How Much Money to Take for Turkey

Page update - Apr 11, 2023

How much money to prepare for a vacation in Turkey for current expenses? What are the additional expenses for All Inclusive vacation? How much to prepare for food and drinks, where is it better to eat? How much are the excursions, transport tickets, gifts and souvenirs? Read the answers on this page.

All the prices on this page were updated in April 2023. ALL THE PRICES ARE HIGHLY UP as the Turkish currency continues to fall and has halved in value over the past 1.5 years (from 9.5 lira to 19.3 lira per US dollar). Prices in Turkey are rising steadily, but there is an important nuance. Prices that are expressed in Turkish liras are rising. But the prices of goods and services in dollars or euros remain broadly stable.

On this page, we give most of the prices in Turkish liras, but some in dollars or euros. It depends on which currency you need to pay for certain services. For the current exchange rates, see our in-depth review "What money is in Turkey".

All Inclusive vs. NO - is there a big difference?

If you're going to a hotel WITHOUT All Inclusive then read this page in full.

If you're going for All Inclusive, then skip the sections on drinks, food, alcohol.

At the end of this page, we'll give totals for all options. For now, let's look at the 12 main expense items.

1. Communications - calls home and internet

The problem of communication during vacation is divided into two sub-problems: how to call home at a reasonable price and how to use the internet. And it happens that the best solutions for these two tasks are not compatible in one smartphone.

This page is targeted to a wide range of countries, so we have no opportunity to describe all the roaming terms in all countries. But we give full prices for local SIM-cards here. A minute of call to the US or European countries costs 3.5-5 liras. If using local options usually called "Allo, Europe", "Allo, America" or similar, the call rate decreases to 1 lira a minute (pack of 30 or 60 minutes). Compare this price with your roaming terms and draw conclusions.

Internet access can be solved by using hotel Wi-Fi, if it's free, of acceptable quality, and with good coverage. If not, you have to choose between roaming options and a local SIM. There are pros and cons to both. In short, you can buy a SIM-card with 20 gigabytes of traffic at an airport for 750 liras. Compare this price with your roaming terms and draw conclusions.

There is also an important point about the Internet. Prices for internet traffic in Turkey are not high. See the photo of the booth near, click on the photo to enlarge. However, the new SIM-card (new contract) with the Turkish operators now costs from 150 liras! And such Internet may not be so cheap anymore for tourists.

2. Gifts and souvenirs

There are plenty of interesting gifts and souvenirs to take home from Turkey, and most are edible. To convert prices from Turkish liras to other currencies, see the current exchange rates in our review "Money in Turkey".

Turkish baklava costs 150-250 liras per kilo (250-350 for the pistachio variety).

Turkish delight (lokum) costs from 50 liras per kilo and up to infinity. There are ultra-expensive varieties.

Turkish halva costs from 100 liras per kilo.

Turkish Raki (strong alcohol) costs from 300 liras for a 0.5 liter bottle. A good coffee brewing pot costs from 50 and up to infinity. Karadeniz tea costs 100+ per kilo.

If you want to bring a decent set of gifts, then plan to spend USD 100. If you want a chic set is USD 200, a royal set is USD 300.

For the best gifts and the prices, read our great review "What to bring from Turkey".

3. Excursions

Excursions in Turkey are very different, and the prices vary a lot. Let's try to classify them.

Excursions within the city (resort) of your stay. They usually cost 20-30 US dollars and last half a day. The tour will take you to local attractions, and the guide will tell you everything interesting.

For example, if you are in Istanbul, you can order an excursion to Hagia Sophia Cathedral for USD 20. Then you will pass the queue and the guide will show you all interesting mosaics and architectural elements inside. Or in Antalya, you can have a tour for USD 20 to Antalya Museum, the Duden waterfalls, and the Park of Sand Figures (the ticket is usually not included).

Excursions within the same region or sightseeing tours around the city. They usually cost about USD 50-70 and last all day. During such excursions, you will go to see sights in 100 kilometers (60 miles) or more from the hotel of your stay.

