Shulchan Aruch says an Israeli Jew who is just visiting non-Israel should not work in public on the second day of Yomtov so long as he is in "yishuv" (and commentaries explain "yishuv yisrael") -- a city inhabited by Jews.

I think there are places in the United States where you could draw a hundred-mile radius where you won't run into a single yomtov-observant Jew -- but you will run into Jews who don't observe. How about in those places?

  • Isn't the whole thing about breaking from the minhag hamakom? Do nonobservant Jews have a minhag?
    – Double AA
    Commented Jul 2, 2013 at 4:10
  • Re "Do nonobservant Jews have a minhag?" - From a practical (non halachic) perspective, yes, they do. For example, many Reform Jews don't eat kitniyot on Pesach.
    – Shmuel
    Commented May 1, 2014 at 17:51
  • relevant: notes 7-9 on Halachipedia and halachayomit.co.il/en/ReadHalacha.aspx?halachaid=603
    – mbloch
    Commented Feb 23, 2016 at 11:37
  • I would not be so sure about your "no Jews" thing. I live in Midland, Texas, a city without even an Orthodox synagogue, yet I am a Yom Tov observant Jew. :) I would be willing to bet the same about other remote cities, because I have run into Jews in the most remote West Texas towns.
    – ezra
    Commented Nov 21, 2017 at 21:02

1 Answer 1


I asked a Rosh Kollel that question. After checking he told me a Jew living in Israel cannot go to a place where there is an organized Jewish community (I assume based on SA OC 496:3). The fact that there are isolated Jews is not an issue (luckily since, unless you go to a real desert, there is always a risk of having isolated Jews). In my case, I was able to fly to an airport in chu"l on yom tov sheni since there was no organized community there.

The same ruling would apply to your question and allow a Jew living in Israel to go the isolated places you describe.

I have now seen that R David Sperling rules in the same way here

[...] there are major rabbinic opinions that allow it. This is because when in transit you stay in the airport which is considered similar to a "desert" (ed: despite the fact there are nearly certainly individual Jews in the airport) – that is a place that does not yet obligate you to refrain from labor on second day Yom Tov (see the work Yom Tov Sheni BeHalacha, 3:11)


if you are already in a city that has a Jewish community in it (and not just passing through the airport), it is forbidden to fly out of it on second day, for it would be forbidden to drive to the airport

See also MB 496:10

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