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Israel / Jordan Border Crossing (Yitzhak Rabin / Wadi Araba Border)

A few weeks prior to my arrival an Englishman arrived at the border and was refused entry. He was told that there had been a recent rule change by the Jordanian Government, and whilst tourists could cross, tourists with motorbikes couldn’t. Upon finding out about this I went to the Jordanian embassy in Tel-Aviv, where they said I could cross. However, when I asked for written confirmation they said it wasn’t necessary. I approached the border with trepidation!

I pulled up at the Israel border and was instantly told the Jordanians wouldn’t let my motorbike into the country, I had to pay to leave Israel, and if I returned I wouldn’t get my money back. I smiled and said I’ll risk it!

Getting my bike out of Israel was easier than getting it in. I paid 129 NIS (£30 / 33 Euros) for the motorbike and me to leave the country. As I didn’t want an exit stamp from Israel, they didn’t stamp my passport. Just before leaving into ‘no mans land’ another guard came over and again said ‘you’ll be back, they won’t let your motorbike in’.

At the Jordanian border, I first went to customs where I thought they were being thorough, what I realised after leaving the border was, they stole my ‘Buck, lock-knife’! Anyway that took 20 minutes. I then went through immigration, I asked them not to stamp my passport as I didn’t want an entry stamp into Jordan at the israeli Border, and they obliged. They stamped a separate piece of paper as they do in Israel. I brought insurance for my bike and had to pay for some road tax / registration and everything was done.

The whole process took 2 hours. I rode out of the border gates where I was instantly welcomed into the country by about 10 taxi drivers. As it was well over 40° I stopped for a drink with them. We talked and laughed, what a great welcome. I’m going to like it here I thought! It’s all about the people…

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