. The airfare will be paid to the airline in full upon their request and subject to their cancellation/refund policies.
  • Booking your own Airfare: If you are not joining your tour’s group airfare, please do not book your airfare until 90 days before the tour departure date or until the Notice of Group Minimum has been sent to you.
  • Flight Diversions: If you elect to be on the group flight and wish to depart from a different city of origin, you can a.) Book your own domestic airfare connection or b.) Select the Add-On in your My Account for a $50.00 Domestic Flight Booking Fee. Any costs or savings for the additional flight will be added or deducted from your tour balance. Please contact us with your specific departure city request.
  • Deposit & Payments for Land: To ensure your spot on the tour, we request a $300.00 deposit be paid upon signup. The deposit (less a $100.00 non-refundable fee per person) and any other payments made are refundable up to 90 days before departure. After that, the remaining deposit amount is non-refundable, but can be used as a future credit with Samson Tours or converted into a Gift Certificate which you can transfer to a third party. The deposit can be paid by cash, check, money order, bank transfer, debit or credit card. If the tour is canceled by Samson Tours, then you will be entitled to a full refund without any cancellation fee. This refund of cancellation fee does not apply to tour leader cancellations or postponements due to group minimums not being reached. For cases of political instability or cancellations or postponements due to force majeure, please see the Force Majeure section below.
  • Final Payments: The final payment will be made to Samson Tours 60 days before departure. If the tour leader is collecting all payments, they may specify their own timeline. Payments made by check or cash will be made in US$ to Samson Tours, Inc. Payments made by debit or credit card to Samson Tours, Inc. will be charged the full balance. If there are any unpaid fuel surcharges for the group flight, they will be billed to you at cost per the group airline contract either before or after the tour. There is a Late Payment Fee of $200.00 if the balance is paid after the final payment date.
  • Late Registrations & Payments: Theoretically, you can join a tour anytime up to the time of the departure date (Land Only and subject to Hotel Availability). There will be a Late Payment Fee of $200.00 and an additional $50.00 fee if you require airfare assistance. If a hotel or other service listed in the itinerary is unavailable, we will find an alternative hotel for you, however you will be responsible for any transportation costs to/from joining the main group.
  • Land Diversions: If you arrive either before or after the recommended group departure/arrival time, or if your flight is delayed beyond a reasonable waiting period, or if you elect to divert or add-on additional days to the trip, then it is understood that you will arrive at the hotel or to the airport at your own expense. We will more than happy to assist you with these arrangements
  • Refunds (Land): The following refunds for the land portion of the price will apply for non-insured travelers only: Your balance less a non-refundable fee of $100.00 per person, which is transferable or can be applied to future tours if cancelled 90+ calendar days before departure. 75% refund of balance less a non-refundable fee of $100.00 per person if cancelled 89-60 days before departure. 50% of balance less a non-refundable fee of $100.00 per person refund if cancelled 59-30 days before departure. 0% refund if cancelled 29 or less days before departure.
  • Refunds (Group Air): Per group contract with airline. Typically, there is a $100 non-refundable fee up to 3 months before departure and 100% non-refundable 30 or less days before departure. Most airlines will, however, allow you to postpone your travel dates for a re-ticketing or name transfer fee.
  • Force Majeure: If Samson Tours decides to postpone the tour do to political unrest or for any reason beyond our company’s control that could compromise your security, then your balance will carry over to the new tour dates. Depending on the new dates, there may be an increase in costs for tours that are rescheduled within 1 year. If you are unable to join the new tour dates, then you will be entitled to a refund, less the cancellation fee (see Deposits) and any other non-refundable deposits that may be imposed on us by suppliers such as airlines and hotels. The deposit and/or balances amount can also be applied to any future tour or may be transferable to a third party.
  • Travel Insurance – Samson Tours does not require travel insurance. It is, however, strongly advised that all travelers equip themselves with a comprehensive travel insurance plan through World Nomads. You can obtain an individual travel insurance quote, by visiting our Insurance page and clicking on any of the ‘Get a Quote’ links that refer you to our partner’s website. Travel Insurance coverage begins ONLY from the time you have purchased travel insurance. It is advisable only to purchase travel insurance when you have made non-refundable payments that exceed the amount of travel insurance purchased.
  • Add-ons once you have registered for a tour you can select from a variety of add-ons in your My Account area you may select or deselect any of these add-ons (extension tour, hotels, late fees, etc.) until 30 days before your tour.
  • Your Health:All participants should be in good health and walking condition. This program is active and involves a lot of walking over uneven surfaces and climbing stairs. All locations may not be accessible for the disabled. Having a disability does not disqualify you from joining any tour. However, be advised that you may have to forgo portions of the said itinerary by waiting on the bus or in a safe location until the main group has returned. If you require special accommodation, please report this at the time of your reservation so that we can better serve you.
  • Single Supplement: For single travelers, a single supplement fee for the hotels is required. This usually amounts to around 85%-90% of the Double Room cost. If a person has ordered a double room and his or her roommate cancels his or her tour, then the individual holding a double room must find a new roommate or pay the single supplement.
  • Exchange Rate: Samson Tours, Inc. reserves the right to charge a supplement to the price if the dollar falls below the 3.5 threshold. To date, we have never yet had to charge an exchange rate surcharge.
  • Government Imposed VAT or taxes: Currently there are no VAT taxes for foreign on tour land packages to Israel. Should such a tax be imposed before the start of the tour, even after ‘final payment’ has been made, Samson Tours will notify all of its participants in writing. In order to participate in the tour, you will be required to pay all such taxes before the start of the tour. If you are an Israeli Citizen you will be asked to pay VAT at the time of you final payment.
  • Responsibility - Samson Tours, Inc., its agents, suppliers, guides, leaders and representatives shall be, in no way, liable or responsible for any personal or property loss, damage or injury howsoever caused. The company shall also not be responsible for penalties for privately-booked flight tickets if purchased before the minimum is reached.  
  • Update – These policies may be updated from time to time. Upon update, you will be notified by Samson Tours, Inc. or its group leader.

Deadlines

 

Due Date

Early bird special discount ends. $200.00 Late Registration Fee

goes into Effect.

Oct 5, 2020

 

 

Final Payments are Due by Registered Passengers

Nov 5, 2020

 

 

 

 

All Passenger Info is Due (Passports, Roommates, etc.)

Nov 6, 2020

 

It is not mandatory, but highly recommended to purchase “Cancellation for any Reason” Travel Insurance. Please visit our Insurance webpage for an instant quote from our partner World Nomads (very affordable packages), or consult with your credit card company for buying their affordable travel insurance policy.





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