Living in Turkey

What is the difference between a tourist visa and a residents visa?



A tourist visa issued at the airport on entry into Turkey entitles you to stay in Turkey for 90 days including multiple entry and exist during the 90 days. You must however leave Turkey before the 90 days expires.

A residents visa permits you to stay in Turkey for time frames of 1 to 5 years depending on the length of visa applied for and granted. 

What are the benefits of having a residents visa?


In addition to not having to exist and renter the country every 90 days a residents visa also always you to:

  • Apply for a telephone connection in your own name
  • Import you household contents from the UK to Turkey without paying import duties and taxes
  • To purchase and register a vehicle in your own name.

How do I apply for a residents visa?


Resident visas are applied for at the foreigners department of the regional police office of the area in which you are living. In our case Antalya.

To apply you will to have the following documentation.

  • Copy of your property title deed or a notarised rental agreement for a property for the time frame you are applying for.
  • Your passport and passport photocopies
  • 4 colour passport size photos
  • Photocopy of the page in your passport showing the last entry and exist stamps into Turkey.
  • Proof of income from bank statements to show you can support yourself financially in Turkey for the time frame you applying for.
  • The visa fee in YTL. We recommend you check this just prior to application from the police station as these fees change regularly.
  • A completed copy of the application form which is available on arrival at the police department or through the Turkish Embassy in your country.

You will submit these documents at the police station and pay the visa fee. You will then usually be told to return 2 weeks later to collect your residents visa in person. It is normal for a 1 to  3 year visa to be issued on the first application rather than the maximum 5 year visa.


The visa is a small blue book containing your details and photo which you should then carry with you at all times. You can present it on entering and existing Turkey and will then not need to pay the tourist visa entry fee.

Am I entitled to work in Turkey with a residents visa?


The answer is simply no. In order to work in Turkey you will need your employer to apply for a Work permit on your behalf. The residents visa will be required though in order to apply for the work permit.

Alternatively you can form a Turkish company and through this route obtain the right to work in your own company.

If I marry a Turkish national do I automatically have the right of residence and right to work in Turkey?


No. You are required to be married for a minimum of 3 years before you can apply to become a Turkish citizen. As a Turkish citizen you will have the right of residency and work. Initially therefore you will need to have residents visa and if you plan to work, for anyone other that your partner, then you also need a work permit.

Can I bring my house contents from the UK to my property in Turkey?


Yes but in order to do so without incurring hefty import duties and taxes you will need to have documents to prove you own a property in Turkey and possess a residents visa.

Can I bring my car from the UK into Turkey?


Technically speaking yes. You can bring a UK plated vehicle into the country for 6 months at a time. You will not however be able to simply re register it on a Turkish number plate. If you want to have a vehicle permanently in Turkey then you will either have to take your UK vehicle over the boarder every 6 months or buy and licence a vehicle in Turkey.

Can I bring my pets from the UK into Turkey?


Providing your pets have a pet passport proving their inoculations and a health certificate then yes. There is a one pet per person rule for birds, cats and dogs. In the event however that you should want to return to the UK then your pets would have to go through UK quarantine.

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