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AmarSalameh

Settling in Turkey

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Hi,

You might wonder why am being general by saying Turkey! It's because after a short while from arriving to Antalya and being a member in this forum I decided to move to Canakkale.

 

I don't think there is a forum for Canakkale, and am just too busy with my own issues at this time to start one yet.
So, settling in Canakkale; I started the next day of arrival by 'finishing up' the bank account that I started in Antalya!

 

There in Ack bank they asked for Mokhtar signature on the tax number paper that I already succeeded to do earlier. I didn't go to Mokhtar as by then I have already planned to move.

 

So I went to ZIRAAT bank instead because I remember a guy in the migration department in Antalya naming it to ease my process.

 

I got that right! They didn't need the Mokhtar signiture and stamp and still no one seemed to care about it for my resedincy yet.

 

At the cashier, where I need to deposit my money, she noticed that there is a mistake in my tax number sheet!
She was right, I didn't see that and no one did before, the lady in Antalya got my first name last letter replaced with an H instead of an R! I really thought it could be a complicated situation but I decided not to panic especially that I had a Turkish man helping me around because he Knows his way around in Chanakkale.

 

To my surprise the lady at the desk listened to him and gave me a new tax sheet with the same number and details that says Antalya hotel address on it except with correct name in five minutes!

 

Note: this makes me ask everyone to

 

1. check every document you process for the correct details before leaving the place.

 

2. Don't hesitate asking questions once there especially if you have someone who can translate for you!

 

I seriously don't know why I didn't ask how come she kept Antalya address and didn't ask her to replace it with the hotel address in Canakkale.

 

Now ZIRAAT bank didn't need the Mokhtar signiture for some reason as I mentioned earlier and both banks are state banks and I was told that ZIRAAT bank is the biggest bank here as in operations.

 

So third step was renting an apartment. Since am fussy about the place I want to live in, and the one I saw was too big for me and too expensive and it's got one room with the great view and the rest of the rooms were unbearable. It might be worth it to say here that I was surprised that I couldn't see the other two places that were announced for rent as Because they didn't wish to rent for foreigners! I was told later that that was so unusual. I couldn't get angry or offended to an upsetting point eventually because I have been showered with great hospitality and help from Turkish people from the first minute I had been out of the airport door! And it was only the second day for me looking around. I decided that I want the help of a good realestate agency, no offense to all existing ones but I went to an international one. They happened to have one place to show that matches my needs on the spot and I liked it much.

 

3. The contract took couple of days before I got it in hand since the owner lives abroad. 4. I thought I'd better prepare to move in to save hotel money, especially that I was handed the keys and got my recites for rent and deposit so I went ahead and picked my electronics and payed for them to be moved the next day because electricity can be swiched on immediately once you show them your rent contract and the previouse tenant name if you were not the first. I got the rent papers and headed to the electricity department! There was my shock! When I thought that I was armed with the information I needed weeks befor moving to Turkey. I was told there that They need my residency number before they can swich on the electricity in my apartment and I thought no way, there must be something wrong and I nearly panicked because I was alone there and having language barrier though used the translation application. But I should have known better already! One must not panic in Turkey easily

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Did you fix your electricity problem? When I first moved to Antalya I couldn't get telephone service until I had my residence permit, it was undergoing an address change, and it took 30 days to get it back (under the old system). I don't remember what happened with the electricity, but since I have the bills coming in my name, they must not have asked me for a residence permit, or my landlord liked me enough to somehow vouch for me.

 

I've never had anybody ask me for a muhtar signature on anything, anywhere in Turkey.

 

You're certainly experiencing how people at banks and in government tend to say different things in different places in different times.

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Well Ken I noticed that they don't know much about process or specific requirements and the order of it in different departments. I also noticed that they for some reason suggest your next step as thinking you will get through it but then you find a missing document pending for number of procedures first, and then they'd tell you 'I didn't know they'll ask for that'. Eventually they didn't deal much or at all with non residents before.

 

I got off on my first share and couldn't continue for some reason, it also omit much of what I wrote after the posted lines, is there a word limit per post here?

 

I kind of hate rewriting so will take a break and continue from the last post end later.

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Hi Samar!

 

First of all, good luck with your move and wish you the smoothest settle.  I have been following your process to settle in Turkey since i am having similar plans.  Following your posts, along with others in this forum, gives many information that i am thankful for.

 

Keeps us all posted on how things go with you, and once again, wishing you the best of luck.

