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Driving in Turkey - Rules & Procedures

24th November 2014

Driving in a foreign country can be quite daunting, especially in Turkey. Rules, regulations and procedures can become quite confusing and complicated.

Here is a list of Frequently asked questions about driving in Turkey.

Legal requirements

Always carry your Drivers License
While driving around turkey, you should have always have your driving license, together with your passport and insurance documents in the car at all times. The traffic police conduct various spot checks on all vehicles and you will be asked to produce these documents.

Can I drive in Turkey with my foreign driving license?
You can legally drive with a Foreign license, but only for a maximum period of six months.

According to Regulation in article: 88 from the karayolları trafik yönetmeliği (Road traffic regulations)

After six months you are required to have a notarized translation of your Foreign license.

Note: You do not need to apply for a Turkish driving license if your UK or another Foreign driving license is the new style card with photo.

Please also note to check with your vehicle insurance provider, as some will invalidate your insurance when using a foreign driving license for more than 12 months.

If you want a Turkish Driving License here's how to do it - How do I apply for a Turkish driving license?
In order to apply for a Turkish driving license you must be over 18 and the following
are required:

• YKN Yabanci Kimlik number
• UK Driving License
• Translation of driving license certified by the notary
• Passport
• Residence Permit and a photocopy
• Turkish Tax number
• 5 passport size photos
• Police record
• Health report and blood group card (please visit your local hospital and explain you need this for your Turkish Drivers License)
• Criminal Record Check (please see : » How to apply for a criminal record check in Turkey)

Firstly before applying for your Turkish driving license you need to visit your local tax office, hand over your Turkish tax number and pay your license fee. You need to apply at the local traffic police (Trafik takip), applicants do not have to take a driving test. You will have your finger prints taken, fill in forms,( for a fee of around 85TL) you leave your documentation along with receipt for your license fee. You will be given an estimated time for when your license is ready, then you need to go back to collect your license (fee of around 70tl)

How much is a Turkish driving license?
The fee is around 450tl, this is just for the driving license, there are other fees for the other documentation required.

Automobile insurance is compulsory - At least third party insurance

Do I need to pay car tax in Turkey
All cars in Turkey are subject to an annual tax. This tax varies depending on the ,type, age and size of your cars engine. So if you are buying it is important you take this into account. A big 4 litre car may cost you as much 11,000 ytl per annum.

The minimum age a person may drive is 18 years old, they must hold a valid driving license

Rules of driving in TurkeyIt may not appear that Tukey has many driving rules, especially when you witness drivers speeding, running red lights and overtaking. Tukey does of course enforce it's driving laws and regulations.

Cars drive on the Right in Turkey

It is compulsory to wear a seat belt, for both passengers and driver

What are the traffic speeding limits in Turkey?
50 kilometers per hour in built up areas. 90 kilometers per hour,on open roads. 120 kilometers per hour on motorways.

What to do if I receive a traffic fine in Turkey?
If you receive a traffic fine in Turkey, you will need to visit the nearest tax office (Maliye Vergi Dairesi) in order to pay your fine.

Please take your traffic fine papers along with your passport and cash to pay the fine.

Speeding and running a red light is subject to a 166tl fine.

What are the drinking and driving regulations in Turkey?
The Drink Driving limit in Turkey is 50mg alcohol per 100ml blood.

The police have the power to carry out random alcohol tests on drivers at any time and if found over the limit drivers can risk being fined and have their license temporarily confiscated.

In the event of an accident, all drivers involved are breathalysed.

First time 700 TL, second time 877TL for the third time the fine is 1,407 TL

Your automobile
Taking care of your motor vehicle is essential, the rules to maintaining your automobile roadworthiness applies to Turkey.

What do I need to know about the Turkish vehicle test (MOT)?
The Turkish law requires vehicles on the road to be tested. For cars, motor bikes and scooters the test is due 3 years after the first registration date then every 2 years

You will need the following documents:

Traffic registration document

Traffic Form (The other small form where the visa is noted)

Valid Third Party insurance certificate (trafik Sigortasi)

Emissions testing stamp if applicable to your vehicle.

You will also need to ensure that you don't have any tax or fines outstanding. You can do that at the tax office or online. The testing station has online access to the tax records so no paperwork needs to be produced

The test is comprehensive and covers the following main items (in English and then Turkish):

1. Braking system (Fren sistemi)

2. Mirrors, indicators and lights (Direksiyon ve Direksiyon Simidi)

3. Windscreen and glass – watch out if you have heavily tinted windows as these may fail the test (Görüş Özellikleri)

4. All Lights – alignment and light output including colour and all reflectors (Lambalar,Yansıtıcılar ve Elektrik Teszatı)

5. Wheels, rims, tyres and suspension (Dingiller, tekerlekler, lastikler, süspansiyon)

6. Chassis and components (Şasi ve şasi bağlantıları)

7. Emergency/safety equipment (Zorunlu Ekipmanlar) see list below and other passive safety equipment - Seat Belts, security of seats (Diğer Donanımlar)

8. Wipers and washers (Gürültü Kirliliği ve seviyesinin kontrolü)

9. Distance on speedo, visibility of number plates and number plate light working, vehicle identification numbers

If your vehicle is powered by LPG or dual fuel petrol/LPG you’ll need to obtain a gas safety certificate (LPG/CNG Ruhsatı, "Gaz Sızdırmalık Raporu”) 

What Happens if my Vehicle Fails the MOT Test?
If your vehicle fails you’ll be issued with a notice, in Turkish of course, explaining the faults that need to be fixed. Some minor faults noted on the resulting report do not result in a 'fail'. Take this to your garage and get them to quote for and fix the faults. As long as you return within 1 month of the date of the failure notice you’ll be entitled to a free retest.

Disclaimer: The information on this site is provided as a general guide. Information published to YellAli is confirmed by official government departments in Turkey. Whilst every effort is made to ensure that the site is up to date and accurate, information may be subject to change at any time. YellAli does not accept any responsibility or liability for inaccuracies in this information.

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