Istanbul's new airport: how to get to the center | Elena Kazantseva's blog


The grand opening of the New Istanbul Airport took place in October 2018 on Turkish Independence Day, on April 6, 2019, the final transfer from Ataturk Airport to the New Airport took place, now all flights arrive here. This is a completely new air transport hub, so new that on April 11, on the day of my arrival, even the paint in the parking lot has not yet dried! This airport will be discussed in this article.

Istanbul International Airport (New, Third Airport): website, map, terminals, photos.

The official website of the New Istanbul Airport

This airport was built due to the lack of opportunity to expand two other air transport hubs of the capital – Ataturk and Sabiha Gokcen airports. New Square – 76 km². Passenger capacity – 90 million people per year. Air traffic is planned in 350 directions. The new airport will be expanded, completed until 2023 inclusive. Today it has a passenger terminal with an area of ​​1.3 million m², 4 runways, parking for 12,000 cars, 77 telescopes. Everything is very automated: everywhere there are monitors, electronic pointers, information boards.

Maop of the New Istanbul Airport

Arrival Hall (clickable)

new istanbul airport scheme

Departure Hall

istanbul airport scheme

Here are a few photos that I managed to take:

Istanbul New Airport
At Arrival Level: Luggage Belts
new Istanbul airport how to get
Departure level. Reception.
taxi new istanbul airport
Departure Hall. Beautiful, but nowhere to sit down. Only with gates.
istanbul airport buses
Scoreboard at the departure level. Hands-free calls are not announced. At all.

It has everything you need to wait for a flight: two art galleries, restaurants, mother and baby rooms, game rooms, pharmacies, shops. The Duty Free Zone consists of 9 large sectors. Here you can buy both luxury products and local products – food, souvenirs, textiles.

In the arrivals area there are two left-luggage offices in opposite halls. Work around the clock. The cost of the service per day ranges from 10 to 20 Turkish liras (1.5-3 euros, depending on the weight of the luggage). Here, in the arrivals hall, you can exchange currency or withdraw money from the card, rent a car, connect to the Internet, etc.

As in many airports in the world, the exchange rate at the New Airport is not very profitable. You can exchange only a little money for travel if you need money in local currency. There are no problems with exchangers in the city. April 11, 2019 there were such courses (in different exchangers they are different, while you wait for luggage, you can be like comparing):

  • 1 $ ≈4.76-4.98 lira
  • 1 € ≈ 5.61 lira
  • 100 rubles ≈ 7.72 lira

For comparison, courses in the city:

  • 1 $ ,65,61-5,64 lira
  • € 1 ≈ 6.36-6.38 lira

(I didn’t look at the rubles in the city, because they changed dollars).

Tax free can be issued at the New Airport if the amount of purchases is more than 118 lire (about 18 euros). Refunds are made in local currency. The procedure is very fast.


Read also “Istanbul areas and hotels: where to stay 


How to get from the New Airport to the Istanbul center

Istanbul airport how to get to the city

The distance between New Airport and Taksim Square is 43.5 km. Laleli District is 45 km away. Sultanahmet is just over 48 km away. Station – 41 km. How to get from the airport to all these places, we understand together.

Taxi and private transfer from the airport to the center

The most convenient and safe way to get from the New Airport to the center of Istanbul, in my opinion, is an individual transfer. This is understandable: no need to worry about whether you can catch a taxi or look for a bus stop with heavy suitcases.

For the third time, I ordered an individual transfer from kiwitaxi  website. I share with you the nuances of ordering a transfer in Istanbul:

  • When ordering a transfer in Istanbul through , for the first options for the price, payment is only possible in cash to the driver (these are micro and minivan categories). For the following options for the price, both full payment to the driver, and partial, and full payment on the site are possible. Earlier, for example, in Paris , I did not encounter this, and even ordering the simplest option, I paid the full amount on the site.
  • Confirmation of the order takes place the day before by phone (Russian-speaking employees from Kiwitaxi call). The phone must be available, and you must confirm that your plans have not changed, otherwise the transfer will be canceled.
  • Payment is made in euros , therefore, it is better to bring an even amount with you.
  • The number of people meeting at Istanbul Airport is off the charts, see the photo below. Therefore, finding your driver, even if he is holding a sign, will not be easy.

transfer from istanbul airport

  • A few hours before the transfer from the meeting company, a message arrives in the social network (in Russian), a photo of the “number” of the meeting company is attached to the message. If you can’t find a person, show the photo to anyone, they will bring you to yours.
  • Unlike Paris and Valencia, it is not the driver himself who meets here, but the “manager” who finds you on the lists, calls the driver and escorts you to the car.

By the way, having ordered a micro class car, we again drove in a minivan 🙂

taxi from the new airport
Transfer minivan

Transfer kiwitaxi from the New Airport to Sultanahmet starts from 256 lira (38 euros). Please note that the service is really in demand, and the price may rise.

A few words about a taxi from the New Airport to the center (Taksim and Sultanahmet). Cars with “checkers” are opposite the main exit on the ground floor. The journey to Taksim will take about 30 minutes (we drove 35 minutes), to Sultanahmet – 10-15 minutes more. The cost of the service is about 150 liras (23 euros) from Taksim, in case the taxi driver turns out to be respectable and takes you along a short road rather than starting to wind circles.


Book airport transfer >>>


At that price, we drove to the airport, but we ordered a taxi through the hotel reception (they have a contract with some taxi company, and taxi drivers don’t “hobble”) if you catch a taxi on the street the price may be higher. Also, the price will be higher for a trip from Sultanahmet or Laleli. The transfer price is the same and fixed for these three areas.

