While you are in

1Road safety in Turkey
Visitors who are dreaming of an extraordinary vacation by making use of the advanced highway network in Turkey should get informed about certain rules and regulations for their own convenience. The unique and magnificent landscape of Turkey is waiting to be explored by vacationers who are ready to hit the road!
2Car Rental
Car Rental: Car rental companies positioned in close proximity to the airport and terminal exit gates as well as in numerous city centers and holiday resorts will provide you with the most appropriate vehicle for a pleasant car trip.
3Traffic Lanes
Traffic Lanes: Turkey drives on the right-hand side of the road, as in many other countries of the world. Drivers who check the mirrors as frequently as possible will automatically improve their safety. Seat Belt and Child Safety Seat: drivers and passengers are legally required to fasten their seat belt as soon as getting into the car and to wear their belt until arriving at their destination. Likewise, children under the age of 7 are legally required to be seated in child safety seats for their own safety.
4Drink Driving
Drink Driving: The legal alcohol limit for drivers is limited to 0.5 promilles since drink driving is prohibited in Turkey. Drivers who are convicted of driving while over the legal alcohol limit run the risk of having to pay a fine of 700 TL and suspension of driver’s license for six months.
5Mobile (Cell) Phones
Mobile (Cell) Phones: Drivers are not allowed to use mobile phones while driving for their own security and that of their passengers. Using a mobile phone while driving is prohibited by law and the penalty for breaking this law is a fine of 73 TL.
6Travelling to destinations away from tourist centers
Travelling to destinations away from tourist centers: Turkey is like a riddle to be solved as it hides numerous interesting spots and towns in the interior regions waiting to be explored. It is advisable to make use of a GPS device and road map and to keep an eye on the road signs at all times.
Tolls: Some of the major highways of Turkey are toll highways that can be used in return for a small fee collected at automated HGS (fast pass system) and OGS (automatic pass system) stations located at the entrance and exit of tol

