Mail sent to Mabat Platinum Tour Operator and was later sent to me:
I just wanted to give you some feedback on our recent trip to Israel through your company, Mabat.
My cousin and I went on this trip to Israel – – it was our first. Between us we traveled the entire world --Africa, Asia ,the South Pole, South America, Europe – – you name it and we've been there. But this trip ranks as one of our favorite ever.
When we landed in Israel, all of the trouble began between the Palestinians and the Israelis. To be honest, as you know, we were a little bit worried. As it turns out I could not have felt more comfortable and more safe in this country.
First, Isreal itself clearly takes care of its people and the contrast between the United States, where there's plenty of trouble, and Israel is incredible. But I think the real success of a trip came from our guide, OREN.
Just to start with safety and security, Oren is constantly on the phone or his Internet following up with all the news of the day and making sure that he made adjustments in our itinerary as necessary. He talked us about what was happening, where it was happening, and explained what the country was doing in response. We were right in Jerusalem during all the trouble and we saw everything without boring from one second about our personal safety. If you just read about this in the news you get a completely false representation of what's really happening. In actuality, I'm positive that there's less trouble going on here then there is in our hometowns --Chicago and Baltimore.
Of course, our trip was not just about the trouble. Oren made sure we had the most remarkable trip imaginable. He showed up at night when he wanted to take us someplace that wasn't on the itinerary, he transported my cousin's nephew ( who lives in Israel) when he needed a ride--he stayed with us if he thought we needed a local escort after hours… just gave it 100% every day all day. We got an incredible historical and actual perspective of the country. It was a perfectly planned trip and I would not have changed a thing.
I waited 62 years to get here, and I can't even contemplate that I almost changed ( and missed) this trip of a lifetime because of my perception of the trouble in this country. While the situation is horrible and upsetting as a human being, it was a non-issue as far as our security and in fact was very helpful in understanding the political dynamics that Israel faces.
If any of your future clients want to email me with questions I hope that you will refer them to my attention. Also, I hope that you will assign Oren to anyone coming if he's available because I can guarantee they'll have the best trip.
October 2015, Karen Williamson and Lori Zazove Israel, USA