Merhaba and a very warm welcome to our community for international expats in Istanbul! Here on InterNations, we have a wide variety of people who live and work in Turkey's largest city who are able to help with any advice you might need on making the move. Plenty of our members have found the information available on InterNations — both in dedicated guides and the local forum — invaluable! With a move providing many challenges and potential issues from practical, cultural and linguistic perspectives, you can take advantage of the collective knowledge of the Istanbul Community to make sure you don't encounter any problems. After joining InterNations, you can ask any question that you might have concerns over, such as "is Istanbul safe to walk around at night?" or "how expensive are international schools in Istanbul?". Regardless of your query, we're bound to have members who have been there and done it, so make sure to learn from their experiences and make your relocation and life abroad a pleasant one.
With InterNations, you never stand alone. Whether you move to another city or go on a business trip somewhere — our communities are there to make you feel at home wherever you are in the world. Feel free to also check out our other vibrant InterNations Communities like the ones in Jeddah or Riyadh.
Attend our monthly events and activities for Istanbul expatriates to get to know like-minded expatriates in real life.
Get trustworthy advice and local insights from fellow members in our Istanbul expat forums.
Istanbul has been a melting pot for a huge variety of cultures ever since it was built. It bridges two continents itself, and if you take a walk around historical sites you can observe both Roman and Viking graffiti. It's no surprise that little has changed in that regard, with people from all over the world still calling Istanbul home. With a population of more than 14 million people, it is one of the largest conurbations in Europe and is the third largest city in the world by population within city limits. That is why expats should be armed with patience regarding the traffic jams and crazy driving especially at the center of this capital. Speaking of the center, it can be hard to find an apartment nearby the center when it comes to accommodation. However, if you are looking to be close to other expats, you can definitely find them at the European side of the city in neighbors like Cihangir or Çukurcuma. Istanbul and Turkey in general is not only home to a huge tourism industry, but also a large and burgeoning manufacturing industry in all sorts of materials, from paper to textiles to automobiles, so there are always plenty of other expatriates coming and going in order to work in Istanbul. Outside of work, they often take the time to enjoy the stunning vista over the Bosphorus or the glorious architecture of the Blue Mosque, the Cisterna Basilica and the Dolmabahce palace. Moreover, you can look forward to taking in the sight and smell of the incredible variety of food, spices and drinks offered at the "infamous" Egyptian market and Kapala Charshi — two magical and incomparable places. The stunning landmarks in the European part of Istanbul are so saturated that it will be a challenge for expats to discover everything during a shorter stay. You can't really know a place if you haven't try the local food. Flavors and aromas are part of the culture and traditions of Istanbul. From delicious cakes, Turkish delight and baklava to Döners, Börek and popular fish sandwiches with Balık Ekmek (mackerel), you'll be spoiled for choice. As a hugely liberal city, there are also always plenty of events going on, from jazz concerts to belly dances, and you should be able to make yourself feel at home in Istanbul, regardless of where you've come from. Also, you can visit many of our offline events in Istanbul and start creating lots of memories with your new InterNations'’ friends.
InterNations is the largest global network for expatriates, with communities in 390 cities across the globe. Get to know fellow internationals in your city, before you're moving, or when traveling somewhere and never feel like a stranger. InterNations makes it easy for you to stay in touch with your expat friends, both online and offline, so you can grow your network of friends and contacts from all over the world. Whether they live in Abu Dhabi or Beijing, InterNations allows you to be close to them even if they are miles away.
When you join InterNations, not only will you get access to a huge number of fellow expatriates who can give you advice about anything from the intricacies of the Turkish tax system to which restaurant has the best view over the Bosphorus at night, you'll also find that membership is by approval only. This means you won't have to worry about the reliability of your information, while also making sure that your interactions on InterNations are always safe and courteous. If you wish, you can also take your networking offline, as our Istanbul Community organizes a range of groups for various interests and activities. There are groups for English and French speakers, or to practice your Turkish, as well as a gourmet night — something that shouldn't be missed given the stunning variety of food on offer in Istanbul. In addition to the smaller, interest-based get-togethers, our larger events also allow you to network with lots of diverse expats from all over the globe!