Taking double the time and double the cost, the fast train between Tel Aviv and Jerusalem finally launched its first successful journey on Saturday evening, December 21. The project was birthed in 2001, was meant to be completed in 2008, yet has seen many road blocks and financial shortages throughout the years. The train, originally projected to cost NIS 2.8 billion, was completed at the cost of NIS 7 billion, and required the construction of five tunnels and nine bridges.
In September 2018, the railway journey was partially completed and started its trial runs. However, patience is a virtue. What used to take two stops and up to two hours is now only 34 minutes between the two major cities, which span about 50 kilometers. Before there was no straight route between the two cities and so passengers needed to switch trains, which meant delays and breakdowns. However, a new wave of transportation is open, and for only NIS 22 per ride, it will save many travelers precious time.
Trains will travel every 30 minutes between Tel Aviv and Jerusalem from Sunday through Thursday, and Saturday evenings. The high-speed train is a piece of the new wave of transportation aiming to make travel more effective in an increasingly congested Israeli world.