İstanbulkart is like the key to public transportation in this wonderful city and it offers more than just transportation!
İstanbul is an important cultural, economic, and historical center. As the highest populated city in Turkey, İstanbul needs and offers a well-developed transportation system.
No matter if you decide to live here or enjoy a temporary stay, our advice is to discover İstanbul thoroughly. You can spend the perfect day in İstanbul and learning about public transportation will make everything easier.
The main public transportation means are the bus, tram, metro, ferry, Metrobus, cable car, and Marmaray. All these options require one thing: İstanbulkart. But how does İstanbulkart work? Read to find out!
What is İstanbulkart?
İstanbulkart is an electronic ticket for public transportation. This İstanbul city transport card comes in various types. Each of these types meets different needs and offers different advantages.
Any person over the age of 6 can get an İstanbul card for public transport. A transportation fee is not required for younger children.
You can buy İstanbulkart from kiosks, ticket vending machines, markets, and buffets all over the city. Just after your arrival, you can buy İstanbulkart airport.
What are the types of İstanbulkart?
İstanbulkart comes in various types for different needs. Here are the details:
If you don’t qualify for a discounted card but plan on living here at least for a while, a blue card is the best choice.
You can use your Blue Card with monthly subscriptions along with its balance. You can top up this card from kiosk machines, ticket vending machines, or in the İstanbulkart app.
If you are a student, teacher, or a senior Turkish citizen, you can get a discounted card. The necessary documents and a recent photograph are all you need. Afterward, you can enjoy your transportation discount and all its advantages.
Limited Usage Card
These cards are ideal if you are not planning on staying here for long. These cards have 1, 2, 3, 5, or 10-time usage options.
The modern world needs modern solutions. If you lose your card or don’t want to carry it around, you can simply pay with your mobile phone! For QR payment, all you need to do is download the İstanbulkart app and follow the steps it leads.
İstanbul City Card
This card is for İstanbul visitors and offers beautiful designs that reflect the cultural richness of the city. İstanbul City Card offers an unlimited pass for a certain period.
The unlimited İstanbul public transportation card card comes with 1, 3, 5, 7, and 15-day usage options. Once you buy your card, you can use it any much you want!
Frequently Asked Questions About İstanbulkart
Still have questions? Here are the most frequently asked ones:
How to buy İstanbulkart?
After your arrival, you can buy your electronic ticket at the airport or from any spot in the city. Ticketmatics serve in up to 10 languages and they are easy to use. You can make your payment in paper notes of 5, 10, 20, 50, and 100 TL.
You can also buy your ticket from the website and have a free delivery to an address, including our hotel.
If you have longer-term plans in İstanbul, a Blue Card may be more economical. While a THREEpass costs ₺80, using a Blue Card 3 times will cost ₺45, and ₺21,96 if you are a student.
You can apply for a discounted card from the İstanbulkart Application Centers. Here, you can also carry out your renewal procedures. You can apply here if you lose your personal card as well.
You can get your İstanbulkart from various markets, including Migros. Here, you can get bonus credits for purchases via İstanbulkart too!
How can I use my İstanbulkart?
İstanbulkart is an easy payment method. It is not any different than your contactless credit card. All you need to do is hold the card on the reader, and you’re good to go.
What else can I do with my İstanbulkart?
The İstanbulkart offers more than just public transformation.
Basically, most İş Bankası pos machines will accept payment in İstanbulkart. You can use it in retail stores, gas stations, cafes, restaurants, public restrooms, public beaches, taxis, university cafeterias, and museums. You can even make online purchases with this card. İspark, Halk Bank, and pop machines accept İatanbulkart as a payment method as well.
What are the advantages of using an İstanbulkart?
Retail stores, markets, cafes, and restaurants offer special campaigns for İstanbulkart users. If you follow the İstanbulkart website, you will see extra discounts and free passes.
Can I recharge my İstanbulkart?
Of course, yes! You can pay cash to the vending machines. You can also use the mobile application to top up your card online. Here, you can also give an automatic payment order and never have to deal with an insufficient balance.
If you use the Smart Re-Cycle Bins, you can get a certain amount of charge for your card!
How can I check my İstanbulkart balance?
The kiosk machines can display your balance. After each usage, you can see the remaining balance on the reader’s screen as well.
The mobile application also offers this service. Once you enter the card information into system, you can benefit from lots of other advantages. Online topping up, giving an automatic payment order, and QR paying are only a few of them.
Can I buy İstanbulkart with credit cart?
Absolutely. You can buy a limited usage cart with your credit card from ticket vending machines. Here you can also top up your card. However, these ticket vending machines are not suitable for monthly pass charging.
You can also buy a card online from the official website and mobile application.
How to get a refund for an İstanbulkart?
The Metrobus and Marmaray are well-developed transportation means in İstanbul. They both charge money based on the distance.
At first, you need to pay the determined amount. Once you arrive at your destination, you can use the refund machines. When your card approaches the screen, the extra amount is refunded to you.
I lost my İstanbulkart. How to report a lost or stolen İstanbulkart?
If your card is not personalized, you cannot block it and cannot get a refund of the balance within the card. You can easily personalize your existing card from here.
If you lose your personalized card, you can block it from the mobile application or by calling ALO 143 Beyaz Masa. To get a refund, you can apply to İstanbulkart Application Centers.
What are the 2023 İstanbulkart prices?
Now, you know all the basics about the types of İstanbulkart and how the system works. You can check out the table below for the detailed price list.
|Anonymous Card Fee||₺70|
|Blue Card Fee||₺80|
|Blue Card Monthly||₺1177|
|Bue Card Monthly (Student Discount)||₺212|
|1 Day Unlimited Pass||₺130|
|3 Day Unlimited Pass||₺600|
|5 Day Unlimited Pass||₺1170|
|7 Day Unlimited Pass||₺1500|
|15 Day Unlimited Pass||₺2250|
|1st Transfer Fare||₺10.74|
|2nd Transfer Fare||₺8.15|
|3rd, 4th and 5th Transfer Fare||₺5.15|
Note: These prices are from October 2023 and change annually.