How the Latest Visa Restrictions for Travel to Turkey Affect You

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This morning, via The Points Guy, we learned that unless you already have a valid visa, US passport holders will no longer be able to enter Turkey.  

This includes visas issued at embassies and consulates, e-Visas, and other border visas.  So if you have an upcoming trip to Turkey or have a connecting flight through Istanbul, it’s important to know your options!

How The Latest Visa Restrictions For Travel To Turkey Affect You
This News Affects Anyone Planning a Trip to Turkey. Or Anyone With a Long Layover In Turkey Who Does NOT Already Have Their Visa!

Turkey No Longer Issuing Visas to US Citizens

In the past, US citizens traveling to Turkey could get a visa upon arrival.  Meaning lots of folks would book flights and fly without a visa.

But as of today, October 9, 2017, US citizens who don’t already have a visa are no longer able to enter the country.  Because the Turkish government has stopped issuing visas to US passport holders.  

While most folks likely don’t have a trip to Turkey planned, it’s possible some of y’all have connecting flights through Istanbul on Turkish Airlines.

What Can You Do?

The good news is, if you have an upcoming flight on Turkish Airlines, they already have a flight change or refund request program in place:

  • Valid for tickets purchased before October 9, 2017
  • Only valid for flights terminating in Turkey
  • If you’re connecting through Istanbul, this program does NOT apply
  • You can make reservation and route changes for free
  • You can request a refund for tickets that have NOT been used, or a partial refund for those that have been partially used
  • Only valid for flights on Turkish Airlines and AnadoluJet
  • Change or refund requests must be made by October 31, 2017

If you booked a flight on a different airline, or using miles other than Turkish Airlines miles, you’ll have to call the airline to see if they’ll make an exception and refund or redeposit your miles for free.  I’d say a sudden change in visa requirements is a valid reason!

Bottom Line

As of today, October 9, 2017the Turkish government has stopped issuing visas to US citizens.  So folks flying to Turkey, or those with an extended layover in Istanbul, need to make other arrangements.

The good news is, through October 31, 2017Turkish Airlines is allowing free reservations changes and refunds for any tickets purchase before October 9, 2017.  

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