Digital Nomad Tax

Turkey Digital Nomad Visa: Should I go For It?

Turkey is one of the countries I personally spend quite some time in. Up till now, mostly just on a tourist visa. Which is probably the route most digital nomads choose.

However, now Turkey launched the Turkey digital nomad visa. In this article, we’ll have a closer look what’s it all about, the requirement and process to apply.

Highlights of the Türkiye Digital Nomad Visa

  • To qualify you obviously need to work remote and hold a university degree
  • Age limit: only people between 21 and 55 can apply
  • You need an income of at least $3.000/month
  • Only people from a qualifying country can apply. Find the full list in the article.
  • The application process seems to be rather simple. You do need to pickup your visa at the visa center though.
  • It’s still unclear what’s the maximum duration of the digital nomad visa and if you can renew it.
Turkey Digital Nomad Visa

Eligibility Criteria for the Turkey Digital Nomad Visa

As with every digital nomad visa, you need to meet certain criteria in order to qualify for the Turkey digital nomad visa.

Work Remote

Obviously, the first requirement is that you need to be able to work remote.

If you work as an employee, you need to provide a copy of your contract with your employer.

If you have your own business, you need to provide proof of this as well. However, it’s still a bit unclear which documents you exactly need to provide depending on whether you work as a freelancer or have your own company.

University Degree

The second requirement is that you need to hold a university degree.

This can be a bachelor or master degree. Any of them will do but you will need to show the necessary proof of obtaining the degree.

Age Restriction

The Turkey digital nomad visa is only open for people aged between 21 and 55. This age restriction seems arbitrary but that’s just how it is.

In any case, people younger than 21 will probably not meet the previous requirement of having a university degree in any case.

Minimum Income Requirement

Just like most digital nomad visas, the Turkish digital nomad visa also has a minimum income requirement. You need to make at least $3.000 per month to qualify.

As an employee, this might just be mentioned in your contract and that might suffice. The same applies if you work for your own company. As a freelancer you might need to provide bank statements to have sufficient proof.

Qualifying Country

The visa program is only open to people who hold a passport of some specific countries. These are mostly Western countries.

Hereby the full list of countries that qualify: Austria, Belarus, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Poland, Portugal, Ukraine, United Kingdom and United States.

Miscellaneous Requirements

Finally, there are two other basic requirements you need to meet.

The first on is that your passport needs to be valid for at least six more months as from the date of arrival in Turkey.

The second requirement is that you need to provide a biometric or passport picture with your application.

How to Apply for the Nomad Visa Program?

There are different steps in the application process for the digital nomad visa Türkiye.

First, you register an account on the official website dedicated to the Turkish digital nomad visa. This is similar like when you would apply for an e-visa.

Once your registration is finished, you can upload all the necessary documents in order to show you meet the criteria. We refer to what we discussed in the previous sections.

After submitting your request, you will an email confirming your application. Now the Turkish authorities start evaluating your application and the documents you provided.

After that, you receive an email with the outcome of the application. If you are approved, you will immediately receive a digital nomad identification certificate. This isn’t your actual visa though.

If you are outside of Turkey, you need to go to a Turkish visa center or consulate to get the actual digital nomad visa. If you are already in Turkey, you can get your Turkey digital nomad visa from the Presidency of Migration Management office.

Currently, it’s not yet possible to actually get your final visa from the migration office as all the procedures are not in place yet from a practical point of view. Also, it’s unclear for how long the visa will be awarded. I contacted the Turkish authorities in this respect but I am still awaiting their input.

How’s the Digital Nomad Scene in Turkey?

There’s many nomad hotspots in Turkey. That’s no surprise as the country offers nice cuisine and climate at a very affordable cost. But where should you actually go?

Many nomads of course visit the metropolis of Istanbul. Probably there is something for everyone in Istanbul. However, if you are not a fan of big cities you might want to look at alternatives.

In that case, I can definitely recommend to have a look at Antalya. There is a thriving nomad and expat community. It’s one of the places I’ve spend most of my time over the past years.

Not too far from Antalya, you also have the town of Kas. Although much smaller than Antalya, also very popular with nomads. Many of them go there for freediving.

The aforementioned government website includes information about the main cities in Turkey. This can also be an interesting source to have a look at if you want learn more about what Turkey has to offer.

One thing I noticed myself that might be worth mentioning is that not all VPN’s work in Turkey. If you need a specific VPN for your work, it might be worth to check this out upfront.

Residence Permit in Turkey vs Digital Nomad Visa

The Turkey digital nomad visa targets digital nomads who want to spend more time in Turkey than they are allowed on a tourist visa. A residence permit or Ikamet on the other hand, is open to anyone who meets the requirements.

Therefore, each of them have a different purpose and different conditions. However, many nomads could technically probably qualify for both.

One of the pain points of the Turkish residence permit is that you need a notarized long-term rental contract.

First of all, this means a lot of paperwork to go through. And, it’s not a secret that those things aren’t always very efficient in Turkey.

Furthermore, you will be paying rent for a place in a specific city while you might want to use the opportunity to visit multiple places that Turkey has to offer.

If you are looking to set up tax residency in Turkey, the residency permit is probably the way to go. If not, the digital nomad visa might suit you better.

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