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Arts & Humanities Resources

 

Emre Ocaklı

0212 338 1328

eocakli@ku.edu.tr

 

İlkay Gürbüz

0212 338 1663

igurbuz@ku.edu.tr

Business & Economics Resources

 

Derya Soğuksu

0212 338 1226

dsoguksu@ku.edu.tr

 

Duygu Kızılaslan

0212 338 1225

dkizilaslan@ku.edu.tr

Engineering & Science Resources

 

Ümran Yaman

0212 338 1322

uyaman@ku.edu.tr

Health Sciences Resources

 

Güssün Güneş

0212 311 2620

ggunes@ku.edu.tr

 

Mine Tarlan

0212 311 2623

mtarlan@ku.edu.tr

Social Science Resources

 

Kamil Yeşiltaş

0212 338 1660

kyesiltas@ku.edu.tr
SECTION 32 – GETTING TO KNOWABOUT ISTANBUL




32.1 INTRODUCTION

This section is intended to familiarize the reader with Istanbul. Information has been compiled by Koç faculty and spouses based on their own personal experience, as well as from a variety of other sources.

Istanbul is an ancient, densely populated city of at least 12 million on the Bosphorus between the Black Sea and the Sea of Marmara. Most of the flights that are bound from the US arrive in Istanbul around noon or early afternoon. Those from European cities are usually in Istanbul in the late afternoon. Koç University is about a one hour 45 minutes drive northeast of the airport and about 45 minutes drive from the city center. Allow more time during rush hour.

USEFUL TIPS:

The Istanbul Guide, a bi-monthly magazine on Istanbul written in English, is a good source of information on issues ranging from child education to doctors’ names, and is available for your review at the University Library. The Istanbul Guide can also be purchased at bookstores and newsstands.
Time Out IstanbuIn/Out Istanbul, a monthly magazine on living in Istanbul, provides up-to-date information on

entertainment, cultural events, movies and newly opened restaurants. It is published written in both Turkish and Englishbut

has a multi-page insert in English on each issue’s highlights. It can be bought in Miros on campus as well as newsstands in neighborhoods such as Taksım or Nısantaşı, where there are more English speakers.
Two helpfuls websites are: http://www.mymerhaba.com and the “Community Information Section” of the “American Citizens Service Unit” at http://www.usconsulate-istanbul.org.tr/.
has a multi-page insert in English on each issue’s highlights.


USEFUL TIPS:
The Istanbul Guide, a bi-monthly magazine on Istanbul written in English, is a good source of information on issues ranging from child education to doctors’ names, and is available for your review at the University Library. The Istanbul Guide can also be purchased at bookstores and newsstands.
Time Out IstanbuIn/Out Istanbul, a monthly magazine on living in Istanbul, provides up-to-date information on

entertainment, cultural events, movies and newly opened restaurants. It is published written in both Turkish and Englishbut

has a multi-page insert in English on each issue’s highlights. It can be bought in Migros on campus as well as newsstands in neighborhoods such as Taksim or Nısantaşı, where there are more English speakers.
Two helpfuls websites are: http://www.mymerhaba.com and the “Community Information Section” of the “American Citizens Service Unit” at http://www.usconsulate-istanbul.org.tr/.
has a multi-page insert in English on each issue’s highlights.









3.2 EMERGENCY AND OTHER IMPORTANT TELEPHONE NUMBERS , MAKING CALLS AND USING PAY PHONES




Emergency Numbers



On Campus Emergency Numbers





  • Health Emergency EALTH EMERGENCY 1100

  • Fire IRE 3535

  • SecurityECURITY 3535



GGeneral Emergency Numbers


((Ddial “9” first if calling from campus.)
These numbers are valid anywhere in Turkey and immediately put you in contact with Turkish emergency services. These services are offered free of charge, 24 hours a day 365 days a year.

  • FireIRE 110

  • Ambulance MBULANCE 112

  • Police OLICE EMERGENCY 155

GENDARMARIE (rural area police) 156 

  • Coast Guard oast Security 1158

  • Forest Fire orest Fire 177

  • Gendarmerie / Jandarma 156

(rural area police)
These numbers are valid anywhere in Turkey and immediately put you in contact with Turkish emergency services. These services are offered free of charge, 24 hours a day 365 days a year.
Emergency Calls from Cellular Phones
:

To call emergency numbers from your mobile phone, dial “0,” then the area code you are physically in (212 or 216 in Istanbul), then the 3-digit emergency number, then “0000.” For example, to call the police regarding an emergency on the European side, you would dial 0 + 212 + 155 + 0000. (See more on cellular phones in Section 32.3.).

Other Useful Numbersful Numbers:

Dial “9” first if calling from campus.




  • Director Assistance IRECTORY ASSISTANCE 118

  • Mail Code InformationAIL CODE INFO 119

  • Postal Service InformationOSTAL SERVICES INFO 161

  • Wake-Up Service AKE UP CALL 135

  • City of Service ITY OF SARIYER 242-7580




USEFUL TIP:
Wake-Up Service: Dial 135 or 9+135 to use an automated wake-up call service. The service is in Turkish, so you might ask your faculty secretary to help you.



Operator Assisted International Calls:
By dialing 115 you can reach a Türk Telekom international operator. Register the call details with the operator -i.e. type of call, country, and telephone number. The operator will assist you with the connection.

Making Calls On-Campus:



Someone On Campus: Dial the four-extension.
Dial “00” for the University operator during business hours.University Operator: Dial “00” for the University operator during business hours.

Making Calls Off-Campus:
Dial (9) first. Istanbul has two area codes: (0212) for the European side and (0216) for the Asian side. To call another area code within Turkey, first dial (0), then the area code and phone number. To call within the same area code, just dial the last 7 digits. To call overseas, first dial (00), then the country code and so on.

USEFUL TIP:
IIf in your lojman or office, dial:


  • 1414 to call Richard Hight in his office

  • 9 + xxx xxxx to call amy friend on the European side

  • 9 + 0216 xxx xxxx to call a my friend on the Asian side

  • 9 + 0 + 312 xxx xxxx to call a my friend in Ankara.