Useful Information

Electricity : Those who use 110 V or any other than 220 V at home need a converter as Turkey has 220 V power system. Please check your electric appliances before you use them in your hotel room. Only the five stars deluxe properties would have converters so it is advised to bring one with you in case it is needed.
2Time Zone
Time Zone: Turkey’s time zone is Eastern European Time ( +2 GMT ), More on Time zones and hour differences.
3Drink Water
Drink Water Although it is safe to drink tap water, it is recommended to buy bottled drink water which can be found almost everywhere at stores. The city water is chlorinated for sanitation reasons of which you might not like the smell. You can safely brush your teeth with tap water.
Smoking is not permitted in flights, public places, most tour busses and public transportation. The Turkish people do smoke a lot , you would easily recognize that nearly 80 percent of the population smokes cigarettes. By the way Turkish tobacco is top quality and you should buy your cigarettes in Turkey as they are delicious and cheap.
5Public restrooms
Public restrooms are available at the town centers, museums, restaurants, mosques and gas stations and usually a small service charge is expected ( 15 c. ). It is sometimes hard to find a European style (sitting closet) closet especially in rural areas. Western style can be found at gas stations and restaurants along the major tourist roads. In any case, it is advised to have your own toilet paper and Kleenex where it is unavailable at public rest rooms. The usage of the squat toilet can be summarized as follows: Briefly, pants are rolled up to the knees, and the upper part, along with underpants, lowered to the knees. Items capable of falling are best removed beforehand; retrieving them will likely be impractical. You squat by first bending the upper part of your body forward (to maintain balance), then lower yourself by bending your legs, coming to rest quite naturally (and comfortably) on your haunches and legs. Reverse to rise. Aim is more important in squat toilets than in sit toilets, so don’t fire indiscriminately. Cleaning up is likely not to involve toilet paper, unless you brought your own. This is done using a container to bring water to your waiting left hand, which will splash it on the appropriate areas. Wash your hands when finished with soap. Now you know why the social use of the left hand is impolite in many parts of the world. If you do use paper, do not deposit it in the toilet (unless there’s no plumbing involved), or you will probably clog the plumbing. There is likely to be a wastebasket handy: the soiled paper goes there.
Traffic is running from the right in Turkey. While crossing streets in big cities, make sure that the vehicles are at a reasonable distance to allow you cross the street safely. In Turkey, cars have the privilege to use the streets. You can safely walk on the pedestrian walk ways.
7The mosques
The mosques are open to everyone. You will have to leave your shoes at the entrance or carry them in your hands, women in most mosques are required to cover their heads with a scarf and naked parts of their legs and shoulders. If you don’t have anything with you, they will give you some scarves at the entrance for free. Silence is required inside the mosques, it is suggested that you shouldn’t laugh loudly inside as this may offend people praying. Most of the mosques are closed to visits at prayer times. Turkey is a secular country with a population that is mostly Moslem. Turkey is a secular country where religion and politics is slightly separated. The weekends are Saturdays and Sundays, while Fridays are working days, even though in the Moslem belief Friday is the holy day. More info on Religion in Turkey…
Photographing : In some of the museums or palaces you are not allowed to take pictures or use flash, before you go in, just check if there is a sign with a camera crossed over, which means keep you camera in your hand bags, or check them in. Also, as an universal rule you are not permitted to touch any of the artifacts displayed. Photographing the Turkish ladies in the rural areas may offend them. The procedure is, just direct your camera towards them, if they say no, or mean it with gestures, just leave it. Some people including ladies love to be photographed, and will probably give you their address hoping to receive a copy from you. If you are traveling independently, check which dates that the museums are open to visits. Most of the museums are closed to visits at least one day a week. Archaeological sites can be visited everyday from 9 AM to 5 PM ( this may change from summer to winter ). More on Closed days of museums …
9Working Hours
Working Hours: Offices and banks are generally open 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM from Monday to Friday, with a break between 12:00 to 1:30 PM
10National / Official Holidays
National / Official Holidays in Turkey: Apr 23 National Sovereignty and Children’s Day (anniversary of the establishment of Turkish Grand National Assembly) May 19 Atatürk Commemoration and Youth & Sports Day (the arrival of Atatürk in Samsun, and the beginning of the War of Independence) Aug 30 Victory Day (victory over invading forces in 1922) Oct 29 Republic Day (anniversary of the declaration of the Turkish Republic) Ramazan Bayramı / Sugar Feast :Three-day festival when sweets are eaten to celebrate the end of the fast of Ramazan. (A Moslem moveable feast) (The dates of these religious festivals change according to the Muslim lunar calendar and thus occur 12 days earlier each year.) Kurban Bayramı / Slaughter Feast : (A Moslem moveable feast) Four-day festival when sacrificial sheep are slaughtered and their meat distributed amongst the poor, neighbors and within the family.
Alcohol: There is no restriction on the sale and use of Alcohol in Turkey. The famous local anis drink “Rakı” is widely consumed in Turkey. The “Rakı Culture” is sitting long hours at the dinner table, eating “meze”‘s and chat with each other on regular and personal subjects. While most people prefer Rakı, wine is also famous in Turkey. The local wine production in northwest and mid Anatolia is worth to mention. Many foreigners do tell that the local beer, specially the “Efes Pilsen” brand does have a wonderful taste. You only should if possible avoid drinking in public during the month Ramadan (The vesting month). As a tourist you will not be effected from the Ramadan, the night life will continue in rural areas. More information on Beverages and Night life in Turkey…
12Bargaining and Shopping
Bargaining and Shopping is part of Turkish culture. Before you purchase anything, try to get the prices down as low as possible. In most cases, just leave the shop or vendor and pretend to walk away, you will be probably invited back to his shop by the vendor asking what would be your best offer. Then, feel free to declare your own price for your purchase. Usually, bargaining margin starts from 10 % and may go up to 40%. Do not push more than possible, this will cause you to under estimate the value of the good. Bargaining could only be done in touristy areas, in local towns or new city and modern shopping malls no bargaining is possible. More on Shopping in Turkey…
13Flight reconfirmation
Flight reconfirmation: Some airline companies may require a final flight reconfirmation a few days before your departure, You could contact our free assistance service for this or call your self. More on Airline Office Telephone Numbers…
14Antique pieces
Antique pieces are not allowed to be taken out of the country, this is a serious crime and may need a heavy punishment, most probably imprisonment.
15High Season
High Season (Jun–Aug) Prices and temperatures highest Expect crowds, book ahead Turkish school holidays mid-June to mid-September İstanbul's high season April–May and September–October Christmas–New Year and Easter also busy
16Shoulder Season
Shoulder Season (May & Sep) Fewer crowds, apart from around Kurban Bayramı holiday (currently in September) Warm, spring and autumn temperatures, especially in the southwest İstanbul's shoulder season is June–August
17Low Season
Low Season (Oct–Apr) October is autumn; spring starts in April Accommodations in tourist areas close or offer discounts High season in ski resorts İstanbul's low season is November to March
18Getting around
Bus Generally efficient and good value, with frequent services between the major cities and tourist spots. Often less services in winter. Air Turkey is a vast country and domestic flights are an affordable way of reducing travel time. More route choices if flying to/from İstanbul. Train The growing network of high-speed services offers rapid routes across Anatolia, for example between İstanbul and Ankara. The bus is often quicker than normal trains. Car A great way to explore rural areas, with rental operators in cities and airports. Drive on the right. Petrol is expensive. Ferry Regular services cross the Sea of Marmara and link parts of the Aegean coast.
FLIGHTS TO TURKEY The best price found from Russia to Turkey is on December 26th, 2016, travelling with Azerbaijan Airlines. See more options, compare prices and book: search flights.

