Israel Railways – Enjoy your journey!
Israel Railways is a government-owned company responsible for transporting passengers and cargo all over the country. At Israel Railways, our goal is to make connections, between cities and settlements, and between people and communities. We're passionate about opening up diverse possibilities and new social and economic opportunities for employment, education, culture, leisure and entertainment. We see it as our mission to improve people's quality of life by reducing travel distances and making it easier, safer, faster and more convenient to move from one place to another.
Customers are the center of what we do
You, the customer, are at the heart of everything we do. That's why we strive continuously to improve the services we offer and to make the travel experience an enjoyable one. We are constantly engaged in improving service reliability levels, increasing train frequency, opening new stations and upgrading existing stations, expanding parking lots, upgrading information channels, and many more projects designed to enable our travelers to get from one place to another easily, comfortably and rapidly while, of course, enjoying the journey...
The beginning of the way
Israel Railways began life as an auxiliary unit in the Ministry of Transport, upon the establishment of the State of Israel. In 1988, responsibility for its operation was transferred to the Ports and Railways Authority and in December 1996, the Israeli Government decided to separate it from the Ports and Railways Authority and establish a government railway company. In 2003 Israel Railways became an independent company owned by the Government.
Israel Railways in numbers
As of 2016: 60 million journeys a year, 220 thousand daily trips in 468 trains running every day within 12 lines, departing from 61 passenger stations nationwide. Annual turnover is NIS 2.3 billion from current operations as well as investment cash flow of about NIS 1.7 billion coming from development activity. In 2015 and 2016, the Company issued bonds totaling around NIS 1 billion per issue and became an audited corporation subject to the Securities Regulations in respect of transparency and efficiency.
Israel Railways is developing at high speed
Israel Railways is the fastest growing transport company: 11% growth in the number of passengers and over NIS 2.7 billion invested in development projects in 2017.
As part of the development impetus, new railway tracks are being laid and new stations are being inaugurated: The Ahihud Train Station, the Karmi’el Train Station, two train stations in Ra’anana, the Hamifrats Central Train Station, the Jerusalem - Yitzhak Navon Train Station, the Kiryat Mal’akhi – Yo’av Train Station. The Mazkeret Bayta Train Station is expected to be inaugurated in the future.
Israel Railways recently inaugurated the fast line to Jerusalem – a national project that connects Jerusalem to Tel Aviv in less than 30 minutes. As part of the project, 57 km. of new track was laid, 5 tunnels were excavated and 8 bridges were constructed.
In parallel, the company is working on materializing the electrification project, as part of which all trains will be electrically powered, ensuring effective, environmentally friendly operation, rapid and more comfortable trips and, due to the length of the trip, there will also be more seats available.
In addition, the Sharon Railway line project has been launched, which connects the Sharon District cities (Kfar Saba, Ra’anana and Herzliya) to the coastal railway line.
Israel Railways is promoting development projects of new maintenance complexes, which will meet the maintenance requirements of a growing fleet of trains which will be adapted to the electrification era. Projects for the replacement of the signaling and communications system are under way, which will install advanced systems that will enable increasing the frequency of the trains (ETRMS) and the establishment of railway sidings for freight trains from the ports to various destinations and the establishment of additional freight terminals all over the country.
Israel Railways is acting to promote new projects (such as the fourth railway track along the Ayalon Corridor, the eastern railway track, doubling the coastal railway track and connecting the tracks for the transition of the IDF bases to the Negev.
Israel Railways has two subsidiaries:
The Company for development of the Israel Railway Sites, which operates the business-commercial development of the land at the railway station sites. The Company's goal is to plan, initiate and establish an intensive system of land uses for employment and commerce at the sites of the train stations and in the nearby areas, so that visitor traffic within these sites will depend on the scope of passengers using private vehicles. The land development will generate future sources of income and will infuse funding from the private sector for the funding of the train operation, reducing the State's support and increasing its autonomy – both for development and ongoing operation.
The Cargo Railway Company aims to increase economic value in the field of cargo transportation, optimize the existing system, and widen the basket of complementary logistics services for Israel Railway's activity, in order to serve end customers and provide them with a comprehensive solution in the field of transportation. The subsidiary aims to achieve its goals by utilizing railway cars owned by it, or owned by other corporations, and for this purpose it will execute investments and development of designated infrastructures (including transportation) for cargo transportation.
5 Facts you never knew about Israel Railways
Every day, about 145 thousand people choose to leave the car at home and travel by train.
Passenger trains travel approximately 50 thousand km every day.
Passenger trains remove approximately 65 thousand cars from the road during rush hours.
Freight trains in full occupancy remove approximately 70 trucks off the road.
Over the last 5 years, the number of train journeys have increased from approximately 35 million passengers a year to approximately 60 million passengers – a rise of 70%.