  • 9 + 00 + 1 + 860 to call a my friend in USA – Connecticut


Operator Assisted International Calls:

By dialing 115 you can reach Türk Telekom international operator. Register the call details with the operator -i.e. type of call, country, and telephone number. The operator will assist you with the connection.


Pay Phones:
Public telephones are conveniently located throughout the country. Two types of pay phones are available - one is operated with coins and the other with telephone cards.

IMPORTAANAT TIP:
Where to Buy Phone Cards: You can purchase phone cards (in 30, 60, and 100 units) in various locations, such as: any PTT office (including the one on campus), Türk Telekom shops, small convenience shops called bakkals (they often stick these phone cards in the window to advertise that they are for sale), and sometimes at small vendors stalls near the phone booths.


Pay Phones with Token: Lift the receiver and place the appropriate token into the proper slot. When you hear a beeping sound and see the red light on the machine turn off, you can place your call. If a beeping sound is heard during the conversation, this is a signal that your time is about to run out. If you want to continue the conversation, quickly place additional tokens into the slot.
Pay Phones with Telephone Cards: Lift the receiver and place the card (cards can be purchased with 30, 60, and 100 units) into the slot. When a beeping sound is heard, dial the number. During the conversation if you hear a beeping sound, that reminds you that your credits are about to run out. You will see the number of remaining units flashing and the message "Change Card" on the display. When you see this message press the "Card Change" button and insert a the new card. When you place a call from any kind of phone there will be a charge in accordance with the length of the call and the distance to the number dialed.

Pay Phones with Token: Lift the receiver and place the appropriate token into the proper slot. When you hear a beeping sound and see the red light on the machine turn off, you can place your call. If a beeping sound is heard during the conversation, this is a signal that your time is about to run out. If you want to continue the conversation, quickly place additional tokens into the slot.

You can purchase the above mentioned phone cards in various locations, such as: Türk Telekom shops, small convenience shops called Bakkal (they often stick these phone cards in the window to advertise that they are for sale), and sometimes at small vendors stalls near the phone booths.



IMPORTANT TIPS:

Some Helpful Turkish Phrases While Using the Telephone:
I want to call… … telefon etmek istiyorum.

I want to call (Australia). (Avustralya)’ya telefon etmek istiyorum.

One moment, please. Bir dakika, lütfen.

Who’s calling? Kim arıyor?

Wrong number Yanlış numara

Hello, is “so-and-so” there? Merhaba, “So-and-so” orada mı?

I’ll call back later. Daha sonra arayacağım.






IMPORTANT TIPS:

Some Helpful Turkish Phrases While Using the Telephone:
I want to call… … telefon etmek istiyorum.

I want to call (Australia). (Avustralya)’ya telefon etmek istiyorum.

One moment, please. Bir dakika, lütfen.

Who’s calling? Kim arıyor?

Wrong number Yanlış numara

Hello, is “so-and-so” there? Merhaba, “So-and-so” orada mı?

I’ll call back later. Daha sonra arayacağım.




32.3 CELLULAR PHONES
Cell phone usage is widespread in Turkey. If you spend any time at all off-campus you will find a cell phone helpful.

Cell Phones and Service Providers:

In Turkey, it is not the phone itself that is activated with a specific number tied to a specific service provider, as in the US. Rather, a manually inserted small chip called a “SIM” (Subscriber Identity Module) card that stores the phone number as well as your individual data activates the phone. You can use your SIM in any phone that works with GSM technology. You buy your phone and service separately. Phones can be expensive.

There are two ways of getting service on your phone: (1) entering into a contract with a cellular service provider or (2) buying airtime (o0r köntur, units) as you need it.
Contracts with Sservice Pprovider: The service contracts are similar to those in the US, except that the Turkish system has two advantages: you’re not locked in for long periods with huge cancellation penalties, and the rates are low in comparison to those in the US. The threewo main companies are Turkcell, Telsim, and Arveea.
To set up service, you must either be an established resident of Turkey or have a Turkish citizen “vouch” for you. Vouching involves the Turkish citizen agreeing to pay your bill if you fail to (there may or may not be limits on this obligation). The agreement must be notarized by a “notar,” who performs duties similar to those of a notary public. There is a notar located to the right side of the main road into Sarıyer going towards the water.

You are billed monthly and, unless you request a paper bill, you may simply get a text message on your phone in Turkish alerting you that you need to pay. You can pay in person at a bank or, more conveniently, online, directly from your bank account. There is a very short window of time in which you must pay, after which, first, you will not be able to make calls but will be able to receive them. call out, but will still be able to accept calls, then shortly aAfter that, you will lose service entirely.


Buying Ttime as Yyou Ggo: Instead of signing a contract with a service provider, you can buy airtime credit as you go by buying phone cards. This is a more popular and easier method. Time on the cards is measured in “konturs.” 100 konturs currently costs 10.50 YTL and 250 konturs costs 23 YTL. If someone calls you, there is no charge against the konturs. Calling another cell phone from your phone is quite expensive, so it is wise to keep your calls short. Calling a land-line telephone isn’t quite as expensive. You can buy kontur cards on almost any corner of the city. There is a number covered by silver on the back of the card. Scrape the silver off to get the number. You have to call a special number and then enter the phone card number to register the kontur credit. These cards are available at all phone stores and also at the campus Migros. Once you have a credit card established with a bank, you can go online and buy kontur credit for your phone via your credit card. It is reflected within minutes of your online request, . thus This savinges a lot of time.

