Wedding Traditions in Israel
Updated: May 27
Everyone loves a wedding! The music, the food, the abundant joy. What are weddings like in Israel? With so many different cultures mixed together, they are for sure an experience worth having!
In this case, Israel makes it easy. Money is the best option! Checks or cash only -- the norm is about 350 NIS for a single or 600 NIS for a couple. Gifts can go much higher for people who are close to the couple.
COME HUNGRY and make sure you arrive for the Kabalat panim! There is very likely to be a buffet before the ceremony and the main meal. The buffet before can have all sorts of delicious options -- sushi, pasta, fish, and then the main meal is sure to be amazing -- steak or chicken, of course.
Weddings in Israel are definitely less formal than overseas. You can see men wearing jeans and a button-down, and for girls, a classic dress is the go-to. Commonly black, but anything goes! Only white is a no-no unless the bride asked. It can be surprising to Olim who attend their first Israeli wedding!
Other cultural traditions
Israel has such a mix of cultures, it's no surprise that there are many unique traditions.
For example, the wedding henna. Mainly done by Mizrahi Jews from North Africa and the Middle East, the henna is a fascinating ceremony. A few days before the wedding, the bride, groom, and guests get henna applied to their hands. At Morrocan hennas, they dress in traditional clothing and eat delicious Morrocan food. At a Yemenite henna party, the bride dresses in a huge, ornate headdress, called a tashbuklulu. No matter what culture the henna is, it's sure to have lots of dancing, happiness, and delicious food!
Don't worry about not being on time for an Israeli wedding -- they don't start on schedule and you might find yourself there before the bride and groom!
You can expect to dance all night, drink a lot, and fill your belly with all of the best foods!
Hope you get invited to an Israeli wedding soon!