For example from Kemer, Antalya, Side or Belek, you will go to see Demre-Myra-Kekova or Tahtali. Or a full day excursion to the best places in Istanbul, if you are in Istanbul itself. Or an excursion to Ephesus from hotels in Kusadasi, Didim, or Cesme.

Long excursions for the whole day. They usually cost USD 90-120.

These include trips to Pamukkale from all the resorts on the Mediterranean Sea. Or trips to Troy from Aegean resorts. Or trips to the ancient city of Patara and to Patara beach from Alanya hotels.

Excursions with a flight are the most expensive. The price is USD 200-300. The tours last the whole day, often leaving the hotel at 4-5 am and arriving back at midnight.

For example, an excursion to Istanbul from the Mediterranean resorts, flights to Israel, Cappadocia, Northern Cyprus.

We recommend. For a vacation of 7 days, plan 2 excursions: one long-distance, one local, will cost around USD 100 per person. For a vacation of 10 days, plan 3 excursions: two long-distance, one local, will cost USD 150 per person.

4. Local transport

The most convenient way for tourists to get around is by taxi.

Taxi drivers in the resort areas rarely agree to metered fares. They usually ask for a flat rate and the rides are more expensive. In Istanbul, taxi drivers ride by meter almost always, it's easier there. For the official fares for the main regions, see our in-depth review "Taxis in Turkey". On average, it costs 10-15 liras to board and 8-14 liras per kilometer (13-22 liras per mile).

Public transport is cheaper, but can be very inconvenient.

The situation with public transport in Istanbul is excellent as there are metro, trams, buses, and even funiculars and cable cars. The ticket price for a ride is 9.9 liras. Read more about the features, rules and how to pay in our review "Subway in Istanbul".

The situation in resort regions is complicated. There are buses in Antalya and the fare is 9.6 liras. In the rest of the resorts, there are only local shuttles, they are called "dolmus". The price of a trip within one area ranges from 7 to 25 liras per person, depending on the distance.

In the Mediterranean resorts, there are dolmuses that travel along the coast on the D400 highway and pass all the resorts. You can take a dolmus to Antalya from any resort, which can be very convenient. The fares range from 10 to 100 liras, depending on the distance.

We try to explain in detail on our pages about attractions about how to get there by public transport. Read our pages and you can save money.

5. Sights tickets

The prices vary widely depending on the importance of the attraction.

Tickets for local attractions in the resorts are usually inexpensive, ranging from 10 to 60 Turkish liras. For example: Chimera Mountain in Kemer is 20, Alanya Castle is 65, sand sculpture park in Antalya is 8 Euros (150 Lira).

Tickets for the Istanbul sights are more expensive - up to 700 liras. For example: Topkapi Palace along with the Sultan's Harem is 650 liras, Basilica Cistern is 300, Galata Tower is 175 and the Archaeological Museum is 100.

Is it better to go sightseeing on your own or with a guided tour? The question is complicated. The answer depends on the circumstances.

If you come to Istanbul, it is much better to see the sights on your own, because there is a well-developed public transport.

In the resorts, it's more complicated. Many places there are difficult to get to by bus or dolmus. In some cases, a tour will be more convenient and more economical, and you will receive a guide service. Our advice: first find out how difficult it will be to get there on your own and then decide whether to go on your own or book an excursion.

6. Drinks (non-alcoholic)

Shop prices for drinks are about the same as in most European countries. Except for plain bottled water, which is much cheaper in Turkey. Following are the prices in Turkish liras. The current exchange rates can be found in the review "Money in Turkey".

Sparkling drinks: the 0.33-liter Coca-Cola can costs 15 liras, the 1.5-liter Coca-Cola bottle costs 23 liras; local soda 2 or 2.5-liter bottles start at 20 liras.

Fruit juices are from 20 to 30 liras for a 1 liter pack. Iced tea is from 10 for 1 liter and from 20 for 2 liters.

Taste national Turkish drinks. The main national drink is "ayran" which reminds some of the yogurt you are used to, but is not as dense. The price for a 200 ml ayran pack is 4-5 liras or starting from 20 liras for a 1 liter bottle.