What To Do If Your Cell Phone Is Stolen:
If your phone is stolen, you can minimize your loss by keeping a safe record of providing the registration number of your cell phone. Note the IMEI (International Mobile Equipment Identity) number of your phone. (Of course, you must do this before the phone is stolen and kept in a safe place.) Dial *#06# from your mobile phone and a 15 digit IMEI number appears.
As soon as you realize your phone is stolen immediately call your service provider (Aria, Turkcell…) and give the IMEI number. The company will immediately put your number out of operation. Even if the SIM card is changed, the phone will be blocked and no body will be able to use the phone.
32.4 CLIMATE, ATTIRE AND PERSONAL CARE
Climate and Attire:
The climate in Istanbul is temperate.  The latitude is about the same as Rome or New York City. While it may snow a few times, winters are often rainy with temperatures in the teens 10s Celsius/ or 40s Fahrenheit. Being close to the sea, the weather seems colder, so bring winter coats!   Spring usually starts in late April or even May; the temperatures will warm up in June.  Most homes and many taxis and shops do not have air conditioning, so easily washable clothing is helpful in the summer.  However, even on the hottest days in summer, you'll want to carry a sweater or warm shawl if you'll be by the seaside in the evening.  By September, the nights get really chilly. Sunny, crisp days well into November are common.   
Personal Care:

Turkish hairdressers (kuaför) and barbers (berber) are generally excellent at customer service. In many kuaförs prepare to have a small army work on you. One takes your coat, another washes your hair, another cuts, another holds the dryer, and yet another holds the brush. It is best to pay attention to their faces or clothing because you should tip each one according to the value of his/her service. The actual “kuaför” is the one who will cut your hair and put the final touches on. If the cutter is the owner of the salon he/she may not accept a tip.


Kuaförs (including the Hair Planet on campus) offer cuts, color, highlighting, blow-dry, styles, as well as waxing, manicures, and pedicures. Prices vary according to district for hair. Waxing, manicures, and pedicures are dramatically less expensive than in the United States. If you’re afraid of the Kuaför taking too much liberty with your locks, you might bring a picture of what you would like.
Basic Vocabulary at the Beauty Salon or Barber:
Some “sign language” in combination with the following vocabulary should get you through any kuaför or berber experience:
Basic Expressions:

  • lütfen = please

  • istiyorum = I want

  • iste-mi-yorum = I don’t want

  • bu model = this model

  • kalsin = leave it

  • ne kadar? = how much?

  • mersi = thanks

Kuaförde” (at the hairdresser):



  • saç = hair

  • kesim = cut

  • şampuan = shampoo

  • uzun = long

  • kısa = short

  • bir az = a little / çok = a lot

  • fön = blow out

  • topuz = special occasion style

  • uzatıyorum = I am growing my hair out.



  • röfle = highlight

  • boya = color

  • açık = light

  • koyu = dark

  • dipler = roots

  • uçler = ends




  • ağda = waxing

  • manikür = manicure

  • pedikür = pedicure

Berberde” (at the barber):



  • saç = hair

  • kesim = hair cut

  • sakal tıraşı = shave

  • uzun = long

  • kisa = short

  • jöle = jell




  • arkadan = from the back

  • önden = off the front

  • yanlardan = from the sides

  • çok = a lot / biraz = a little

(ex. yanlardan biraz = a little from the sides.)


  • Favoriler kalsın. = Don’t cut my sideburns.

  • Boynumdaki tüyleri (neckhair) alırmısınız? = Can you shave the hair off my neck.




  • Saçımı yıkar mısınız? = Would you wash my hair?

  • Saçımı yıkamayın = Don’t wash my hair.

  • The berber will usually dry your hair. If you don’t want it, say “kalsın.”


3.5 BANKING AND & MONEY
Getting Paid
How do you get paid?

Salaries are paid to a Koç Bank YTL account on the last working day of each month. You will probably open both a YTL (Yeni Turk Lirasi) account and a USD account in the first few days of arriving on campus. It is also possible to open other accounts for Euro, etc. if you wish. Many people immediately change their salaries into a hard currency for security. It is easy to do this at the bank and even easier with online banking.


In addition to opening accounts, you will apply for an ATM card. You will receive this a week or so after you apply and can pick it up at the bank. You can also get information about applying for a credit card as well. Be careful to ask around and do your homework before applying for lines of credit in Turkey. Banks all over the city have been active in marketing credit cards.

IMPORTANT TIPS:
Campus Smart Cards: Your KU ID card has a gold-colored chip in it making it a “smart card” that you can use in the vending machines, the downstairs and upstairs cafeterias, Yedi CafeCici’s Bufe, and Suzy’s Café. It works as a declining balance that you can add to using the machines next to the KoçBank on campus.


Buying Turkish Llira

:

Major foreign currencies can be exchanged at local change offices (döviz), as well as banks. The closest one to campus is on the main street in Sarıyer. Generally, change offices offer slightly better rates than banks. Rates may vary slightly from change office to change office. You can check the up-to-the minute exchange rate for the dollar and euro on http://www.kocbank.com and http://www.garanti.com.tr. Traveler’s checks can be difficult to cash. Larger branches of banks will cash them for you, as well as some change offices in touristy areas like Sultanahmet. A commission is usually charged.




IMPORTANT TIPS:
Closest Change Office (Dövizs) to Campus: The KoçBank on campus is always able to change money for you, but if you want to change money in the evening or on Saturday, there is a change office (dövizs) on the main street of Sarıyer about mid-way on the right-hand side as you come down from campus.






IMPORTANT TIPS:
Campus Smart Cards: Your KU ID card has a gold-colored chip in it making it a “smart card” that you can use in the vending machines, the downstairs and upstairs cafeterias, Cici’s Bufe, and Suzy’s Café. It works as a declining balance that you can add to using the machines next to the KoçBank on campus.


Commonly Used Banks:

Most foreigners working at KU seem to bank with KoçBank (http://www.kocbank.com.tr) on campus (this is where your salary is deposited at the end of each month); Citibank (http://www.citibank.com.tr) in Maslak or Esentepe, and/or Garanti Bankasi (http://www.garanti.com.tr) in Sarıyer or Akmerkez. All three of these banks’ websites have English links and phone banking in English (KoçBank 444-0550; Citibank 444-0500; Garanti 444-0333). Staff at most bank branches around the city will be able to understand basic transaction requests. For more complicated transactions, they can usually find someone at the branch who speaks enough English to help you.


Contact people who speak English:


  • KoçBank: Ebru Türkgeldi, the General Manager (genel müdürü) of our branch on campus is extremely helpful. Ext. 3001. She is not fluent but is learning English.




  • Citibank: Tinsel Kara, branch manager of the Maslak office, 212-276-2130 (direct) 0212-276-2050 (branch main number). Citibank has a large office in Esentepe with English speaking staff, 212-288-7700.