Group transfer from Istanbul Airport to the center

Another way to get from the New Istanbul Airport to the center is a group transfer. Suitable for those who travel alone and do not want to bother with buses. You can order the service here . Price – from € 21 per person. Waiting at the airport for up to 45 minutes, but will be taken to your hotel.


Read also “My review about the hotel Rixos Pera Istanbul 5 *”


Buses from Istanbul New Airport

buses new istanbul airport

The public transport network in Turkey is well developed. For 2019, the only way to get to the city by public transport is to use the bus. Transport links between them are provided by carriers Havaist (its official website ) and IETT ( ).

The fare is paid using a special card – Istanbulkart. You can replenish it in one of the machines located at the airport. Children under 6 years old can travel for free provided that they do not occupy a seat.

You can get from Sultanahmet New Airport via flight Ist-1. The first bus leaves the line at 7:30, the last – 21:40. Waiting between flights is about 30 minutes. On the way – one hour. Prepare 18 lire for the ticket (about 3 euros).

Ist-19 is flying to the popular Taksim area from New Airport. The first bus at 07:30, the last at 00:00. The journey will take about 1 hour 30 minutes. Ticket – 18 lire (about 3 euros). In Taksim, you can take the green line of the subway (M2).

Other flights:

  1. Ist-2 follows to the Tuyap district . The journey to the final stop takes 110 minutes. The fare will cost 21 lira (3.20 euros)
  2. The Ist-3 route is useful if you need to get to the large Istanbul bus station Otogar Esenler . It takes 90 minutes to get there. Pay 16 lire (€ 2.40)
  3. Flight Ist-7 will take you to the Asian part of the city, namely to the Kadikoy metro station . Get ready to ride 1 hour 45 minutes. Ticket price – 25 lire (3.80 euros).
  4. The Havaist H-2 bus runs along the Istanbul Airport – Mecidiyeköy metro line .
  5. H-3 follows to the Halkal stop .

More information about bus routes from Istanbul Airport:

Metro at Istanbul’s New Airport: when are you planning to build

Plans to build two metro lines from the Third Airport. Tentatively, the opening is scheduled for the end of 2019. The authorities do not name specific dates, the process may be delayed.


Read also TOP 35 Istanbul attractions


How to get from New Airport to Sabiha Airport

The distance between Third Airport and Sabiha Gokcen Airport is over 84 km. There is no direct bus, you have to change trains. First you need to get to the Taksim area. From there, take the Havabas express bus (the schedule can be found on the official website ). In total, the road will take about 3 hours. For money – 18 liras + 18 liras = 36 liras (about 5.5 euros).

Another way, more convenient, but also more expensive is a taxi or private transfer. The transfer price starts from 75 euros (about 500 Turkish liras), you can order here . An ordinary taxi can be both cheaper and more expensive, depending on the traffic situation and the honesty of the taxi driver.

Car rent at Istanbul New Airport

new Istanbul airport car hire

Several car rental companies work in the arrivals hall: Europcar, Green Motion, Budget, Essence Car Rental and others. All are located on the arrivals floor.

I usually prefer e-booking a car at .

Here is a review of car rent in the Czech Republic . To be honest, I don’t know how the car rental is in Turkey, but I think it’s completely identical. Service price from € 31 per day.


Before renting, I recommend reading the article “Renting a car abroad”


Hotels at and near Istanbul Airport.

If you need a hotel for docking, check out these. For me, all of them are not very good, but until new ones have been built near the New Airport, you will have to be content with these options:

YOTEL Istanbul Airport (Landside) is a hotel with a rating of 8.0 300 meters from the airport. On its territory there is a fitness center, a restaurant with Turkish cuisine, a bar. The non-smoking rooms are soundproofed and equipped with air conditioning, tea / coffee making facilities, and a TV. Double room – € 162. Breakfast included.

YOTELAIR Istanbul Airport (Airside) with a rating of 6.9 (for a location of 8.9) is 200 meters from the Third Airport. The rooms have TV and air conditioning, good furniture. On the territory of the exchange office, restaurant, outdoor fireplace and terrace. Pets are not allowed. Non-smoking rooms. Room price per day – € 194. Honestly, such a price for such a rating is not clear to me, but if there are no other options, let this be a spare.

Park Inn by Radisson Istanbul Airport Odayeri is 9.5 km from the airport. The 4 * hotel rating is 8.2. It features an indoor pool, a fitness center, a terrace with views and a restaurant. The rooms are nice, bright, everything you need for a comfortable stay is available. Accommodation – € 131 for a double room. Of course, the hotel will have to be reached by transport, but it will be closer than from the city.

İstanbul Airport Durusu Club Hotel (rating – 7.5) is located 11 km from Third Airport. A shuttle service is organized to him. The magnificent location of the complex is in a picturesque quiet forest. Rooms with a minibar, a full range of household appliances. Separate bathroom. The guests’ leisure time is well organized: you can ride a bicycle, horses, go hiking in the company of a local guide. For a double room with breakfast – € 99. For many, this hotel is a godsend.

Kumsal Pansiyon is a guest house by the sea. The airport is about 9 km away. Guests can use the outdoor terrace, restaurant. Rooms with a seating area. New furniture, good plumbing. Double room with one large bed – € 35. Breakfast is optional for an additional cost.

Perhaps this is all I can tell about the New Istanbul Airport at the moment. If you have add-ons, please leave comments! So you will help other travelers! If my article seemed useful to you, then bookmark and share on social networks, maybe someone from your friends is now looking for this information.

Have a nice trip!

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