Guide for Foreigners Who Want to Move to Turkey

Turkey is becoming a popular destination for highly-skilled expats and thousands of foreigners who are flocking from throughout the world. Check out our guide if you’re interested in why foreigners are moving to Turkey and if you want to learn how to begin a new life in Turkey.

Why Do Foreigners Move to Turkey?

  • The Weather Suits Everyone

Turkey, with its four seasons, is one of the few countries with a climate spanning from the Mediterranean to oceanic. The country’s residents enjoy thousands of natural beauties surrounded by vast seas and mountain ranges. The northern regions have an oceanic climate, whereas the southern sections have a warm Mediterranean climate. Turkey’s diverse climate, lush greenery, and majestic forests are nature’s miracles. Summers are lengthy and hot in the south. Because Turkish houses are built with natural materials that are resistant to the elements, they can withstand temperatures as high as 35° in July and August. For maximum sunlight efficiency, buildings include huge windows and balconies.

  • Cost of Living is Inexpensive

Turkey has a cheaper cost of living than the majority of European countries. Living in Turkey is affordable for EU and US citizens. With the exception of a few locations, housing and living costs are cheaper than in their home countries. Rents, transportation, food, and other necessities are all substantially less expensive than in the EU or the US, notwithstanding regional differences. Apart from that, Turkey’s housing costs are lower, with possibilities ranging from villas to apartments.

  • The Food is Delicious

Turkey’s cuisine is diverse and will appeal to all tastes. Turkish cuisine is known for its freshness, low cost, and high nutritional value. Almost every vegetable and fruit on the planet is accessible. The country’s restaurants and street cuisine continue to entice visitors with unique appetizers and flavors. There are also marketplaces selling local goods and honey from local beekeepers. The most popular meat meals include kebab, çiğ köfte, lahmacun, and kokoreç, but there are also plenty of vegetarian and vegan options.

  • Refreshing Outdoor Lifestyle

The outdoor lifestyle is better for your health and brings you greater social connection, both of which are beneficial to your mental and emotional well-being.

Most individuals feel happier and healthier when it’s sunny outside in the summer because their vitamin D levels are elevated.

Instead of paying for movie tickets or a family day out at a pricey theme park, many choose to spend time outside, having barbecues, visiting the beach, sailing, strolling, and socializing with friends.

Turkey is one of the few nations in the world where you may engage in a wide range of activities throughout the year because of the country’s climate. In the summer and winter, you can go skiing, sailing, rock climbing, and golfing; on historical excursions and safaris; on rafting; hiking; swimming; island tours; and on mountain biking and paragliding. Golf courses and sports fields of the highest caliber may be found across the Mediterranean region, particularly at Belek. Turkey’s diverse social and sporting activities meet the expectations of many individuals in nearly every field due to its geographical and natural characteristics.

  • Rich History & Cultural Heritage

Turkey’s cultural heritage is as rich as its tourism attractions. The country, rich in culture and history, has numerous old structures worth seeing, many of which are free. The Basilica Cistern, a feat of Byzantine engineering, the Topkapi Palace, which has become a symbol of the Ottoman Empire are all worth seeing. Sumela Monastery, Cappadocia with its fairy chimneys, Nemrut Mountain National Park with its ancient city of Kommagene and its remains, and Kaunos King Cemetery with its rock-cut tombs for kings all attract visitors from all over the world. Turkey’s treasures include St Nicholas Church, the most important Byzantine building, Aphrodisias Museum, and Gobekli Tepe, which is 7000 years older than the Egyptian Pyramids and is currently being excavated. The ancient city of Ephesus, one of the seven wonders of the world, and the Lycian ruins in Patara are other must-sees. Only a few countries in the world allow you to live history as if it were everyday life, and Turkey is one of them.

  • Healthcare is Superior & Affordable

Turkey’s healthcare system is often regarded as one of the best. The country’s robust economy and medical infrastructure have both been built over the last two decades. Additionally, rural hospitals have access to the same high-tech medical equipment as those in the country’s major cities. This is especially true for emergency care. Medical professionals are educated in medical schools. Foreigners living in Turkey are required to have health insurance, and they have access to the greatest medical treatment in nearly every location.

