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How to Reach Haifa Congress Centre for ICML 2010

ICML 2010 is being organized at Haifa Congress Centre, located near the Haifa beach. If you are planning to attend the conference, you need to be armed with all possible information on how to reach the venue. So read on to know how you can reach the venue from Ben Gurion Airport, Israel’s main international airport, without much ado.

Train

Ben Gurion Airport boasts of a train station next to the arrivals halls for easy transportation. All you need to do is buy a ticket for HofHaCarmel, the nearest station, and board the train. From the station, you can then take a taxi to your hotel.

The conference starts on Monday but if you plan to explore the city over the weekend, remember that the trains usually do not run on Shabbat – from Friday afternoon till late Saturday evening.

Bus

If you are more adventurous and would like to get a feel of Israel, take a bus from the airport. Take the direct bus 947 to HofHaCarmel station, Haifa. The trip takes around 2.5 hrs. and would cost you USD 10. The ticket can be purchased after boarding the bus.

On reaching HofHaCarmel station, take a city bus that goes to your destination. You can check the map or just ask around the station to find out which bus to board. However, if like most of the participants you are staying at a hotel in Carmel Centre, you can straightaway take bus 3 or bus 133.

The buses also do not operate on Shabbat.

Taxi

If you are feeling luxurious and don’t want to use public transport you can hire a personal or shared taxi. To get a personal taxi, go to the taxi stand just outside the terminal building, tell the dispatcher where you want to go, and he will direct you to the correct taxi. Remember to ask for the fare amount so that you do not get fleeced. Also, fares from the airport are fixed, so do not let the driver use the meter.

You can also use shared taxis, or rather minibuses seating 10, known as Sheruts. You will easily find them lined up outside Level G of arrivals hall. It is cheaper almost by half as compared to a private taxi but the downside is you might have to wait a bit till it is full.

Almost all international car rental services like Avis, Europcar and Hertz have their booking offices at the airport. So you can even rent a car to reach your destination.