Energy drinks: Red Bull 0.25 liter is 20 liras, Monster 0.5 liter is 27.5, Burn 0.25 liter is 20.

7. Food - products from a supermarket

The most budget-friendly way to eat is to buy ready-made food in a supermarket. Tourists make sandwiches or buy fruits and vegetables. Of course, sandwiches are not healthy, but the savings are obvious.

A loaf of bread is 6-12 liras, flatbread is 15-25 liras, and a bagel is 5-6 liras.

Cheese is from 200 liras per kilo, meat slices are 30-40 per small pack.

Yogurt is around 10 liras per 100g cup, milk is 15-25 per liter.

Ready-to-eat peas, corn, beans are 15-25 liras per 400 grams can.

Experienced tourists can eat for 100-150 Turkish liras per person per day.

8. Food - street-food, cheap cafes, bakeries, fast-food

It's a more expensive but far more interesting way to eat. Luckily, there are a lot of eateries in Turkey.

In street-food places: doner (shawarma) costs 40-70 Turkish liras, bagel simit is 5-6, small pies are from 5 depending on the stuffing, fried corn is 12-18. The interesting thing is that Turks prefer roasted corn to boiled as it's customary in most countries.

At bakeries: small pies are from 5 to 20 liras depending on the stuffing, burek is from 10 to 25 depending on stuffing and type, tea is from 7, baklava is from 12 per piece. As for bakeries in the cities, remember the main rule: the further from the main streets, the cheaper. For example, in Istanbul on the main street in the bakery chain "Simit Saray" tea costs 14 liras, but in the bakery 50 meters (150 feet) from the street already 8 liras.

In cheap cafes: a large pidem (pictured near, click to enlarge) or lahmacun is 40-60 depending on the filling, konafe is from 25, a portion of kofte cutlets with side dishes and vegetables is 50-70.

In national fast-food outlets, prices are about the same as in cheap cafes; see the prices in the paragraph above.

At international fast food outlets. At McDonalds: Big Mac is 88 liras, McRoyal is 114. Note: At the time of updating this page (April 2023) there are promotions in McDonalds - combos with two or three burgers with great discounts.

At KFC: Twister is 55, Double Zinger is 74, one strip is 24, one leg is 29. At Burger King: Bopper is 86, Double Cheeseburger is 77, nine nuggets are 45.

The situation in Turkey is very interesting: eating at national fast-food outlets is inexpensive, while eating at international outlets is very expensive. Don't be surprised. International fast food places in every country position themselves differently. Somewhere it's cheap food for the poor, somewhere it's expensive food for the middle class. In Turkey it is the second option.

Eating in street food shops, bakeries, fast food outlets will cost between 250 and 500 liras per person per day.

9. Food - restaurants

Eating in restaurants in Turkey is 2-3 times cheaper than in Europe, if we compare restaurants of the same service level. The main rule is the same: the further from the main roads, the cheaper. Of course, if you go to a restaurant in a tourist area, you can multiply the prices below by 1.5-2 times.

The prices are roughly as follows: Iskander kebab is from 100 liras per 100 gram portion, other kebabs are from 50 per 100 grams, kofte cutlets with a side dish are from 40, karniyarik is from 40 per portion, konafe with kaimak and pistachio sprinkles is from 25.

The drinks are worth a separate story. If you order tea at a restaurant, you'll pay 15-30 liras for it. But other drinks are more expensive.

A glass of beer will cost about 80 liras and it's not going to be a draft but an ordinary bottled beer. A glass of wine will also cost around 80. A can of Coke will cost 15-25, a glass of juice 15-20.

Eating in mid-level restaurants cost about 400-600 liras per person per day. But that's assuming you don't drink alcoholic beverages there.

10. Food - culinary departments in supermarkets

Many (but not all) supermarkets and hypermarkets have cooking departments where you can buy ready-made meals. This is convenient, tasty, inexpensive and safe (most of the time). The price of the meals: 300-400 liras per kilo for meat, 100-200 liras for vegetables or side dishes.

