Stopover in Istanbul with Turkish Airlines

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Long Story Short: Turkish Airlines Stopover in Istanbul Program is a Great Deal

Stopovers are a great way to break up a long journey, and Turkish Airlines offers some fantastic options for passengers. In this article, we will explore everything you need to know about Turkish Airlines stopovers and how they can enhance your travel experience. Let’s start.

Table of Contents

Is Turkish Airlines a good Airline?

Turkish Airlines is the national flag carrier airline of Turkey, headquartered in Istanbul. Founded in 1933, it operates scheduled services to more than 300 destinations worldwide, making it one of the largest airlines in the world.

Turkish Airlines has a modern fleet of more than 360 aircraft, including narrow-body and wide-body jets, and it operates flights to a diverse range of international and domestic destinations.

The airline is known for its high-quality service, modern fleet, and extensive route network, and it has won numerous awards for its in-flight experience, customer service, and sustainability initiatives. Turkish Airlines is considered one of the best airlines in the world.

Is Turkish Airlines a member of Star Alliance?

Yes, Turkish Airlines is a member of Star Alliance, which is the world’s largest airline alliance. As a member of the alliance, Turkish Airlines offers its customers access to a vast network of destinations and a range of benefits, such as frequent flyer miles and lounge access, when flying with other Star Alliance airlines.

What is “The Stopover in Istanbul with Turkish Airlines” program?

We would like to introduce you to the Turkish Airlines initiative called “The Stopover in Istanbul”, which offers passengers the chance to explore Turkish culture and heritage. Passengers who are connecting via Istanbul Airport can enrich their travels by discovering the city’s history and cultural life with Stopover in Istanbul – and enjoy free accommodation in partner hotels!

That means Turkish Airlines provides a complimentary voucher that allows you to stay at a hotel without any charge. Economy class passengers are eligible for one night’s stay at a 4-star hotel, while business class passengers can enjoy up to two nights’ stay at a 5-star hotel. It is important to note that transportation expenses and other related costs are not included, but the opportunity to stay at a hotel for free is truly remarkable.

Turkish Airlines usually brings you through Turkey on the way to your final destination if you fly internationally from anywhere on their network. This probably means stopping at their hub in Istanbul en route. The flag carrier has implemented a free stopover service to encourage people to actually explore Turkey, rather than just fly through it.

What are the benefits of a Turkish Airlines Stopover in Istanbul?

There are many benefits to taking a Turkish Airlines stopover. First and foremost, it allows you to break up a long journey and avoid the boredom and discomfort of sitting on a plane for hours on end. Instead, you can explore a new city, enjoy a change of scenery, and make the most of your travel time.

Additionally, a Turkish Airlines stopover is an opportunity to experience the vibrant and diverse culture of Istanbul. The city is steeped in history, with ancient ruins, stunning mosques, and bustling bazaars to explore. You can also indulge in some of the delicious local cuisine, which blends Turkish, Middle Eastern, and Mediterranean flavors.

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Layover with Turkish Airlines in Istanbul (6-24 Hours between flights)

Turkish Airlines has a unique program that offers free tours of Istanbul to its passengers on international flights with layovers between 6 and 24 hours. This innovative service is called Touristanbul and it provides travelers with the opportunity to experience the rich history and cultural heritage of Istanbul accompanied by the world-famous Turkish cuisine.

Touristanbul is a great way to make the most of your layover by exploring Istanbul’s unique streets and neighborhoods. The tours are led by professional and experienced guides who are passionate about the city and its history. They will take you to some of the most popular tourist destinations such as the Hagia Sophia, the Blue Mosque, and the Grand Bazaar, as well as hidden gems that are off the beaten path.

What Can I see during the Tour?

During your tour, you will have the opportunity to taste some of the most delicious and authentic Turkish dishes. Turkish cuisine is known for its rich flavors and unique combinations of spices and herbs. From the famous Turkish kebabs and baklava to the savory mezze platters, you will surely be impressed by the diversity and quality of Turkish cuisine.

In addition to the cultural and culinary experience, Touristanbul also offers practical benefits for travelers. You don’t need to worry about transportation, as Turkish Airlines provides free shuttle services to and from the airport. You will also be accompanied by an experienced guide who speaks English, making the tour informative and easy to follow.

