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Travelling to Turkey

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driving in Turkey
(23 Messages in 3 pages - View all)
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1.       juperez89123
1 posts
 03 Nov 2009 Tue 02:01 am

Hi everyone. I am from the US and I am going to Turkey in January. I want to rent a car but I am somewhat scared. Has anyone driven in the US and Turkey? Can you let me know if there is much difference? Hows the traffic? How do people drive? Is it like Rome, Paris, Sao Paulo or is the drivers calmer like the US? Thanks for your response

2.       angel-frier
322 posts
 03 Nov 2009 Tue 04:55 am

 

Quoting juperez89123

Hi everyone. I am from the US and I am going to Turkey in January. I want to rent a car but I am somewhat scared. Has anyone driven in the US and Turkey? Can you let me know if there is much difference? Hows the traffic? How do people drive? Is it like Rome, Paris, Sao Paulo or is the drivers calmer like the US? Thanks for your response

 

 According to me, you will need to be carefull so much, while driving a car in Turkey, because most drivers dont know the traffic rules or practice, they even know some rules or all of rules. Even you are a so good, and patient driver, you have to be carefull so much in Turkey, while driving a car. These are my experiences

3.       Henry
2604 posts
 03 Nov 2009 Tue 07:49 am

 

Quoting juperez89123

Hi everyone. I am from the US and I am going to Turkey in January. I want to rent a car but I am somewhat scared. Has anyone driven in the US and Turkey? Can you let me know if there is much difference? Hows the traffic? How do people drive? Is it like Rome, Paris, Sao Paulo or is the drivers calmer like the US? Thanks for your response

 

 Hi, if you drive confidently in the US, you will be fine in Turkey. There aren´t as many multi-lane expressways in Turkey but they do have some. Istanbul is just like any other big city, busy and chaotic and it pays to have a good road map and navigator. Parking is sometimes hard to find. Drivers in Istanbul I think are better than Rome, Paris or Beijing. Taxis drive erratically as they do everywhere else.

Country driving is fine, just be wary of the occasional slow moving tractors or the rarer horse and cart. You get lots of truck traffic, and some kamikaze truck drivers during overtaking manouvers. But the real killer is the petrol prices in Turkey. Around 3 Turkish Lira per litre!

4.       vineyards
1954 posts
 03 Nov 2009 Tue 08:03 am

The difficult part is getting used to being a part of the traffic. In a big city like Istanbul, the distances are usually big, the traffic is unbearable in the rush hour and people drive recklessly. If you ask me stay away from driving in the city as much as possible if you don´t know where to go. Trying to experiment in heavy traffic might sometimes be suicidal (joking).

 

I thought about driving in Cyprus and Athens. I gave up on the idea in both cases. In Cyprus there was not much traffic but then the traffic was running in the opposite direction. With all turns and exits being on the wrong side of the road, your habits and instincts can be dangerous. In Athens, an old guy in a car rental office advised me to take a taxi rather than rent a car just for a day. Apparently, the first day is the most dangerous of all.

 

I hired an ATV instead on one of the Greek islands. When I left the road and almost crashed into a wall my wife refused to go any further and we took the vehicle back paying the full rent after having driven for 10 minutes. I think most of the danger lies in not being used to something. After a few days, you can drive anything. Of course, if you can survive the first a few days.

 

In Istanbul one needs to be fast, very responsive and accept that sometimes violating a rule or two is expected of you for the general benefit of the traffic. Cab drivers are great instructors about reckless and selfish driving. You can learn a lot from them.

 

A young German friend of mine described Istanbul traffic as a slow speed street race (he is used to driving 350hp cars) and found it very cool.

 

Good luck.

 

5.       ikicihan
1127 posts
 03 Nov 2009 Tue 10:14 am

rent a car with automatic transmission, use a gps, and stay away from minibusses and taxis when you drive!

6.       yakamozzz
398 posts
 03 Nov 2009 Tue 03:04 pm

the best way to stay alive in turkish traffic is to ride on a back seat <img src='/static/images/smileys//lol.gif' alt='lol'> (fast) if it is anyhow possible then sit back, relax, make sure you fasten your seat belt (<img src='/static/images/smileys//lol.gif' alt='lol'>) and let locals to do the driving for you coz they will always survive that madhouse on those streets there Cool

7.       ReyhanL
1961 posts
 03 Nov 2009 Tue 03:06 pm

Take good care of pedestrians...in Turkey they dont respect any rule while crossing the street.

