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  1. Call Another Mobile Phone Dial 0 (zero), a three-digit mobile phone prefix (it always begins with 5) then the rest of the number, for example, 0 536 555 XXXX. Call a Landline Phone (Residential or Business Phone) Dial 0, then the area code, then the number, such as 0 242 555 XXXX. Call an International Number Dial 00, then the country code, then the area code, then the number, such as 001 717 496 XXXX. Send an SMS Message SMS messages work the same way. Just type out your message, then in the "to" block, enter the numbers as above. If the person you're messaging is one of your contacts, navigate to the contact on your phone and select the option to send an SMS message. Note: You can bring one mobile phone into Turkey. If you buy a Turkish SIM card for your foreign phone, it will work for 60 days. To use it longer than that, you will need to pay a tax and register your mobile phone. Get TurkCell SMS Messages in English Send a text to 2222 and in the message, type ENGLISH in all upper case letters. Any messages you get from TurkCell after that will be in English. See Also Telephones and Internet Forum Ken Grubb As a special investigator for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and teacher for the University of Maryland, Ken Grubb has lived and worked in Turkey since 1997. He now lives in Antalya, where he researches and writes guides to help others live skillfully in Turkey.
  2. Learning Your Mobile Phone's IMEI Number There are three ways to learn your mobile phone's IMEI number: Enter the following numbers and characters on the keypad of your phone: * # 06 #. A 15-digit number will appear. That is your phone's IMEI number. Turn off your phone, remove the battery cover and the battery. Under the battery you will also see the IMEI number. Look on the box or in the documentation that came with your mobile phone. Keep this number separate from your mobile phone, and not in anything which might also be lost or stolen with your phone. Reporting a Lost or Stolen Mobile Phone Call the Mobile Device Registration System From within Turkey: 444 9777 From outside of Turkey: 90 312 232 23 23 Or, call your network provider. Their main customer service numbers are: Turkcell: 444 0 532 Vodaphone: 444 0 542 Avea: 444 1 500 These are national toll-free numbers, so no prefixes are necessary in Turkey. They will direct you to an English-speaking operator if necessary. Explain the situation and give them your IMEI number, and they will disable your mobile phone. Your phone will be useless to anyone trying to use it, even if they insert a new SIM card. Report your stolen mobile phone to the police. It may be recovered and returned to you if they have a report on file. See Also Telephones and Internet Forum Ken Grubb As a special investigator for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and teacher for the University of Maryland, Ken Grubb has lived and worked in Turkey since 1997. He now lives in Antalya, where he researches and writes guides to help others live skillfully in Turkey.
  3. If you use a foreign mobile phone, with a Turkish SIM card, it will work for 120 days. Within that time, you must pay a tax and register it or it will be cut off. Turkish mobile phone systems work on either the 900 Megahertz (Mhz) or the 1800 Mhz band. Your mobile phone must be able to operate on one of these. A UK and European models will work, but not a US models, unless it has multi-band capability. The iPhone and other smart phones will work in Turkey. The three leading mobile service providers in Turkey work on one of two different frequencies. Your phone must be a GSM phone working on the same frequency as one of these cellular network providers: Turkcell: 900Mhz (market share 52.4%). Vodaphone: 900 Mhz (market share 27.9%). Avea: 1800 Mhz (market share 19.7%). SIM Cards A Subscriber Identity Module, or SIM card, is the brain of your mobile phone. It is a small plastic chip about the size of your thumbnail, which tells the phone which service provider to connect to, who you are, and what your phone number is. It also has memory to store your saved telephone numbers and your user preferences. If you use a Turkish SIM card with a foreign mobile phone, it will be blocked after 60 days. Locked and Unlocked Phones Your phone will have to be an "unlocked" model, or it will have to be unlocked to work with a Turkish SIM card. A locked mobile phone is one which can only be used with one provider and one SIM card. They are typically sold by the provider themselves, along with a subscription package, so you can't change to another provider. If your phone is locked, you can ask someone at a Turkish mobile phone shop to unlock your phone. It costs less than 50 TL. Check your local laws and your warranty before doing this. Unlocking your phone may be illegal in your country, and will probably void the warranty. 