Driving standards in Turkey have generally been poor, but with the forthcoming EU-compatible licenses and stricter driving tests the standard has been steadily improving, and so has the quality of the roads.
Travelling between Turkey’s major cities such as Istanbul and Ankara has become increasingly easier largely in part to the ‘otoyol’, the country’s four-lane motorway system. While some otoyol roads are free, there are many toll roads in Turkey.
It is vital to know that you cannot pay by cash or card on any toll roads in Turkey. Instead, cars are fitted with an electronic sticker that registers your use of toll roads and charges a fee to an account registered to your vehicle. If renting a car, ensure that it is fitted with one of these.
Once you head towards the east of the country however, the roads deteriorate in terms of quality compared to the rest of the country.
The average price of petrol in Turkey is slightly higher than the world average at ₺4.67 (€1.37). With bus tickets costing on average ₺2 (€0.59), public transport may be a better choice if you are not going to be moving around too much.
Road signs in Turkish
While road signs often use internationally recognisable symbols, it is worth the trouble taking note of some important phrases you might come across when driving through Turkey.
Tek yon - One way
Giremez - No entry
Dur - Stop
Dikkat - Attention
Yol kapali - Road closed
Parking in a major Turkish city is generally considered a bad idea, so it is suggested that you leave your car on the edge of the city and proceed with your journey via public transport.