  • Garanti: According to their website, Garanti has English speaking staff at every branch. Some ELC faculty went to the Sarıyer branch (212-218-1554) to open accounts and found the staff very kind, but not proficient in English. The account applications were, however, in English. The Akmerkez Shopping Mall branch (in Etiler) has English speaking staff. (212 282-2331). Also, the staff at the Zekeriyaköy branch speaks good English and is very friendly and helpful (212-202-9028).


A Nnote on Bbranch Bbanking: Whereas you may be able to do many different kinds of bank transactions at any bank branch in your home country, that may not be the case in Turkey. This is especially true when requesting bank checks or transferring money overseas. The bank may require you to do certain transactions only at the branch where you initially opened an account. This can be sometimes frustrating, but it has gotten a little better in the last year. If you are persistent, staff may be able to call or fax information to your home branch in order for them to do the transaction. So, it may be wise when opening an account at a bank (other than Koç Bank) to choose a branch where you will often be near or pass by. For example, the Sarıyer Garanti branch may be convenient since it is on the main road in Sarıyer.

Personal Checks and Paying Checks and Bills:
Personal checks are not used much, if at all. Bank checks can be issued for payment in Turkey or overseas, or when you might not want to carry money on you that you intend to deposit overseas. They are usually used for larger sums and is a fee. Personal checks from the US can be cashed in Turkey but can take as many as 14 days to clear.
Credit card and cell phone bills are paid by (1) going to a specified bank with cash and your bill invoice (fatura), (2) electronically, or (3) by telephone. Any bank representative can help you to arrange electronic or phone payments.
Transferring Mmoney Ooverseas

:

Fees are generally on a tier, based on the amount you send. There are different options based on how fast you want to send it, the amount you are sending, and whether you do your transaction in person, on-line or by phone. Fees are lower for on-line and telephone transfers, but these transfers are generally between two accounts at the same bank or an EFT (Electronic Fund Transfer) between accounts at different banks in Turkey only. It may be possible to do an international money transfer online only if your home bank uses the “SWIFT” code inter-banking system. However, most banks in the United States are not on this system. So, ask at your bank or ask around and other instructors may be able to give you some advice. Also, remember that your home bank will probably automatically charge an “incoming wire fee.” To avoid all of these fees and complications, many instructors get a bank check issued and wait until they go home to deposit it (just like a regular check), or if a friend or family member comes to visit, send it back with them for deposit at your home bank.


Bank Credit Cards

:

Foreigners can get Turkish credit cards, but the interest rates on these cards are high. Bank credit cards generally earn points or chips that you can cash in for goods or services. Some of the more well- known ones are “Shop and Miles” from Garanti, which earns miles on ticket points from Turkish Airlines, and “Bonus Kart” also from Garanti.




Taksit Cards / Installment Payment Cards

:

Some banks offer installment (taksiıt) cards. KoçBank offers a credit card to KU employees that allows them to buy big-ticket items and pay in installments (taksiıt) with low interest. HSBC (there is one in Sarıyer) offers the “Advantage Kart”, which allows you to pay in installments at many stores. These are becoming more and more popular to use so make sure to ask around to make sure you understand what each bank offers and how it all works.






32.6 PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION
Istanbul’s public transportation system consists of ground, underground/light rail, and water transportation. buses, minibuses, group taxis (dolmuş), metro lines, seabuses, ferries, and tramways. Some information on the municipality-owned system is available on its website:  http://www.iett.gov.tr.  The website is in English, as well as in Turkish.  The phone number for the head office of İETT is 245-0720.


AKBİL Discount Pass and Teacher Discount Cards (İndirimli Kart):
An AKBİL is a discount ‘magnetic button’ that can be used on all buses, metros, seabuses, ferries, and tramways. AKBİLs cannot be used on minibuses or dolmuşes (these two modes are discussed below). . Discounted AKBİLs are available for students and teachers, but first you need to apply for a teacher discount card (indirimli kart) through the University. You need to renew your card yearly. Ask your department secretary about this. Regular AKBİLs are mounted on a plastic holder. Discount AKBİLs are mounted onto the discount card. At the time of this writing, the initial AKBİL was 6 million YTL.
In Sarıyer, AKBİLs can be purchased next to the main IETT bus stop/terminal which is located at the entrance of Sarıyer’s main street, as you come down from campus. The white kiosk is marked ‘AKBİL Satış Gişesi’. You can add to your balance at these kiosks and at metro and seabus ticket countersthroughout the city. There is a minimum amount you must add per transaction. A sign indicating the minimum should be posted, but if not, you might add 5 YTL, which is certain to be above the minimum.
Ground Transportation:
Buses
:

There are two types of buses: İETT Belediye Otobusu (public), which are red and Halk Otobusu (private), which are green. Check the side and/or front to of the bus to determineistinguish its type. To board a public bus you need a ticket or your AKBİL. To board a private bus, you pay an attendant on the bus or you can use your AKBİL. As of August 2005, the cost of a regular bus ticket was 1.3 YTL.


The one bus that goes by campus is the public Sarıyer – Rumelifeneri İ.E.T.T Public Bus #150. The bus stop can be found outside the school gates. From Sarıyer, the buses to Taksim are #25 or #40. The bus to Eminonu is #25E. An up-to-date schedule can be reached online from the “Campus Life” section on the KU homepage. At the time of the printing of this Guide, the cost of a regular bus ticket was 1 YTL.

IMPORTANT TIP:
Useful Bus Routes:
Rumelifeneri - Sarıyer – #150. The bus stop can be found outside the school gate. (The scheduleeschedule is published on the KU website under “Campus Life.”
Sarıyer - Taksim - #25 or #40
Sarıyer – Eminönü - #25E.



Group Taxis or “Dolmuş”:

Yellow dolmuşes inby contrast to minibuses (discussed below) are much simpler. Unfortunately there aren’t any in Sarıyer. There is a set price regardless of where you get on or off and you pay in cash (dolmuş drivers also prefer smaller bills or change).


Some uUseful routes , however, are:


  • Taksiım-Kadıköy-Bostancı (next to the AKM),




  • Nişantaşı (near the American Hospital) -Kadıköy,




  • Nişantaşı (across from the Teşvikiye mosque/MADO) - Taksim,




  • Taksim (in the side streets across from McDonalds) -Eminönü;




  • and Beşiıktaş (near the Beşiıktaş ferry) -Harbiye/Nişantaşı.


