Train station in central Israel
Train station in central Israel
Photo: Yaron Brenner
Train station in central Israel

Israel's trains to resume full operations on June 8

Reopening date pushed back for second time; passenger capacity on intercity and city buses, shared cabs and private taxis increased; health and transport ministers praise move

Assaf Zagrizak |
Published: 05.24.20 , 22:12
The Health Ministry announced Sunday that train services will resume full activity on June 8 after they were suspended in March as part of efforts to curb the spread of coronavirus.
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  • This is the second time the date for the reopening of railway traffic has been pushed back.
    Train station in central Israel Train station in central Israel
    Train station in central Israel
    (Photo: Yaron Brenner)
    The Health Ministry decided trains will return running on May 17 without a limit on the number of passengers on each wagon. However, Health Ministry Director-General Moshe Bar Siman Tov overruled the decision.
    The sides agreed to push the reopening date back to June 1 under tighter regulations.
    The ministry also introduced a host of leniencies to social distancing regulations on public buses.
    Beginning May 28, inter-city lines will be allowed to take 46 passengers at the same time instead of 23 so far. Passengers will not be allowed to ride the bus standing up.
    עומס בתחנה שליד העירייה במודיעיןעומס בתחנה שליד העירייה במודיעין
    A large group of people waiting for the bus in Modi'in
    Buses on intra-city routes will be allowed to take 49 passengers instead of 20 on regular buses, and 75 passengers instead of 30 on articulated buses. Passengers will be allowed to ride the bus standing up on in-city lines.
    Minibuses and shared taxis will be allowed to take passengers up to a 75% capacity.
    Regular taxis will be allowed to take two passengers in the back seat.
    "This is new the people of Israel were looking for," said Transportation Minister Miri Regev. "I call on the public to help us, take self-responsibility and act according to Health Ministry guidelines."
    תחנה מרכזית אשקלוןתחנה מרכזית אשקלון
    Central bus station in Ashkelon
    (Photo: Roee Idan)
    Health Minister Yuli Edelstein also urged the public to adhere to social distancing regulations.
    "We've started opening the economy for the sake of the public and businesses, but it all depends on each and every one of us," said Edelstein. "Without strict adherence to the guidelines – coronavirus could return, and with it, the closure of the economy.
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