The departments look different. The classic version is just a shelf where you can pick up a pre-packaged meal in a tray and film. There is no need to weigh anything, because the label and barcode are already attached.

There are full-service departments where a member of staff will pack the food you like in the desired quantity. There are cooking departments with tables where you can eat the food you have bought by paying at the cash register next to it.

But the best option is a grill. You choose your favorite sausages or kebabs from the nearby shelf, bring them to the chef, and he/she grills them for you on the spot. It is very convenient and interesting. If there is a supermarket with that kind of cooking nearby, you should go for it. Unfortunately, there are very few supermarkets like that in Turkey at the moment. In addition, all such food shops closed in 2020 during the pandemic, and some have yet to reopen.

11. Bad habits - alcohol and cigarettes

Cigarettes in Turkey are now (April 2023) much-much-much cheaper than in Europe or the US. Cigarettes and tobacco products were once more expensive in Turkey, but 2018 and 2021-2022 saw two "collapses of the Turkish lira" when the USD/TRY exchange rate rose from 4 (summer 2018) to 19.3 (April 2023).

Cigarette prices did not rise much and cigarettes were quite affordable. Now a pack of Winston in Turkey costs around 35 liras, a pack of cheap local cigarettes is 31.5 (pictured near, click to enlarge). Affordable. Read more in our review "Cigarettes and smoking in Turkey".

If you vape or use iQos, then definitely take everything with you. Read the details in our review "Vape and iQos in Turkey".

Alcohol in Turkey is expensive, about 2-3 times more expensive than in Europe. The price of a can (bottle) of beer starts from 30 liras, a bottle of wine is from 100, a bottle of spirits is from 300. See our review "Alcohol in Turkey" for details.

At these prices, we advise drinkers to pack as much as the laws of the Republic of Turkey will allow. Unfortunately, import regulations are strict. You can find out more in our review "What you can and can't bring into Turkey".

12. Contingencies

There may be many of them.

Your travel insurance will necessarily have a deductible. This means that the insurance company will pay for the treatment but only after a certain amount, usually 30 US dollars or Euros.

For example, if a doctor stitches up and wants USD 80 for it, you pay 30 out of your own pocket and the insurance company pays the remaining 50.

Or you will want to buy a souvenir or a gift, though you didn't plan to buy it at all. Or want to taste some dish, seeing it on the stand near the restaurant, although originally you didn't plan to taste it.

Or get lost and decide that it's easier to take a taxi to the hotel than to look for the right way.

Unforeseen expenses can be many. It is advisable to have a 100 US dollars (or Euros, or UK pounds) reserve for them. It's better to be reassured.


If you're going All Inclusive. Prepare around USD 100 per person for excursions + USD 100 for gifts and souvenirs + USD 30 for trips to local attractions.

If you are going WITHOUT All Inclusive. Prepare USD 20-25 per day for food and drinks + around USD 100 per person for excursions + USD 100 for gifts and souvenirs + USD 30 for trips to local attractions.

An important point! If you go to a resort hotel, the cost of food WITHOUT All Inclusive may be much higher than USD 20-25. It all depends on the location of the hotel. If there are shops, cafes, restaurants nearby, that's fine. But what if there is nothing nearby? If the hotel is in the middle of nowhere? Then you will eat in the hotel restaurant at exorbitant prices. Conclusion: When choosing a hotel, you should check the map and see if there are shops, cafes, restaurants nearby.

If you're going to Istanbul. Prepare 20-25 US dollars a day for food and drink + 100 US dollars for gifts and souvenirs + 100 US dollars for trips to attractions.

More important tips

- When buying souvenirs and gifts, don't get too carried away. Not everything can be taken out of Turkey, and some things can be taken out, but with restrictions. Read our detailed review "What you can and can't take out of Turkey";

- On what to take besides money, read our detailed review "What to take on vacation to Turkey".

Have a great trip to Turkey, and read our pages about the country (see the pages list below). © 2020-2024