7 Do’s And Don’ts While Enjoying Chabad’s Services During Your Travels

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Thousands of Chabad-Lubavitch emissaries gather in front of Chabad-Lubavitch world headquarters. (Photo: Mendel Grossbaum for Chabad.org )
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Update: With hundreds of passengers traveling to and from Israel while utilizing Chabad House services around the world, now is a good time to bump and share this post.


Over the years I’ve spent Shabbos at Chabad Houses from Melbourne to Paris, Chiang Mai to Buenos Aires, Kobe to Hong Kong, Tokyo to Venice, Sao Paulo to Oxnard, Hollywood to Singapore, and Cape Town to Kyoto. Each one stands out as an incredibly memorable and moving experience.

And Antarctica, naturally.

 

While I can get by pretty much anywhere in the world with a HotLogic and a Polar Bear cooler bag, having a Chabad House makes things much easier and more pleasant.

Mrs. Freidy Orgad’s viral op-ed is an excellent place to start before reaching out to Chabad Shluchim for help. It surprised me, but it seems many people don’t realize that Shluchim are not funded by any central organization and every dollar is self-fundraised.

She notes on the DansDeals Facebook group that the article was translated from her original version in Hebrew and does have some differences, including that her article was written for all travelers and not just frum travelers.

I’m not a Shliach, so I can share some additional insight from a traveler’s perspective. Here are some of my thoughts:

  1. Do your own research BEFORE contacting Shluchim.
    • Shluchim as a whole are incredibly busy. The majority of them cater to their local community’s needs, but some of them do focus on tourists. Be sure to do a deep dive into their websites, which are often linked to via Chabad.org’s Chabad House locator (or the DDF thread for unofficial Chabad Houses), before contacting them. Those websites often, though not always, will have answers to your questions about the services available in that Chabad House.
    • Shluchim aren’t your Google Maps or trip planners. Type in your location into the Chabad House locator to find the closest Shliach, rather than guessing who it might be and then asking how far they are from you. It’s not fair to call a Shliach asking about kosher food availability 100 miles away from him.
    • As I’ve said for years, I do wish the Chabad.org team would make a simple FAQ on the search results page with information such as, is there a daily minyan, does the Chabad House offer kosher takeout food on weekdays or Shabbos, are Shabbos meals available, are there kosher restaurants nearby, are there hotels within walking distance, etc. It would solve a pain point for both Shluchim and travelers looking for quick information about a Chabad House. But that being said, many Chabad House websites do have that information available on their sites (such as Bal Harbour, Flagstaff, Orlando, Puerto Vallarta, and many more), so take the time to research before you contact them. If Shluchim keep their information updated and organized like that it will certainly save them from having to deal with an abundance of information requests.
  2. If you are visiting somewhere with Shluchim, ask them what they need before you travel.
    • Shluchim sacrifice the comforts of living in a Jewish community in order to connect with Jews in every corner of the planet. Whenever possible and even if I don’t need their services, I reach out to Shluchim to see if I can bring them something from home. Before I traveled to Kyoto earlier this year, I reached out to the official and unofficial Shluchim to see what they needed, which was good as I learned that the official Chabad House had closed over COVID. Rabbi Moti Grumach gave me lots of Kyoto travel tips and told me that they had no need for meat products, but that there are no cholov yisroel dairy products in Japan. I asked him for specific requests and loaded a Polar Bear bag up with them. His kids shrieked with happiness at seeing goodies like yogurt and cream cheese that we take for granted!
  3. Set your expectations at a reasonable level.
    • Most Shluchim will be happy to accommodate you when possible, but sometimes feel abused by visitors that expect the world from them. Shluchim have various standards in whether they accommodate tourist’s needs and they certainly are not obligated to provide you with a comfortable vacation or trip planning. In some locations, it’s simply not possible to cater to tourists’ needs at all and travelers need to accept that and not bad-mouth the Shliach for not doing more for tourists.
    • After researching, you can politely ask a Shliach if there will be a minyan or let them know that you have half a minyan with you, but just realize that there’s only so much that can be organized in small communities that may not have any frum local congregants. If a Shliach says that he can’t help you, take that at face value and decide if you need to find another locale to vacation based on that. On the other hand, some Shluchim will be happy to help organize a minyan, especially if you can bring most of one to them.
    • Also on that note, some Chabad houses will have lavish Shabbos meals with five-star dining, while others may leave you wishing you brought some extra crackers to eat on Shabbos, and others won’t have anything on Shabbos at all. Some Chabad Houses are run out of a Shliach’s home and may not even get a Minyan together on Shabbos, nor do they offer meals. Again, do your research (much of this can be found or asked on DDF), reach out to the Shliach if things on their website are not clear, and temper your expectations as to what will be offered.
  4. Don’t expect things to operate as they do back home.
    • Many Chabad Houses primarily serve people who are still learning about their Jewish heritage and may not yet be Sabbath-observant. The Chabad approach to Judaism is that every mitzvah and good deed is worth going to the end of the world to accomplish and not to push people away for what they don’t do. The shul may not be geared towards you, so don’t try to shape the experience around what you’re used to, just take it in and enjoy something that might not be in your comfort zone. And certainly, act appropriately around people who may not yet be frum and leave the rebuke at home.
  5. Don’t kvetch about food pricing.
    • Almost all Shluchim that sell food do so as a fundraiser for their local activities and price the food accordingly. You wouldn’t kvetch about pricing to a restaurant or a hotel in middle of nowhere that had kosher food, so give the Shliach the same respect. If the pricing doesn’t make sense for you, just bring your own food.
    • There are exceptions to this rule, such as in Thailand and other Southeast Asia Chabad Houses with restaurants, where food costs are heavily subsidized by donors so that Israeli backpackers will keep kosher. You should definitely leave a donation to cover those subsidies.
    • Of course, there are differences between a Chabad House that happens to have Shabbos meals in exchange for a donation and Chabad Houses that operate restaurants for tourists. It’s certainly within your rights to complain about a restaurant order that wasn’t to your satisfaction, but please don’t do that to a Chabad House offering you a Shabbos meal!
  6. Shluchim are humans too.
    • Shluchim have many responsibilities. They are not in the hospitality business and sometimes their job (it’s not really a job, it’s the life they’ve chosen to live) can be very stressful. When they may not have your food order ready, they could be arranging a Jewish Burial for a community member. A Shliach can have a bad day with many demands and it’s important to keep in mind that they are only human. You have to be prepared to take things in stride and have alternative plans as they aren’t there to cater to your needs.
  7. Shluchim have to fundraise every dollar, a generous donation and a thank you will go a long way.
    • If you utilize a Chabad House for a minyan, or especially if a Shliach has gone out of his way to help you, be sure to leave a generous donation. Shluchim receive no central Chabad funding, they need to fundraise for their operations and salary. It’s an easy way to say thank you and make them feel appreciated. There’s no greater investment than in somebody that is sure to pay it forward.
    • Sometimes you won’t have any interaction with the Shluchim directly, but you will benefit from their years of hard work. For example, guests at the Grand Hyatt Baha Mar have an incredible kosher experience, but that is only possible thanks to years of sweat and labor from the local Chabad. It’s always a good idea to donate to something you benefit from, the vast majority of people don’t do this, so really any amount helps!
    • Regardless, if you have taken advantage of any service, be sure to say thanks in person to the Shliach and Shlucha and/or write them a thank you note via email after your trip. It can mean the world to someone!

And for heaven’s sake, don’t be a kafui tov (roughly translated, an ingrate) with derogatory comments or jokes while enjoying what Chabad and the Shliach are able to offer you, to make your vacation more comfortable.

A Shabbos in a far-flung Chabad House may be one of the most unique experiences of your life. I’ve seen more lives changed at a Chabad House over a Shabbos during my travels than can be imagined. Take it all in slowly and go along for the ride while remaining laid back and appreciative for the infrastructure that exists because of the Lubavitcher Rebbe’s incredible foresight decades ago in setting up the most incredible global network that Judaism has ever seen!

Where have you experienced a memorable Shabbos with Chabad? What other tips do you have?

Leave a Reply

124 Comments On "7 Do’s And Don’ts While Enjoying Chabad’s Services During Your Travels"

All opinions expressed below are user generated and the opinions aren’t provided, reviewed or endorsed by any advertiser or DansDeals.

drodavis

Thank you for this excellent article and suggestions!!