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Did you fix your electricity problem? When I first moved to Antalya I couldn't get telephone service until I had my residence permit, it was undergoing an address change, and it took 30 days to get it back (under the old system). I don't remember what happened with the electricity, but since I have the bills coming in my name, they must not have asked me for a residence permit, or my landlord liked me enough to somehow vouch for me.

I've never had anybody ask me for a muhtar signature on anything, anywhere in Turkey.

You're certainly experiencing how people at banks and in government tend to say different things in different places in different times.

Hello Ken,

 

For some reason I can't find always the follow icon to get notified when there are new messages!

 

I didn't fix the problem yet because it is pending on my residency! So it will come last!

In the application it says purpose for residency and the only available match is tourism! There nothing like retirement or I want to live here thing, so, is it possible thar one keep applying for tourism purpose every year? No one in the forum mentioned the application much.

 

Please let me know if tourism is right, I know am not here for education or job etc.

 

One more thing, do they prefer that you work?? Or have a job? Because as far as my understanding, residents are not allowed to work unless their skills are not matched to any Turkish ones.

As you can see am getting a bit worried about the application thing.

 

Regards

 

Hello there

Thank you Abdulla, am trying as you can see and I got my ups and downs too.

 

I believe Canakkale applies some how different rules than Turkey in General because it is a military base city, though it is not obvious.

 

For instance a forigner can't buy his own property and it is a very old law.

Am not sure if electricity is also different but will try to find out next time I go to the department. But if I am to get electricity at home it'll be under my name.

 

I once read on the forum that a privat health insurance cost 260 TL, and I believe this price is the total cost per month.

I bought my insurance on Friday, and to my surprise there was no medical checkup, I filled the application being honest and they raised the average expected fee what's equivelant to ten dollars per month because I mentioned that gluten and lactose cause me bloatation! Well am nearly always avoiding them but I guess I had to pay for that.

anyways, it's for one year and it cost me TL 1932,57

 

Which is $60 per month. And it is a very basic one, no dental or eye or past solved matters or occurring serious illness, etc.

 

Am figuring by next year if one is here, will have learned the language and the place and might be able to get a better deal.

 

One good news is that since Canakkale is not crowded and with hardly any applicants for residency the approximat waiting for an appointment is couple of days .. I hope! Staying in hotels is not my favorite thing!

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Hi Samar!  Yes, it does sound a bit bumby right now for you, but nothing that is so major.

 

The Private Health Insurance price you mentioned sounds more that what is being said in many site.

http://www.yellali.com/blogs/article/194/private-health-insurance-vs-sgk-turkey

http://www.yellali.com/Groupama_FIT_brochure.pdf (FIT stands for Forigners in Turkey, and its compliant with RP).

They do offer an Instant Online Quote For Residence Permit Health Insurance, whic is "probably" an estimate. 

I got [Estimated Annual Policy Premium: 1224.64 TL].  Don't know yet if there are any hidden costs.

One has to compare plans.  Yours might be better.  Of course a new commer would not all the insides and the saving ways at first.

 

You are doing good, and you seem very determined thmbup%5B1%5D.gif
I pray that things will be much better and easier for you in all the coming days.

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Well Ken I noticed that they don't know much about process or specific requirements and the order of it in different departments. I also noticed that they for some reason suggest your next step as thinking you will get through it but then you find a missing document pending for number of procedures first, and then they'd tell you 'I didn't know they'll ask for that'. Eventually they didn't deal much or at all with non residents before.

 

That's the main reason for this forum. Sometimes government people don't know the exact procedures if they have never done something before, and if there is a manual they could reference, they usually don't. So often the best way to find out how something works is from the experience of a foreigner who has been through a process, and that's what you're sharing here. And you've also seen how Turks often go out of their way to help a foreigner if they can, I've experienced that a lot. Thank you!

 

 

I got off on my first share and couldn't continue for some reason, it also omit much of what I wrote after the posted lines, is there a word limit per post here?

 

I don't know what might have happened there. There is no word limit, just a total data limit. It is very doubtful that you could exceed this with any forum post, and I have never seen the forum cut off a post, even when there are a lot of images in it. Even if it cut you off, it would give you a warning first. It even saves your post from time to time so you don't lose it, so I don't know what could have caused that.

 

Regardless, if I have a very long post, I always write it in a "text" document, a .txt document in notepad or wordpad, and keep saving it. Then I copy and paste it into the text window of the topic. But that is just in case my electricity goes off in the middle of a post.

 

 

For some reason I can't find always the follow icon to get notified when there are new messages!