Havaş Airport Service

:

Istanbul’s privately owned airport service drops off and picks up in a few places, but Taksim (next to McDonald’s) and Etiler (next to Akmerkez Shopping Mall) are probably the most convenient. For more info, check their website which has an English link: http://www.havas.com.tr.


Minibuses

:

Minibuses, which are off-white or blue, run specific routes throughout the city, but unfortunately, .



there are none minibuses that pass by the campus. They are more expensive than buses, but still quite inexpensive. A ride from Sarıyer to the metro in 4. Levent as of July 2005 is 1.20about 1 YTL (approximately $0.75). You pay in cash (drivers prefer smaller bills or change) according to the distance you travel. The price list is not posted as the prices are subject to frequent increases (zam). Just ask, for example “Maslak ne kadar?”(Maslak = the name of a district, ne kadar = how much) Certainly interesting is the way that money is passed back and forth to the driver.

StopsTerminals and Routes: Sometimes there is sign marking the minibus’ “end pointterminal”. The sign might have a “D” on it (“(”durak” – bus stop) and a list of the places the minibus goes. There are no minibuses that pass by the campus.
I
USEFUL IMPORTANT TIPPS:
Minibuses from Sarıyer iInto the City Center:
Sarıyer-Beşiıktaş: The Sarıyer- Beşiıktaş (Maslak-road, in-land route) minibuses are in front of the ‘döviz’ (change office) on the right-hand side of the main street in Sarıyer.
Sarıyer-Baltaılimanı: The Sarıyer-Baltalimanı (coast road route) minbuses are tucked in a side street at the very end of the main street on the right, just past the HSBC Bank.
The destination is usually in the front window and above the windshield. If you are unsure, just hop on and say, for example, “Beşıktaş?” Yet another indicator is the driver’s index finger. While trying to catch the minibus while it is moving, the driver may point his finger to the right which means that he is going “up” the Maslak road past the metro towards Beşıktaş. If he points his finger towards the left, it means he is going “down” on the coast road, past Tarabya and İstinye. When you want to get off, you say “inecek (inejek) var” and the driver will stop for you.

n Sarıyer, there are two routes that go into Istanbul: Sarıyer-Beşıktaş and Sarıyer-Baltılimanı. The Sarıyer- Beşıktaş (Maslak-road, in-land route) minibuses are in front of the ‘döviz’ (change office) on the right-hand side of the main street in Sarıyer. The Sarıyer-Baltlimanı (coast road route) minbuses are tucked in a side street at the very end of the main street on the right, just past the HSBC Bank.
The destination is usually in the front window and above the windshield. If you are unsure, just hop on and say, for example, “Beşıktaş?” Yet another indicator is the driver’s index finger. While trying to catch the minibus while it is moving, the driver may point his finger to the right which means that he is going “up” the Maslak road past the metro towards Beşıktaş. If he points his finger towards the left, it means he is going “down” on the coast road, past Tarabya and İstinye. When you want to get off, you say “inejek var” and the driver will stop for you.
Other minibuses in Sarıyer are (as you are coming from campus): (1) Sarıyer-Zekeriaköy (to the left of Gündüzoğlu Baklava, which is on the left-hand side of the main street just after the main bus terminal); (2) Sarıyer-Simpaş/Acarlar (on the left-hand side of the main street in front of Gündüzoğlu Baklava); (3) Sarıyer-Kilyos (on the left-hand side of the main street just after Gündüzoğlu Baklava); (4) Sarıyer-Rumeli Kavağı (off the main street on a right-hand side street next to Ziraat Bankası).


How to Understand the Minibus’s Route:
(1) The destination is usually in the front window and above the windshield. If you are unsure, just hop on and say, for example, “Beşiktaş?”
(2) For the two Sarıyer routes mentioned above, another indicator is the driver’s index finger. While trying to catch the minibus while it is moving, the driver may point his finger to the right which means that he is going “up” the Maslak road past the metro towards Beşiktaş. If he points his finger towards the left, it means he is going “down” on the coast road, past Tarabya and İstinye.
Getting Off: When you want to get off, you say incjek var (pronounced” inejeck var”)and the driver will stop for you.
Other Minibuses in Sarıyer: (as you are coming from campus):


  • Sarıyer-Zekeriaköy (to the left of Gündüzoğlu Baklava, which is on the left-hand side of the main street just after the main bus terminal)




  • Sarıyer-Simpaş/Acarlar (on the left-hand side of the main street in front of Gündüzoğlu Baklava)




  • Sarıyer-Kilyos (on the left-hand side of the main street just after Gündüzoğlu Baklava)




  • Sarıyer-Rumeli Kavağı (off the main street on a right-hand side street next to Ziraat Bankası)




      Taxi Services:





      Cabs are available 24 hours a day. Reliable and recommended companies are Martı Taksi and Kumsal Taksi. As of July 2004, a one-way trip between campus and Sarıyer is about 6-7 YTL ($4-5). At the time of this writing, the taxi meter should start at 1.3 YTL. The taxi meter should show which rates you are being charged. Day rates (gündüz) run until midnight. After midnight, night (gece) rates apply.

  • Martı Taksi: 341-1184, 341-1185, 242-6048

  • Kumsal Taksi: 218-3267, 242-9357

As of August 2005, a one-way trip between campus and Sarıyer costs approximately YTL ($4-5).

A t the time of this writing a ride to the airport costs approximately 45 YTLytl ($35) in the daytime and 65 YTLytl ($50) after midnight.

USEFUL TIPS:
Calling a Taxi: To call a taxi, say “Taksi lütfen – lojmanlar” and then give your building and apartment number






Underground/Light Rail Transportation:
Metro Lines

:

The Istanbul metro is expanding. To board the metroFor these, you either need to buy a token from a nearby kiosk or use your AKBİL.



