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General Information About Turkish Visas

It is highly recommended that foreigners, who wish to visit Turkey, should read the related information about our country’s visa regime.

Visa regime for Touristic and Business Purposed visit of a country may differ from Work and Education Purposed visit. Also Turkey’s visa regime may change according to reciprocity principle.

While some applicants may be exempt from visa for their touristic or business visit to Turkey, the others can obtain an e-Visa. All other applicants will need to obtain a visa through Turkish Representations in the abroad.

An information note about visa regime of Turkey is available in the following address: www.mfa.gov.tr

Visa types granted by Turkey are;

1- TOURIST/BUSINESSPERSON

a) Touristic Visit
b) Single Transit
c) Double Transit
d) Business Meeting/Commerce
e) Conference/Seminar/Meeting
f) Festival/Fair/Exhibition
g) Sportive Activity
h) Cultural Artistic Activity
i) Official Visit
j) Visit to Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus


2- OFFICIAL VISA


a) Assigned for duty
b) Courier


3- STUDENT – EDUCATION VISA

a) Internship Visa
b) Internship ERASMUS
c) Internship AISEC
d) Turkish Language Course Purpose
e) Course Purpose
f) Education Purpose
g) Education in Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus


4- WORKING VISA

a) Employment Purpose/Special Employment Purpose
b) Assigned Lecturers/Academics
c) Assigned Sportsperson
d) Assigned Artists
e) Assigned Free Zone Workers
f) Assigned Journalists
g) Montage and Repairman Purposes


5- OTHER VISAS

a) Archaeological Excavation, Exploration Purpose
b) Documentary Purpose
c) Tour Operator Representative
d) Medical Treatment Purposes
e) Accompaniment Purpose
f) Family Unification Purpose
g) Freight Vısa
h) Seafarer Visa


PASSPORT VALIDITY

In accordance with the article 7.1b of “the Law on Foreigners and International Protection” no.6458, foreigners wishing to enter Turkey should carry a travel document (passport) with an expiration date at least 60 days beyond the “duration of stay” of their visa, e-Visa, visa exemption, or residence permit.

Example A: In order to enter Turkey having a visa with 90 days “duration of stay”, foreigners should hold a travel document valid at least for an additional 60 days which totals to 150 days (90 days + 60 days) of validity at the time of entrance.

Example B: In order to enter Turkey having a visa with 30 days “duration of stay”, foreigners should hold a travel document valid at least for an additional 60 days which totals to 90 days (30 days + 60 days) of validity at the time of entrance."

In accordance with international agreements and special legal provisions, the following categories are exempted from this provision:

a) Citizens of countries who are allowed to enter Turkey with their national ID’s in accordance with “European Agreement on Regulations governing the Movement of Persons between Member States of the Council of Europe”;

1- Germany
2- Belgium
3- France
4- Georgia
5- The Netherlands
6- Spain
7- Switzerland
8- İtaly
9- Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus
10- Liechtenstein
11- Luxembourg
12- Malta
13- Portugal
14- Greece

b) Citizens of countries holding passports which are expired but considered as valid for a certain period

1. Germany – Passports expired within the last year / ID’s expired within the last year
2. Belgium - Passports expired within the last 5 years.
3. France - Passports expired within the last 5 years.
4. Spain - Passports expired within the last 5 years.
5. Switzerland - Passports expired within the last 5 years.
6. Luxemburg - Passports expired within the last 5 years.
7. Portugal - Passports expired within the last 5 years.
8. Bulgaria – Valid ordinary passport

c) Holders of diplomatic, special and official passports

GENERAL INFORMATION

- Visitors who are not exempt from entry visa must obtain their visas or schedule an appointment with the Turkish Consular offices via Pre-Application System for Turkish Sticker Visa (www.visa.gov.tr). The applicants who meet the requirements will be directed by the Pre-Application System for Turkish Sticker Visa to the e-Visa system (www.evisa.gov.tr) In those countries where Turkey does not have a consular representation can also use online scheduling for appointments with the nearest accredited consular office of Turkey.

- In order to avoid inconveniences that may be caused by delays in processing, it is recommended to apply for visas at least one month in advance before the planned travel.

- The visas submitted to foreigners do not guarantee absolute rights of entry to Turkey.

- Visa fees are not refundable in cases where applications are rejected

- All applicants are required to have a medical insurance that will be valid during their stay in Turkey.

- The length of stay provided by visa or visa exemption cannot exceed 90 days within each 180 days. The regulation of 90 days of stay within the last 180 days is binding for all foreigners that will travel to Turkey.

- It is not possible for foreigners holding two passports to stay in Turkey for 90 days each with their two different passports within the last 180 days.

- In all types of visa applications, Turkish consular offices may issue visas with a maximum duration of stay of 90 days. The foreigners who wish to stay longer than 90 days in Turkey, should apply for “Short Term Residence Permit” at the Provincial Directorate of Migration Administration in order to extend their residence.

