Turkey Entry Restrictions: How to Avoid Getting Denied Entry

Don't let your trip to Turkey get ruined because of entry issues! © Daniela Cuevas / Unsplash

Are you planning to go to Turkey? It’s not surprising, as this country is one of the top travel destinations in the world. It has all you need – white-sanded beaches, rich historical sites, shopping hubs, luxurious hotels, and friendly local people.

You definitely want to ensure that your trip will be perfect and nothing will rain on your parade. You’ve heard about the strict entry rules some countries have introduced, and now you are concerned that after you pick places to visit, pack your bags, and imagine your trip in the most precise details, you may get denied entry into the country. 

Don’t worry! If you follow Turkey entry restrictions, nothing will prevent you from having the best trip of your life. We prepared some information and tips on how to avoid being denied entry into the country. 

Ensure you have a valid passport

In accordance with Turkish Law, foreigners who want to enter Turkey should carry a travel document (passport) with an expiration date of at least 60 days beyond the “duration of stay” of their visa, e-Visa, visa exemption, or residence permit.

For example, if you have a visa with 90 days “duration of stay”, you should hold a passport valid at least for an additional 60 days, which totals 150 days (90 days + 60 days) of validity at the time of entrance. However, the following categories are exempted from this requirement:

  • citizens of countries who are allowed to enter Turkey with their national IDs in accordance with the “European Agreement on Regulations governing the Movement of Persons between the Member States of the Council of Europe”;
  • Citizens of countries holding passports that are expired but considered valid for a certain period;
  • Holders of diplomatic, special, and official passports.

Get an e-Visa to Turkey

Travellers who are not exempt from an entry visa must obtain their visas online or schedule an appointment with an embassy. If your travelling purpose is for tourism or business and you are from an eligible country, you can get an e-Visa for Turkey to avoid paperwork and going to an office.

Note that all children must have a separate online permit, even if they are included in their parent’s document. Applications for all underage passengers are made by their parents or guardians.

e-Visa types

Your nationality influence which electronic visa type you are eligible for. There are two e-Visa types:

  • single-entry visa allowing a 30-day stay
  • multiple-entry visa allowing a 90-day stay

Note that for any travel purposes other than tourism or business ones, you will need a traditional visa. For example, you can’t work for a Turkish company with an electronic visa.

Application process

Applying for a Turkish online visa doesn’t take much effort; you only need to do a few clicks. In order to complete the application, you should follow simple steps:

  • Fill out the form providing some personal and travel information.
  • Attach the necessary documents.
  • Cover the e-Visa fee via the online payment method. Turkish online permit costs 69 Euro, 99 Euro, or 129 Euro, depending on your nationality.
  • Check the inbox, as the electronic visa in PDF format will be delivered to your email.

Additional documents

Requirements for obtaining a Turkish online visa differ depending on the applicant’s citizenship. You should check your country information to be sure which supporting documents you must have. You may be obliged to provide some or all of the following additional documents:

  • A valid visa or a residence permit from one of the Schengen countries, the USA, the UK, or Ireland.
  • A round-trip ticket with Turkish Airlines, Pegasus Airlines, Onur Air, or AtlasGlobal Airlines.
  • A return ticket and hotel reservation.
  • At least US $50 or the equivalent in foreign currency for each day of stay in Turkey.

When to fill out the form

The application process is very simple and can be completed within minutes. The majority of applicants get their e-Visa in 19 hours or earlier. Sometimes, though, processing can take up to 3 business days. In order to avoid issues and have everything ready on time, it is recommended to fill out the form at least three business days before arrival in Turkey. 

What should you have at the customs

The Turkish customs officials will ask you to show your documents (a valid passport and a paper copy of your e-Visa), then examine them and, if everything is ok, let you in. Ensure your documents are with you, and don’t forget to print out a copy of your electronic visa. 

Transit information

If you enter Turkey only to transit through it to another destination and do not plan to leave the transit zone within the Turkish airport, you are not required to get an e-Visa. Yet, if you are going to leave the transit zone, you need to have all the documents – a valid online visa and passport.

Follow coronavirus restrictions

On June 1, 2022, Turkey cancelled all COVID-19 restrictions, so the requirements to enter the country have been returned to the pre-coronavirus ones. Now travellers are not required to show proof of vaccination, a negative PCR test, or a negative rapid antigen test. A day earlier, the mandatory rule of wearing masks was cancelled too. Currently, you must wear a mask only in medical institutions. 

Since the middle of March, Turkey has also rescinded the requirement to show a QR HES code (Turkish Code for Healthy and Safe Travel) and fill out the form on the website of the Ministry of Health. All these decisions have been made due to the significant decline in the number of new coronavirus cases. However, the situation can change very quickly, so keep up with the COVID-19 news and restrictions so as not to miss any important announcements.

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