Fast Facts: Turkey

Below are some of the most common questions from our travelers.

Do I need a passport? What is required for entry?

U.S. citizens must have a passport, which should contain at least 2 blank pages and be valid for at least six months after your return date. Passports expiring before then should be renewed as soon as possible.

U.S. citizens must have a travel visa for entry into Turkey, which must be obtained electronically from

If you hold a passport from another country, you are responsible for meeting all entry requirements and obtaining a visa, if required. If so, we recommend using a fee-based visa service, such as our preferred provider VisaHQ.

What is the weather like?

The coast of Turkey is temperate, warm, and humid in the summer. Eastern Turkey has short summers and bitterly cold winters. Central Anatolia is dry and hot in the summer, rainy and snowy in the winter. If you plan to visit beaches, June thru September is the best time to travel. Southeastern Turkey is very dry and extremely hot in the summer.

April-May and September-October are the best months for touring with the least amount of rainfall and the most comfortable temperatures.

Check out the current weather conditions in Turkey.

Are there any health precautions I should take?

There is no risk for malaria in Istanbul. You should check with your doctor about possible vaccinations against typhoid and hepatitis. Take along plenty of insect repellent!

Center for Disease Control
World Health Organization

What is the currency?

The currency in Turkey is the lira. Please review the current exchange rate for the lira.

Are tips & service charges customary?

Tip 10% in expensive restaurants even if a service charge has been added. Tip porters $1-$3 U.S. per bag, and tour guides around $5-$10 US.

ATMs are found all over in major cities. Beware of ATMs in secluded areas.

What items should I shop for?

The best items to shop for in Turkey are handwoven rugs and kilims, leather goods, silk, alabaster, copperware and brassware, ceramics, Iznik tiles, brass samovars, and meerschaum pipes. Be cautious of “antiques,” some are fakes. If you do buy an antique, be sure to obtain an official permit to export it.

What are the voltage requirements?

230 volts. Plugs C & F. You will need a voltage converter and plug adapter in order to use U.S. appliances. We recommend getting a universal adapter and converter kit. View more information about electrical standards around the world.

Can I take my cell phone?

See our blog post on using your cell phone abroad.

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