General Information About Turkey

Turkey has a population of over 80 million people. The major cities are Ankara (the capital), İstanbul, Antalya, İzmir, Adana and Bursa.

The official language is Turkish, but most touristic establishments are multilingual, with English, French and German spoken widely.

Most businesses are open weekdays from 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Banks are open weekdays from 8:30 a.m. to noon, and from 1:30 to 5:00 p.m. Bank branches located in major hotels offer additional hours.

There are two types of public holidays in Turkey; those fall on the same day each year and the religious festivals which change according to the lunar calendar and, therefore, fall on different dates each year.

The official currency is Turkish Liras. Exchange rates are published daily by Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey. In the candidate city, widely accepted and used foreign currencies are Euro, Dollars, Pound etc. Apart from this, the credit cards (MasterCard, VISA, American Express, Diners Club etc.) can be used.

Turkey’s standard time is 2 hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time; 1 hour ahead of Central-European time and 7 hours ahead of Eastern Standard Time in North America.

The coastal areas of Turkey bordering the Mediterranean Sea have a temperate climate, with hot, dry summers and mild, wet and cold winters. Summers are hot and dry, with temperatures generally above 30 °C (86 °F) in the day.

The electrical supply in Turkey is 220 V/50 Hz. Major hotels provide adapters and converters for guests.

The Electronic Visa (e-Visa) Application System was launched on April 17, 2013 by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Turkey. This system allows visitors travelling to Turkey to easily obtain their e-Visas online ( in approximately three minutes. It is possible to obtain e-Visa which is only valid when the purpose of travel is tourism or commerce, 7/24 at everywhere with internet connection. The applicants can obtain their visa after they fill in the necessary information concerning their identity, passport and travel dates and pay visa fee online. Detailed information on visa regulations of Turkey for countries is available on official page of Republic of Turkey Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Shopping is a great adventure in Turkey, particularly at the bazaars in various cities. The best buys are leather and suede, copper, brassware, tiles, porcelain, jewelry, embroidery, ceramics, and the famous Turkish carpets and kilims.