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Tuesday, 05 July 2011 00:00

Driving Licence regulations in Turkey

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UPDATE :: NEW RULES AS OF 01.01.2016

 

As of 01.01.2016 Turkey are introducing a new style driving licence and have given all citizens/licence holders until 2020 to get the new style licence, a simple switch-over is 15tl if you already hold one.

The news that affects expats here is on the other changes that are are now as follows:-

  • You can drive a car or motorbike in Turkey on your own countries driving licence if your country has a reciprocal agreement with Turkey (or an International Driving Licence) for a maximum of 6 months after entry to Turkey

    • NOTE: It is currently unclear if this means that you can simply leave Turkey every 6 months and re-enter to "reset" the counter on the 6 months, as with many of the vague regulations we will have to wait and see how it is interpreted by authorities and and when fines or infractions start to be reported.

  • After 6 months you must transfer your driving licence to a Turkish Driving Licence, the procedure is outlined below:-

    • DOCUMENTS REQUIRED TO TRANSFER FOREIGN DRIVING LICENCE TO TURKISH DRIVING LICENCE

      • Existing foreign driving licence and copy

      • Notarised Turkish translation of foreign licence

      • Driving licence form (obtained from the "Drivers Chambers"/Soförler Odasi - see map below for location in Antalya)

      • Passport and Residence Permit/Birth certificate (and copies)

      • Health report for drivers (Can be obtained at all state hospitals, check with the Soförler Odasi which private hospitals are eligible to issue reports if you want to use a private hospital)

      • Receipts from the Tax Office or authorised Banks for the three licence payments, Licence card fee, special "valuable paper" fee, licence service fee

      • 2 Biometric passport size photos

      • Blood group card issued from hospital or a written and signed declaration of blood group

    • After submitting the application at the Soförler Odasi (or traffic Polis) your original licence will be kept and returned to your home countries issuing authority (in the case of the UK, the DVLA)

      • NOTE: This point has caused some consternation amongst expats who, understandably, are reluctant to part with an official legal document from their home countries. Some of the concerns raised include:-

        • If you return to your home country is the Turkish licence viewed as equal for traffic police and more importantly, traffic insurance purposes?

        • Given the notorious unreliability of Turkish post, will your old licence end up with the authorities? How will you know? and in the case of some newer licences in some countries that hold fingerprint and health information what safeguards against the card going missing and identity theft are in place?

      • Various consulates are trying to find the answer to these questions and we have been asked to be patient and wait for announcements.

    • COSTS

      • New driving licence card - 128 TL

      • Tax - 400 TL

      • Translation and Notary fee - 100-200 TL

      • Health report - 150-200 TL

  • There is no motorbike "provisional" in Turkey, if your home countries licence doesn't include motorbikes then ANY kind of motorbike (except low powered electric bikes) are out! rental companies wont tell you this as its you that gets the fine, not them.

  • Another new change now classifies ATVs or "Quad bikes" as cars and owners must hold a full car driving licence (group B) to be able to drive one.

  • A Full list of countries with reciprocal agreements and full details of the new regulations can be found HERE

 

At the moment it seems the easiest (legal?) route is to ensure you leave and re-enter Turkey every 6 months BUT the fact that the law states that you must transfer your licence "6 Months after the entry date to Turkey" it has yet to be defined if they accpt that if they regard "entry date to Turkey" as your first 6 month plus stay or your last entry date.


Also how will the insurance companies interpret and enforce the rulings?

As usual the vagueries will only be solved through trial and error but as we learn more we will keep this page updated.

 

These changes are only a small part of a raft of legislation designed to bring Turkey closer to the EU standards and they also include many new regulations that should help reduce the terrible traffic accident and death figures in the country with stricter licence requirements and monitoring and a new points system to exclude habitually bad drivers. We welcome the package of measures but of course have just concentrated on the issues here affecting expats directly.

Read 5630 times Last modified on Thursday, 07 January 2016 14:11
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