Passport & visas
All international travellers coming to Turkey are required to have a passport valid for at least six months after leaving Turkey. All domestic flights within Turkey require the passengers to show the passport or ID.
In general, it is cheaper to obtain the tourist visa on arrival in Turkey instead of paying in advance through the consulates. Travellers should make sure they have some cash on them to pay the visa fee upon arrival as only cash is accepted. Nowadays it is alsp poccible to apply for an e-visa online prior to travelling to Turkey at https://www.evisa.gov.tr/en/.
Turkey offers many items of fine craft at very reasonable prices. Traditional souvenirs include beautiful rugs, tiles, pottery, gold & diamond jewellry, silk, leather and copper products. During the tours there will be opportunities to see unique, locally produced products representing good value from reliable vendors. Customers should use their best judgment when deciding if the price of a product is worth it.
Bargaining is a wonderful aspect of Turkish culture. It is generally common to bargain before buying anything expensive. Offering an amount 25% below the original price is usually a good place to start. It is always a good idea to offer to pay in cash or combine the purchase with the travelling companions to get a group discount. The only rule is that if you make an offer, you should also be prepared to buy the item at that price. You should also be prepared to have some tea or apple tea as this is an important part of the whole process of buying and selling.
Turkey is a modern country and people generally wear casual and comfortable clothes. In Istanbul and other large cities, including beachside resorts and major tourist centers, tousists may dress as they like except when visiting mosques. It should be kept in mind that neither shorts/short skirts nor bare shoulders are allowed in the mosques, and that women should also cover their head. It is recommended to dress more conservatively when visiting the central, eastern or Black Sea areas.
In the south and west the weather follows normal Mediterranean climate patterns with warm, mostly dry summers and mild winters. In the high plateau of Central Anatolia the summers are also hot and dry, but winters can be very cold, with varying precipitation (nights are mostly cool). In the north, especially the Black Sea region, rain is frequent, and in the mountains of the east is an Alpine climate. The southeast, on the other hand, has a near desert climate.
Currency in Turkey
The currency unit in Turkey is the Turkish Lira (TL). Travellers’ checks are not widely accepted and generally get a less favorable exchange rate than cash. There are ATMs almost everywhere in Turkey now where you can use a credit or debit card (Visa, MasterCard etc).
Larger shops generally accept US dollars, Euro and credit cards, but small shops accept only cash and you need Turkish lira for local convenience stores or grocers. American Express is not widely accepted and personal checks are almost impossible to cash.
Calling from your hotel room is usually expensive. It is recommended to use a long distance calling card or buy a telephone card from a local kiosk or post office. For international calls the country code is preceded by two zeros. When calling from abroad the country code for Turkey is 90.
Electrical outlets in Turkey are 220V and all appliances running on 110V need a converter or an adaptor. It is advisable to check the appliances before using them in the hotel room. Hair driers are available in all 4 & 5 star hotels and boutique hotels.
Food & water
Turkish cuisine is considered one of the finest in the world and mostly fresh ingredients are used in a clean atmosphere. It is possible to experience a wide variety of regional culinary dishes on a typical tour. Although water is chlorinated in larger cities, it is recommended to drink bottled water. The water everywhere in Turkey is safe for cooking and brushing the teeth with.