Turkey digital nomad visa and other important information to know

Turkey is a multicultural country and one of the most popular digital nomad destinations for travelers across the globe. In 2019, with the influx of 51 million foreign tourists, Turkey ranked as the world’s 6th most popular tourist destination. In 2021, nearly 14.7 million tourists visited Turkey. Since 2020, this beautiful country has been welcoming more digital nomads and remote workers every year. And it’s easy to see why.

The genuinely hospitable people, the gorgeous golden beaches, ancient cities, rich history, natural wonders, amazing food, beautiful landscapes, and incredibly cheap lifestyles entice digital nomads, remote workers, and ex-pats from all parts of the world. And that is just the beginning.

The combination of the low cost of living, ease of travel, convenient remote working infrastructure, and, most importantly, the ease of visa obtainability makes Turkey a top destination for many.

Many digital nomads look for 5 determining factors: low cost of living, top-notch infrastructure, limitless culinary offers, amazing workplace, and faster internet connection. And guess what? Turkey has it all.

If you’re a digital nomad looking to move to a great location with a low cost of living, Turkey can be your next home. Even though the country hasn’t launched a special digital nomad visa program for digital nomads, foreigners can quickly relocate with an e-visa or residence permit. If you’re considering and contemplating a Turkey visa, this blog will guide you through and answer all questions you may have.

Who Can Apply for the Digital Nomad Visa for Turkey?

Most foreign citizens can travel to Turkey without a visa and stay for 3 months every 180 days. Anyone who wants to travel to Turkey and wishes to stay for more than 3 months needs to apply for a residence permit. While European citizens can enter Turkey visa-free, citizens of the USA and Canada, and several other countries need to apply for an e-visa.

Unfortunately, there is no provision for a digital nomad visa for Turkey as of now, but a non-Turkish national can live in Turkey for 3 months with an e-visa or tourist visa. A digital nomad visa for Turkey, or rather a residence permit, allows digital nomads to stay for more than 3 months.

As long as foreigners comply with the immigration rules, they can apply and live in Turkey. A valid work permit and enrolment in Turkey’s social security system are all they need to work remotely in Turkey.

Here are the 5 different types of residence permits:

Short-term residence permit

Foreigners who want to enter Turkey and stay longer than 90 days can apply for short-term residence permits. This permit is valid for 1 to 2 years. This permit is best applied for any of the following reasons:

  1. Business purpose
  2. To conduct scientific research
  3. To participate in the training program and learning courses
  4. Medical treatments
  5. For citizens of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus

Documents Required for Short-Term Residence Permit:

  • residence permit application form
  • proof of sufficient finance for the duration of stay in Turkey
  • proof of health insurance
  •  photocopy of passport

Family residence permit

The family residence permit is a special permit for a foreign spouse of a Turkish national and their children under the age of 18. This permit can be issued for 3 years at a time. Foreign workers working legally in Turkey for a year can also apply for this permit for their spouses and children.

Documents Required for Family Residence Permit:

Documents to be submitted by resident:

  • residence permit application form
  • a signed document to replace a passport
  • 4 biometric photos

Documents to be submitted by the supporting person:

  • a signed document to replace a passport
  • original and photocopy of birth certificate
  • declaration of financial means
  • proof of health insurance for all family members who apply
  • original and photocopy of residence permit
  • clean criminal record
  • a document showing that the applicant is registered in the address registration system

Student residence permit

The student residence permit allows foreign citizens to enroll in primary or secondary education. This permit is granted to anyone willing to study at the levels of an associate degree, bachelor’s, master’s, doctorate, or training course. The permit is valid for the time, depending on the length of the studies.

Documents Required for Student Residence Permit:

  • residence permit application form
  • 4 biometric photos
  • statement of financial opportunity
  • original and photocopy of passport
  • proof of health insurance
  • active student certificate

Long-term residence permit

Any non-Turkish national could opt for a long-term visa or Turkish permit only if they stayed in Turkey continuously for at least eight years. This permit will be issued with indefinite validity.

Documents Required for Long-Term Residence Permit:

  • residence permit application form
  • 4 biometric photos
  • proof of financial means
  • proof of health insurance
  • proof of no social assistance in the last 3 years
  • proof that the applicant is registered in the address registration system
  • original and photocopy of passport

Humanitarian residence permit

The humanitarian residence permit is granted to refugees in Turkey without a valid visa or residence permit. This is a special permit granted for a maximum duration of 1 year.

Documents Required for Humanitarian Residence Permit:

  • medical report justifying the reason for the inability to travel outside Turkey
  • residence application form
  • 6 photographs
  • valid passport
  •  translated birth certificates for children


Can you work remotely in Turkey?