Let\'s go!

Dan – excellent article. Can you clarify what differences there are between “official” and “unofficial” Shluchim?

S

Official ones are listed on Chabad.org, may receive a start up grant from HQ, and probably have some uniform standards to keep to. Operationally, they are almost always on their own to fundraise.

Unoffical are totally independent from HQ.

Aj

There are some Shluchim that operate in various places that aren’t under the umbrella organization of Agudas Chassidei Chabad and hence aren’t recognized as officials Shluchim.
If you search on the chabad.org website for shluchim they won’t show up but they are there.

How there are unofficial shluchim varies on the circumstances of the place and people who are there.
As well, there may be a chabad rabbi who is a rabbi of a shul, but not there as a shliach but would still be able to help.

TA

Love this!

Leah613

This is fab.

yelped

What an amazing way of putting things. I really appreciate your perspective and your knack of laying things out in a way anyone can understand.

Juke

You nailed it all. Thank you Dan.

M

Thank you for this great article. Personally, my wife and I research in advance and plan on staying in places that davka have a chabad house that has meals available, and paid or not, always leave a generous donation. If you can afford a vacation, you can afford to donate to the shluchim.

Anonymous

Beautiful. If people adopt these attitudes, it will benefit both sides, and motivate constant improvement.

MMM

Tip:
When my wife and I went to Morocco on our honeymoon – someone recommended, get in touch with Chabad when you land & give them a donation right away. (I think we also offered to bring anything from NY)
Don’t be that guy that only gives a donation afterwards when chabad steps in for you.

Our flight on Thursday from Casablanca back to NY ended up getting moved an hour earlier without notifying us, so we missed our flight & chabad set us up with a family for Shabbos.
We felt comfortable reaching out to Chabad since we already reached out previously, we offered to bring things from NY, we donated etc.
We even met the Chabad Rabbi at some hilula seuda, so he knew us a little more personally.

Safe travels!!

mm

beautiful

jason

this needs to be said. thank you for sharing! soooo true

Chaya Mushka

Fantastic post, and I think it’s valuable coming from a traveler’s perspective even more so perhaps than from a shliach/shlucha.

On another note, this post reminded me that we’re still waiting for Antarctica part 5 if I’m not mistaken!!

Janice

I just returned from Jackson, Wyoming where we brought a suitcase of chalav Yisrael (and pareve chocolate chips) as we have done every time we have gone there for the last 10+ years.

We always call to ask what we can bring as they have to order a full semi ($$$) any time they restock as they are hours from the nearest interstate and even further from major cities. Not to mention they are a lovely family.

It’s worth the trip for the views!

WY? Why not!

Regards to Rabbi Mendelsohn! He was a bochur shliach in my yeshiva some years ago. They recently brought out another family on shlichus to WY. He made a minyan for Robert Kraft to say kaddish when his wife passed away.

veniceyid

Venezia!!!
Hands down best place to be shabbos in europe!

Tavster

Excellent article.

I think that Shluhim should make very clear on their respective websites that they are self-funded.

I have been at more Chabad houses than I can possibly count and most ‘guests’ I came across were convinced that ‘Chabad Central’ finances everything. And I’m sure that more people would donate if they understood that most Shluhim desperately need donations.

I have the habit of staying in touch with the Shluhim I’ve met throughout the years – except for one or two, hardly anyone ever a fundraising campaign etc. I’m assuming it’s related to Chabad’s humility

BN

Interesting you say that because as someone who grew up on shlichus, I have definitely seen the fundraising model change. Nowadays most Chabad centers run an annual fundraiser campaign to bring in funds so they can support the local Jewish community and when applicable, be helpful for tourists as well.

PS – if you check out the about page on many Chabad house websites, they often have a note there specifying that they are funded by donations and don’t receive any central funding.

Zalman

After enjoying a wonderful shabbos at a chabad shul out of town, (I was invited for the meals but brought along food) I told the Rabbi and his wife that as colorful as Chabad is , they remain colorblind. They loved my comment (and donation) . In my humble opinion, what the shluchim do is amazing and mesiras nefesh on a personal level. But, having a network of shlucim covering the entire world is an accomplishment beyond what I can describe and a testimony to the greatness and vision of the rebbe .
P.s. while you state that you are not a shiluach, you might consider yourself a ‘shiluach without borders ‘

Dov bennish

Kudos for helping out unofficial shluchim

ShmuliT

+1

As an official shliach myself, ty Dan for including the official and unofficial together. May all soon follow in your path with true achdus and ahavas yisroel to fulfill the Rebbes ratzon.

