WHAT IS ISTANBUL WELCOME CARD AND HOW TO BUY ONE


Last Updated on April 16, 2021 by Anjum


“If you love History, then there is no better place then Istanbul! You will find Museums and ancient monuments second to none during your visit to Istanbul – Turkey”


This is no secret that if you want to get the most out of your travels then you need to do some research about the city / country before taking the trip. Not only will it save you time and money but it will ensure that you will not miss anything significant.

Planning ahead is the right way to go because travelling is expensive and when you are paying a lot of money then it would be great if you could do it in the right way, in the right places, on the right tours, activities and excursions.

WHY ISTANBUL?

Istanbul is a mixture of everything!

  • If you love Historical things, Museums, Monuments etc., then Istanbul is for you.
  • If you like Shopping (who doesn’t) then Istanbul is again for you as it has some of the best shopping choices available, be it branded stuff or unbranded.
  • Istanbul also has a very vibrant night life. So if you are going to enjoy your evenings then again Istanbul is the right place for you.
  • If you want some relaxation, then again Istanbul is the right place for you as you can stay in any of the peaceful Princess Islands and relax on the car-free islands.

Istanbul in its full glory! - Istanbul Welcome Card
Istanbul in its full glory!

PLANNING A TRIP TO ISTANBUL

Istanbul has a lot to offer and if you want to enjoy to the maximum then planning your trip beforehand is essential. Do some research and make a list of the things you want to do based on your own preferences to make the most out of your trip. If you are a history buff like me, then you should look at the Istanbul Welcome Card.

ISTANBUL WELCOME CARD

Istanbul Welcome Card is a great tool if you want to enjoy your time in Istanbul without having to worry about getting passes to various museums and waiting in huge lines to enter them.

This Welcome Package includes various advantages. Istanbul Welcome Card offers following benefits:

  • Free entry to 12 museums without any sort of waiting in lines
  • Guided tours at Hagia Sophia, Topkapi Palace and Basilica Cistern
  • A ride one the famous Bosphorus Cruise
  • 10 public transportation tickets and;
  • Audio Guides for top Museums

The biggest benefit of getting Istanbul Welcome Card is that you can use the card as per your own preference. The flexibility is what makes this card all lucrative. You can discover various Museums at your own pace.

You can run through every museum or you can take your time in each museum, it is entirely up to you. Do read the word of caution below though.

WORD OF CAUTION

Istanbul Welcome Card will be valid for 5 days from first activation. So keep this in mind when you are planning for the trips to museums. After 5 days have passed you will not be able to use the card anymore.

First we will discuss how to get the Istanbul Welcome Card, then we will see how to use the Istanbul Welcome Card and finally, what are the salient features / benefits of Istanbul Welcome Card.


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HOW TO GET THE ISTANBUL WELCOME CARD

Getting the Istanbul Welcome Card is easy. Follow the steps below in order to get your Istanbul Welcome Card:

  • Scroll Down and Select the number of Participants and the Date and click on Check Availability.

Select Participants and Date - Istanbul Welcome Card
Select Participants and Date
  • You will see the Total Price and breakdown.

Click on Add to Cart - Istanbul Welcome Card
Click on Add to Cart

  • Click on Add to Cart.
  • You will see your Shopping Cart in the next screen.
  • Check the details and if everything is fine then click on Checkout.

Click on Checkout if everything is fine - Istanbul Welcome Card
Click on Checkout if everything is fine

  • On the next screen, fill out your billing details by providing your name, email, country and phone number.
  • If you are not the traveler and are purchasing the Istanbul Welcome Card for someone else the uncheck then same as traveler option and provide details for the traveler.
  • Enter your hotel / accommodation details if you have already booked your hotel. This is where the Istanbul Welcome Card will be sent before your arrival. If you haven’t booked your hotel then don’t worry you can always add this detail later. You will need to provide the address at least 24-48 hours before the tour date.
  • Select your preferred Payment Method.

Select Payment Method
Select Payment Method

  • Click on Proceed to Payment.
  • Once you are done, you will receive a confirmation email with booking reference number. Save this email / confirmation for later use.

That’s it! you have now successfully purchased the Istanbul Welcome Card. The next part is How will you use your Istanbul Welcome Card. If you are interested in checking out more tours for your trip then you can check them here.


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HOW TO USE THE ISTANBUL WELCOME CARD

When you will first arrive in Istanbul, your card will be waiting at your hotel. You will find vouchers and cards that can be used in 12 Museums, 10 public transportation tickets along with a ticket for Bosphorus Cruise and audio guides for various Museums.

Everything is self explanatory. You just have to go to the museum and show the card and all is done. No need to wait in line or anything. The timings and the procedure for entry into each museum will be mentioned in the package.

Same is the case for Bosphorus Cruise. Just show your card and you are done.

