Istanbul formerly known as Constantinople is a city that sits between Europe and Asia, home to over 15 million people.
The city reflects centuries of empire disputes through the streets. This is displayed in the way the city is laid out and the phenomenal architecture it holds. Notable places within the city are architectural pieces and historic landmarks such as the Hagia Sofia, The Blue Mosque, The Grand Bazaar and Dolmabahçe Palace.
Turkey is a bridge between Asia and Europe and this unique culture influences the rich diversity of the city enticing people to not only visit and experience the city, but also, immerse themselves for extended periods of time as expats within the city.
If you are thinking of taking the leap to move to Istanbul this will be the article that may convince you to book that one way flight right now!
Istanbul has an amazing public transport network that consists of the metro (underground train) which is one of the oldest metro systems in the world. In addition, the ferry that can take you between many islands closer to the city such as the Prince’s Island and the Golden Horn. The city also has available trams, buses, Funicular (this is a cable railway in the streets that help you get up those steep hills), cable cars and also the good old taxi.
A monthly pass costs 777 Turkish Lira which currently is about 38 euros. The “blue card” monthly pass can be purchased at an authorised IETT establishment. These spots are located at many points within the city of Istanbul.
Purchasing the blue card allows you to use multiple methods of transport without extra cost. The card is also pre-paid so you do not have to top up the card on each use. Additionally the card is very easy to use and by purchasing the card, you get discounted travel fares than if you purchase a ticket day by day.
In order to feel truly comfortable in a city this is the most important aspect you need to find when you make a new city your home. There are many safe and secure apartments in Istanbul on platforms such as Spotahome. This platforms can help you find the best place for all of your needs. Protected from scams and all securely online so you don’t have to visit various homes around the city to find the perfect place for you!
If you have an income that is outside of the country of Turkey you will be able to have a stronger buying power within the country.
Inflation has impacted the average Turkish citizen which has increased the prices of everyday and leisure items. This has made everyday life harder for regular Turkish people. Please be aware if you have an income that is from outside of the country be conscious of how you interact and live within the city of people native to Istanbul as they do not have the same buying power due to the current issues within their economy.
That being said these are some of the prices of everyday and common expenses you may incur living within Istanbul:
- Eating out at an inexpensive restaurant costs 6 euros.
- Domestic beer 0.5 litres costs 3 euros.
- Coca cola 0.33 litres 1 euro.
- Bread costs 50 cents.
- Apples cost 0.84 cents.
- Potatoes cost 0.57 cents.
- Bananas cost 1.50 euros.
- Monthly fitness membership costs 26 euros.
Depending on where you are within the city can impact the actual prices to be lower or higher than stated above.
The national language is Turkish and derives from the Altaic languages family. Modern Turkish comes from the previous Ottoman empire, listening to Turkish you will hear a lot of words that are close or service from the Arabic and Persian language.
English is not widely spoken by citizens so if you want to move to Istanbul you need to learn the language in order to get around. If you go to more tourist areas within the city you will of course have people who will be able to speak with you in English but, in order to experience the true Istanbul you need to venture outside of these areas and this is where finding someone who speaks English may be hard.
The internet in Istanbul is good, not the fastest in Europe but definitely stable for anyone who wants to work as an expat. The download speed for fixed internet is 36 mbps, upload 7 mbps and latency 8 ms.
Turkey has varying broadband networks to purchase internet from such as Millenicom, TurkNet, TurkCell and Turksat Kablo to name a few. Do your research on each of these networks and find which one works best for you and your needs while you are within Istanbul.
If you love to meet other expats and people who work in startups and have a driven personality, you may want to work from coworking spaces within the city. If you are interested in these spaces here are a few you can check out till you find the one that fits the vibes that enables you to work at your best. COBAC, GBC, Ofis Voyvode, Impact Hub, Workhaus and Kolektif House.
During winter the weather is mild with temperatures only going as low as 8 degrees celsius but in the summer, temperatures can reach as high as 29 degrees celsius. Istanbul is located between The Black Sea and The Mediterranean therefore the weather is favourable to people who love a warmer climate year round.
Istanbul is located in Turkey which is close to some countries that are currently experiencing wars and unrest within their countries. This proximity has led to a large amount of refugees within Turkey and a threat of terrorism. While Istanbul is rather safe it is worth mentioning in order for you to be informed.
Despite this, Istanbul is safe and many female solo travelers express positive experiences within the city. The most common crimes are scams from street vendors, pickpocketing and frauds especially within tourist hotspots. While you are within the city petty crimes are for the most part the most of your worries.
Should You Live In Istanbul?
If you want to live somewhere that has warm weather, rich history, great public transport links, a good quality of life and a city that has such a diverse culture being the connection between Asia and Europe you should definitely check out Istanbul!