Israeli residents returning from an international trip will now be allowed to swap a mandatory hotel quarantine for a self-isolation option at home as long as they agree to wear a tracking bracelet.
The new policy started on Monday with a pilot of 100 tracking systems at Tel Aviv's Ben Gurion Airport, Reuters reported. It will allow travelers to opt for home isolation rather than a hotel quarantine if they agree to wear an electronic bracelet and participate in the program that comes with a wall-mounted tracker.
Officials will be notified if a traveler tries to take the bracelet off or leaves the designated home area.
"There is potential for the pilot to quickly expand into a project consisting of thousands of units for more wide scale use to assist in quarantine compliance in Israel," SuperCom, the company behind the program's technology, told Reuters.
Previously, those arriving in Israel from abroad had to stay at a hotel for up to two weeks, paid for by the government. Israel largely restricts who is allowed to enter the country, which includes citizens and permanent residents, according to the country's Ministry of Health.
Hotel quarantines have been used by several nations to control the COVID-19 pandemic, including the United Kingdom, Canada, and Australia.
Israel has also introduced a "green passport" — their version of a vaccine passport — allowing fully-vaccinated residents to participate in things like concerts and go to gyms.
The country may not be welcoming foreign tourists just yet, but Israel is a destination travelers should consider when it does reopen with several new projects on the horizon, including new direct flights and a host of hotel openings.
In the meantime, travelers can experience the best of Israel from home with virtual tours of iconic sites like the Western Wall tunnels and the Sea of Galilee.
Alison Fox is a contributing writer for Travel Leisure. When she's not in New York City, she likes to spend her time at the beach or exploring new destinations and hopes to visit every country in the world. Follow her adventures on Instagram.
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