Points to Consider Before Moving to Turkey

  • Obtaining Residency & Health Insurance

To move to Turkey, the first thing you should do is obtain a resident visa and health insurance coverage. Many foreigners join the government-run SGK scheme, which covers couples as well as those over 65. Learn how to obtain a visa for a residence permit.

  • Getting a Work Permit

Before moving to Turkey, expats should look for work because getting a job in Turkey can be challenging. Employers in Turkey who wish to hire a foreign worker must adhere strictly to a set of regulations. Additionally, owning a business does not inevitably provide you with employment opportunities. Lastly, do not work illegally under any circumstances, as you risk being penalized and deported instantly. Learn how to obtain a work permit in Turkey.

  • Preparing Your Finances 

You must first determine your monthly expenses in order to determine whether you can financially make the move. When the exchange rate fluctuates on a daily basis, converting between your home country’s currency and the Turkish lira might be challenging. Having multiple residences in many countries necessitates a high level of financial management expertise. Make sure you are on top of your money by tracking your income, expenses, and savings.

  • Renting or Buying a Property in Turkey

Some people buy property right away, while others rent for six months or a year to evaluate if they enjoy where they are living before making a commitment. Browse our selection of apartments and villas for sale in Turkey to find the perfect place to call home. Price, location, home features, and contact information are all included in each listing so you can learn more or schedule a viewing with ease. Take a look at our portfolio of  Projects & Properties for sale in Turkey.

  • Transferring Your Possessions

Transporting Household Items: Because of the high customs fees, it’s usually cheaper to acquire new household items in Turkey rather than move across the border. Many people have also had to wait a long time for their possessions to be released from customs. Therefore, get quotes from international removal companies and compare them to the cost of buying new home items. Find out if they will ship them in or if they will carry them in by road, as this will affect both time and cost. On the other hand, you can save money by purchasing in bulk when buying new household items.

Bringing Electronic Devices: There are import restrictions on machinery and any telecommunications/satellite equipment for foreigners moving to Turkey. In the event that you import a television, radio, video, satellite receiver, or any other type of transmitting device, you will be charged a fee. Those fees might fluctuate from year to year, so make sure you are up to date on the most recent information. To avoid paying duties, keep in mind that electronic devices, even if stored in their original packaging are dutiable, and regarded as too many for personal use. Therefore, more than two units of the same electronic device cannot be imported.

  • Learning the Turkish Language

Learn Turkish if you want to live in a small village in central Anatolia or the southeast of Turkey. Similarly, despite the fact that the majority of Turks in Istanbul know English, you will still have difficulties, particularly if you enter the workforce. Many foreigners relocate to tourist cities along the Aegean and Mediterranean shores where inhabitants are fluent in English, German, and Russian. As a result, their daily lives are unaffected, and they rely on Turkish friends for translation services when needed. The linguistic barrier can be easily crossed. Having said that, it is recommended that you learn as much as possible to enhance your overall well-being and happiness. Even if you only say one word a day, it will add up.

  • Choosing Where to Live in Turkey

Turkey is a very diversified country when it comes to its geography and society. Decide whether you want modern, metropolitan-style cities or smaller towns that keep their traditional Turkish charm.

A move to Istanbul will be your best bet if you’re looking for the energy and excitement of city life. Istanbul is a one-of-a-kind city that welcomes people from all walks of life. Istanbul is much less expensive than other major European cities, which gives it a great advantage.

The Antalya region has a laid-back lifestyle and a more international feel. It has a more European vibe than some of the other Turkish vacation spots. Antalya has a higher concentration of foreign residents than any other region of Turkey. 

  • Settling in Turkey

Learn as much as you can about Turkish culture to make it easier to fit in, meet new people and make good friends. Learning the language will definitely help you a great deal to open up to the culture as well.

Because Turkey offers so many positive aspects, it could very well end up being your ideal home away from home. Many expats in Turkey adore their lives and have no desire to leave.

However, adjusting to a new culture when you move to a new country is a very individual experience. What is ideal for one person may be disastrous for another.

Prior research is essential, but it won’t give you a clear picture of whether Turkey is the appropriate place for you. A good strategy is to spend some time as a temporary resident and network with other expats living in Turkey before making a permanent transfer.

More About Moving to Turkey

Nevita ® is here to help! We supported a large number of foreigners in purchasing property and relocating to Turkey. Call us if you have any questions or would like to speak with one of our local professional agents who are delighted to assist you with any concerns regarding moving to Turkey.