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FAQ

Listed below are some of the more frequently asked questions about holidays and staying in Turkey.

Please note that the contents below should be used as a guide only. Whilst every endeavor is made to ensure accuracy of the contents you are advised to make you own enquiries.
If you have any questions that are not answered below or you require a more detailed answer please feel free to drop us a line or fill in the form on our contacts page.

We will try to give an honest and straightforward answer.

By Air: Most international flights into Turkey arrive at Ataturk Airport Istanbul approx. 20km to the west of the centre of Istanbul. Domestic flights to other Turkish cities depart from the nearby domestic terminal linked by shuttle bus.

International flights also arrive at Ankara, Izmir, Antalya, Adana, Trabzon & Dalaman airports.

Dalaman airport servers the Fethiye/Oludeniz area and is about one hour's drive, this will be reduced upon completion of a road tunnel through the mountains during 2007.

By Sea: There are three ways to arrive in Turkey by sea, Turkish Maritime Lines operate ferries from Venice to Izmir with daily services from Northern Cyprus, there are also ferries from some of the Greek islands.

By Train: The Istanbul Express leaves daily for Istanbul from Munich, Vienna and Athens with connecting services from Sofia in Bulgaria. Weekly services to Istanbul also leave from Moscow, Budapest and Bucharest.

By car: No documents are needed for visits of less than three months the vehicle is entered on the driver's passport as imported goods, if you intend to drive to Turkey you are advised to check with you insurance company to extend your insurance cover.

By coach: There are regular coach services to Turkey from Austria, France, Germany, Holland, Italy, Switzerland & Greece

Visa requirements differ from country to country and you should check with your travel agent, Turkish consulate or embassy for any visa requirements.

For British and Irish nationals arriving in Turkey a visa is required which can be purchased on entry. They are valid for three months and cost £10, so ensure that you have sufficient sterling with you to cover the cost, change is rarely available.

The visa is valid for three months which allows you to enter and leave Turkey during this period, if you have visited Turkey recently and are returning and your visa is still valid for your period of stay then there is no need to purchase another visa.

The Aegean, Mediterranean coasts: The tourist season normally runs from 1st April to 31st October. May, June & September are the best months July and August can be very hot for sightseeing in the midday sun. Swimming in the sea of the Northern Aegean is normally from June to September, and from April to November in the Southern Aegean and Mediterranean areas.

The time in Turkey is GMT + 2 hours

Australia: + 8 hours - Canada - 7 hours - UK - 2 hours

Loose light cotton clothing is best, with a cardigan or jacket for the cooler evenings. Comfortable shoes are essential for scrambling over rocky archaeological sites you may visit and sun hats, sunglasses and high protection sun cream are recommended.

A torch is always useful for returning to your accommodation at night as street lighting is not always installed along the roadsides.

The electricity current is 220 volts 50 cycles throughout the country with two pin European plugs - don't forget the adapter! although they are readily available locally.

Domestic air travel: Operated by Turkish Airlines (THY) between local airports in Turkey. Flights are good value and frequent, THY buses usually run from the airports to their offices in city centers. Flight tickets can be arranged through Activities Unlimited office.

Intercity buses: Comfortable, usually air conditioned, reliable and inexpensive, there are many private companies offering frequent day and night services between all Turkish cities. Tickets should be booked a day or two in advance and this can be arranged through Activities Unlimited office.

Taxis & Dolmus: Yellow taxis are metered with a day tariff and a night tariff. The night tariff operates from 12 midnight to 6.0 am in the morning, it is not normal to tip a taxi driver however rounding up the fare is appreciated.

Dolmus (pronounced Dolmush) normally a minibus operates on set routes and passengers pay according to the distance travelled. Pasengers can alight anywhere on route and a destination board is normally displayed. Fares are cheaper than a taxis which are fixed by the municipality.

Yes of course - Drivers must be over 21 years and be in possession of a current valid driving licence from their own country. Third party insurance is compulsory and it is advisable to take out collision damage and personal injury comprehensive cover.