8.       kurtlovesgrunge
1435 posts
 03 Nov 2009 Tue 03:07 pm

if you can drive in istanbul traffic, you can drive anywhere in the world...that sounds like a huge challenge

9.       tinababy
1096 posts
 03 Nov 2009 Tue 03:25 pm

I like driving in Turkey but I have had to develop new eyes in the back of my head. There don´t appear to be any rules except to make as many lanes as you can and to make sure you leave the lights BEFORE they change to green. Pedestrians are always a hazard as the the motor cyclists! Crazy people. I will say though that although people drive without rules they also seem to drive without aggression!

Enjoy!!

ps It will be easier for you from the US because you already drive on the wrong side of the road!! Wink

10.       Elisabeth
5732 posts
 03 Nov 2009 Tue 06:47 pm

 

Quoting juperez89123

Hi everyone. I am from the US and I am going to Turkey in January. I want to rent a car but I am somewhat scared. Has anyone driven in the US and Turkey? Can you let me know if there is much difference? Hows the traffic? How do people drive? Is it like Rome, Paris, Sao Paulo or is the drivers calmer like the US? Thanks for your response

 

 I am from the US and drive whenever I visit Turkey.  Driving in the cities is an extremely intense experience to say the least.  I don´t advise it.  However mass transporation in major cities in Turkey is very good, so you won´t need to drive.  If you will be out in the country, the driving is somewhat easier, however, keep an eye out when going thru intersection.....Turkish drivers do not understand "right of way".  Use common sense....don´t speed (even though everyone else will be).  This will give you time to react to everyone elses bad habits.  I would call your US insurance company and make sure that they cover you if you should be in an accident in Turkey.  Sometimes you will have to pay an extra fee....but it is well worth it, if something happens!

11.       barba_mama
1629 posts
 05 Nov 2009 Thu 09:39 pm

I just came back from a great road-trip in Turkey. We did a respectable 1000+ kilometers in about 3 and a half days. Some roads are just like I know them in The Netherlands...very straight and very good. I´ve also been dragged along small mountain roads, where barely one lane was shared with on-coming tractors and family-packed old white cars You all know the type I´m talking about.

I would say, it depends on which areas you are planning to drive around. Compared to The Netherlands Turkish roads don´t have a lot of lights shining on them in the night. But generally the roads are good, although small village roads should be handled with care

12.       vineyards
1954 posts
 05 Nov 2009 Thu 10:10 pm

Quoting barba_mama

I just came back from a great road-trip in Turkey. We did a respectable 1000+ kilometers in about 3 and a half days. Some roads are just like I know them in The Netherlands...very straight and very good. I´ve also been dragged along small mountain roads, where barely one lane was shared with on-coming tractors and family-packed old white cars You all know the type I´m talking about.

I would say, it depends on which areas you are planning to drive around. Compared to The Netherlands Turkish roads don´t have a lot of lights shining on them in the night. But generally the roads are good, although small village roads should be handled with care

 

Turkey is about twenty times as large as the Netherlands. Much of its territory is rugged terrain and high plateaus. There are all sorts of places in the country. Generally speaking major land roads are usually in good or excellent condition. Smalle, lesss significant roads are generally much worse.

 

I once did 1170 kilometers in less than 10 hours. Not three and a half days

Many Turks living in Germany travel all the way from Germany to their towns or villages in Anatolia non-stop. Still, 1000 kilometers is quite a long distance...



Edited (11/6/2009) by vineyards

13.       barba_mama
1629 posts
 07 Nov 2009 Sat 06:55 pm

1170 kilometers in less then 10 hours...sounds like somebody drove too fast and has to be happy the police wasn´t around I´m just glad I didn´t go 100+ km an hour over those mountain roads. I can see myself being launched over the edge already!

14.       *cartel*
40 posts
 07 Nov 2009 Sat 09:04 pm

you gonna be first time in turkey so ill tell you one thing, especially about istanbul´s traffic .if you want to stay fine as psychologically NEVER drive a car in istanbul.

15.       AlphaF
5677 posts
 07 Nov 2009 Sat 10:31 pm

Trick to safe driving in Turkia is to make sure you have 3 other crazy drivers in your car, while driving.

 

Needless to say, you should never let the other loonies drive....not ever !

 

The idea here is that while there is a very high probability that there will be another car driven by an accident prone lunatic  around you,  at any given time or place, on any piece of highway,  the chances of five lunatics coming together in any one accident is very very low. Hence, even you can safely drive in Turkia, thanks to your own lunatics.

 

This deep knowledge of statistical probability laws is what kept me alive so far.



