As mentioned above, Ankara has a moderate climate with four seasons. It gets cold in the winter and hot in the summer. You might want to bring a winter coat and boots if you are arriving in January, and light clothing for August. We suggest that you do not bring traveler’s checks, as they are difficult to exchange. ATM machines are available at several locations on campus.
Even though you can find almost anything you might need in Ankara, you may still want to bring some personal or specific items (for instance, particular brands of cosmetics or electronics, etc.) with you, especially those that might be more expensive or less readily available in Turkey. Be sure to consult the nearest Turkish consulate to find out what you can and cannot bring under customs regulations.
Although it is possible to ship some of your belongings in advance, it is not advisable due to the complicated customs procedures. (For instance, you cannot pick up your shipment until after you receive your residence permit.) However, if you still wish to do so, check with your department for the correct delivery address, and make sure that you have all the necessary documents prepared.
If an item remains in storage at customs because, for example, you have sent it ahead of time, or left it for later clearance, there are additional fees and commissions to be paid. Please be aware that tax rates, fees and duties are subject to frequent change. For detailed information regarding customs
regulations in Turkey, you can visit www.gtb.gov.tr
The voltage of electrical appliances in Turkey is 220V. To use North American appliances, you may want to bring with you voltage converters and/or adaptor plugs appropriate for the particular items in question. Although converters can be purchased in Turkey, they are sometimes difficult to find and may be very expensive. You may nonetheless occasionally experience problems with voltage surges, which could cause damage to your electrical appliances. Consider purchasing a good surge protector.
Most laptop computers do not need a special converter. Be sure to check on the transformer box of the power cord, or in your computer manual, to see if it is 220V-compatible. If it is, all you will have to do is purchase a small adaptor to plug your cord directly into a socket. It is strongly recommended that you use a surge protector for computers.
Bringing your car or buying a blue-plate car
If you enter Turkey with your car, note that customs will set a time limit during which the vehicle can be kept in the country. Please notify the Human Resources Office about your car within two days of your arrival in Turkey. In order to receive this temporary exemption from the customs law, you will need to make a refundable deposit at a bank in an amount based on the car’s model and engine capacity. You may want to visit the Touring and Automobile Club’s website at www.turing.org.tr to learn more about the requirements, documents and procedures involved in bringing a vehicle (used or new) into Turkey. A customs broker or a car dealer can also handle the paperwork for you, which is perhaps the simplest method of accomplishing the process. Please note that you will need to obtain your residence permit before you initiate any procedures concerning your car. Also, always remember to have a translated and notarized copy of the identification section of your passport available to be used as an identification card during official transactions in Turkey, such as giving authorization to a customs broker.
As an international faculty member, you are eligible to buy and sell blue-plate (OTV/KDV tax-free) cars until your work and residence permits expire. Untaxed cars in Turkey are also called blue-plate cars because cars brought into Turkey by foreigners were formerly given blue license plates to denote their tax-free status. (For security reasons, the blue plates have been replaced by license plates beginning with the letters MA-MB to MZ.) By law, tax-free cars cannot be sold to Turkish citizens; they can only be sold by one foreigner to another. It should also be noted that tax-free cars can only be driven by the owner of the car or a member of his/her immediate family.
When purchasing a blue-plate car, you can either complete the transaction on your own or pay a fee (approximately 1000 TL) to a company to do it for you. As mentioned previously, it is much simpler and more practical to buy a new or used car with the help of a car dealer, who can do the necessary paperwork on your behalf. If you choose to work with a dealer, you must sign a power of attorney and have it notarized. You should bring a translated copy of your passport with you when you have the power of attorney drawn up. In addition to the initial taxes, licensing fee and insurance costs, the government requires a refundable deposit in an amount that depends on the model and the engine capacity of the car. Please check with the Human Resources Office regarding the official letter, showing your employment status, to be submitted to the Touring and Automobile Club.
Bringing mobile phones
At the time of publication, all Turkish and foreign visitors are entitled to bring one mobile phone with them to Turkey during a period of two calendar years. According to Turkish customs regulations, it is necessary to register the phone within 120 days of the entry date, in order to be able to use it with a SIM card that is purchased from a Turkish network operator. The SIM card that is assigned to your mobile phone needs to be compatible with the phone’s IMEI number. Phones that are not registered this way cannot initiate or receive calls. The registration procedure can be completed only at an authorized outlet of a network operator after paying a 149.20 TL telephone registration fee via e-devlet at www.turkiye.gov.tr. You might want to check with your bank to see if they can transfer your fee payment via EFT.
Important: In order to be able to use e-devlet services, you first need to obtain an e-devlet password from a PTT Office by presenting your passport and residence permit card (at the time of publication, the fee for obtaining an e-devlet password was 4 TL).
Documents required for registering a mobile phone:
• Residence permit
• YU number (as printed on the residence permit card)
• Residence certificate (can be obtained from the Housing Office)
• Registration fee receipt (can be printed out directly from the
• Copies of all Turkish entry/exit stamped pages of the passport