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Time needed to get to Istanbul airport

My flight out of Istanbul is at 7 pm (19:00) on a Wed. in October. I will be staying in the Old Town. At what time should I leave my hotel to get to airport in time to get my flight to Bari, Italy on Turkish Air?

Posted by
1447 posts

At that time of day you need to depart before the mid-afternoon traffic crush out of Sultanahmet and get to IST airport 55 miles away. Then you need to navigate the gigantic airport— there’s a lot of walking to get through this airport which was #2 among airports worldwide with the highest number of international passengers. To be sure you’re ahead of the afternoon traffic , I would have your hotel arrange for the taxi to pick you
up around 2pm, or the time they recommend. They’ll know if there’s some reason like highway construction that might require .more time. That allows 90 minutes to take the expressway to the airport plus an additional 30 minutes for leeway. That puts you inside the airport terminal 3 hours before your flight. There are dozens of duty-free stores if you find yourself with extra time.
Be sure to keep a paper copy of your e-visa in your passport as Immigration can ask to see one either entering or departing Turkey as they did me.
Have a great Trip!

Posted by
545 posts

Just came from airport to Istanbul. There are a dozen or so airport transport busses. We took H-12 and it dumped out in a little park. Then we walked 2 blocks and got a tram. We could do the reverse now that we know, but you would need to look up the info on this some how. It took about an hour total - not counting the time dealing with the malfunctioning machines and being coached by scammers at the tram ticket machine