Can anyone recommend a service I can contact in advance to arrange a transfer from IST to our hotel in Karakoy?
I would check with your hotel. Most hotels can make arrangements with a reliable service.
When we contacted our hotel in Karaköy for the RS Best of Istanbul tour, they quoted us a price of 60 Euros (yes, quoted in Euros) for a transfer of 1-4 people from the Istanbul (new) airport. The driver meets you at a designated location at the airport with a name board. On arrival at the hotel, you pay cash at the reception, not to the driver.
@cwsocial -- Your experience -- both the pricing and the procedure -- sounds about the same as mine. I think our hotel just tacked the transfer cost onto our bill.
I can also recommend just booking through the hotel. I believe our cost was 40 Euros paid to the front desk upon our arrival. Confirm with hotel a couple of days before travel and make sure the hotel gives specific instructions on who to look for, as usually they are not holding a sign with our names; we have to look for THEIR company sign.
When are you going? It seems that there is a metro/subway that is supposed to connect to the new airport but I cannot find any updates as to whether or not the subway service is on track for completion. The website has not been updated since last year. Anyway, we are traveling there in June and are hoping to use that as it seems like it would be the most efficient. Thoughts?
The best I am hearing is mid-2022 for the opening of the metro line, but I will believe it when I see it. The metro to the airport a big deal, and so I am sure there will be plenty of press announcements when there is a firm opening date. For now, I wouldn't count on it.