Cars and Jeeps are available for hire through Activities Unlimited, email us for pre-booking and for our competitive daily rates.

Generally the road network in Turkey is very good and usually well maintained and roads outside of towns are pleasantly clear of large volumes of traffic which makes driving on the open road in Turkey a pleasurable experience.

Traffic drives on the right in Turkey. The speed limit in towns is generally 50 kph, 90 kph on state highways and 120 kph on motorways but keep an eye out for speed signs in towns as the speed limit can be less than 50 kph and ensure you reduce your speed when passing through villages as traffic police frequently carry out spot checks especially on entry to towns and villages where the limit changes from 90 kph to 50 kph.

If you are caught exceeding the speed limit a speeding ticket is issued and payment is normally made on the spot in cash.

Turkish road signs conform to the international protocol. Seat belts are compulsory in the front seats and should be worn.

At all times expect the unexpected, particularly driving outside towns, be prepared for agricultural vehicle driving on the wrong side of the road, livestock wandering on the road along with the chickens, dogs and cats, sheep, cattle and of course children! A whole family on a scooter or motor bike is also a common sight! along with the pillion passenger riding side saddle. Crash helmets are compulsory but infrequently worn.

In a nutshell it's a different driving experience and anticipation of the unexpected is the key to safe driving! and vigorous use of the horn will also be needed!

Road Signs:
Dur = STOP Yavas = SLOW Dikkat = Watch out road works or similar
Sehir Merkezi = Town Centre

Yellow road signs indicate archaeological sites

Any road traffic accident should be reported to the Traffic Police (navy uniforms with white caps)

First ensure the safety of all persons, do not move the vehicle involved in the accident and call the Traffic Police. It is normal for all drivers to undergo a breath test if involved in a road traffic accident.

If you are hiring a vehicle it is advisable to find out in advance from the rental company what action you should take in the event of a breakdown or being involved in a road traffic accident.

Emergency numbers: 112 Ambulance 155 Police 110 Fire

The monetary unit is the Turkish Lira (TL) exchange rates are published in the daily newspapers. Most banks exchange foreign currency as do most hotels and local shops in the tourist areas, there are also many change offices in the major towns.

Credit and bank cards can be used in ATM's to obtain local currency but the exchange rate may be less than exchanging foreign currency locally.

Generally a better rate of exchange is obtained locally so it may be advisable to change foreign currency when you arrive. Check the Central Bank of Turkey web site for daily exchange rates.

In the tourist areas you may find that goods and services are priced in foreign currency i.e. Sterling - it is advisable to enquire what exchange rate applies before making any purchase

You should make sure that you have suitable medical insurance cover when visiting Turkey as medical and treatment costs can be very expensive.

For minor ailments go to the chemists (eczane) and explain what the problem is, most medicines including antibiotics are available over the counter. In most towns and cities there is always a 24 hour chemist. If it is necessary to visit or call a doctor there will be a charge for his/her services.

There are private hospitals, clinics and doctor's offices available in towns and cities, your hotel or tour operator will be able to advise you of where they are. Many doctors and chemists in the tourist areas speak good English.

In some cases you may have to pay for medical treatment and then claim back from your insurance company when you get home so make sure that you receive all the necessary receipts and reports.

There are no mandatory immunisation requirements for visits to Turkey.

If you are uncertain you should visit you own doctor to seek advice well before arriving in Turkey.

Never risk photography where there is a notice that expressly forbids it, as this is an offence which can carry a prison sentence.

Some archaeological site ban flash photography and you may sometimes find that higher entry charges are levied for cameras and video cameras.

If a service charge of 10-15% is added to your restaurant bill it is customary to still leave a further tip of around 5% for the waiter. In smaller restaurants when a service charge is not added the norm would be a tip in the region of 10%.

It is not normal practice to tip taxis drivers a rounding up of the fare is the accepted practise.