For public transportation, procedure is again the same. Just give 1 of your 10 tickets to the person responsible and you are good to go.

IMPORTANT TO NOTE: Your Istanbul Welcome Card is valid for 120 Hours from when it is first activated.


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SALIENT FEATURES / BENEFITS OF ISTANBUL WELCOME CARD

There might be a question in your mind that WHY ISTANBUL WELCOME CARD? Why not just go to the museum and purchase your tickets there?

Well, if that is the case then the biggest advantage of purchasing the Istanbul Welcome Card is that it will save you a lot of time and money. When we are travelling the worst thing we can do is waste our time waiting, this is because we have paid a lot of money for the trip and if we are wasting our time then the loss is only ours and nobody else’s.

Following are the salient features of getting the Istanbul Welcome Card:

1- FAST TRACK ENTRY TO 12 MUSEUMS

With the purchase of Istanbul Welcome Card, you will get Fast Track entry to 12 Museums, which means you will not have to wait in lines to enter the Museums. You will be given Fast Track entry that will save you hours of your time. Your Istanbul Welcome Card will give you Fast Track (Skip the Line) entry to following 12 Museums:

  1. Hagia Sophia Museum
  2. Topkapi Palace
  3. Harem
  4. Chora Museum
  5. Fethiye Museum
  6. Galata Mevlevi House
  7. Hagia Irene
  8. Istanbul Archaeological Museums
  9. Istanbul Mosaic Museum
  10. Museum for the History of Science and Technology in Islam
  11. Museum of Turkish and Islamic Arts
  12. Rumeli Hisar Museum


2- GUIDED TOURS WITH PROFESSIONAL GUIDES

You will also get the benefit of getting 3 guided tours with professional guides:

HAGIA SOPHIA

You will be able to enjoy an hour long tour of Hagia Sophia with professional tour guide. Tour operates daily. You can avail the tour any day except on Mondays at 10am and 2pm.


Hagia Sophia Istanbul Turkey
Hagia Sophia at night


Related: How to Book HAGIA SOPHIA Skip the Line Guided Tour


TOPKAPI PALACE

You will be able to enjoy a 90 minutes tour of Topkapi Palace with a professional tour guide. This tour also operates daily. You can avail the tour any day except on Tuesdays at 11:30am and 3:30pm.


Topkapi Palace - Istanbul Welcome Card
Topkapi Palace

BASILICA CISTERN

You will be able to enjoy a 30 minutes tour of Basilica Cistern with a professional tour guide.


Basilica Cistern
Basilica Cistern

3- ENJOY A CRUISE RIDE ON BOSPHORUS CRUISE

With Istanbul Welcome Card, you will also get a 90 minute ride on a Bosphorus Cruise. You can enjoy the famous Bosphorus Bridge and the breathtaking views from the cruise ship. You will also be able to see several famous and historically significant monuments along the way.

The Bosphorus Cruise operates daily every hour from 10am to 5pm. Plan your trip accordingly to make the most out of your 90 minute ride.


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4- PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION TICKETS

Not only you will get the Fast Track entry to 12 Museums and a Bosphorus Cruise ride but you will also get 10 public transportation tickets that you can use at your own disposal. From Metro to Buses, you can use any mode of public transportation on these tickets.

5- FREE CANCELLATION OPTION

Perhaps the biggest peace of mind for any transaction you do is the option of Free Cancellation. This tour if booked through this website has the option of Free Cancellation but only if cancelled 24 hours before the activity starts. You will know the exact date till which you can cancel in your booking details.

If due to any reason you want to cancel the booking, then you can do so easily and all your money will be refunded as long as the booking was cancelled 24 hours before the activity starts.

6- MAKES THE TRIP HASSLE FREE AND SAVES TIME AND MONEY

Istanbul Welcome Card not only will save your time and money but will also make your tour hassle free. You can take the tour at your own leisure time.

You will also get discounts at various top sights, attractions and activities across Istanbul.


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7- COVID-19 PRECAUTIONS

Travel Industry has perhaps suffered the most from COVID-19. For Travel industry to return to some sort of normalcy, COVID-19 precautions have to be taken to the maximum. Same is the case here. All Museums and activities that you will access through the use of Istanbul Welcome Card will have following traveler requirements and precautions:

  • Tourists will have to bring their own Masks. Wearing a mask is mandatory for entry into any museum.
  • For listening to Audio Guides on your phones, you will have to bring your own headphones.
  • All customer touch points will be regularly cleaned and disinfected frequently.
  • Number of Tourists have been reduced in order to maintain social distancing.

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CONCLUSION

In a nutshell, Istanbul Welcome Card is a tool that will enable you to enjoy your trip to Istanbul to the maximum. The Card is easy to use and will save you time and money. If you are a museum person then Istanbul Welcome Card is a must!

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