120-Day Period to Register a Foreign Mobile Phone Using a Turkish SIM Card If you buy a Turkish SIM card and use it with your mobile phone, you have 120 days from the day of your arrival in Turkey to pay a mobile phone use tax, and register your foreign mobile phone in the Central Equipment Identity Register. Once your phone is blocked, you will only be able to access emergency numbers. Mobile Phone Registration Cost The total cost for 2019 is 1,500 TL. Registering Your Mobile Phone in Turkey 1. Save Your Phone Numbers from Your Foreign SIM Card to Your Phone. While the SIM card's memory stores phone numbers, your phone itself also has a memory where you can store the numbers for later transfer to your Turkish SIM card. 2. Find the telephone's IMEI number. This is a unique number which identifies the mobile phone. There are a few ways to get it: a. Pull up your mobile phone's keypad, press these numbers: *#06#. This will display the phone's IMEI number. b. Turn off your phone completely, open the battery access panel, and remove the battery. The IMEI number will be displayed in the battery compartment. c. Look on the box or in the documentation of your mobile phone. 3. Write this number down. Keep your IMEI number in a place separate from your phone. If your mobile phone is ever lost or stolen, you can give that number to your mobile service provider and they will disable the phone, making it useless for anyone using it unless you ask them to re-enable it again. 4. Go to a local tax office. Take your phone, its IMEI number, and your passport with you to a local vergi ofisi, or tax office. Ask for a mobile phone registration certificate, or just point to your mobile phone and say "vergi." Pay the tax (as of 2019 it is 1,500 TL). You can also do this at a PTT (Turkish post office) or at a bank. 5. Go to the Shop of a Turkish Mobile Network Provider. Go to a shop operated by your chosen service provider (Turkcell, Vodafone, or Avea). If they can't register your phone, you may need to go to their central telecommunications center. The clerk will check your documents and passport/residence permit, then register your phone, which should be activated within a day or so. Reasons Not to Register 1. You're only going to be in Turkey for a few weeks. 2. You buy a Turkish mobile phone. You can buy a cheap Turkish phone from one of many mobile phone sales stores, paying around 80-100 TL for the cheapest model. The starter kit is extra. 3. You have a handheld computer device with Skype. You can download a Skype application and use Skype to make calls over the internet. The iPhone, for example, is a mobile phone and a computer-two different systems in the same device. If you download the Skype application for your smart phone, it works with the computer in your smart phone, not with the mobile phone. So you will not be using the cellular telephone system at all. If you go to a cafe or other business with WiFi access, you can use Skype to make calls. It's free for calls to other Skype users, and you can also call land-line telephones at cheap rates. Registering After the 120 Day Period If you decide to not register your mobile phone and change your mind after the 120 day period, you will have to leave the country and come back with a new entry stamp in your passport. A tourist visa is a 90-day multiple-entry visa, so you won't need a new visa, just a new entry stamp. It works the same if you have a residence permit. How Many Phones You Can Register You can only register one foreign mobile phone every three years. The registration links a single IMEI number to your name, so if you change from one foreign mobile phone to another, you will have to de-register the old one, pay the tax again, and register the new one. Checking the Registration of a Mobile Phone If you buy a used mobile phone, there is a chance that it has already been registered by a foreigner within the last two years. To check a mobile phone's current registration, go to the MCKS website (link below), and click "IMEI Sorgulama." You need only to enter the IMEI number and a Captcha code to learn who the phone is registered to. See Also Buying a Mobile Phone in Turkey Using a Mobile Phone in Turkey Prepaid Mobile Phone Cards Lost or Stolen Mobile Phones Telephones and Internet Forum External Links IMEI Number Checker: Check an IMEI number to see if it's registered in Turkey. Just enter the IMEI number and the security code, then click the "Sorgula" button. Ken Grubb As a special investigator for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and teacher for the University of Maryland, Ken Grubb has lived and worked in Turkey since 1997. He now lives in Antalya, where he researches and writes guides to help others live skillfully in Turkey.
  4. I applied a while ago for a residence permit. I still didn’t receive it. But it will be 90 days since I entered and I got this message from Turkcell: Sayin abonemiz vizeniz ile ulkemizde bulunma suresi sinirina yaklastiniz, yetkili resmi makama bildirimde bulunup temin edeceginiz yabanci kimlik numaranizi Turkcell Magazalarina iletmediginiz takdirde 01.01.2021 tarihinde hattiniz giden aramalara, mesaj gonderimine ve internet erisimine kisitlanacaktir. B0 How do I ensure the phone continues when I don’t have a residence permit yet? I used this number to register a on the online system at e-ikamet.goc.gov.tr.
