Rosh Hashanah’s coming, so it’s time for a public service announcement.
Things here in Israel are NOT the same as they are wherever you come from. That includes shul on Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur.
You probably won’t need tickets, and I don’t know of any shul in Israel that will kick you out if you haven’t signed up ahead of time, but depending on the shul, they might not have a lot of space for you.
Also, check around your neighbourhood carefully – the davening (prayer services) is very different in different types of shuls. And I’m not just talking about Ashkenazi and Sefardi (Mizrachi) shuls.
Yeshivas, for example, may have a longer, more drawn-out davening that’s enjoyable if you like something more spiritual, while “stam” Israeli shuls may have more of a “get in, get out, get home” type of approach. Most shuls start at 8 am on yom tov, but the ending time really varies, from 10:30ish across the street from me to as late as 1 or 2 in some places.
(So if you’re expected somewhere for either of the lunch meals, it’s extra important to co-ordinate with your hosts so you get there when they want to start.)
If you’re new to your area, ask around to find out which shul is more likely to offer you the best experience. That depends, of course, on what your criteria are. Such as whether you like singing or prefer to avoid it at all costs, like at the shul across the street from me, where any necessary musical touches are grudging at best.
Also, if you’re a woman, ask other women – your experience might be very different from what a man would encounter in the same shul.
One thing you won’t get here that you may or may not be used to – calling out page numbers. Most Orthodox shuls outside of Israel don’t do this either, but our shul in Toronto did because it had a kiruv (outreach) bent.