 

There is a "Follow This Topic" button at the top right. Also if you want to follow an entire forum, there is a "Follow This Forum" button at the top right if you are at the forum level.

 

 

In the application it says purpose for residency and the only available match is tourism! There nothing like retirement or I want to live here thing, so, is it possible thar one keep applying for tourism purpose every year? No one in the forum mentioned the application much.

 

It looks like they are using an old form, or something from the old procedure. There used to be a "tourism" residence permit but now they are just "short-term" residence permits. But it is the same thing, The short term permit is for one year, renewable every year, but at least the renewals you can do online or by mail or delivery company.

 

So yes, tourism is correct.

 

It is not a work permit. A work permit is an entirely separate thing.

 

I hope your residence permit is processed quickly!

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I wanted to share with all of you that despite how nice and helpful are the Turkish people, this doesn't mean that you should be trustful to all no matter what.

 

For instance, the helpful Turkish man that I asked him to drop me at big shop for electronics which has everything related to homes and all the available brands, instead he dropped me at SES Electronics claiming that they are the best and the store is very big! I rest to his choice!

 

The shop isn't that big and was limited in options. But I doubted my judgement because the woman helping me used to refer to catalog models for size and etc. I didn't see raged prices! The woman in general was very helpful and friendly, however, when it came to money it was something else. At the end of the day, fasting and very tired, She directed me to another shop to buy electrical wire for iPhone because The battery was running out and I must have the translation app and telephone available. At that shop I paid and plunged my phone to charge while I looked around. To my shock I found two very exact items that were on my shoping list at SES except with huge price difference, SES was way more expensive! A teffal boiler was for TL 49, she marked it after discount for me at TL79, the cooler was marked TL 145 were she gave me TL 460. So I took pics of the items and price and went back expressing that am not happy with prices at their shop, she said sometimes little items happen to have a day drop in price. She wouldn't change the price! So As exhausted I was and so eager to move to my place -not knowing about the electricity surprise- I started to eliminate items and considering the main ones only.

 

PS; When I called the Turkish helper to tell him what happened, he said in a very cool voice " you can go look around and shop anywhere else". True, I could and would have done that if I didn't have feet problem that excessive walking and standing cause me severe pain which I had already and would take days before it is gone! That option at this point of pain was out of question.

 

She then dropped the price a bit more twice. I paid in full and the electronics were suppose to be delivered the next afternoon to my place, and they'll call first to decide on the time.

 

I left to catch Iftar at the last minute at my hotel extremely tired. The next morning I called the shop from the hotel and asking the receptionist who speaks English to explain to her that am not taking an item and that am exchanging another and that I should be at the shop in less than an hour. I went to the shop and she got that am exchanging one cook set with another and canceling the grill. She then tells me you can buy the other cook set but you can't return the first one and we can give you money credit for the price of the grill to buy from this shop and this is the shop policy!! The items never left their store!

 

I didn't say much except that just like any country, I expect Turkey as well to have consumer protection agency which I shall contact. She immediately changed her mind and gave me the money they owed me.

 

I know I must have paid over price for what I got from them and yet not sure that my residency will work out and I have payed rent as well with two months security deposit!

 

Lessons for others:

 

1.never shop before your home is all ready from key to water to electricity and contract of course. Staying extra time at the hotel would be the least expensive price!

 

2. Trust your gut feeling, if the shop doesn't seem to be the one, even if recommended by someone helpful shop around and see more before buying

 

3. Don't pay in advance even if they were to bring the stuff the next day, stop by one more time to pay before delivery. If they insist you can pay a small deposit in advance and the rest on delivery.

 

I probably would have thought about all of this if I wasn't in pain and exhausted, so probably you should note this point as well.

 

Am still waiting the money to arrive before I can apply online, and still suffering from my feet!

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So sorry to hear about this bad experience, Samar.  Rest well since the day for is done.

 

And yes please, don't hurry things.  I wish I had info to provide, but i can only offer you support and prayer.

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Samar, we may not be able to do much to help, but we support you and we are here for you. I'm sorry to hear about your experience. Unfortunately I've had a few similar experiences. I think I can say with confidence that things will get better. They definitely got better for me as I learned how things work.

 

It sounds to me like your helper took you to a place where he would get a commission. It's funny that I have learned to recognize the people who are going to cheat me... there is a subtlety about it. The truly helpful Turks, yes, are friendly. And the ones who intend to cheat you are even more friendly. It takes a little time to recognize the difference. You will.