Edited (11/7/2009) by AlphaF
Edited (11/7/2009) by AlphaF

16.       vineyards
1954 posts
 08 Nov 2009 Sun 12:33 am

Much of the driving was done on motorways where the legal speed limit is 140kmh (no one cares).

It did not have much to do with speed. It was non-stop driving that did the trick. When I jumped off the car my eyes were swollen and bloody and I was in a miserable condition. The silly objective was to find out whether I could drive more than 1000 kms without ever stopping.

 

Quoting barba_mama

1170 kilometers in less then 10 hours...sounds like somebody drove too fast and has to be happy the police wasn´t around I´m just glad I didn´t go 100+ km an hour over those mountain roads. I can see myself being launched over the edge already!

 

 



Edited (11/8/2009) by vineyards

17.       barba_mama
1629 posts
 12 Nov 2009 Thu 03:27 pm

 

Quoting vineyards

Much of the driving was done on motorways where the legal speed limit is 140kmh (no one cares).

It did not have much to do with speed. It was non-stop driving that did the trick. When I jumped off the car my eyes were swollen and bloody and I was in a miserable condition. The silly objective was to find out whether I could drive more than 1000 kms without ever stopping.

 

 

 

 

 Oh, sleep depreviation...much better

18.       sheena
308 posts
 12 Nov 2009 Thu 04:17 pm

I drive in Turkey, but only round Bodrum penisular and Bodrum at night.  Its great fun, as long as you drive at your pace and not others.  Don´t be harrased by crazy drivers behind you, they will soon overtake you. Also, be aware at T junctions, while I was looking for oncoming traffic a Turkish driver pulled out from behind me and turned left the way I was going.

It´s true Turkish drivers do not observe the rules and seem to make up their own. Oh, and also be aware of cows, ducks and slow walking Turks crossing roads, other than that, enjoy, there´s some beautifull scenery to look at (not while driving of course){#emotions_dlg.rolleyes}

19.       yilgun-2010
572 posts
 12 Nov 2009 Thu 07:00 pm

This is a good question.

I am a three years driver between Ankara and İzmir.

 

-  Fırst of all you will need to be more careful.

 

-  Be aware of animals, slow walking people and students crossing roads.

 

-  Speed limit and  security distance and right direction are very very important factors in traffic..

 

Ankara , İzmir and western districts are good as traffic flow.

But İstanbul district  is dangerous because of traffic´s heavy.

 

Unfortunately most drivers in İstanbul and other districts don´t obey and know traffic rules or practice.

You can go to anywhere by local bus, dolmuş - shared taxi -, train, ship or taxi.



Edited (11/12/2009) by yilgun-2010

20.       barba_mama
1629 posts
 12 Nov 2009 Thu 07:05 pm

 

Quoting sheena

I drive in Turkey, but only round Bodrum penisular and Bodrum at night.  Its great fun, as long as you drive at your pace and not others.  Don´t be harrased by crazy drivers behind you, they will soon overtake you. Also, be aware at T junctions, while I was looking for oncoming traffic a Turkish driver pulled out from behind me and turned left the way I was going.

It´s true Turkish drivers do not observe the rules and seem to make up their own. Oh, and also be aware of cows, ducks and slow walking Turks crossing roads, other than that, enjoy, there´s some beautifull scenery to look at (not while driving of course){#emotions_dlg.rolleyes}

 

 Especially in that area people shouldn´t drive too fast...jeez, the police LOVE to have stake-outs there

And to the list of animals I want to add goats and chickens.

21.       ReyhanL
1961 posts
 12 Nov 2009 Thu 07:23 pm

 

Quoting barba_mama

 

 

 Especially in that area people shouldn´t drive too fast...jeez, the police LOVE to have stake-outs there

And to the list of animals I want to add goats and chickens.

 

 No pigs ! {#emotions_dlg.lol_fast}

22.       lady in red
6947 posts
 12 Nov 2009 Thu 07:28 pm

 

Quoting ReyhanL

 

 

 No pigs ! {#emotions_dlg.lol_fast}

 

Well certainly wild boar!  Last year a friend of ours was driving back from the airport at night and one ran out of the wooded area at the side of the road straight in front of his car.  He swerved and actually hit a tree but luckily no-one was hurt.

23.       Ron1
2 posts
 05 Dec 2009 Sat 07:55 am

Hello, I would like to ask two questions. One can an American use the Harbur Gate entry point from Iraq and get a three month visa and two is it possible to rent a motorcycle once inside Turkey? Something on the order of a Kawasaki KLR or Honda Alpine. I would like to ride throughout eastern Anatolia. Thank You.

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