Generally speaking, yes, you can work remotely in Turkey if you’re a remote worker, an employee of a foreign company, or a business worker.

According to the International Workforce Law of Turkey, “foreigners must hold a work permit to work or be employed in the country.” According to this Law, foreigners who are exempt from a work permit in other laws, international agreements, and conventions to which Turkey is a party may work or be employed without obtaining a work permit.

As long as your work doesn’t benefit a local person or Turkish company, you can work remotely. Additionally, if your clients are from foreign countries and all your payments go through to your bank account abroad, there’s nothing to worry about the legal issue with the Turkish government.

How to apply for a residence permit in Turkey?

Turkey offers residency programs, and you can get a so-called “digital nomad visa” by applying for a residence permit. Just do one of the three simple steps to obtain the desired visa: rent an apartment, sign up for a language program or enroll in a university. On top of that, make sure to prove that you are financially able to sustain your life in Turkey.

Arguably, the easiest and proven way for digital nomads to get a residence permit is to rent an apartment for a year. A rental contract is a ticket to a residence permit, but you should make sure to have the following documents:

  • Turkish tourist visa application form
  • two photographs
  •  valid passport
  • income statement
  • travel insurance
  • travel itinerary
  • proof of accommodation

The first thing to do is decide what type of permit you want to apply for. In order to apply for a Turkish Residence Permit (digital nomad visa), you must fill out an online application, schedule an appointment at the closest office of the Directorate General of Migration Management (DGMM office), and pay the application fee. You must give correct information like name, surname, date of birth, nationality, and other details.

Here are the documents required for a digital nomad visa in Turkey:

  1. original passport
  2. four biometric photographs
  3. residence permit application form
  4. proof of sufficient income for the duration of the stay (($550 for each month, 9853 Turkish Lira)
  5. proof of health Insurance


How much does the digital nomad visa for Turkey cost?

The Turkey digital nomad visa cost varies based on the applicant’s nationality. Once you complete the application form, the system automatically calculates the visa fee based on your nationality. The currency exchange rate also influences the residence permit fee.

On average, the visa/permit fee is around $9 for the first month and around $3 for each additional month of residence. To print the residence permit card, you will need to pay $11 approximately. If you are entering Turkey without a digital nomad visa, you must pay a single entry fee of around $70.50 (1262 Turkish Lira).


How long will it take to process the application for the Turkey resident permit?

The main drawback of a Turkish residence permit is the long processing time. The residence permit processing can take up to 4 months. The time frame primarily varies based on the country you’re applying from. So, depending on the applicant’s country, the application will be processed in a maximum of 3 to 4 months.

Please note that the processing time also depends on the cities you apply to. It takes 3 to 4 months in Istanbul for the whole process, 2 to 3 months in Ankara, and 1 month in Antalya.


What are the requirements for a Turkish Digital Nomad Visa?

Though a popular digital nomad destination, there is no digital nomad visa program in Turkey. However, anyone can live and work in Turkey. If you are interested in a digital nomad visa in Turkey, you require a visa or work permit.

Here are some requirements for a digital nomad to live in Turkey:

  • valid passport
  • visa fee
  • lease contract
  • travel insurance
  •  residence permit for digital nomads


What is the internet speed in Istanbul, Turkey?

According to Speed Test Global Index, as of June 2022, Turkey’s mobile and fixed broadband internet speeds are 32.10 Mbps and 29.40 Mbps, respectively. In recent years, the country has seen remarkable refinement in average internet speed. Last year, Turkey’s internet speed increased by 65%.

This is one of the best news for business owners, freelancers, ex-pats, and digital nomads in Turkey whose daily job is totally dependent on the internet. If you stay in major cities like Istanbul, Ankara, and Bursa, you will enjoy high-internet speed. Co-working spaces, coffee shops, and hotels also offer free internet to digital nomads and freelancers.


What are tax regulations for remote workers in Turkey?

Digital nomads and remote workers are not subject to any tax policies in Turkey. However, if you stay in the country for a long period of time and get paid in a local bank account, you are obliged to pay tax to the Turkish government.

For instance: Suppose you get paid every month from a US company to a US bank account. In this case, it is unlikely that you will pay taxes in Turkey.

But if you stay in Turkey for more than 183 days in Turkey, depending on the double taxation agreement, there is a high chance that you might be considered a full taxpayer.


Cost of Living in Turkey

Turkey has a significantly lower cost of living compared to its European neighbors. No doubt that Turkey is a cheap place to live. The monthly cost of living in a large city like Istanbul is around $1500. According to most digital nomads and major travel websites, the average cost of living in any major city in Turkey is $1500 per month.