 

I think you are already handling a few things like someone who has lived in Turkey for a long time! smile.png

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Yay! Processed application and got an appointment on Monday! Am so excited! Do I get the residency permit the same day? Are they going to interview me or just collect the needed documents?

My feeling everything will be over on Monday!

I already found a nice fitness center beer by for TL 50 per month!

I think I found were I can study Turkish too, COMU UNIVERSITY hoping it's not too late for summer course.

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Alf Mabrook .. Congrats Samar clap2%5B1%5D.gif

 

From what i hear, they application takes some time to process but you get the actual premit in 2-3 weeks by mail (i think).

If this is the case, i hope you will get some paper proof and that would suffice to do what you need to do as if you are holding the actual official premit card.  I hope someone would come along and correct me if i am wrong.

 

Take (2) copies of your passprt, (4) passport size photos, a copy of your visa to enter Turkey, and i (guess) you might need yout rent contract, of course some cash (around 80USD). 

Do you need a bank statement?

Do you need a proof of your medical insurance?

 

I usually take all the necessary and the "might be" helping documents with 2 copies at least of each docuemtn.  Yupe, a handful folder :)

 

You could also have a look here:

http://istanbulforeignersoffice.com/en/residencepermit/touristic-stay

 

May by this coming Eid you will have completely and peacfully setteled.  Keep us posted, and GOOD LUCK thmbup%5B1%5D.gif

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Do I get the residency permit the same day? Are they going to interview me or just collect the needed documents?

 

You don't get it the same day.  But you'll get a paper with your identifying information and photo on it that you can use until you get your residence permit. If you have to leave the country you can do so for up to 15 days with that paper.

 

Your residence permit will be processed in Ankara, then sent to you by special courier through PTT (the postal system). They will deliver it to the address you listed on your application. When it arrives, you will sign for it.  I have heard it take as little as three days in some places, but they should tell you at the DGMM office how long it will probably take to get it.

 

There is no real "interview" that I have ever heard of, they mostly just go over the paperwork to make sure everything is correct.

 

Good price on that gym membership, it's usually 100 TL in places I have been.

 

An early congratulations to you, Samir! :)

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Hello everyone,

I went to my appointment yesterday! It went fine, they needed the original copy of my health insurance which I didn't have in the first place. But that didn't delay the process. I still managed to collect it from the bank the same day, will drop it off today in shallah. The residency number will be given through the computerized system by the end of the week. So it takes three to four days. The residency permit arrived within ten days by mail. Once I get the number it is good enough to give it to the electricity department to swich it on in my place. I expect moving in to my place on Monday hopefully.

So tired from hotel stay.

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It had its problems getting started, like any new program would, but the new system is much better than the old one. I am glad to hear that it worked well for you. I have heard other cases where a foreigner arrived for an appointment missing a document, and they were able to go and get it and come back. In one case, the DGMM called the person on his mobile phone to let him know something was missing, so he went and got it and took it to the DGMM.

 

I think that's probably the biggest issue in moving to Turkey, if the utilities aren't in your landlord's name, you have to wait until you have your residence permit to get them.

 

Unless, Samar, you've become aware of an easier way to do it. As I am understanding it, your experience went like this:

 

  • Moved to Çanakkale and checked in to a hotel
  • Found an apartment and got a rental contract
  • Went to the DGMM and used your apartment address as your residence
  • Got your residence permit with the apartment as your address
  • Got utilities connected to your apartment with your residence permit

 

Is that the procedure you had to go through to get settled in? I am asking so I can better advise the next person who is moving to Turkey, because it sounds like that is what everybody will have to do. :)

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Hello,

I have received the residency number on Friday! I was informed that my residency is valid since 26/6/2015 and expires the same date next year. The date was based on the health insurance validity date! Sounds good! Well that's what I thought, except the electricity department didn't care much for the number, they need the official residency document. The card is not expected before minimum ten days or two weeks!

At this point, this is how I feel; am frustrated, going nuts being at the hotel, fed up with Canakkale and very lonely! And leaving Canakkale sounds like sole remedy right now!

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Ken, I started as soon as I arrived to Turkey based on their request on the web page, but that was the biggest mistake! DON'T DO THAT is my advise to every new comer unles they are 100% sure this is where they want to be. You'll see why if you look closely to the proceidure I took and will figure out what to do instead:

1.Got a tax number from tax office, they requested my address, I gave the the hotel address in Antalya.

2. I didn't check the document, it spelled my name wrong.

3. I didn't like Antalya and wanted out as soon as possible and moved to Canakkale, went to Ziraat Bank were they still wanted my tax number to process me an ATM card.