  5. Sorry I haven't visited for so long, I hope you are all OK. Just wondering whether anyone has ever tried BIMCELL ? I've been using Turkcell for 3+ years & certainly not dissatisfied with their service or anything. They keep putting their rates up but I just recently noticed Bimcell & amazed at their low rates, they seem too good to be true. I searched but found no mention of Bimcell on this site. If anyone has ever used it or knows someone who has, I'd love to hear your opinions before switching..... otherwise I'll go ahead & then let you all know my rating on it. Can always switch back, I suppose. Thanks for any feedback...
  6. Hi everybody, I want take four phones from US to Turkey and after one week staying taking them to my homeland. Is that a matter? Thank you for your time.
  7. So as you all know the mobile phone registration fee has increased to 1500 Lira which is a lot and I honestly can't afford that yet and I don't think I will in 90 days and besides it's not even worth it since my phone costs 1500 lira in Turkey. So My question is that can I switch my sim slots( in one of them is my home country sim and the other holds a turk telekom) to reset the 120 days period? If not can someone tell me where can I sell an unlocked phone? Or give me other options which do not contain paying 1500 liras
  8. I hope everything is going okay for everyone. I have some questions about turkish domestic cell phone. If I buy a basic domestic phone, do I still need a residence permit or just a passport is enough? Another one is if I buy one, can I buy a prepaid sim card and a prepaid plan and pop up whenever needed? For this case, is 120 days rule still applied?
  9. According to a recent article in the Daily Sabah, the fee for registration of foreign mobile phones has increased to 1,500 TL. According to the new law, foreigners can bring in one personal device to Turkey and use it for up to 120 days before it is cut off, unless they register it. You can learn how to register your foreign mobile device here:
  10. My wife and I have been indecisive about where to live in Turkey so we would like to get residence permits using a hotel address. Is there a possibility that the hotel would refuse to write a letter stating that we live there? Is there a minimum term we have to stay at the hotel? Can we use the hotel address to do other things like opening a bank account or getting a mobile phone contract? Regards.
  11. My Indian friend purchased a cellphone from aliexpress. It is kept in custom in Turkey for around 50 days. The do not turn it back and he can't understand why?! The due date for turning back is also over and even if they turn back he does not know whether the seller refund or not around 1000 $ ! Does anybody hav same experience. He is disappointed! It seems that custom keeps it forever!
  12. Hello guys, I just have a question no related to this forum and would be really grateful to reply me if you know it. Please let me know how much is the rate to register mobile phones in Turkey? Since they said After 120 days, you must register your device and pay the registration fee or your device will be blocked. Many thanks in advance for your help.
  13. Hello First of all, how long could we use our phone without registering it? I remembered it was 90 days on 2015 maybe! Also, does it mean after that day, we just get the call but could not call, right? I mean it would be one-sided call, right? How about, SMS? Could we use it? Also, what is your idea about buying an obsolete phone in Turkey and use that cellphone just for calling and message? In that way we do not need to register. Or you suggest for me to register my phone? How much does it cost? Finally, Which one is better? Vodafone or Turkcell? I had AVEA, which seems to be disappeared!
  14. On the page It states "You must also register your mobile phone, if you brought one, within 30 days." Where would I register a US-based Sprint Cell phone?
  15. I had worked for about 10 months with my phone while I was in Turkey. However, I did not register it. I just could call for 3 months and then just could get calls. As you know the phone should be registered. Now could I use that number after a year and half interval? Just getting call!
  16. [Information] Changing Network from Vodafone (very rude and insulting representatives) to Turkcell (helpful and kind) while keeping same phone Hey friends, I am here to give an information to all members. I came 9 month ago and bought a sim card from airport which was on Vodafone; after having used it for 9 months I planned to switch to Turkcell but I wished to keep the same number and didn't want to purchase a new sim instead port my number from Vodafone network to Turkcell network. The process seemed easy as I have already gone through this in my home country as well but here it was not as easy as thought. I had to visit at least 10 Turkcell shops in order to find one which was ready to do this for me as all the others said that it is impossible for a foreigner to do this; this service was only available for Turk citizens. But the one which agreed to do this wanted me to go back to vodafone and ask them to give me a 'bilgisi' from their computer which will show that my number is registered with them with my parents names and also that I do not have any outstanding amounts to pay them. Now this was a big hassle because when I visited Vodafone (being in a populated district of Istanbul and having a Turkish speaking friend with me) I had to go through a 15 minute communication with each member of Vodafone service and sale point and when they found out that I was to switch network they were very rude and initially rejected any possible help they could do. But after a half hour debate with them and trying to convince them and requesting them multiple times and telling them that their coverage is not good in the area I live I got lucky and they told me where to go next.... I went there and same half hour convincing and getting insulted process continued but at the end I was given that paper on which only my name, surname and date of birth was printed. (which was wrong' the month entered was wrong). No mother of father name as on the airport the representative is there to make sales and do minimal work. This was a big disappointment. Getting back to Turkcell was a good experience; I explained them through all the problems I had gone through to get to this paper and that I bought sim from Airport and it is not my fault if incomplete or fake information is entered in their system. They accepted it and issued me with a Turkcell sim which should work within four days. I am happy I am with a more professional and respectable company which respects their customers. Good luck to all.
