Your Handy Guide to Using Money in Turkey

Your Handy Guide to Using Money in Turkey
Common Questions About Using Money in Turkey
Written on: 22 April 2018

For first time visitors, using money in Turkey may seem like a daunting task. The unfamiliarity of notes, coins, prices and money transactions that are foreign to us, often has even the hard-core travellers worried.

However, take a deep breath and relax because it isn’t as complicated as it seems. The good news is the days when money in Turkey had six noughts after it are long gone, and nobody uses those millionaire notes anymore.

Currency converter apps quickly help us to see exactly how much we are paying and after a couple of days, familiarity means you’ll be using ATMs swiftly and spotting bargains like a Turk.

Common Questions About Using Money in Turkey

What Currency is Used in Turkey?

Turkey’s national currency is the Turkish lira, of which the sign is ₺, and the abbreviation is TRY. For Turks, YTL refers to the new Turkish lira and TRL is the old Turkish lira which was replaced in 2005. You may also see some shops using TL.

What are the Denominations of Turkish Lira Notes and Coins?

Note denominations include 200, 100, 50, 20, 10 and 5 lira. Coins, called Kurus come in the form of 1, 5, 10, 25 and 50. Lastly, there is the 1 Turkish lira that is also a coin.

Can you use English Money in Turkey?

Yes, you can. In all touristic holiday destinations, bars, restaurants and shops will take most foreign currencies including the euro and dollar. (The one exception to this rule is Scottish notes which are rarely accepted in Turkey.) Bear in mind though, the exchange rate won’t work in your favour, so it is better to change money into Turkish lira at the beginning of your holiday.

Using ATM Machines in Turkey

You can use foreign debit and credit cards in most ATM machines throughout Turkey. Before you leave your home country, notify your bank that you are visiting Turkey, and this will stop them flagging any ATM transactions as security concerns.

Also, check with them as to how much they will charge for each withdrawal. Unless your bank has an already existing agreement, there is likely to be a small charge to pay. Most ATMs give out Turkish lira only, but designated banks like HSBC also have machines where you can withdraw GBP.

What Credit Cards Are Accepted in Turkey?

You can use most major credit cards in Turkey including Visa and Mastercard. If an establishment doesn’t accept them, it is purely their own business policy but most bars, restaurants and shops in big cities and touristic holiday resorts take them. They will swipe your card into the machine, but before entering your pin number, check the currency and amount is correct.

Where to get the Best Turkish Lira Exchange Rate?

If you withdraw money from the ATM in Turkey, you will get the exchange rate used by your bank at that time. However, if you are carrying cash, only exchange a small amount in your home country to get you through the first few days. The reason is that you will get a better exchange rate using Turkish banks or commission shops in Turkey. (You need to present identification such as your passport.) Never change money at the airport or in hotels because they rarely offer good deals.

How Much Money Can You Bring into Turkey?

The Turkish Ministry of Customs and Trades says you can bring unlimited amounts of money into Turkey. However the limit for taking it out is the equivalent of 5000 USD, and it must be declared. (Please note, for our clients who are buying property in Turkey, we can advise you of a much safer method with ideal exchange rates and low transfer fees.)

Tips for Using Money in Turkey

So, after a few days, you’ll become familiar with Turkish lira, but that doesn’t mean you should be complacent because that leads to opportunist scams. If eating out at a restaurant or bar, always check the itemised bill and never accept drinks from strangers.

When using a taxi, insist they use their meters and also carry small notes so that they can’t claim they don’t have any change. Always check change when it is given to you and like anyway in the world, Turkey does have pickpockets so keep bags and wallets securely hidden and close to you at all times.

More Information for First Time Visitors to Turkey

  • Perfecting the art of souvenir shopping in Turkey. Includes tips on how to haggle, spot fakes, buying antiques and what to buy.
  • Our list of apps for travelling around Turkey will help you to save money, find your way about, translate signs and know where the best restaurants and local attractions are.

 

 

 

Other posts

Istanbul in Winter: Where to Go and What to Do

To visit Istanbul in winter is to see an alternative face to Turkey’s biggest and most prominent city. Summer in the metropolis is fun but winter can be as well because there are significant benefits you won’t get during any other season.

Why Go Skiing in Uludag Turkey

Uludag Ski Centre, covering the two hills of Fatintepe and Kusaklikaya, is 30 minutes from Bursa city centre, and ideal for skiers who either want a day trip or an overnight stay. Although already a firm favourite of Turks, its popularity grows every year, as more foreigners arrive to find out what the hype is all about.

The Best Snowboarding Places in Turkey

While Turkey’s reputation as an ideal beach holiday destination makes people think of sand, sea and sun, the country’s skiing resorts are growing in popularity as Turkey seeks to transform itself into a year-round holiday place.

Celebrating New Year in Turkey: Tips for a Great Evening

As one of Turkey's most popular holidays, expect lively street parties, copious amounts of delicious food, music, dancing, firework displays and much more. For this special occasion, Turks will not compromise and cut corners.

How to Spend Christmas in Turkey

One big reason to come here for December 25th is to pay homage to a famous person i.e. Santa Claus. We are not talking about the commercial Santa who rides across the sky in a sleigh. We're talking about the original bona fide Santa Claus who was born in Turkey.

Download our Turkey Homes app now

Available Free on App Store and Google Play



mobile screen mobile screen
mobile screen
WhatsApp Us Contact Us