- The residence permit of the foreigners will be cancelled if they stay outside Turkey for longer than 120 days in total during the last year.

- For United Nations (UN) Travel Document (Laissez-Passer) holders who have blue UN travel documents, visa exemption with 90 days length of stay within the preceding 180 days may apply during their official visit to Turkey if they can certify their official assignment. Red UN Travel Document holders, shall be exempt from entry visa and may stay in Turkey 90 days within the preceding 180 days regardless of their purpose of visit. General visa provisions shall apply for Blue UN travel document holders subject to regulations specified according to their country of origin.

- Visa applications for travels except for touristic or trade purposes (work or study etc.) will need to obtain visa through Turkish Representations in the abroad.

- Regardless of the visa regime applied towards the citizens of a country, the travel document holders of that country need to obtain visa from Turkish missions beforehand.

- Any applicant under the age of 18 must submit official written approvals from both parents. For those applicants who certify that their parents are officially divorced and prove the parent holding their custody as well as for those with one parent deceased, visas may be issued in accordance with their purpose of visit.

- The authorization of processing the residence permit applications submitted by the following persons who enter Turkey availing visa-free regime and without requirement of obtainment of Student Visas lays with Local Immigration Offices (Provincial Directorates of Migration): Foreigners who arrive in Turkey upon invitations by universities under Turkish Higher Education Board to study at the associate, undergraduate, graduate, post-graduate, Ph. D levels pursuant to international student exchange programs, cultural programs as well as under EU Education and Youth Programs.

- For foreigners wishing to enter Turkey via naval ports with touristic purposes, visa-free entry permits may be issued by the local governorates. These permits shall have a maximum 72 hours duration of stay and will be only valid for sightseeing purposes in the vicinity of naval ports where they entered the country. This practice, as it intends to facilitate entry for those visitors subject to visa, does not entitle visitors to visa. Passports of these visitors are not retained by the border authorities; however, visitors are given "Harbor City Entry Permit" which is required to be returned to the authorities upon their exits.

- Any piece of data submitted here may be processed and stored in database accessible to the relevant Turkish authorities in accordance with their respective mandates.


Tourist Visa

- If an invitation letter is submitted for a Touristic Visa application, it must include the inviting person's TR Identity Number, clear identity, the list of invitees, permanent address, contact number, length and purpose of stay and the affinity with the applicant must be stated in the letter. If the inviting side is an organization or a company, tax registration certificate of the organization will be required. In the invitation letter it is also required for the inviting person/authority to pledge for covering victuals and accommodation expenses and for taking their own responsibility. The applicant is required to have sufficient and/or regular remunerations.


Working Visa:

- Foreigners lay their applications for work permit through our consular offices in the country of their residence or nationality.

- To work in Turkey, you must apply to the nearest Turkish mission to obtain work permit and visa. Your passport, visa application form and a letter from your employer are the necessary documents for your application. Other documents should be submitted to the Turkish Ministry of Labor and Social Security (MLSS) by your employer within ten working days after your application.

- Work Permit Applications are concluded positively or negatively by the Ministry of Labor and Social Security. Work Permits have equivalence to residence permits. Thus, should a working permit is approved by the Ministry, the foreigner is charged an Entry Visa Fee, Work Permit Certificate Fee and Residence Fee by the Turkish consular offices. Since Work Permit Card substitute residence permit in Turkey, "Work Annotated Visa" issued by these offices can only be used for entrance and for 90 days at maximum.

- You may find the list of those documents in the MLSS’s website ( http://www.csgb.gov.tr ). Applications are finalized by the MLSS within thirty days at the latest. Right after your arrival in Turkey (before starting to work), you should be registered at the local police department within one month to obtain the necessary residence permit.

- Work permit is granted to foreigners who will work in Free Zones in our country by the Ministry of Economy, to those to work in units under Ministry of Culture and Tourism by the mentioned Ministry and to foreign national personnel to work in universities by the Higher Education Board.


Internship Visa / Work Permit Exemption:

- Applicants need to obtain a work permit from the Ministry of Labor and Social Security pursuant to the Law numbered 4817 for private internship applications outside the provisions set forth in the Article 55 "Work Permit Exemption" title of Law Enforcement Regulation about Working Permits of Foreigners.

- Article 55 of the Law Enforcement Regulation on Working Permits of Foreigners no. 4817 regulating working permit exemptions, the extent and the lengths of time the foreigners are exempt from working permit are stated. Those who meet the requirements below do not need to obtain a work permit.