USEFUL TIPS:
The website www.turkeytravelplanner.com, written by Tom Borosnaohan, author of LoneyLonely Planet for Turkey has a wonderful website with up-to-date information on the metro system, including a very helpful map. The link for information on the metro is:

http://www.turkeytravelplanner.com/WhereToGo/Istanbul/Transport/IstanbulMetro.html


4.Levent-Tasksiım: The metro line that services central Istanbul currently goes from 4. Levent to Taksim (6 stops). At the time of this writing, construction is underway to bring to metro up to Ayazağa/Maslak. To to the 4.Levent stop from Sarıyer by minibus, you can just say “metro”.
Airport-Sultanahmet: There is also a metro line from the airport to Aksaray. To get to Sultanahmet, you can either transfer to a tramway at Zeytinburnu or take the metro until Aksaray and then take a short taxi ride.

Tramways:
The two tramways you are likely to use are :
Historic Taksim/Beyoğlu-Tünel: This charming tramawy runs the length of İstııklal Caddesi in Taksim/Beyoğlu.
Fındıklı / Eminönü - Zeytinburnu (passing Sultanahmet): This modern tramway runs along the Divan Yolu along many of the historic sites in Sultanahmet. One end point used to be Eminönü, but the tramway is in the process of being extended. This new link will eventually extend to ed to to Besiıktaş, but at the time of this writing, the line runs to Fındıklı (past Beşiıktaş a couple of kilometers on the Coast Road/ “Sahil Yolu”). You may have to change cars in Eminönüin Eminönü to get to Sultanahmet.

Tunnels (One-stop Metro)




The Tunnel in Tünel: l:

At the end of İstıklal Caddesi in Taksim, you can take a quick one-stop metro ride down to Karaköy, which lies at the foot of Galata Bridge.


The Taksiım-Kabataş TunnelLink: :

A Taksiım-Kabataş tunnel is also expected to openunder construction at the time of this writing.



Water Transportation:
Seabuseses ( “Deniz Otobüs)s”

:

Seabuses are fast ferries that have specific routes. There are very comfortable and efficient, yet have limited service. The Sarıyer Seabus dock (iskele) is located on the water just as you begin to see the Bosphorus when you are leaving Sarıyer. It is basically a weekday commuter ferry that leaves in the morning for Eminönü and returns to Sarıyer in the afternoon. The seabus website with an English link is: http://www.ido.com.tr.

As of August 2005, the cost of the Seabus for Istanbul routes is 4YTL.

Ferries (or “Vapur)”:

Istanbul is well served by ferries or “vapurs.” The Sarıyer dock (iskele) is a white and yellow wooden building past the seabus dock as you are leaving Sarıyer.

T
USEFUL TIP:

Ferry Lines Serving Sarıyer: There are two lines that serve Sarıyer: Anadoğlu Kavağı - Rumeli Kavağı - Sarıyer and Boğaz Hattı (Bosphorus tours).
here are two lines that serve Sarıyer: Anadoğlu Kavağı - Rumeli Kavağı - Sarıyer and Boğaz Hattı (Bosphorus tours).

The schedule is posted on İskele (dock), or yYou visit the can get the schedule from the Turkish Maritime Organization Inc. (Turkiye Denizcilik İşletmeleri, A.Ş.) website: http://www.tdi.com.tr. They don’t have an English link but you can get schedule information by choosing: “Online Bilet,” then “Şehirhatları İsletmesi” (City Line Services) from the left-hand side menu, and then “Yolcu Vapuru” (Passenger Ferries). You should see a list of the lines. Click on the one you want.

Some useful terms are:

kalkış /varıs” (departure /arrival)

Pazar ve bayram günleri hariç hergün” (everyday except Sunday and holidays)

Pazar ve bayram günleri yapılır” (Sundays and holidays)



Recommended Travel Routes from Koç University to Sultanahmet:


  • Koç Shuttle to Sarıyer; dolmuş to 4 Levent Metro; metro to Taksim, historical tramway along Istiklal Caddesi to Tünel; Tünel down to Karaköy, tramway to Sultahahmet




  • Koç Shuttle to Sarıyer; dolmuş to Beşiıktaş, taxi to Fındıklı; tramway to Sultanahmet.



  • Koç Shuttle to Sarıyer; seabus to Eminönü (weekdays); tramway or walk to Sultanahmet




  • Koç Shuttle to Sarıyer; IETT public bus to Eminönü #25E, tramway or walk to

Sultanahmet

32.7 CARS AND DRIVING
General Information on Driving in Turkey

:

A helpful website about driving in Turkey is the Istanbul Police Department (Istanbul Emniyet Müdürlüğü) at http://www.iem.gov.tr. After you select English from the pull-down menu, choose “licenses of foreigners” from the left-hand side menu. You will find information on what to do in case of an accident, driver safety advice, routine traffic stops, required equipment, road signs and various traffic statistics.


The US State Department travel sheet on Turkey located at http://www. travel.state.gov/turkey.html includes some information on road conditions and driving. For inquiries regarding registration and driver’s licenses you might contact Turing (Turkish Touring and Automobile Club of Turkey) at http://www.turing.org.tr, the Sarıyer Traffic Office (Trafik Şubesi) 212-218-0627/8, or the main Traffic Office in Gayrettepe 212-214-4205.

Traffic Stops and Tickets

:

Routine traffic stops and checks by traffic police are common in Istanbul, especially at night. The area near the campus is under the jurisdiction of the jandarma, and frequently there are traffic stops at night. Often you are waved by, but if they do stop you, they will ask you for your license (ehliyet), registration (ruhsat), insurance (sigorta), and emissions sticker (emisyon ölçüm pulu). They may check for your traffic set (trafik seti), and if it is snowing a lot, they may check that you have chains (zincir) on your tires. Getting a speeding ticket in Istanbul is rare, but does occur, especially on the road that goes up to Maslak.


Gasoline:
Gasoline (petrol) is expensive. At the time of this writing, one liter (1/4 gallon) gasoline is about 2.69 1.8 Ymillion TL or $21.0025. The price is fixed by the government according to city. No need to shop around, unless you want to drive outside of Istanbul. There are no self-service stations. To fill your tank, just say “dol-dur”, or “ful – leh -yin”.


Turing” (The Turkish Touring and Automobile Club of Turkey)

:

Turing handles the paperwork for carnets de passages, international identity carnet (for cars that are registered in Turkey when they need to travel abroad) and international driver’s licenses. There are some English speakers at Turing. There is a website with an English link at: http://www.turing.org.tr.