  17. Hey Fellas, I hope all are doing good and feeling happy and safe with new year arrival. I have a question. I have brought a cellphone in Turkey in December 2016. I wish to get it registered but I am not sure of what is the procedure and where to go. I did some research on internet but could not find answer to my question. As far as I understood there are two steps; 1st being paying a tax in a tax office or a bank and then going to our network provider (Vodafone, Turkcell or Turk Telekom) and pay a certain amount and show the receipt of tax we paid at the bank and then they will register our device IMEI. Is it true? Does it work like this or I am a bit deviated? Please help. Where to pay the tax in Istanbul and then what next to do? Regards.
  18. I was wondering if any of you have successfully registered a foreign phone with Avea. I have paid the tax, got my entry document from the foreigners police but I can't find an Avea shop that is able to do the registration. I've been to several shops and they all tell me to try a different branch because they are "not authorized to do it". It seems that not all the branches can do this procedure. I have even tried going to Turkcell - there is a branch in Istiklal where they do registrations – but they can only register mobiles with a Turkcell sim card. Do you know of any Avea branch that can do the registration? Thanks for your help!
  19. Mobile phone update - (Communications Law No. 5809 Turkey's Maritime, Transport and Communications Minister has announced that all holidaymakers coming to Turkey can now use their mobile phones in Turkey for up to 60 days, before it is blocked. (This has been extended from 30 days)
  20. So, I missed a very important SMS from Avea a couple of weeks ago. It said my phone was going to be blocked due to the fact that I had not registered it since I entered Turkey, 3 months ago. I thought It was an ad (türkçe az biliyorum). I'm surprised to read in the forums that usually they don't take this much to block a phone. I now find myself with a blocked phone. Has anyone been through this? Any advice on how to unblock it? Yes, I know -- this was very stupid. I managed to get myself a resident permit, but not to register my phone. Any tips?
  21. Does anyone know if there is any cost for "receiving" SMS, when keeping the phone with Turkcell SIM switched on outside Turkey? Most mobile carriers worldwide allow absolutely free incoming SMS when on international roaming. Of course, there is cost for sending SMS, but receiving is never charged for. Not sure about Turkcell and Avea, in particular (as even their websites are not clear enough on tariffs). Anyone took a Turkish SIM abroad and incurred cost for receiving SMS on it?
  22. Hello! I have already registered my cell phone about a year and a half ago. I just bought a new cell phone here and now I want to sell my old one (iPhone 4 32GB). A few days ago, I went to a shop who buy second hand phones, and he refused buy mine, because it is registered with a foreigner's passport and as he said it only works for me! Later I tried to insert another SIM card (my brother's who is a foreigner here as well) and it didn't work on my old phone. So I think that it only works with the SIM/number it was registered first and with no other sim, right? Then I am unable to sell it to someone else here in Turkey?
  23. Hey all! I have another question, I've been reading this forum and I can't figure out what you're all talking about with sim cards and taxes and things like that for phones. I don't know anything about using a phone in another country. When I lived in Belize we just bought those cards with minutes on them and used payphones. With the age of cellphones, could someone tell me exactly what I need to do to have a cellphone that would work in Turkey? Do I really need to buy a new Turkish one? Or can I just bring in my current one? Thanks! (Of note, I have the most basic phone ever, so there's no need to deal with all that crazy stuff like "smart" technology.)
  24. i know this topic has been mentioned at times, though not this specific situation, and i haven't been able to find a recent answer (the laws change so often it may have changed recently). i have a friend coming from the UK in september and she's planning to bring me a used samsung galaxyS3. from what i've been able to figure out, the only way to register it is to show that i've entered the country within the last 30 days (plus the 115TL tax etc). does anyone know how or if it's possible to have it registered in my name without a recent entry stamp on my own passport? would a border run to one of the islands or to bulgaria fulfil the 30day reentry stamp requirement? can it be registered as a gift? i haven't purchased a phone in the last 2 years and have never registered a foreign phone... i've been here for 2-1/2 years now and currently have another 2-1/2 years on my RP.
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