Transportation in İstanbul
The IstanbulCard (Smart Ticket) is commonly used on the following modes of transportation within the Metropolitan Municipality of İstanbul: Sea buses, marine city lines, all the İETT buses, private/public buses the Tünel and the tramcars. Smart Tickets can be purchased to be used for a minimum of 15 days at various Smart Ticket (IstanbulCard) sales points all over Istanbul. The fee, which is reduced in price if using IstanbulCard, will be deducted from your smart ticket each time you use it.
You can have discounted public trasnportation cards. Please check the site of IETT www.iett.gov.tr.
Public buses in Turkey operate much the same way as they do in other countries. There’s no time schedule, you just go to the nearest bus stop and wait. Each bus displays its route and bus number, as well as indicates its origin and destination locations.
A dolmuş is a communal taxi. It will often wait at a particular location until it’s full before departing. There will be a placard in the window showing its origin and destination. You have to pay cash for the ride and most of them operate all night, especially on the weekends.
Taxis are the best way to get somewhere if you’re in a hurry and don’t want to wait. Taxi meters operate on daily rates.
Transportation by Sea – Ferries, Sea Buses and Water Taxis
Ferries operate on regular schedules between two points located at different parts of the city. They are the most enjoyable way to get to where you’re going. The city ferries have a fixed rate and schedule. Destinations are prominently displayed at the ferry ports.
The main boat ports on the European side: Karaköy and Eminönü by the Galata Bridge.
The Kabataş boat port is near Dolmabahçe Palace, and the Beşiktaş part is near Bahçeşehir University’s Beşiktaş Campus.
The main ports on the Asian side: Üsküdar and Kadıköy.
You can get information on all city ferries from the İstanbul Ferry Lines Office open 9 AM to 5 PM
Sea buses also operate on a regular schedule. Sea buses are comfortable (air-conditioned) convenient and safe. You can check the schedule for Sea Buses at www.ido.com.tr.
There are several ports for sea buses and the Beşiktaş Port is walking distance from Bahçeşehir University. Water taxi is another safe and convenient way to get away from İstanbul’s heavy traffic especially at rush hours but it is pricier. The phone number for water taxis is: 0212 444 44 36
Metro – Subway
The Metro operates on the European side and has two lines. It is a very convenient way to get around central and commercial areas and evade traffic.
Until recently, Türk Hava Yolları (THY or Turkish Airlines) was the only choice for inter city flights. Today there are other choices including Atlas Jet, SunExpress and Onur Air