As usual, as much as I love and benefit from the deals, your articles are really the best part of your website.

You did mention about no centeral funding, one of the biggest myths about Chabad, but one point to stress, when you are ready to leave a donation, please go directly to that shliachs website to donate. Each Shliach can tell you the countless times people have said, Thank you so much, we left you a generous donation on Chabad.org!

Moshe

I have has shabbos accommodation meaning food and staying at a local hotel in Niagra falls, by Rabbi Zalman Zalzmans. He can throw a shabbos tish for 30 to 100 people in the blink of an eye. With a shul and great 3 meal shabbos and affordable, do your next vacation in niagra falls with https://www.jewishniagarafalls.com/
.I have been there 4 times just because I enjoy shabbos with reb zalman in the summer.

srul

100 percent its a amzing chabad house a few minute walk away from the fallson the canadian side and they have a restuaraunt with kosher food

Traveldreams

Celebrated Sukkos with the Chabad of Cancun and it was amazing! The delucious food, the warmth, the fun and we saved money not doing an official program. Definitely left a donation on top of the meal cost but still so worth it. Plus, it was only a 5 min walk from gorgeous hotels. If you’re interested in meeting friendly Jews from around the world in a frum and festive atmosphere, I highly recommend it.

Yidel

WOW! very well said.
I remember you had a similar message a few years ago, regarding offering to bring kosher stuff, and since then I always offer that.

and on my last trip to Jamaica, when I reached out to Rabbi Raskin to see if he needs anything, he told me that since this year was a very busy season with kosher travelers, he ran out of chicken completely! and the Shochet was only due to come in 2 weeks.
So I offered to bring him chicken, and not only did I do him, and the tourist for the next 2 weeks a favor, I also benefited, because he got me a permit for the chicken and milk for him, and he also added the stuff I wanted to bring along for myself to the permit. so it was a win win.

ejf

Great post and reminder to show הַכָּרַת טוֹב. Have been at the chabad house for davening or a meal from Cancun and Hong Kong to Mumbai and Maui and have had great experiences. Have to show appreciation in every way possible and that you can.

Mark

My wife just spent a Shabbos in a distant locale b/c a close relative was in the hospital over Shabbos. The Chabad Rabbi and shluchim (two separate families) were incredibly helpful and kind and really took care of her. We were so grateful that we sent them expensive gifts soon after. I cry when I think of how different her Shabbos would have been without their kindness (at best a hard couch in the waiting room with pretzels for an entire Shabbos.)
I’m not a traveler and don’t do the whole Chabad shluchim Shabbos thing, but if it ever happens, I’ll be so glad to call and ask what they can use. A small way to help another Jew who helps so many others.

Steve

Calling ahead to find out what is needed is common courtesy. It is a shame that people even need to be told to do this.

It is not just cookies, candy and Cholev Yisrael. I have brought emergency medicine that simply could not be obtained at my destination without extensive delay. I have brought kosher baby formula. I even brought 8 computers that Brooklyn wanted to send down, but did not have an economical way. (I had plenty of extra luggage allotment from my employer and a clear path through local Customs).

I ALWAYS leave a overly-generous donation.

To steve

Greatly appreciated. It may be a small thing to you but it makes a huge difference when living out in the boondocks to get kosher food and stuff.

Nolad

(Speaking as a non – Lubavitcher) Unfortunately Chabad houses are used and then abused!

Moshe

If you are on a cruise with those frozen meals and dock in cozumel Mexico., look up the cabad house and take a cab there to reb yossi’s restaurant , great food and if your boat leaved late you’ll catch a mincha.

Bob

I was at one of the Thailand Chabad houses this year, and asked the shlucha what percentage of people pay the suggested donation for shabbos meals. She said only 20-30%!
Doing some rough calculations based on the hundreds of guests they have every week, I figure they have a $15k hole to fill every week just for shabbos meals!