Very few countries in the world are as affordable as Turkey for digital nomads and travelers alike. The low cost of living is one of the many perks of choosing Turkey for a remote lifestyle.

Statistically, according to Numbeo, the cost of living in Istanbul is 68% lower than that of New York; rent prices in Istanbul are 88.42% lower than in New York; groceries prices in Istanbul are 74.33% lower than in New York. Comparing the cost of living between Istanbul and New York, you would need around $2000 to live the same standard of life as about 9000$ in New York.

A studio apartment in Istanbul can cost you around $385 per month. You can save money if you choose to stay in other cities like Ankara; you can rent a studio apartment in Ankara for less than $150 per month.

For just $6, you can enjoy a delectable meal in Istanbul. Digital nomads claim that electricity and water are quite expensive in Turkey. If you are on a tight budget, you can significantly cut costs by living a frugal yet comfortable lifestyle.


7 Best Cities for Digital Nomads in Turkey

Turkey is among the best countries in the world for digital nomads. When it comes to Turkey, there are convenient cities for digital nomads to work remotely. If you’re looking for popular cities to live and work in Turkey, here are the top 7 cities.

Disclaimer: The ranking of the cities is not in order, and the ranking may differ.


When visiting Turkey, Istanbul is a must-see! The major city straddling two continents is by far the best city in Turkey for digital nomads. In fact, this big city has the highest number of ex-pats in all of Turkey. This bustling city boasts the fastest Wi-Fi in all of Turkey, the best local transport, tons of hip bars, international schools, and not to mention the most co-working spaces. Even better, most top attractions in Istanbul, especially in Sultanahmet, are within walking distance from each other and very close to the main Taksim Square.


Perched in the Marmara region of Turkey, Bursa is one of the top cities in Turkey for digital nomads. Also dubbed “city of heritage” and “Green Bursa,” Bursa is an ideal choice if you’re moving in with your family. The city is the birthplace of the Ottoman Empire and is near Uludag, one of Turkey’s highest mountains. The Workery and NexLab are two co-working spaces in Bursa for digital nomads.


Antalya is yet another popular destination in Turkey and has much more to offer regarding digital nomad infrastructure. This city is Turkey’s 5th most populous city and the largest Turkish city on the Mediterranean coast. The city offers yearlong affordable accommodation and a Mediterranean climate, ideal for warm weather travelers. Antalya is the right pick for you if you are looking for an affordable Mediterranean city in Turkey.


Located on the Aegean coast, to the west of Turkey, lies a beautiful city, Izmir, loved by the old holidaymakers and retirees. Izmir boasts many coworking spaces, affordable cost of living, beach-side resorts, and advanced infrastructure to lure digital nomads. OriginnWithconuvEGE, and Lokasyon are the best coworking spaces for digital nomads in Izmir.


Private resort. Yacht clubs. Fancy restaurants. Ancient city. Bodrum has it all. Bodrum has welcomed world-famous celebrities and millionaires like Tom Hanks, Bill Gates, Kate Moss, and Nicole Kidman. Bodrum offers nightlife, beaches, and delicious local cuisine. And for digital nomads, this amazing city in Turkey has an incredible climate, variety of accommodation preferences, stunning coastline, rich history, and many other benefits that are much appreciated by remote workers.


Adana, Turkey’s sixth largest city, is scattered with historical sites and archaeological sites attracting history buffs from all corners of the world. One of the perks of choosing Adana to stay and work remotely is the low cost of living. The prices are significantly lower than in most Turkish cities. Go OfisWorkInStation, and Dreamwork are some ideal coworking spaces in Adana.


Ankara, the capital city of Turkey, has long been a popular tourist hub and digital nomad hotspot for years. Arguably, Ankara is one of the cheapest cities in Turkey. What appeals to digital nomads in Ankara is the low cost of living, an abundance of coworking spaces, high-speed Wi-Fi facilities, and a very low crime rate.

Top 7 Reasons why Turkey is the best destination for Digital Nomads

With a rich history, optimal climate, and affordable cost of living, thousands of digital nomads flock to Turkey to live a much-desired nomadic life. Here are some top reasons why Turkey is considered the best country for digital nomads to settle in and work remotely.

Ease of Obtaining a Visa

Anyone can easily get a visa or work permit to Turkey even though Turkey hasn’t yet introduced a digital nomad visa program. Foreign nationals of over 50 eligible countries can quickly get an e-visa through an online application form. Thanks to e-visa, foreign citizens can get the approved visa by email within 24 hours.

All they need to do is log on to www.evisa.gov.tr, fill in the essential information, pay the fee, and download their e-visa. It shouldn’t take more than 10 minutes. Turkish e-visa is valid for up to 90 days within 180 days.

