Internet in Ashkelon
If you’re looking to make Aliyah and move to Israel or if you've already made Aliyah, the city of Ashkelon has probably piqued your interest. After all, this coastal city in the Southern District of Israel is known for its beautiful beaches with crystal clear water, numerous historical sites, and a strong sense of community.
While this fast-growing city has a significant Anglo population, it takes time to properly settle in and link up with them. For this reason, you should do some research on your own before moving to this beautiful city to ensure your life there is comfortable and pleasant.
But even if you're already living in Ashkelon, this article will help you understand all of the internet options Ashkelon has to offer, so you can stay connected to friends and family back home and make your transition to life in Israel as smooth as possible.
How to Set Up an Internet Connection in Ashkelon
Before exploring what internet providers are available in Israel, it’s essential to understand how to set up an internet connection in this city and country in general. This process differs from most English-speaking countries in that you need to purchase two services instead of one.
With that in mind, let’s go over the process of setting up an internet connection in Ashkelon step by step.
Step 1: Choose the Infrastructure for Your Internet Connection (Tashtit)
The first service you’ll need to purchase when moving to Israel is an infrastructure for the internet connection, referred to as Tashtit.
If you want to establish wired internet in your Ashkelon home, you’ll have two choices for Tashtit. The first is Bezeq, a company offering phone services, which provides internet infrastructure via dial-up and DSL. And the second one is HOT, which does so via cable internet.
The choice between the two primarily boils down to your preferences, location, and desired speed. HOT’s network tends to slow down when it gets overwhelmed by users since it’s based on shared bandwidth. When fewer users are surfing the internet, cable internet can achieve higher speeds than its phone counterpart.
(When it comes to location, HOT doesn’t offer services in many chareidi neighborhoods since the residents don’t use the company’s primary cable television services.)
Another important thing to note is that Bezeq’s modems use the PPPOE protocol (Point-to-Point Protocol over Ethernet). In contrast, HOT’s modems rely on LT2P (Layer Two Tunneling Protocol) and PPTP (Point-to-Point Tunneling Protocol) technology. So, when purchasing your router, make sure it’s compatible with the appropriate protocol.
Besides the two wired internet options in Ashkelon, you can also choose the mobile route. Most popular cellular providers in Israel offer infrastructure for your internet connection services. Plus, they can also serve as your internet service provider. When it comes to Ashkelon, the most popular options include Cellcom and Partner Communications.
Step 2: Obtain a Modem or a Router
If you choose the wired route, you must get a modem or a router. In most cases, the company that provides you with the internet infrastructure will also supply you with a modem or a router.
Keep in mind that the company maintains ownership of the device. This means that you’re basically renting the device while using the service. If you decide to cancel the service, you’ll also need to return the modem or router.
If you want to avoid this, you can simply purchase the device. For instance, Bezeq offers both options: renting and buying. However, if you choose the former, you’ll often receive a better device with more features.
To receive the modem or router, you’ll need to visit a Bezeq or HOT location personally. If you decide to send someone else to pick it up, you’ll need to authorize them to do so with a letter containing your ID number.
After the modem or router is picked up, it must be programmed. You’ll be instructed on how to do this by your service provider.
Step 3: Choose Your Internet Service Provider (Sapakim)
Your options are significantly better when choosing the internet service provider (ISP) in Ashkelon and beyond compared to choosing the infrastructure provider. Each ISP offers several different internet packages, so the choice between them primarily boils down to your priorities.
Some providers can also help you with getting the Tashtit. They’ll either do it for you at a slightly lower price or guide you through the entire process. This service can come in handy for someone who has just moved to Israel, so keep it in mind when choosing your ISP.
Another helpful thing to remember is that the internet service providers for Ashkelon and beyond are negotiable. So, you can bargain both before setting up the service and when your commitment period is nearing the end.
Which Internet Providers Are Available in Ashkelon?
Now that you know how internet services work in Israel, let’s discuss the internet options in Ashkelon.
For your ISP, you can choose between the following companies:
- TCS Telecom
- Partner Communications
- Bezeq International
- XFone 018
- 012 Smile
- 013 Netvision
- 099 Primo Communications
- Orange Israel
- Triple C
- XFone 018
As you can see, Ashkelon is well past the era when you could choose only between the most popular options in the country. Israel is quite advanced when it comes to internet connectivity, so new internet providers are constantly popping up.
