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Means of payment in Israel

The means of payment via which the general public can execute payments are cash, checks, electronic debits, debit cards, account debiting authorizations, payments via the Internet and by telephone and more.

Set out below is a brief explanation of the main means of payment in Israel:


  • Cash - notes and coins, which are the most liquid means of payment

  • Check - a document in which a person ("the drawer") instructs the bank at which he
    manages his account, to pay money from his account to a third party ("the payee") at a predetermined time. The check, as a document, can be endorsed (unless the drawer restricts his endorsement on the check, and the legal conditions permitting this have been fulfilled), and in such case the endorsee (the person to whom the check has been endorsed
    to) can demand redemption from the drawer or from the endorser
  • EFT (Electronic Funds Transfer) - electronic funds transfer from a payee to a recipient by means of communication between information systems, without physical transfer of paperwork, banknotes or checks. A Zahav transfer (see below) and a transfer via MASAV are examples of this means of payment in Israel
  • Zahav transfer - an electronic transfer executed via the Zahav system during the business day, usually within a few minutes. A transfer of this type is final and irrevocable.
    Debit card - a means of payment that is used as a substitute for cash and checks. When paying by means of a debit card, the payer presents the card or gives his details. The supplier or recipient of the payment contracts the clearing house, which sends him the payment and debits the customer

  • Payment card – a means of payment that serves as an alternative to cash and checks.  When using a payment card, the customer presents the card or provides its details.  The supplier or payment receiver contacts the merchant acquirer, which transfers the payment to him and debits the customer.


  • Credit card - a type of debit card, which is used as an alternative means of payment to cash; the customer is usually charged for the transaction at a date later than the transaction date

  • Pre-paid card - a type of debit card, which has to be charged in advance with the maximum amount for debiting. Each payment is deducted from the customer's balance until the balance is zeroed.