Similarly, nationals of over 78 visa-exempt countries do not need digital nomad visas to travel to Turkey for tourism or commercial purposes. Citizens of 16 countries can travel to Turkey with just national IDs and 8 countries with their expired passports.

Remote Working Infrastructure

The major cities in Turkey brim with many coworking spaces, cozy cafes, cocktail bars, open-air spaces, and restaurants for digital nomads, freelancers, and entrepreneurs. Besides, there are many networking venues for digital nomads, remote workers, and ex-pats to socialize and connect. Many freelancing hotspots and trendy coworking spaces have sprung up in most cities, especially Istanbul.

As for internet facilities, you can undoubtedly find blazing-fast Wi-Fi throughout major cities, and a sim card is readily available everywhere. Buying a sim card for data is recommended to stay in touch with family and friends. Most public places offer free Wi-Fi and internet. Here’s the thing: for a small fee, you can find Wi-Fi on some buses, trains, and airports.

However, while the internet connection may be strong in Istanbul or any other major city, it may not be as fast in rural areas.

Low Cost of Living

There are very few European countries where digital nomads can take advantage of the low cost of living, and Turkey arguably tops the list. You can enjoy a high-quality lifestyle for as low as $1500 per month.

You can reduce living costs by relocating to a cheaper city other than Istanbul or avoid a central location if you want to stay in a major city. Compared to American cities like New York and Los Angeles, the cost of living in Istanbul is almost 65% lower. That’s one of the determining factors for digital nomads to choose Turkey over other countries.

Excellent Turkish Cuisine

Excellent Turkish cuisine is a major draw in Turkey, enticing hundreds of travelers annually. From traditional Turkish tea to kebabs and meze, every Turkish food will delight your taste bud in a way you won’t expect. When it comes to cuisine, very few countries in the world can compete with Turkish cuisine.

Everybody who has tried Turkish food has fallen in love with it; The country boasts limitless culinary offers for every traveler, from traditional cuisine to international. The food menus are relatively cheap as well. You can enjoy scrumptious Kebab for just $2 in major cities. Local food is even cheaper. And it is good practice to eat amazing food if you are budget oriented.

Public Transportation Network

Traveling in Turkey is unbelievably convenient and affordable too. The public transportation network in Turkey includes long-distance buses, high-speed railways, ferries, domestic flights, and intercity bus services. There are 57 airports across the country for the quickest way to travel across Turkey and other countries, but admittedly it is the most expensive way to travel.

Intercity buses are a standard transport mode in major cities and are also cheaper. Before boarding a train or bus in cosmopolitan cities, you’ll need a public transit card. Arguably, the high-speed rail network is fast and convenient, but you can opt for renting a car. If you hate to travel by bus or want to skip a flight, you can easily rent a car and travel around with your foreign driving license.

Keep in mind that most people in Turkey, especially the elderly may not speak English. So if you are traveling, it’s best to show your destination to the driver or have it written down if you don’t speak Turkish.

Warm Hospitality

Living in Turkey also means meeting some of the warmest and friendliest local people. Did you know that the Turkish people have a reputation worldwide for warm hospitality?

It is easy to think that you will not be accepted in Turkey as an outsider, or a Muslim country as a Christian, or a Buddhist, but you will be surprised to find that Turkish people welcome guests regardless of what religion they follow, where they come from, or any other grounds.

Turkish culture has this remarkable quality of sharing and welcoming guests. Turkish people will go out of their way to help you without expecting anything. Sharing their space, helping people, and maintaining relationships are the traits ingrained in the Turkish culture from generation to generation. The culture of friendship and hospitality in Turkish will surely overwhelm you.


There’s a saying in Turkey; “The climate in Turkey suits everyone.” And rightfully so. Most digital nomads would agree that they moved to Turkey for its favorable climate. Turkey has 300 sunny days a year, mild winters, and pleasant temperatures year-round.

With diverse landscapes from vast sea to mountain ranges, the climate in Turkey ranges from the Mediterranean to oceanic and has 4 seasons: winter, spring, summer, and autumn. Due to its unique geographic location, the climate and weather are incredibly favorable. A pleasant climate means that you can spend quality time outdoors and enjoy traveling.


Turkey is an excellent destination for digital nomads and remote workers. Besides the mix of European and Islamic cultures, delicious traditional cuisine, and rich history, Turkey has a low cost of living, which is a pretty good reason for digital nomads to want to live there.

When it comes to visas, digital nomads who wish to visit Turkey and do remote work can do so if they apply for a residence permit. Whether or not Turkey will introduce a digital nomad visa in the future, there are still other ways to enter Turkey and stay for an extended period of time.