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edubongo

mobile phone blocked

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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?

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If you've been here for 3 months, you may have to leave the country (overnight will do) so you can get a new re-entry stamp in your passport (this is because you will have to show entry within the last 30 days).  You'll have to pay the tax at the Maliye (now gone up to 120 lira), then register the phone at a Turkcell (or Avea or Vodafone) shop to get it unlocked.......... similar information is available on most of this forum's threads concerning mobile phone registration.

 

If these procedures have changed, I hope someone more competent will correct.  Good luck ! :)

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It was a couple of years ago when I did that and it worked--I took a ferry to one of the Greek islands and got an entry visa stamp in my passport (even though I had a residence permit and didn't need one). I showed my visa stamp to the TurkCell people and they registered an un-blocked my phone.

 

After that, they changed the law to require you to pay the tax and bring them the receipt first.

 

Because of that change, it seems to me that all they really want is their tax money. So I am wondering if you can now get it un-blocked without leaving the country. Someone at the Avea shop would know. I haven't heard of anybody trying it, but if you find that you are able to get it un-blocked that way, would you let us know? I've got an article on mobile phone registration (Articles Section) and I'll modify the article if you are able to pay the tax and get it un-blocked without leaving Turkey.

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Thanks, all.

 

Well, it turns out that I DID leave Turkey in december to spend Christmas with my family in Brazil, so I do have an exit/entry stamp on my passport. I'll try your suggestions and see how it goes, then report back. Thanks again!

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When I did it, I had to go to a Turkcell TIM, which stands for Telekomunikasyon (something) Merkezi (center). I couldn't do it from just any Turkcell shop. Avea probably has the same arrangement.

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I got my phone unblocked a few weeks ago but never updated this thread. So here's what happened. No need to go to Turkcell TIM or leave the country.

 

I went to the tax office with my phone IMEI number, kimlik number and RP. They charged me 150 liras. They told me I could get the phone unblocked at any Avea store.

 

So I went to the first Avea store I found here in Kadikoy and they said "no, we don't do this. You'll need to go to the Turkcell TIM".

 

But I wasn't happy with their answer. So I went to another one in Altiyol. They said they don't unblock phones BUT told me to go to the Avea store in Bahariye to get it unblocked. So I went there and they checked my tax receipt, my passport and charged me 30 liras. They made copies of my passport and tax receipt so they could send them to the main mobile phone administration in Ankara. They also said my phone would be unblocked the next day, but it might take a week.

 

The next morning I woke up with a familiar sound -- the sound of a sms alert! It was Avea telling me to add credits to my phone so I could start using it again, but at that point the boring "Emergency only" message had already been changed to the "Avea" roaming message. I added credits to my phone and am using it since then.

 

Thanks for the tips, folks! And hope my experience helps someone else too, though if I could leave one message to people coming to Turkey it would be JUST REGISTER YOUR PHONE AS SOON AS YOU GET HERE.

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Hi Carole,

 

Once a phone is registered in Turkey - it can be used anywhere in the world - unless it requires re - registration in the country you are visiting.

 

I travel between Turkey and Germany ( I am in Germany longer than I am in Turkey) and I use the same phone in both countries - I just switch SIMs.

 

I hope this answers your question

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Thanks Edurardo. 

 

The Turkish mobile phone system seems to just record the registration of your mobile phone (not the SIM card, the actual phone), and keeps a record of it showing that the tax was paid on it. As far as I know you can come and go as you like, as long as the phone is registered, it will work when you return to Turkey. I don't know how long the registration stays in the system or if they remove it after a certain amount of time, I haven't heard of any cases of that yet.

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Consulate General of Turkey: Using your mobile phones with SIM cards bought in Turkey (Turkish Networks Only)(exactly as it is written on this official web site)

MOBILE PHONES NEED TO BE REGISTERED FOR USE WITH SIM CARDS BOUGHT IN TURKEYTurkish and foreign visitors are entitled to bring one mobile phone into Turkey within one calendar year for use during their stay in Turkey. A personal mobile phone brought in to Turkey in this manner is exempt from tax and duty.It is necessary to register the mobile phones in order to use them with SIM card bought from a Turkish network operator. (In order to use such a mobile phone with a SIM card bought in Turkey from a Turkish network operator, the mobile phone number assigned to the SIM card needs to be correlated with the IMEI number of the mobile phone. The handset can only be registered with one line. Phones not registered in this way will be blocked and unable to receive or make calls. There is no charge levied for this registration.)No customs documents are required for the registration of mobile phones.Mobile phones to be brought into Turkey are to be registered with the Telecommunication Institution or with the mobile phone shops of Turkish Network Operators (Avea, Turkcell or Telsim).Documents required for the registration of mobile phones are:   TR Citizenship Number or Passport number   Passport (Identity details indicated on the passport)   Copies of all Turkish entry/exit stamps in the passportNo more than one mobile phone per person can be registered in one calendar year.

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My recent experience has been that I paid the 120TL at the tax office, brought the receipt and my passport to a Turkcell shop, and I was told that I need to show my ikamet (resident permit) in order to have my phone unblocked, and they can only unblock it for 3 months. 

 

My question is what if someone is only here for a short stay and don't have a resident permit? And I thought once the phone is unblocked there will be no time limit? Has anyone had similar experience that could share?

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My recent experience has been that I paid the 120TL at the tax office, brought the receipt and my passport to a Turkcell shop, and I was told that I need to show my ikamet (resident permit) in order to have my phone unblocked, and they can only unblock it for 3 months. 

 

My question is what if someone is only here for a short stay and don't have a resident permit? And I thought once the phone is unblocked there will be no time limit? Has anyone had similar experience that could share?

See entry #12 above...

 

I would find another Turkcell shop, they are wrong. Some shops are "authorised" official Turkcell shops and some just do service, some are just dumb, find an authorised one. Once you buy a Turkish SIM card, you can use it as long as you stay in the country. If you know a Turkish person, ask them to go with you to an official Turkcell shop and talk to the manager, not some kid in the shop, some of them are totally clueless. NOTE: if you do not use and do not add "köntörs" to a Turkish SIM card in a six-month period, your SIM card becomes inactive and you have to buy a new one.

 

Any tourist can purchase a Turkish SIM card without a residence permit and go through the unblock procedure. For most tourists, here for a couple of weeks, the costs are not worth it, they can use their home country mobile phones and as long as they do not buy a Turkish SIM card, they will not be blocked. Most tourists buy some sort of special reduced rate roaming plan from their service provider before they leave on holiday for use while they are abroad and ONLY use the phone for emergencies. Free Wi-Fi is almost everywhere in Turkey as are Internet Cafe's. Use them, along with a VPN, when "talking" either through email or VOIP video (aka Skype) to home. Pay phone cards are available for purchase in almost any convenience store and the phones themselves can be found in most public areas. Hotels always (if you are a guest), and cafes and bars sometimes, will allow you to make a local call.

 

If you are a tourist, do not buy a Turkish SIM card, your phone will not be blocked, if you are only going visit for a week or two, do NOT buy a Turkish SIM card, it is a lot of hassle and expensive.

 

Good luck

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Thanks HobbitTR for your tips. I went to Turkcell again with my turkish friend and we got the same response...went to Avea to double check and same answer. People in both shops said that they could unblock my hone for 3 months if I can't show my resident permit...and these are official/authorised shops... Perhaps it's just a rule in Nevsehir...who knows haha. Guess I will just have to wait for my RP before I try again...

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