Mishna Berura Summaries

Siman 163 – If you don’t have water for netillas yodayim

  1. You do not need to go out of your way for water more than it takes to walk 1 mil (18 minutes no matter what your mode of travel is). If you are travelling anyways, wait for water if there is some ahead at the end of a four mil (time) distance. (ShA 1 – MB 3 – BeH “b’richuk”)
  2. If you don’t know that there is water available within that distance and you are very hungry or you are feeling weak and really need to eat bread, you can eat the bread by first wrapping your hands so that they don’t touch it. (ShA 1 – MB 3 – BeH “im”)
  3. Wrap both hands. If you don’t have anything to wrap them with, use some of your clothes. (MB 5,6)
  4. If you feed someone bread you don’t require netillas yodayim. (ShA 2)
  5. Even if you will not be touching your bread, you still need to do netillas yodayim. E.g. someone is feeding you, or you are eating with a fork.    (ShA 2)     
  6. When water is available within the above stated distance, it is forbidden to eat the bread without washing even if you are very hungry and even if you wrap your hands. (MB 2 – BeH “im”) 
  7. You may not give bread to someone who will eat it without netillas yodayim. If you are uncertain that he will not wash, you do not need to be machmir, especially if he is poor. Nevertheless, you should give him the bread with the suggestion that he should wash. (Rama 2 – MB 11)
  8. If he will not do netillas yodayim, do not even pass  him his own bread. (MB 12)