Do Taxis in Istanbul Take Credit Cards?

Carrying cash with you might be problematic sometimes, yet not carrying cash could be as problematic as carrying it as well. This problem especially shows itself in taxis.

Most of the taxis in Istanbul does not accept credit card. Even though you can find taxis that accept credit cards, carrying cash with you is strongly recommended just in case you find yourself in a taxi where a credit card is not accepted. Keep in mind that taxis that accept credit card, you need to pay the commission as well. However, you always have the opportunity to pay via your mobile phone if you call a taxi from apps such as BiTaksi or Uber.

Transportation to another destination that you are not familiar with can be problematic. This article is written for you to have a more comfortable holiday in Istanbul, so keep reading to learn more about how taxis work in terms of paying methods in Istanbul.

How can I pay in a taxi in Istanbul?

You can pay the number that is written on the taximeter via Turkish lira. Even though some taxi drivers accept euros, since the conversion of currency would not be so reliable, it is not recommended. In other words, you might pay more in euros than you need to pay in Turkish liras due to the errors in converting. 

Unfortunately, Istanbulkart is not accepted in taxis also. Istanbulkart is only valid for public transportation vehicles (buses, metro, tram, steamboat, Marmaray).

Things to be careful when taking a taxi in Istanbul

Unfortunately, scams in taxis are not rare in İstanbul. So, there are few things that you need to be careful about while taking a taxi in Istanbul.

First, you should have information about your point of arrival, in terms of how many kilometers away it is, or how many minutes it will take for you to take there. Some malicious taxi drivers might benefit from you not knowing the area and aims to get more money by extending the road. You can open a map from your phone and warm the taxi driver if they get out of the way.

Another thing you need to be careful about in a taxi is the taximeter. If the taxi driver does not open the taxi driver, this is not a good sign. This way, you will not be able to see how much you need to pay for the drive and they can charge you much more than you need to. 

Another way to successfully handle a situation like this is that checking out the approximate price you need to pay after your ride. You can find websites online that will estimate the approximate price that you need to pay based on the kilometers you went by. 

Most of the taxi drivers in Turkey do not speak English. To not have trouble explaining to them where do you want to go, you can write down your address on a piece of paper and give it to them. 

Keep in mind that tipping taxi drivers are not a thing in Turkey, which means they are not expecting you to tip them. But of course, if you were satisfied with the service they provide, you can tip them as well. Instead of tipping, Turkish people tend to let the driver keep the change. In other words, if it cost 80 Turkish liras to get somewhere and you handed 100, you can say to the taxi driver to keep the change. It is a much more common way of tipping.

If you have to pass through a bridge, a highway entrance, or a bus station entrance, you need to pay the entrance fee of those places yourself. So, get ready to pay some extra money if you ever find yourself passing through one of those. 

Be careful about which taxi you will choose. Registered taxis in Istanbul must have the plate number on the doors, and the upside part of the taxi. Do not take any other taxi than a registered taxi, because if you ever get in trouble, justice would be much quicker if you used a registered taxi. Do not forget to take the plate number of the taxi, send it to a friend, and share your location with someone, just in case. 

If you ever feel unsafe or in danger, tell the taxi driver to stop and leave. If you ever find yourself in a situation where you are not able to get out of the car, cal 155, which is the number of the poliçe in Turkey. It is completely free to call 155, so do not hesitate.

If a taxi driver does not let you take their taxi just because the distance is too short, keep in mind that this is not legal. Taxi drivers must accept the passengers regardless of the distance they want to get to.

Another thing to be careful about while you are taking a taxi in Istanbul is the pricing they use. The pricing differs in the nighttime and the daytime, the nighttime pricing being more expensive. Some taxi drivers change to the nighttime pricing in the daytime. Be careful about which pricing they choose as you get into the taxi, to not pay more when you do not need to. 

Preventions for taxis in Istanbul

As there are some problems with taxis and the taxi drivers of Istanbul, the police make some controls to taxis. Such that, sometimes police takes a taxi and pretends to a tourist just to see if the taxi driver will try to swindle them. 

Since there is a fine for such behavior, and even their taxi license could get suspended. Again, you need to let the police know if you ever detect an illegal act of a taxi driver immediately. This way, you will be able to both save your money and report someone who is a potential swindler.

Frequently asked questions about taxis in Istanbul

Unfortunately, the taxi system in Istanbul is not perfect. The following are some of the most frequently asked questions about taxis in Istanbul, to help you to have peace of mind while taking a taxi.

Can I use Uber in Istanbul?

Yes, you can use Uber in Istanbul. As all of the drivers are registered in Uber, it is considered a safer option than taking a taxi in a regular way.

Can I pay in euros for the taxis of Istanbul?

Some taxis accept euros, but the conversion of the currency might be unfair. Converting your money to Turkish lira is highly recommended to not pay more than you need.

Are taxis or Uber cheaper in Istanbul?

Uber is used to call to taxis in İstanbul. So a Uber trip costs the same as a taxi trip.

Can I find a taxi in Istanbul regardless of the hour?

Yes, taxis in Istanbul are 24/7 service.

İsmail Çamönü

Hi! I am Ismail. I am a digital nomad from Turkey. I lived in many cities around Turkey during my life and I am passionate about traveling. At Nomad's Guide to Turkey, I share travel tips for nomads, expats, and tourists who would like to visit Turkey.

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