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Travel insurance for Turkey

Turkey is an amazing destination and great value, making it a popular destination for British tourists. Travel insurance isn't a legal requirement here, but it's worth considering because the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) card isn't accepted in Turkey.

Ready to get insured? Compare quotes now to find a great deal, or read on for more information about travelling in Turkey.

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Do I need travel insurance for Turkey?

Travel insurance isn’t mandatory, but it’s best to consider it if you’re travelling to Turkey. This is especially important as the Global Health Insurance Card (GHIC) isn’t valid there, and neither is the EHIC, if you have one that’s still valid.

If you need emergency medical care while in Turkey and you don't have travel insurance, you might have to pay any bills yourself.

Travel insurance offers peace of mind knowing you’re covered for:

  • Medical treatment and repatriation
  • Flight cancellations
  • Theft, loss or accidental damage of your belongings

Most standard travel insurance policies should have some form of cover in place for Covid-19 too. But it’s best to check the T&Cs before you buy, so you know exactly what you’re covered for.

Do I need a visa to travel to Turkey

You don't need a visa if you’re travelling to Turkey for tourism or business, and you’re staying for up to 90 days in any 180-day period.

If you want to stay in Turkey for more than 90 days, you can:

  • Apply for a longer stay visa before you travel
  • Request a residence permit in Turkey before the end of your 90-day stay

Make sure you have the right type of visa for the type and length of trip you plan to take. For more information on the different types of visas in Turkey, visit Turkey’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

What will my travel insurance cover?


Exactly what your insurance covers differs from insurer to insurer, but most policies will cover:

  • Medical treatment: If you fall ill or are injured in an accident when in Turkey, your travel insurance can pay for your medical expenses.
  • Cancellation and delay: If your trip is delayed, or cancelled for a reason that’s out of your control, you should be able to claim any costs on your travel insurance. 
  • Lost or stolen luggage: If your luggage is lost or damaged, it can cover the cost of replacing your things. The amount of cover varies between policies.
  • Repatriation: This helps you get home if you need to come back to the UK under specific conditions for medical reasons, or if there’s an issue with your airline. 
  • Personal liability: This is designed to cover legal costs if you accidentally damage someone’s property or injure another person.

Most policies come with exclusions too. In most cases you won't be covered for:

  • Incidents relating to drug or alcohol use: Your insurer most likely won’t pay out any claims for incidents that happened when you weren’t sober.
  • Travelling against government advice: If you travel anywhere the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) advises against travelling to, you aren't covered on your travel insurance. The FCDO currently advises against travel to parts of Turkey near the border with Syria and Iraq.
  • Certain adventure activities and sports: Check the details of your chosen policy carefully before buying to check the activities you want to do are included.  
  • Pre-existing medical conditions you failed to declare: Your policy likely won't cover treatment or repatriation because of a pre-existing medical condition you haven’t declared.
  • Cosmetic surgery: Turkey is a popular place to visit for cosmetic surgery, but regular travel insurance doesn't cover this kind of trip. Instead, you’ll need a specialist policy. 

What our travel insurance expert says

"Most of Turkey is in Asia, with a smaller portion of the country in Europe. Despite this, most insurers include Turkey on their list of European countries, meaning a trip to Turkey is covered by many European travel insurance policies. Don’t assume this is the case for all providers though – make sure you double check before buying your insurance. If an insurer doesn’t class Turkey as part of Europe, you’ll need worldwide travel insurance."

Travel tips for Turkey

Here's what you need to know about Turkey at a glance:

  • Official language: Turkish
  • Capital: Ankara
  • Time difference: UTC+3
  • Flight time from the UK: Around 4 hours
  • Money: The currency is Turkish Lira. Credit/debit cards are accepted all over Turkey, mainly in tourist areas and larger towns. ATMs are widely available in tourist areas and cities. That said, it's a good idea to carry some cash with you just in case you have difficulty finding an ATM.
  • Driving: Drive on the right. If you plan on exploring Turkey by car you need an international driving permit or a full UK driving licence notarised in Turkish. You also need a green card as proof of your car insurance if you’re driving your own car.
  • ID: It’s illegal not to carry some form of photo ID in Turkey. If you’re carrying your passport with you, make sure it’s safe.
  • British embassy: The British embassy is in Ankara. Turkey’s consulate locations.
  • Safety: Turkey is generally a safe country to visit, but terrorist groups are still active there. Check the government’s foreign travel advice for updates before you go.
  • Local information site: goturkiye.com
  • Climate: The coastal areas bordering the Mediterranean and Aegean seas have a temperate Mediterranean climate, with hot dry summers. Towards the Black Sea, the climate is temperate oceanic, with warm wet summers. Because the summers in Turkey can get hot, many people consider the spring and autumn as the best times to visit Turkey for sightseeing.
  • Tipping: Tipping in Turkey is optional but common practice – usually about 10% of the bill. Generally you should tip with cash, as you can't add gratuities with a credit card.

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