LS

Agreed. I saw that. But they need to make an announcement or post a sign. Preferably in English and Hebrew

Tavster

100%
IIRC, at Chabad Bangkok when you book Shabbos meals it clearly shows the discounted price and the ‘fair value’. But it’s very subtle and they would benefit in making this clearer

Avigdor

Appreciate the article but changing attitudes will be like pushing water uphill.

For whatever reason frum travelers on the whole are incredibly spoiled and borderline disrespectful of OOT people trying to help them. The saddest part is non-frum Jews for the most part can’t be more appreciative. There’s something deeply wrong in the middos we’re teaching.

Good on you and the rebbetzin to try and correct that but the need for your post and the op-ed to begin with says it all.

Moshe

Even as I somewhat agree with you, I still think that it’s an inappropriate post for many reasons……
I would appreciate if the moderators removed it.

Moshe

Correction: excellent post, inappropriate comment.

yk

I spent a summer in Venice helping out as a bochur. This was in the day when all meals were free.

I remember, when all the yeshiva bochurim came during bein hazmanim, they had no problem eating our food. After the meal we were sitting around and the bochurim start telling us that their Rosh Yeshiva says chabad is oved avoda zora.

One of the other bochurim was arguing with them, I simply told them: “Excuse me? If we are avoda zora then our food is trief.”

Such chutzpah

Momo

Same I was there to help rabbi banin for a chanukah, and this tourist made a massive scene on shabbos, I think he was angry about zmanim or something, horrible behavior

To.momo

I had a similar experience in Columbus, someone came from lakewood to Daven ans he didn’t see a minyan so he started blasting my friend “where is everyone, we’re you watching movies all night? amd so on.
I would just say, being Jewish, complaining is part of our DNA and just go with the flow, it’s not everyone like this bh.

lover of truth

why dont you write instead about satmar rebbe which uses chabad in plam springs
and funded renovation

Bubby

They are amazing. We visited them in Flagstaff. My son enjoyed the pre mincha speech and repeated it in his shul (he is a Rov) We never go without leaving them a nice check. I also left them all my kosher candy rather than bringing it home. My kids even offered to give up their sour belts for the locals

Eema

Sour belts? Lol!!

EliJelly

What an excellent post! Just wow!

Scott Hochstein

Dan. Well said- this is so on point.

I’ve experienced one of the most amazing Shabbos experiences ever in Montego Bay not too long ago. No words to describe. Rabbi Yaakov and Mushkee Raskin were truly incredible and I think people underestimate how much these folks sacrifice.

Kol Hakovod!!

E

We’ll put and this should not be limited to chabad houses. It is best practice and courtesy to leave a donation at any shul who’s services you use while “out of town”.

Joe

Great post as usually and thank you for not being afraid to list all shluchim who all give it there all. Hopefully one day soon there’s going to be true unity but till then its important that everyone gets accurate uncensored info.

Ash

Do “official” chabad houses have a standard level of kashrus? (versus unofficial houses)

KMM

Simple answer is No.

In my experience though, you can expect most shluchim official and unofficial to keep cholov and pas Yisroel etc.

As in all cases you can ask although also as in all cases, some will get insulted, so do it tactfully.

When it comes to meat it will vary where a number will only have “lubavitch shechita” and many will use other glatt meats as well.

Yak

Really?

Kashrut

There is no standard by either, of you are generally machmir in Kashrut, it’s a good idea to verify in a respectful way.

Aaron Orlofsky

Dear Dan,
What is a generous donation? Ajo

Yitz

Dan, this is excellent. I think many people don’t take these things into account, and spelling it out is very much appreciated. I also loved the idea of calling & asking if you can bring anything for them. That’s a classy move

Y

This is not just a chabad shilach issue. I used to live in a small town and the questions people would ask the Rav were imo outright chutzpidik. Things like is your hashgacha reliable and what are the rates for this hotel and that hotel.

Bithya

Excellent

Jack

I wish dans deals would dedicate a separate dans deals page aside from forums (like travel.dansdeals.com) to constant updates on locations with what shuls and restaurants are open, and best practices for visiting each location based on the days spent there.

Offer prizes or status to the best posters etc. I’m sure you can make nice money from it as well!