The Israeli government has invested in Ashkelon, in particular, ensuring its residents have broadband access. In recent years, the focus has shifted toward providing high-speed fiber internet, which allows Ashkelon citizens to be more productive and efficient
Which Internet Providers Are Available in My Area of Ashkelon?
Thanks to the government’s efforts to provide access to high-speed internet to all residents of Ashkelon, most internet providers service all areas of Ashkelon. So, whether living in Afridar, Barnea, or Marina, you shouldn’t have any trouble getting service.
Still, if you want to be 100% sure before committing to an ISP, it might be best to contact the desired company directly and verify if it’s available in your exact location.
The leading internet service providers in Ashkelon – such as Bezeq, HOT, and TCS Telecom – are available in all areas of Ashkelon. However, TCS Telecom might be your best bet if you don’t speak Hebrew. This is the only widely used internet service provider that offers services entirely in English.
If you go for a mobile provider, keep in mind that not all companies offer 5G internet in Ashkelon.
For instance, Cellcom and Partner only provide 4G internet. HOT Mobile offers 5G to only a few areas in Ashkelon. Pelephone might not be the fastest internet provider in Ashkelon, but it covers the most comprehensive area with 5G. For this reason, this company might be your safest bet if you want high-quality mobile internet.
Where to Find Free Wi-Fi in Ashkelon
If you’ve moved to Ashkelon before setting up an internet connection, doing your research and contacting internet providers can be rather challenging. Luckily, the limitations on the public use of Wi-Fi hotspots were lifted a few years ago, so you won’t have any issues finding free Wi-Fi near you.
In fact, according to the Wi-Fi Map app, you can find as many as 185 free Wi-Fi hotspots in Ashkelon.
Of course, using public Wi-Fi comes with numerous risks to your sensitive information and online security. So, if you must use public Wi-Fi in Ashkelon, make sure to also use a virtual private network (VPN).
How Do Internet Providers in Ashkelon Line Up in Terms of Services and Speed?
In terms of services, most internet providers in Ashkelon provide several packages of varying internet speeds.
For instance, if you opt for HOT, you can choose from over 10 packages, ranging from 200 Mbps to 1,000 Mbps. Bezeq, on the other hand, starts even slower, with packages starting at 1,000 Mbps.
Besides the available packages, each ISP will also indicate whether the service includes an infrastructure, the price of the router and the installation, any available sales and promotions and whether the company offers fiber internet.
If you want the fastest internet in Ashkelon, fiber is the way to go.
However, not all internet options in Ashkelon are fiber options.
The most popular ISPs that do offer fiber internet in Ashkelon include HOT, Bezeq, and TCS Telecom. TCS Telecom, in particular, offers fiber optic internet that blows regular internet out of the water. This internet option is up to 1,000 faster than cable internet.
What Are People Saying About the Service?
Anglos visiting or moving to Ashkelon often point out that you might have a hard time getting around without a basic knowledge of the Hebrew language. Given the technical talk setting up an internet connection requires, speaking a different language than your customer support representative is nothing short of a nightmare.
For this reason, you should choose an ISP that offers services in English. TCS Telecom is the only popular provider that can offer you that, and they may be a lifesaver for an Anglo living in Ashkelon.
Chat with Other Anglo's in Ashkelon
You can also get vital firsthand information from other Anglos living in Ashkelon through social media. Here's a great place to start Phone & Internet Support for Anglos in Israel.
Why Consider TCS Telecom for Your Home Internet Services
High-speed internet has undoubtedly had a profound effect on life in Ashkelon. Individuals and businesses alike are taking advantage of the advancements in this area to pursue numerous endeavors.
As important as speed is to a newly arrived Olim, it’s also important to have clear communication with your chosen internet provider. Otherwise, you might sign with an ISP without fully realizing what you’re committing to.
TCS Telecom is a company that values inclusiveness above all. For this reason, it strives to provide exceptional customer service in English to all Olim who have yet to grasp the complexities of Hebrew. This will make any Olim actually feel heard and comfortable during such a major life event.
Of course, stellar customer service can be a reflection of the quality of services they represent. If you do business with TSC Telecom, you can expect high-speed fiber internet, regular upgrades as communication technology develops, and flexible plans.
Also, TCS Telecom can be your one-stop shop for all the necessary phone, TV, and internet services in Ashkelon. Get in touch with us for more information.