Coronavirus : Steps to know before your trip
(Article updated on February, 5)
Covid-19 in Turkey and the tourism crisis
The Covid-19 crisis has had a huge impact on the tourism sector, which is often on the front lines! In Turkey, we can say that we are used to this type of crisis in the tourism sector, the political events, attacks of 2016 and 2017 have stopped tourist flows for almost two years and have contributed to building our resilience!
The crises end up passing, just arm yourself with patience, indeed in 2019 after a few difficult years we beat all our attendance records.
At present in Istanbul, all restrictions have been lifted, restaurants, bars, nightclubs, hammams are open, life has resumed its course! Travelers from most parts of the world can enter Turkey during the coronavirus pandemic (details below).
Tourism is beginning to recover, energy is back, and we hope that with spring you will be many to come and discover Istanbul and Turkey with us.
Measures to travel in Turkey
When entering Turkey from countries not included in the following list: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Brazil, South Africa, India, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, vaccinated persons who received at least two doses of vaccine (one dose for Johnson & Johnson) within 14 days prior to entering Turkey or those with COVID-19 within the last 6 months who can produce a healing certificate and whose first PCR test with a positive result is at least 28 days old can enter Turkey. Below this time, a negative PCR test (72 hours prior to the arrival to the arrival of their inbound flight to Turkey) or a negative antigenic test (48 hours prior to the arrival to the arrival of their inbound flight to Turkey) will be required.
Vaccinated persons are those who have received the two injections of a vaccine approved by the European Medicines Agency for at least 7 days: Moderna, BioNTech Pfizer or Astra Zeneca) or who have received an injection of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine for at least 28 days).
In case of failure to submit a vaccination certificate or documents indicating that the passenger had COVID-19 disease, it shall be deemed adequate to submit a PCR test taken 72 hours prior to the arrival of their inbound flight to Turkey or an antigen test result within 48 hours prior to the arrival of their inbound flight.
The online form for entry into Turkey
From now on, all passengers aged 6 and over traveling to Turkey will have to complete a new online form. The form must be filled in within the last 72 hours before travel. To facilitate the monitoring and management of the health crisis, the Turkish authorities have developed a “Hayat Eve Sığar” (HES) code. This is the Turkish version of the vaccine pass: https://register.health.gov.tr/
This document is important, and you need to store it on your phone. It will allow you to use public transport, to go to restaurants and shops, to take a domestic flight…
To take public transport in Istanbul, there is an additional complication, you must connect the HES code with the IstanbulKart (the PUBLIC TRANSPORT card), to do this, you must go to Activate the HES code on the Istanbul Kart: https://kisisellestirme.istanbulkart.istanbul/.
For more information on public transport, find all the information on our article.
PCR or Antigen Tests
Some countries also require a negative PCR or antigen test on return. This test can be done in hospitals or laboratories, or directly at your hotel that we recommend even if it is more expensive (between €25 and €30) than if you go yourself in a hospital or laboratory (TL250 about €17). To organize you get closer to your hotel.
In Turkey, the price of the PCR test is TL250 or less than €20. Payments by credit card or cash are accepted.
There are also centers to do tests at the airport, if you choose this solution, think about going at least 5 hours in advance to the airport as the time to have the result may be long.
We hope that this article answers your questions, we keep it up to date and will not fail to tell you about the evolution. Do not hesitate to contact us or leave us a comment.
For more information before your trip, do not hesitate to consult the official websites of the consulates and embassies of your country in Turkey:
- France: Istanbul.consulfrance.org
- Belgium: turkey.diplomatie.belgium.be
- Switzerland: https://www.eda.admin.ch/countries/turkey/fr/home/representations/ambassade/consulat-general.html
- Canada: https://www.canadainternational.gc.ca/turkey-turquie/
- USA: https://tr.usembassy.gov/
- UK: https://www.gov.uk/world/organisations/british-consulate-general-istanbul