4. Tax office corrected the name and kept the same address in Antalya which I knew why later.

5. Complete bank process and they won't give you a pre paid credit card ( they hold the value limit plus four or five hundred dollars extra as long as you have the card) not without residency card.

6. Found an apartment and signed the contract.

Went to electricity department and they requested the original residency document

7. Got money transferred to my account, surprisingly it arrived to my account in less than an HOUR! But that depends on coming from which country.

8. Took passport photograph and I had to wipe my simple eye liner off! No make up what so ever! Hair tucked behind the ears.

8. Applied online knowing I got everything they needed and set my appointment right after the weekend and selected the time. NOTE: in the application it didn't indicate a specific amount you must have, it asked to mark one of the options for range of money and the Max was 5000 and above without any reference to the currency. I didn't rely on that and had a bigger figure in the bank statement.

9. Went two hours earlier to the bank for a same date bank statement. I was directed to the 'giving office address appeared on the web to show up to' and told to go by foot as it is near by. Got there and couldn't find the place. Few people helped going the same location on the same floor and it is not there! Running out of time and desided I want to go to the same migration office I know. Got there before my appointment and they said this is the same address I had on my note. So, there are TWO LOCATIONS OF SAME ADDRESS don't ask me how and I told them nothing to spare myself the language frustration.

10. Though I didn't have the original papers of the health insurance, I called the bank to make sure they won't delay the process at the migration office, and promissed to bring it the next day. EVERY PAPER MUST BE ORIGINAL, keep yourself copies of each!

11. The migration office requested payment. It wasn't only for the application fee! It included Chang of address fee!! They considered the hotel in Antalya my first address.

The payment was at the tax office. I had the time to go back to process the application after payment.

The residency number, the police number, the validity date were givin to me on scratch papers and told me now you can go to electricity office. THEY DO NOT know. The residency document will take ten days to two weeks to arrive by mail.

12. Got rejected at electricity dept.

13. Canakkale is considered a military town, foreigners are not allowed to own any property.

I AM STILL AT THE HOTEL AND AM NOT FEELING GOOD. Al hamdulellah for every thing.

Take the time before doing any step in the process. I am not sure I'll find Turkish courses here, there is one offer at the university to improve your Turkish. So, that can also be a problem.

I hope this is helpful

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Well hello there :)

 

Wow .. that's an awful alot.  What an expeiremnt!

 

Hmmm .. more than i want to thank you, i want say that i am really sorry you got so frustrated.  Bear in mind that you are heading for a complete change of life not just residency, and Turkey ,as we hear, should be worth a little troublance at the begining.

 

I sincerely wish that there was an advice that I could offer you, but if it's any comfort, know that although we are all complete strangers to you, but we pray that you be patient and succeed in doing whatever makes you happy. (My wife is following your story as well :) )

 

Don't give up, please, and know that after you get all your papers, you will have plenty of time to reap the benifits of your new life.

 

Wishing ALL the best, and Happy Eid.  Oh yeah, go ahead and make nice plans for Eid.  You need a break.

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Thank you all for your wishful thoughts and prayers for me. I believe I have to do my best and the rest is up to God.

Today the realestate agent told me once more that it might be best that I take my money back and let go with the apartment, I agreed! I know I won't find a one or two bedrooms with good view and I know now that this place is too quiet, almost nothing happens hear, and the only a ail able Turkis courses are in the university and they are not for bigginers. So, am almost set to move one more time, this time to Istanbul and I hope I find a decent location. My bus ticket is with me for Friday morning.

The rent money will be refunded to me tomorrow, the utilities money are supposed to be refunded on Thursday noon. My residency is suppose to arrive to the hotel address and they are willing to mail it for me once it arrives.

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You are so full of surprises :D

 

I have made my booking to Turkey for this coming Friday.  I was surprised to find out that this a very high season -obviously- and many hotels are fully booked.  Rooms available are pricy or in shaby hotels.

 

Does anyone have a recommendation for a family satay in Istanbul (with 2 kids)?

Is it a public holiday for Rurkey in Eid? If so, for how long?

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If i were you, i would NOT settle in the BIG cities where life is on the fast lane, too hectic, and too materialistic. 

I would also avoid the small cities where not much varity of anything, and life might be too quite and sometimes a bit boring. 

Aim for a good location and a population of around 800K to 1 million.  That way you get a bit of everything and you could always visit the big cities for more much more varaities, or escape for a weekend in a rural small town.

 

This is my preference, but i have a son that should attend school next year, so i have to take that into consideration.

 

All the best.

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