K

We recently passed through Phuket and were staying a few doors down from the Chabad House. Having never been to one of their Shabbat dinners before (we’re reform) I was very unclear with the order of things – if there was a service, when dinner started, how we needed to dress (we only had casual vacation clothes), how I would be treated as a woman solo traveler, etc. I was really only able to gather from my communication with them that the majority of people would be speaking Hebrew. I wish there was more of a primer of what to expect.

beans
Fan Feels

Excellent post! Gave me a lot of food for thought (I think this is one food item that chabad houses are well stocked on regardless of how remote the locations are…)

In general, how do shluchim feel about the idea in general, of frum families taking advantage of the meals (at full price + donations, of course) although the rebetzin breaks her back to cook up a storm thinking the guest are locals or students?

I spent shabbosim in multiple chabad centers without giving this too much thinking

Yosef

Same goes for restaurants and hotels , be nice to those you interact with, it goes a very long way

Mike

s/o To Rav Noam Shimon Cohen in Ocean City, MD! Went for family shabbos in january and brought 6 for a minyan, he made sure we got 10, and even was mevater to start 15 minutes early shabbos morning so we could chap son man tefila!
What did I bring him, might you ask? My 2 brothers in law went to a Basi Legani Tanya shiur as it was 11 Shevat!
[and a massive kokush cake from “in town”]
-Interesting ma’aseh- we were on hand to celebrate his son in law’s smicha “party” bc he finished during COVID. I realized that usually shluchim get their smicha before marriage, but his wife was able to be part of the simcha!

Jake

Excellent article. Your writing is done in a way that makes me feel we are shooting the breeze on the back porch.

Another idea

Great article. Here’s another suggestion: Ask your local Chabad rabbi if he has a connection where you’re going. There are many Lubavitch families, some of them in far-flung places, who are not official or even unofficial shluchim, but delight in hosting frum travelers. Before DDF, and in the Internet’s infancy, my rabbi’s friends, classmates and acquaintances were eager to host me in places where there was no Chabad House or Shul.

Regarding minyan

True sometime they may not have. But for a price, sometimes it can be obtained. Not that the shliach needs money for it. But Jews love food, and when there is a good kosher meal, that’s free (3 amazing words in the same sentence) that tends to change the game a bit. I heard in Singapore a guy needed a minyan for kadish, he gave the shliach 500 US, the shliach got shwarma and a whole meal, and all the Israelis came out of the woodwork. While at the meal, they were happy to join in for tefila.

lover of truth

You should write an article telling shluchim its OKAY to accept donations!
Many times they downright refused to accept donation from me
Even once a shliach went beyond anything imaginable and still refused donation
Thankfully these days with websites and CC donations it is much better plus you get points..

Michael Stolyar

Thank You very much for
This useful information Rabbi

Joe

Phuket Thailand chabad was among the best shabbat experiences in my life.. 350 ppl stop eating to sing/dance in genuine love & joy.. the unity so powerful.. and when the first service ends, they do it again for another 350 ppl! (since they can’t fit all 700 at once) You can feel the smile it puts on G-Ds face.. It reminds you of a line – for wtvr reason most ppl forget – “Derech eretz kadma latorah” in my humble opinion it means something like graduate being well mannered/respectful/curteous before embarking on the great journey of the holy Torah (which can be translated into many opinions)

Thanks Dan for great post

LS

I was truly disheartened by visitors in Thailand who show up for Shabbat dinner and expect not to pay a penny

Aaron m

When I went to Denmark I left my stash of chalov ysrael chocolate the kids where so happy

vic

Good sound advice, Dan. I had not considered asking what we could bring, and think it is a wonderful idea. I am always amused and befuddled by friends, who would never set foot in their local Chabad Shul, but regularly use the Chabad services all over the world, and usually rave about it.

BT

It’s a shame that there needs to be a post about treating people with respect- especially if you are a guest in their home!

I’ve stayed at many Chabad houses around the world and each and every time I’m utterly amazed at their devotion and self sacrifice.

I do believe if Chabad HQ did an annual fundraiser (similar to Hatzalthon) they would do very well.

Juke

The Rebbe had the local funding done by design. Seed money may occasionally come from HQ, heavily depending the circumstance. There is lots what to say about that model, as it is much more sustainable and ‘catereable’ to each location their own.