(1) Without prejudice to the provisions set out in specific laws and on condition that the foreigner and the employer fulfill their obligations resulting from other laws;

a) The persons exempted from work visa under the bilateral or multilateral agreements to which Turkey is a signatory party,

b) the foreigners holding permanent residences abroad and wishing to visit Turkey temporarily with purposes of scientific studies, cultural and artistic activities for a period shorter than a month and with the aim of sporting activities for a period less than four months,

c) For the purpose of installation, maintenance and repair of machinery and equipment imported to Turkey, providing training for their utilization or transporting of defective equipment from Turkey and provided that they do not exceed the total stay of three months within a year as of the date of entry into Turkey and verify this condition with the documents that they will submit, the ones coming to Turkey,

ç) For the purpose of training in the use of goods and services exported from or imported to Turkey and provided that they do not exceed three months totally within a year as of the date of entry into Turkey and verify this condition thanks to the documents that they will submit, the ones in Turkey

d) Being an entertainer, performer and etc. in charge at fair and circuses which are going to carry out activities outside the borders of certificated tourism establishments and provided that they do not exceed six months as of the date of entry into Turkey and verify this condition with the documents that they will submit, the ones in Turkey

e) On condition that it does not exceed two years and it will be limited to the period of study, the foreigners coming to state institutions and organizations together with the universities so as to enhance their information and good manners by verifying their state via the documents that they will submit,

f) Persons who notified the Turkish authorities on the fact that they will provide important services and contributions socio-cultural and technological fields and educational fields within a period not exceeding six months.

g) Persons visiting Turkey under the programs of the Center for European Union Education and Youth Programs (National Agency),

ğ) The foreigners to go on a training under the framework of international trainee programs sanctioned by the Higher Education Board, the Ministry of Interior and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

h) The foreigners who are the representatives of tour operators coming to Turkey on condition that the term of contract does not exceed eight months,

ı) During the contracts of other athletes, trainers, football players whose requests are approved by Turkish Football Federation or General Directorate of Youth and Sports

i) By the bilateral protocols signed under the Rule no. I/10 of the International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers, the foreign seafarers serving on vessels which have received " Conformity Approval Certificate" from the related administration and is registered in Turkish International Ship Registry Law and operate outside the cabotage line,

j) Foreign experts employed in the projects that are conducted within the scope of Turkey-European Union Financial Cooperation Programs are not in need of obtaining a work visa during their term of office.

- Within the scope of article 55, residence permits of the foreigners coming to Turkey are given as “Short Term" residence permits by Provincial Directorate of Migration Administration. Exemption periods cannot be extended, the foreigners under this provision can make use of exemption rules only once within one calendar year. However, it is required that it must have been three months as of the expiry date of the residence permit granted to the foreigner with the same purpose in order to exercise this right. In case of the need of working longer than the exemption period allows, the foreigner has to obtain a work visa through the Ministry of Labor and Social Security.


Assigned Journalists

- Without being appointed on a permanent office in Turkey, international press members wishing to visit temporarily are not required to gain a "Visa Annotated for Press". It will be enough to obtain a tourist visa if the foreigner is subject to visa. In case of requirement, foreign press members coming for a short period can be issued a temporary press card by the Prime Ministry Directorate General of Press and Information, and this card will be valid for their stays in Turkey. Temporary press card can be issued for a period for a maximum of three months and extended for another three months when necessary. Press members obtaining a short term residence permit are not additionally required to have a work permit. Appointed press members obtain a "Visa Annotated for Press" is subject to permission.


Tour Operator Representative Visa

- The foreign representatives of tour operators, are exempted from obtaining a work visa for their duties for up to eight months. The applications of the foreigners asking for a residence permit from Provincial Directorate of Migration as the representatives of tour operators are processed under rules regulating touristic visits.


Transportation Visa

- The foreigners applying for visa for transportation may be given a multiple entry visa valid for one year in case they submit the required documents.

- Visa regime for truck drivers of a country may differ from the overall visa regime effective for citizens of that particular country. For further information, please contact the nearest Turkish mission.


The Personnel Assigned for Foreign Religious Foundations

- The personnel employed officially in foreign religious foundations in Turkey - Work permits of the foreigners employed in religious foundations are under the framework of exceptional condition. Applications of permission are made via our Ministry and residence permits are issued by the Ministry of Internal Affairs so that they can work in our country.


Archaeological Excavation, Exploration, Documentary Purpose Visas

- Foreigners who will shoot a documentary film conduct a research or an archeological excavation should get a special permission from the Turkish authorities in advance.

- It is necessary that the one should enter Turkey by obtaining a relevant visa via our foreign representatives for excavation and research.

- The foreigners to come to our country for the purpose of movie and documentary shooting should obtain a permit document from the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, Directorate General of Cinema and the provincial Governorate.

- One can directly apply to the related institutions for scientific researches, sound track recording, filming documentaries and movies, photo shooting to be carried out on archeological, historical, geological, sociological and natural issues in Turkey, on land, in the air, at sea, at river and at lake. Applications on surface explorations to be made on the land registry cadaster records with archaeological excavations and underwater archaeological researches apart from these are made to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs via the applicant's own diplomatic mission in Turkey and to the Ministry via Turkish foreign representatives abroad on the other hand.