Updated February 7, 2024

In January I traveled to Israel on a unique mission with BBYO’s trip provider. It was the first time I had been there since before October 7, and it was an eye-opening experience. I felt the impact of those horrific attacks from the moment I landed and understood the need for support and camaraderie from the global Jewish community. Despite the difficult realities, I was comforted being surrounded by other Jewish people with whom I could relate.

Spending time in Israel volunteering to help displaced communities across the country, talking with local community leaders, and hearing from those who were affected most moved me profoundly. Once I returned home, my team and I worked to pivot our Summer 2024 program offerings in Israel so that we can continue to bring meaningful experiences to Jewish teens through this difficult time. In addition to our flagship program, Israel Journey, I’m thrilled we’ll also be offering a brand-new service trip—Volunteer Israel—for teens to find deeper connection with the Jewish homeland this summer.

We are mindful of the current situation, and will keep a careful watch on the conditions in Israel. With safety as our paramount concern, we have never and will never send our teens into an unsecure situation. We remain in continual contact with our Israeli trip operator and look forward to creating a space where Jewish teens can safely explore, connect, give back, and have fun together.

We’ll be here for your teens, ready to give them the incredible experiences families have come to rely on. Don’t forget that all summer programs are fully refundable through February 27, 2024, so there is no reason not to move forward, cautiously hopeful, with planning a beautiful and meaningful summer for your teens.


Marni Heller

Associate Vice President, BBYO Passport

Marni Heller

Questions? Our team is here for you. Contact us at [email protected] or 202.537.8091.

The safety and well-being of our participants on travel programs will always be our guiding consideration. For the last 100 years, BBYO has strived to earn the trust of teens and parents on programs close to home and far away. Behind this history is a systematic approach to providing a responsible environment backed up by a team of caring professionals with decades of experience. With safety as our first priority, we are equally committed to providing you with a meaningful and fun experience.


In destinations across the globe, we provide proactive risk management and well-informed precautionary measures to ensure the safety and security of all our participants. Our procedures vary to match the specific situation in each country in which we travel, while our core approach remains the same.


Our program directors are skilled professionals—many of whom are also licensed guides—who bring years of local knowledge and cultural expertise to our trips.


In certain areas we travel where we assess it to be prudent, groups will be escorted by a licensed security professional.


While we make every effort to give participants space and time to explore on their own, there is no leaving the group without approved supervision.


Our staff are carefully selected, must pass a background screening, and attend an in-person training with a strong emphasis on participant well-being.


Since 1956, BBYO has organized teen programs in Israel that have resulted in a strengthened sense of Jewish identity, a lasting connection to the State of Israel, and lives transformed. Behind our track record is a layered approach to providing a safe and meaningful experience:


Each group is accompanied at all times by a licensed security escort with first aid response training—most of whom have recently completed their military service.


Our itineraries are approved in advance and re-approved daily by the "Situation Room," a special unit administered by the Ministry of Education and coordinated with Israel's security services.


We plan our itineraries with caution in mind—being careful to avoid areas of potentially heightened concern and always traveling with discretion. If necessary, we modify itineraries and/or policies in the interest of safety.


Our main mode of travel is on a private coach bus with experienced drivers trained to keep the bus secured. We only stay at overnight accommodations with security personnel on site and which are equipped with secure rooms in accordance with Israel's high standards.