Touristanbul is a great way to turn a layover into a memorable travel experience. It’s also an excellent opportunity to discover the unique beauty of Istanbul, a city that bridges Europe and Asia and has a fascinating mix of cultures, history, and traditions. Whether you’re traveling alone, with family, or with friends, Touristanbul is a service that should not be missed if you have a layover in Istanbul.

Who is eligible for a Stop-Over in Istanbul?

The Stopover in Istanbul program by Turkish Airlines allows you to stay within the boundaries of the program for at least 20 hours (By voluntarily selecting a later connecting flight) connection. Stop-overs and Lay-overs should not be confused! A stopover is a planned break in a journey, typically lasting longer than a layover.

A layover also called Stopover Paid-by Carrier (STPC), on the other hand, is a short break between flights that are typically used to change planes or to wait for a connecting flight. If you have a layover for at least 12 Hours you might still get a free Hotel or a City-Tour.

  • In Addition, your roundtrip flights have to be issued and operated by Turkish Airlines.
  • Another important piece of information is that the “Stopover in Istanbul” initiative is not available for all Routes. You can find the most recent Eligible Routes and Contact Information on the official initiative website.

Please read the detailed Terms and Conditions down below to make sure that you are eligible:

Do I need Visa for a Stopover in Istanbul?

Whether or not you need a visa for a stopover depends on the country you are traveling to and the length of your stopover. In some cases, a visa may be required for a stopover, while in others it may not be necessary.

It’s always a good idea to check the visa requirements for the country you are traveling to before you leave, so you can be sure to have the necessary documents.

How to apply?

At least 72 hours before their first flight, passengers can make a reservation by sending their name-surname, reservation code (PNR) and ticket number, desired accommodation dates, preferred room type, telephone number, and e-mail address information to the e-mail address corresponding to their country of departure in the table below or via the booker above with the PNR and surname information.

You can find more information about Istanbul’s stopover departure & destination points and contact information for the E-Mail here

In my opinion, this offer is amazing and I highly recommend that you seize the opportunity. Despite the short timeframe, you will still have the opportunity to visit the major sights and perhaps even purchase some souvenirs along the way.

Additionally, you may want to consider utilizing this offer during the off-season when there are fewer tourists at the main attractions, which could allow you to move around more quickly. We hope that this article has been informative and has helped you plan your next Turkish Airlines stopover. Safe travels!

Turkish Airlines Stopover Istanbul: Useful Tips

Here are some tips to ensure a smooth and enjoyable stopover in Istanbul:

  • Visa Requirements: Check the visa requirements for your nationality, and ensure you have the necessary documents.
  • Time Management: Plan your time wisely to explore the city without feeling rushed.
  • Turkish Lira: It’s advisable to carry some Turkish Lira for small expenses, as not all places accept foreign currency.
  • Language: While many people in Istanbul speak English, learning a few basic Turkish phrases can be helpful and appreciated by locals.


A Turkish Airlines stopover in Istanbul is a golden opportunity to immerse yourself in a city that straddles two continents, offering a unique blend of history, culture, and modernity.

With the right planning and these handy tips, your layover in Istanbul can be a memorable experience. Make the most of your time, explore the city, savor its culinary delights, and create lasting memories.


How long should my layover be to explore Istanbul?

Ideally, a layover of at least 6-8 hours is recommended for a quick exploration. For a more in-depth visit, consider a layover of 12-24 hours. To qualify for the Stopover in Istanbul program by Turkish Airlines allows you should have at least 20 hours (By voluntarily selecting a later connecting flight) connection. Stop-overs and Lay-overs should not be confused! A stopover is a planned break in a journey, typically lasting longer than a layover.

Can I leave the airport during my Turkish Airlines stopover?

Yes, Turkish Airlines offers free tours for passengers with layovers of 6-24 hours, which includes a city tour.

Is Istanbul safe for tourists?

Istanbul is generally safe for tourists. However, it’s essential to follow basic safety precautions and stay alert, like in any major city.

What are the best months to plan a Turkish Airlines stopover in Istanbul?

Spring and autumn are the best seasons to visit, as the weather is mild and pleasant.

Can I use credit cards in Istanbul?

Yes, credit cards are widely accepted in Istanbul. However, it’s advisable to carry some cash for smaller vendors.

How do I book a Turkish Airlines stopover in Istanbul?

You can book a Turkish Airlines stopover through their website or contact their customer service for assistance. Please read this Article to understand the whole concept better.


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