Hence the repeated phrase of no two Chabads are the same.

Avi Rosman

I’m not a fan of business trips that keep me away from my family for shabbos. When it happens I generally stay in a hotel with a kitchen. I found myself in Minneapolis in JANUARY of all places with no way to get back. Someone mentioned the Chabad. It’s so cold that they have sort of a place for locals to sleep like a mini bed and breakfast, otherwise no one would come to shul. In addition to my donation, I made sure that my work reimbursed me for what they would pay for a hotel and the food per diem. Interestingly enough, in todays day and age I was asked where I lived and for security they checked me out with my local Chabad rabbi. They asked me for nothing, the Rabbi just couldn’t fathom me spending shabbos alone.

Fred

Anyone had experience in Chabad downtown Sydney
Do they do minyan and provide dinners

Practice Joe

Let’s not racial profile the whole Lakewood thank you very much

Achdus

Well said. I was in Chabad of Niagara (Rabbi Zaltzman) a few weeks ago. The rabbi asked someone to give a dvar torah between Minchah/Maariv. A guy from LAKEWOOD got up and spoke about the mesiras nefesh of Rabbi Zaltzman and shlichus in general (tying it into the current parsha). He then made an unsolicited appeal for the Chabad house.

Malky

Thank you so much for sharing these insights, it’s really helpful to know this when traveling!!

ELIE Livnat

As they say in Hebrew כל מילה בסלע.
Each word to to the point.
Wish that many people will read your article and act accordingly.
And add you said don’t be Kefiy Tova כפוי טובה.
Rather be among who keep Hakarat Ha ‘Tov הכרת הטוב

Levi

This post had me go and donate to the 7 Chabad houses in Europe and Asia that I traveled to 17 years ago when I was 20 years old, and not thinking about the challenges they face in order to provide us with a beautiful Shabbos.

chaya

dan you make great points but you lose any benefits by allowing derogatory comments on your page. please make us feel safe to visit your site without risking getting sins that takes away ones portion in the world to come thanks

Berl

Great post! Agree to every word!

When I use a Chabad house, I try to stay for the short shiur/lecture after davening, I feel that it’s also a way of showing appreciation and interest in the Shliach’s work.

S

I’m a bit confused what is or isn’t listed on the site – I was at Chabad Playa Venao (in Panama) for sukkos, which isn’t shown on the map, but when you search it it comes up. Rabbi Yariv Klein, formerly of Bocas Chabad (he’s listed on that page). If that’s unofficial, you may want to add that to your wiki. I was at Bocas Chabad as well, and the map seems to show that so I presume that means it’s official (it’s listed on the “unofficial” list). Both are great A+ Chabad houses.

Schnorro Park

It’s actually pretty simple.
99% of the Chabad houses exist to serve the local Jewish population, and meet them where they’re at without any judgement.
They do NOT exist to accommodate frum Jewish travelers.

H.

Says who?? Did the Lubavitcher Rebbe say this? If yes, I’d appreciate if you can please point out to me when and where.

The one who determines the mission statement of Shluchim is by definition solely the one who sent the emissary, i.e. the Rebbe. Nobody else.

The Rebbe sent Shluchim to help bring Jews closer to Judaism and Chassidus.

I (for one) have yet to come across any directive from the Rebbe (though I don’t claim to know them all) where he specifies the job of Shluchim is only for some Jews and not others, or depending on their level of religiosity, or whether they’re residents, vacationers, or fell off a rocket ship.

That said, they’re clearly there to help Jews’ religious/spiritual needs, not as vacation planners or restaurants.

Nechama Turk

This is such a nice post. I love the idea of offering to bring things from wherever you’re coming from.

Mendy

May it also be in memory of r’ moshe Kotlarsky who passed away today

EBG

With 2 kids going off to university in the United States this summer, I tried asking other parents how much we should donate to the local Chabad houses each time my kids eat by them. I got 50 responses but no real answers. I suggested that I donate $18 per meal (weekday as well as Shabbat). I asked the shaliach of one of the Chabad houses, who responded, “Your child never has to pay to eat by us.” What do others think I should donate? Neither university has a Kosher meal plan.

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