Arriving in Turkey: The Ultimate Guide 2021

In this blog post, we will be giving detailed information about arriving in Turkey so you have all the details you need to turn your trip into success. Missing a document or assuming certain information about your travels can cause making bad decisions which could potentially ruin your holiday so please read this post on arriving in Turkey carefully to avoid unfortunate events. 

Before Your Arrival

Documents You Need For Arriving in Turkey

If you need a visa to enter Turkey, your passport should be valid for six months after your arrival date in Turkey. Also, make sure there are two pages available for entry and exit stamps that will be put on by the border officers in the airport.  

If you require a visa and are also able to apply for an e-visa for Turkey, please bring your e-visa approval with you as a print out to save time at the border. 

Some citizens are allowed to enter using their national ID card of their home country. You will be able to find a detailed list of countries for visa requirements in this post so if you are a citizen of one of those countries you will also be able to enter Turkey using your national ID card.

We recommend travellers bring their national ID card in any case just to have two forms of identification. As in the case, you lose your passport you will have some kind of identification with you. 

If you are a resident in Turkey whether it is for work or any other purpose please make sure to bring your Turkish residency card with you along with your passport. 

To get the latest news and updates on Turkish visas click here

Exchanging Money Before Arrival In Turkey

Although you can use Euros and Dollars in tourist parts of Turkey, we definitely recommend having some Turkish lira for various purchases as well as emergency situations. 

We recommend exchanging a very small amount like 100 Euros or 100 Dollars in your home country as the exchange rates in Turkey are much better when compared to your home country. 

However please always check multiple rates when you are in Turkey from different enhancement offices to make sure you are getting a good deal. Avoid enhancing money in hotels at all cost in Turkey as they have appalling deals. 

Restrictions and Requirements Regarding Covid-19

Due to the global pandemic, travelling from the UK to Turkey is not allowed. However, there are those rare flights you might be able to take. Upon arrival at the Turkish border, all travellers are subject to medical screening as well as temperature checks. Anyone who is coming from Denmark, UK, Brazil and South Africa needs 10 days of isolation which can be in a residential place. On the seventh day, you may take a PCR test and if it comes out negative you are allowed to leave the insulation early. 

While you are in Turkey, you will be required to have a unique code that shows your health condition. The data is driven from government databases. So let us say that if you get a PCR test while in Turkey and the result comes back positive then the system will update your unique code and you will not be able to travel, go to shopping malls, government buildings or go to restaurants. In order to acquire this code download the app called “Hayat Eve Sigar” and generate a “HES” code. The app has an English version so do not be alarmed about language barriers.  

When you are leaving Turkey you will need to get a PCR test 72 hours before your flight. The result should be negative otherwise you will not be allowed to board the plane. 

Methods Of Travel For Arriving in Turkey

Air

Planes are the most common way to come to Turkey as there are fantastic airports throughout Turkey. With great public transport links to the city centre for each airport without a doubt that the best way to get to Turkey is by planes. 

Driving

You can drive from the UK to Turkey in three or four days. However that is with very little time for sleep, time off and leisure time visiting cities in Europe. Most people who prefer to arrive in Turkey by driving tend to be caravan owners who wish to take their time travelling through Europe visiting cities and small villages. 

Ferries

Unfortunately, ferries are no longer available from Italy to Turkey however you can get on a ferry in Greece. There are plenty of ferries from Athens to Greek islands where you can find catamaran services to various places in the Aegean part of Turkey. 

After Your Arrival In Turkey

Leaving The Airport

Turkey has fantastic public transport systems especially from airports to their respectful city centres and various other places around the airport. 

Taxi

Unless you absolutely have to we generally do not recommend using airport taxis in Turkey. Unfortunately, taxis do have a bad reputation in Turkey as they take advantage of inexperienced tourists by taking longer routes and charging them more than they should. 

Busses

We recommend all travellers to use busses and coaches as they have a set price, take you to all the important places near the airports and they are clean. Although it may take longer than a taxi it is still the most preferred option by tourists arriving in Turkey. 

Underground

You will be able to use the underground to get to various parts of Istanbul from Istanbul Airport in Turkey. Which is the biggest and the most recently built airport in Istanbul.

Uber / Lyft

Unfortunately using Uber and Lyft is not allowed in Turkey due to the ongoing lawsuits that yellow taxes have opened on them. 

Accommodation After Arrival In Turkey

You have plenty of options regarding accommodation after arrival in Turkey. You have a selection of all-inclusive 5-star hotels, international hotel chains, short term apartment or villa rentals and bungalows. Deciding on your options is entirely down to your requirements and what sort of experience you are looking to have during your stay in Turkey. 

Airbnb In Turkey

Unfortunately, Airbnb is banned in Turkey. Although the site works and people do book their flats on the website, it is not legal and Turkish police does raid the flats and villas that are available on the website which will ruin your experience. The person who has rented the flat or villa will not be charged but the landlord will pay fines. Regardless you will have to vacate the premise which will cause you stress and unnecessary problems until you have found a new place to stay.   

If you are interested in buying property in Turkey, click here.

Websites For Booking Hotels in Turkey

In order to avoid having problems, we recommend you using one of the websites in Turkey that does bookings for hotels like www.trivago.com.tr. Alternatively, you can phone up hotels individually to make a booking on the phone. However, using websites gives you extra protection when it comes to money as hotels become accountable to the big reservation websites. 

Places To Eat And Dine In Turkey

Turkish cuisine is absolutely fantastic. It would be a huge miss if you do not try various restaurants and certain types of food when you are in Turkey. From kebabs to Aegean mezes there are plenty of restaurants you may go to during your stay in Turkey. However please be aware that touristy places that look really fancy might not always be a good option, we recommend finding out about local restaurants that have the most authentic dishes. 

Places To Visit in Turkey

Istanbul is the perfect place to witness the melting pot of the Eastern and the Western world. You can find the remains of the Byzantine Empire and how they affected the Ottomans and modern Turkey we love today. In Ephesus, you will find the frontier of Greek society or if you want to witness surreal geography, you can visit the Cappadocia and Blacksea region in Turkey. Antalya offers the best weather and a great opportunity to play golf throughout the year with 300 days of sun. 

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