February 13 – 22, 2023
March 20 – 29, 2023
Come join Jewish eighth graders from all over Chicago and embark on a journey to remember. You’ll explore must-see spots in Israel, dive into immersive, educational experiences and make life-long connections. Your IsraelNow trip awaits!
Get a taste of what to expect
IsraelNow trips are packed with different opportunities to get immersed in Jewish culture and history and connect with Israelis and the land. There are even Track Days where participants can customize their trip to their preferences.
Visit historical sites and museums and go on an archaeological dig.
Explore Jerusalem and Tel Aviv and the breadth of Israeli culture in both.
Make friends with Israelis and engage in social justice projects.
Trek through the Negev desert and swim in the Dead Sea.
Mark your calendar
Find the latest IsraelNow trip, info session and orientation dates for the city of Chicago.
“I absolutely want to go back! The whole time, I felt so welcome, and I made so many new friends (Israeli and American). To me, Jewish identity is about people. Israel was the place where I felt like I met my best friends in a week, and everywhere we went I thought ‘wow, these people understand me.'”
– IsraelNow Alum
“I’ve made new friends, I’ve learned new things, I’ve grown a stronger connection to Israel and Judaism. I had such a fun time with the people and things in Israel on this trip. Everywhere we went, I was amazed. Even more amazed than the first time I came to Israel this past summer. It was an amazing experience!”
– IsraelNow Alum
“Going on this trip was one of the greatest decisions that I have made. I have created so many bonds with new kids and staff. Everyone was so welcoming on the trip and made me feel such a strong connection to Israel. This trip has just helped me see the start of what my life can be like in the future as a Jew. Thank you for giving me this experience, IsraelNow!!”
– IsraelNow Alum
“It was such an amazing experience being able to connect with people through your religion knowing that while we all were very different, we had one thing in common. I don’t get to do that very often because most people in my school aren’t Jewish.”
– IsraelNow Alum
Frequently asked questions for Chicago
Check out these top questions for Chicago families and visit our IsraelNow FAQ page for more answers.
The IsraelNow program fee is all-inclusive, including airfare. The Chicago area subsidized participant fee is $2,750. We can offer this significantly reduced rate thanks to the generosity of our partners and supporters.
The actual cost of the trip is approximately $5,000 per teen. To assist families who cannot afford the $2,750 subsidized fee, we ask those who are financially able to consider paying as much of the actual trip cost of $5,000 as possible.
Chicago’s IsraelNow program, in partnership with Jewish United Fund, offers the following:
- B’NAI MITZVAH JUF CERTIFICATE: Apply the teen’s JUF $120 B’nai Mitzvah Israel Experience Certificate.
- JUF SKIP PROGRAM: Teens enrolled in the JUF’s SKIP (Send a Kid to Israel Program) may use up to $500 of SKIP funds. To learn if you are enrolled in SKIP, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
- NEED-BASED SCHOLARSHIP: Families with greater financial need may apply for scholarship AFTER completing the IsraelNow application by clicking on the following link: FACTS Financial Aid Application. Financial aid applicants will be notified of awards at the end of November, following the meeting of the JUF Scholarship Committee. If you have questions about the FACTS application, please call the FACTS helpline at 866-315-9262, 7AM-9PM Monday-Friday and Saturday 8AM-2PM.
The IsraelNow Chicago trip cancellation timeline is as follows:
Cancellation on or Before September 30, 2022
A family that gives Jewish United Fund of Metropolitan Chicago (JUF) and IsraelNow Education Foundation (INEF) written notice of cancellation on or before September 30, 2022, and completes the IsraelNow withdrawal form will be eligible for a full refund, including the deposit.
Cancellation between October 1, 2022-November 18, 2022
A family that gives JUF/INEF written notice of cancellation between October 1, 2021-November 18, 2022 and completes the IsraelNow withdrawal form, will be eligible for a refund of all money paid to JUF less $500.
Cancellation after November 18, 2022
No refunds will be granted after November 18, 2022. A family must still complete and submit the JUF/INEF withdrawal form to formally withdraw from the program.
As you start high school, we want to help you stay connected! Springboard, Chicago’s hub for Jewish Teen Programs, can help you learn about amazing opportunities for Chicago area Jewish teens.
- Make sure to check out the Community Calendar regularly and follow Springboard on Instagram, to stay up to date on great programs happening this summer and fall.
- Learn about Access Grants that can help reduce the cost of your first multi-day program like a convention, retreat, or Shabbaton.
- Meet with a member of the Springboard team in person at ice cream or coffee shops or online to have one-on-one conversations and discover the programs are the best fit for you.
Please fill out the form below to get in touch with the IsraelNow Chicago Team.