Buying a Car:



Buying a car and driving in Turkey can be complicated for foreigners. The information below is current as of August 2003, but should be verified thereafter. Neither the American consulate in Istanbul, nor the embassy in Ankara, has much information on this topic. The websites http://www.blueplatecars.com (response to e-mail inquiries in English made to this site was very quick) and http://www.turing.org.tr have some information in English that might be helpful. There are many car brokers/dealers in Istanbul. The best way to find a reliable broker or dealer is by word of mouth. Most brokers who sell blue-plate cars speak at least some English.

Blue-plate or Tax-free Cars:



First of all, the blue plates are not actually blue. They usually have MA, MB, MC, or MD on the plate, signifying that the owner is foreign. Blue-plate cars are available to foreigners who are single, as well as those (male and female) who are married to Turkish citizens but who have not taken Turkish citizenship. The foreigner must have both a residence and work permit. Blue-plate cars may only be sold foreigner-to-foreigner. The advantage of buying a blue-plate car is that you do not have to pay sales tax.

Most people use car brokers to find a car and/or process the paperwork required by customs and Turing. Another source for blue-plate cars is The Turkish Daily News. After finding a car, you will have to block a sum of money (teminat) in a bank “to guarantee the car.” The amount is set by Turing, and the buyer gets the money back when he or she sells the car. The following website gives a list of guarantee amounts http://www.blueplatecars.com/guarantee.htm. The KoçBank on campus is used to this process and can put the money in a type of investment account.



Paperwork and Fees for Blue-plate Cars:
The General Directorate of Security/Head of Traffic (Emniyet Genel Mürdürlüğü – Trafik Hizmetleri Başkanlığı) website http://www.trafik.gov.tr has an English link. From the left-hand side menu choose “traffic processes,” and then “plate processes for foreign citizens” to find a list of the required documents for registration and customs. A broker/dealer should also be able to provide a list of the required documents, of which there are quite a few. Ask your broker to provide an “örnek,” or model, of what is required. Most foreigners keep copies of their paperwork, so you might ask around if you get confused.
Some brokers charge commission on the price of the car, while others make their money through various “fees.” The value of their service is their “navigation ability” through the bureaucracy, especially the customs office. The whole process should take a minimum of three weeks.

Responsibilities of Owners of Blue-plate Cars

s:

(1) Carnet: Every year, you have to renew your car’s “carnet” (the large green document). The carnet’s expiration is linked to the expiration of your residence and work permits. Turing will send you a letter in the mail informing you that you need to renew your carnet. A broker can renew this for you for a fee, but you can go to Turing and customs and do it yourself for substantial savings. This year the renewal fee in 2003 was 65 Ymillion TL. There are additional fees for late renewals.


(2) Insurance (“Trafik Sigortası”): The Turkish government requires all drivers to carry a very minimal level of traffic insurance (trafik sigortası). You must renew it every year. In 2002, it cost 95.000.000 TL for the year and had coverage of $1,000-1,500. The insurance form will be a thin white paper with a round sticker that says “sigorta 2002”. You should keep this paper with your ruhsat (the wallet that contains your car’s registration). Your broker/dealer can renew this for you, but you can do it yourself by going to any insurance agent. If you are buying additional insurance (kasko) you can buy them both from the same agent.
Often during the year, the government increases the cost of the traffic insurance. Your agent will inform you (zeyilname). You will then have to pay the difference. You should then receive a receipt, which you should also keep in your ruhsat. Traffic police check for sigorta and zeyilname when they stop cars and may fine you if your insurance is not current.

(3) Road Tax (“Motorlu Taşıtlar Vergisi”): Motor Vehicle tax or “road tax” must be paid on the car twice a year in January and July at Ziraat Bankasi. (There is one in Sarıyer.) The bank will have a list of fees, but you can check this website for a list of fees: http://www.blueplatecars.com/roadtax.htm You can also pay this tax on-line through http://www.kocbank.com or http://www.garanti.com.tr (both have English links). Although this tax is usually collected twice a year, tThere have been years with three tax periods. Brokers/dealers are also happy to do this for a fee. You will need your ruhsat (the wallet that contains your car’s registration) to pay this. Always keep all your tax-payment receipts because you may have problems selling your car without them.


(4) Emissions Sticker (“Emisyon Olçüm Pulu”): The emissions sticker on your car needs to be renewed every year. You can put your sticker on your windshield or in your ruhsat. Many service stations can do this.
(5) Check-Up (“Araç Muayene”): Every two years, your car needs a “check-up” (araç muayene) performed by an official government service center. In order to have this done, you must show proof of your motor vehicle tax (motorlu taşıtlar vergisi) payment for the two years. The service center on the European-side one is in Zeytinburnu and on the Asian-side one is in Göztepe. The center will update the appropriate a page in your ruhsat.
(6) Safety & First Aid Kit (“Trafik Seti”): All drivers are required to carry a “set” of safety and first aid equipment. You can purchase one at major shopping stores like MMM Migros, Carrefour, Champion. You can buy it from http://www.hepsiburada.com. Basic ones cost 11.000.000 – 12.000.000 TL. Traffic police may check for this.

(7) Chains (“Zincir”): Chains are required on tires during heavy snow, especially near the campus. You can purchase them at major petrol stations, as well as at major shopping stores like MMM Migros, Carrefour, Champion. You can also buy them from http://www.hepsiburada.com.
Turkish-plate Ccars:
Foreigners may buy regular Turkish-plate cars. These cars have MA on their plate and can be sold to either a foreigner or a Turkish citizen. You do not have to block any money as you do with blue-plate cars, but you do have to pay sales tax. Like Turkish citizens, most foreigners go to car dealers who will handle all registration paperwork for a fee. Your broker/dealer should provide you with a list of the required documents and fees for registration.
The General Directorate of Security/Head of Traffic (Emniyet Genel Mürdürlüğü – Trafik Hizmetleri aşkanlığı) website http://www.trafik.gov.tr has an English link. From the left-hand side menu choose “traffic processes,” and then “plate processes for foreign citizens” to find a list of the documents for registration. A broker/dealer should also be able to provide a list of the required documents of which there are quite a few. Ask your broker to provide an “örnek” or model of what is required. Most foreigners keep copies of their paperwork, so you might ask around if you get confused.


