Frequently Asked Questions

Often, excavation volunteers have a number of questions that relate to travel dates, airport arrival, payments, our cancellation policy, their time in Israel, and departure.

To make this information more freely available, we have answered a number frequently asked questions. If however, you are unable to find your answer here or elsewhere on the website, feel free to email Angela at

Payments and Cancellations

Q: How much does it cost?

A: Our expedition charges by the week, and we will announce the costs of the season at the opening of registration for the new season.

Q: What does my payment fee cover the cost of?

A: The participation fee at Masada accounts for the

  • Accommodation at Masada Youth Hostel.
  • Food (3 meals a day, Afternoon Tea),
  • Access to on-site guest lectures from world renowned experts,
  • Transport to the excavation accommodation each Sunday and Friday.

Q: When do I have to pay for the excavation?

A: Volunteers must complete payment prior to the launch of the season.

Any (unexplained) delays in the payment may unfortunately compromise an individual’s registration. Volunteers with payment problems are encouraged to contact us to discuss possible payment plans.

Invoices for Masada 2024 will be delivered in late 2023.

Q: Do I incur a fee if I cancel my registration?

A: Cancellation prior to December 1, 2023: will result in a full refund, minus a 150 NIS registration and banking fee.

Cancellation after December 1, 2023, until the beginning of the dig: Will result in a full refund, minus a 1000 NIS cancellation fee for each week, and a 150 NIS registration and banking fee.

Cancellation during the season or without announcement: Will receive no refund.

Cancellation at any time due to Covid-19 will receive a full refund, minus a 150 NIS registration and banking fee. Please contact our admin for more information.

Q: Who has to pay for the tax associated with the bank transfer?

A: Volunteers are responsible for accounting for the cost of any tax generated by their preferred form of payment, so please be sure to pay close attention to the additional fee.

The 2024 Excavation

Q: What are the dates for the new season?

A: We are a winter excavation and our season normally occurs within Tel Aviv University’s winter semester break. We will announce the dates of our newest season on Facebook and Instagram, as well as, updated right here on this site.

Q: Can I connect to other volunteers prior to the excavation start date?

A: Definitely! We will open a group chat with our whole team closer to the date of excavation. We have simply used Whatsapp in the past, so that everyone can connect together no matter where they are from in the world. An invitation (with instructions) will be included in your welcome package.

Q: When will I receive an equipment list and the details for the Saturday afternoon bus?

A: Information regarding equipment, transport, and the excavation schedule will be sent to all registered volunteers in close to the new season. You can also find it in our Masada Info Pack.

Q: Can people volunteer who are under the age of 18?

A: We do accept volunteers of many ages, however a legal guardian must accompany volunteers aged between 12-15. Volunteers who are 16-17 must submit a signed form of consent by a legal guardian alongside a photocopy of their guardian’s passport.

Q: Can I request roommates?

A: Absolutely! Attach to your registration your roommate preferences. Alternatively, feel free to email us at with your request.

We will do our best to accommodate your request, but in some cases it may not be possible.

Q: Where do I stay on the weekends?

A: During the weekend (Friday evening until Sunday afternoon), volunteers are required to vacate the Hostel. Buses depart from the Hostel to Jerusalem, then onto Tel Aviv on Friday afternoon, where volunteers are invited to organize their own weekend accommodation.

A break from the site affords volunteers with the opportunity to explore Israel’s many sites and customize their weekend experience.

If you would like to stay at the Hostel over the weekend, please organize your accommodation directly with Masada Youth Hostel. The excavation assumes no responsibility for any plans arranged outside of the excavation working week.

Q: What if it rains?!

A: Flooding is common in the desert, particularly in February. Volunteers are encouraged to pack extra clothes and supplies in case of unplanned delays caused by flooding. Floods will interrupt the journey back to Jerusalem/Tel Aviv, as key roads may be affected.

Q: What is the weather like?

A: The weather at Masada in January and February is very dynamic. Volunteers can expect to experience wind, rain, and sun. As a result, we encourage volunteers to pack clothes for a range of weather and bring essentials such as:

  • A jumper/sweater
  • A rain-resistant jacket
  • A scarf
  • Lip Balm (to combat wind)
  • Sunscreen

Q: Equipment? What do I bring?


  • Five changes of socks. (Don’t underestimate how much you will want clean socks at the end of a digging week.)
  • First Aid Kit: We also recommend that while we have First Aid on site, it never hurts to prepare your own. i.e. Band-Aids/Bandage tape (blisters, they can happen), needle and thread (trust us, you may lose buttons or tear work pants…), antiseptic cream (for the odd scratch!), moisturizer, standard: Paracetamol, Ibuprofen, Aspirin.
  • Weather Smart Clothes: long pants for excavation, breathable shirts, rain jacket (if you have one), excavation gloves, a hat (for good measure), a large water bottle or two (you must bring 2 Liters of water to site each day).
  • A face mask
  • Sunscreen/Lotion 50+
  • A backpack for the field (for the above mentioned water, hat, and sunscreen).