Entry & Exit Formalities

Jewellery and items valued over US$15,000 should be declared, to ensure you can take it out when you leave. Goods including the following can be imported duty-free: -200 cigarettes -200g of tobacco -1kg each of coffee, instant coffee, chocolate and sugar products -500g of tea -1L bottle or two 750ml bottles of wine or spirits -Five bottles of perfume (max 120ml each) -One camera with five films -One video camera with 10 tapes -One laptop -Unlimited currency -Souvenirs/gifts worth up to €300 (€145 if aged under 15)
Buying and exporting genuine antiquities is illegal. Carpet shops should be able to provide a form certifying that your purchase is not an antiquity. Ask for advice from vendors you buy from. Keep receipts and paperwork.
Make sure your passport will still have at least six months’ validity after you enter Turkey.
To stay for up to 90 days, most Western nationalities either don’t require visas or should purchase one in advance from (typically €20 to €60). More Information Nationals of countries including Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Israel, Italy, Japan, New Zealand, Sweden and Switzerland don’t need a visa to visit Turkey for up to 90 days. Nationals of countries including Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Ireland, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Spain, the UK and USA need a visa, which must be purchased online at before travelling. Most nationalities, including the above, are given a 90-day multiple-entry visa. You must enter details of your passport and date of arrival in Turkey, click on the link in the confirmation email and pay with a Mastercard or Visa credit or debit card. Having completed this process, the e-visa can be downloaded in Adobe PDF format; a link is also emailed so it can be printed out later. The e-visa must be printed out to show on arrival in Turkey, and kept while in the country. It is recommended that applications are made at least 48 hours before departure. Your passport should be valid for at least six months from the date you enter Turkey. At the time of writing, the e-visa charge was US$20 for most nationalities, with a few exceptions including Australians and Canadians, who paid US$60, and South Africans, who received it free. In most cases, the 90-day visa stipulates ‘per period 180 days’. This means you can spend three months in Turkey within a six-month period; when you leave after three months, you can’t re-enter for three months. Check the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (, for more information. No photos required.
5Residency Permits
There are various types of ikamet tezkeresi (residence permit). Apply at a yabalcılar şube (foreigners police/aliens department) soon after arrival. Plug (the foreign department of İstanbul’s emniyet müdürlüğü – security police) into a website translator for more information. If you don’t have a Turkish employer or spouse to support your application, you can get a permit for touristic purposes. Touristic permits are typically valid for one year; the price varies according to the applicant’s nationality, with charges starting at a few hundred lira including administrative charges. To apply for a residence permit in İstanbul, make an appointment with the emniyet müdürlüğü in Fatih; visit The process can be demoralising and assistance hard to come by; those working behind the desks in cities such as İzmir ( are reputedly more helpful. Little English is spoken, so take a Turkish-speaking friend with you if possible. If your application is successful, you will be given a touristic residency card. More details in Pat Yale’s A Handbook for Living in Turkey, which was being updated at the time of writing. Websites mentioned under Work are also sources of (anecdotal) information and advice.
6Working Visas
Visit for information on obtaining a çalışma izni (work permit). Your Turkish employer should help you get the visa. If it’s an employer such as a school or international company, they should be well versed in the process and can handle the majority of the paperwork. The visa can be obtained in Turkey or from a Turkish embassy or consulate.
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