Responsibilities of Owners of Turkish Plate Cars:

Owners of Turkish plate cars have the same responsibilities as those listed above, except that they do not have a “carnet.”


Important Car Owners’ Precautions

:

Private Insurance (“Kasko”): Purchasing private insurance (kasko) in addition to the government insurance (sigorta) is recommended. The government insurance has very minimal coverage.
Registration (“Ruhsat”): You should also make a copy of your ruhsat (the wallet that contains your car’s registration). Without it, it will be very difficult to prove ownership if necessary, for example of the car in the event of theft, for example.
Car Loans

:

Car loans are available to foreigners, as well as Turkish citizens, through Koç Bank. Financing is based on 24-months for cars up to two-years old. There have been some special offers of 36-month financing, but this is not the norm. At the time of this writing, interest rates are quite reasonable, but this is not always the case.


Driver’s Llicenses

:

Most foreigners just use their native countries’ US driver’s licenses. Although some have been told by the American consulate that it isn’t necessary to have a Turkish license, others have been told by the local jandarma that it is necessary after one year of residence. Here is the information for both international driver’s licenses (IDL) and Turkish licenses:


International Driver’s License
: An international driver’s license can be issued in Istanbul by Turing. These licenses are valid for one year. You may also apply for an international driver’s license while in the US. The State Department has authorized two organizations, AAA, at http://www.aaa.com and the American Automobile Touring Alliance at http://www.aaasouth.com/travel_drivers.asp to issue international driving permits. To apply, you must be at least 18 and have a valid US license.
Turkish Driver’s License:
Driver’s licenses are issued by Traffic Offices (Trafik Şübe). If a foreigner wants to get a Turkish driver’s license (ehliyet), he or she needs to provide a number of documents, in addition to an application form obtained from Turing.

Below is a list of the required documents, taken from the website of the General Directorate of Security/Head of Traffic (Emniyet Genel Mürdürlüğü – Trafik Hizmetleri Başkanlığı) http://www.trafik.gov.tr.


(1)    residence and work permit


(2)  original license and consulate affirmed translated driving license
(3)    health report from a government hospital or private clinic

(4)    blood type from a government hospital or private clinic


(5)    translation of high school/university diploma
(6)    2-8 color passport-size photographs (2) or (8) (info varies)[says (2), brokers say (8)]

The site http://www.trafik.gov.tr has an English link. Information on getting a Turkish driver’s license can be obtained by clicking on “traffic processes” on the left-hand side menu, and then “changing of foreign driving licenses into driving licenses of our country.”


You should be able to apply for a Turkish driver’s license at the Sarıyer Trafik Office (218-0627/28). The main traffic office is in Gayrettepe 214-4205. A broker/dealer can get you a Turkish license for a fee (some foreigners have been quoted $300). The fee listed for a license on the above website is 18.5 Y00.000 TL.
You might notice that the above list does not include a “crime report” (sabika kaydi) or “bank receipt.” Turkish citizens are required to get a “crime report” when they apply for various things, but it is not clear whether foreigners must do this. Some brokers have not included the crime report or the bank receipt in their list of required documents.

Important Traffic Law and International Signs and Symbols:



Important Traffic Law: No right turns allowed on a red light.
Some Important Traffic Signs & Symbols:


  • No parking on one side of the road: a circle with a diagonal slash, blue background with red border and slash.

  • No parking on either side of the road: a circle with a big X, blue background with red border and X.

  • One-way road: a blue/white arrow pointing downwards and to the side. 

  • Do not enter (one way): a red circle with a horizontal white bar.



32.8 MOVING TO ISTANBUL

Don’t Bring

:


Electrical kitchen appliances, hair dryer, cell phones (unless you know for sure that they work here), TV, VCR, DVD.
It is not necessary to bring sheets, but mattress sizes in campus housing are 16080 x 180200 cm for queen size, and 180 200 x 200180 cm king size. The A-type units have two queen size beds and the B-type have one king and one queen size bed.

USEFUL TIP:
Buying Sheets: If you want to bring sheets from abroad, queen size sheets fit one of the mattresses a bed in both the A- and B-type lojmans. If you want to buy sheets in Istanbul, you can find solid colored sheets for the 160 x 200 cm size mattress, which is a standard two-person size çift kişilik, in many stores including Boyner (Maslak, Carrefour) and LINENS (Nisantaşı close to Osman Bey metro stop).
Some Vocabulary to Help You in Buying Bedding:
çarşaf = sheet

lastiklitıklı çarşaf = sheet with elastic (bottom sheet)

düuz çarşaf = flat sheet
yastık = pillow

yastık kılıfı = pillow case
nevresim = duvet cover

yorgan = comforter

battaniye = blanket

Bring:



Here are some items that newcomers have found either difficult to find or expensive, or worth bringing: Rubbing alcohol (but you can have the pharmacist mix it for you); transformers from US able to carry a high voltage (for computer equipment); some computer software in English, some specialized peripherals; reference books in English; US measuring tools for cooking; down comforters (king & queen); clothing stain remover; for pets: Nature’s Miracle; contact lenses in difficult prescriptions; specific imported toiletry or beauty products.





Electronics and Computers:

Most electronics are available and reasonable in Turkey. (Digital cameras might be the exception, right now). . Turkey runs on 220 voltagevoltages. If you have a 110/220 appliance (like a laptop computer), you will need an adapter that fits a “two hole” socket (as opposed to a two prong lot socket). Carry your laptop in your carry-on luggage; otherwise, you might be asked to declare it at customs in Turkey. If you have to declare any electronic device, you must then leave Turkey with it or pay a fine for “selling it.” If you are carrying a lot of necessary camera equipment, for example, visit a US Customs office and fill out a form so that you won’t have to declare them.




Shipping from Abroad:

Packages from the abroad (whether personal or from online stores) may be stopped by the Turkish government and detained in the Posta Paket Müdürluğu (Package Center) in Cevizlibağ, which is an hour away from campus by car. The Center is run by the government postal service (PTT) with customs inside. If your package gets stopped there, you will be sent a small white paper at the Uuniversity by regular mail. The customs fees vary. Someone from the University should be able to assist you in retrieving your package.



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