No travel planning is complete without a budget analysis of how much the trip will actually cost you. This list is based on the three day itinerary for Istanbul that you can find here. The prices provided here are from 2015 and are subject to change depending on the time you wish to travel on, so there is a field for buffer cash i.e. an amount that you should take just in case the prices have risen or exchange rate is less in your favor. I hope this provides you with a basic idea of how much cash or credit amount you need to travel with. One more point to add here is that most places in Istanbul take credit cards so if you wish to travel light on cash, you can definitely rely on your card.

The overall budget stated here is in Rupees as well as TL for your convenience.

Prices are reflective of costs for one person only. Though honeymoon rooms are for two persons.

Before you arrive in Istanbul:

  • Return ticket to Istanbul from Islamabad/Lahore: ~ Rs. 80,000 (contingent on season and how early you book)

Return ticket to Istanbul from Karachi: ~ Rs. 50,000 (if booked in advance) – Rs. 80,000              (last minute/peak season flight)

Best option for airline: Turkish Airlines – offers cheapest fare usually and also a direct flight. Plus the service is great and the food is Halal! So yay!

  • Decent honeymoon Hotel: Rs. 10-12000 per night
  • Hostel for backpackers: Rs. 1000-1500 per night
  • Decent hotel for backpackers: Rs. 3500-5000 per night

Once in Istanbul:

Day 1:

  • Taxi from airport to Sultanahmet: 50 TL

Taxi from airport to Taksim: 30 TL

  • Hagia Sophia: 30 TL
  • Galata Tower: 20 TL
  • Tram: 8 TL for Akbil Pass (allows you to use Tram all day on one pass)
  • Food: 60 TL (very decent but not high end food)
  • Water: 1 TL per bottle
  • Turkish Tea: 5 TL
  • Turkish Hookah (Nargile): 25 TL

Day 2:

  • Topkapi Palace: Minimum 30 and maximum 45 TL (30 TL for Museum and 15 TL for Haram which you can choose not to view)
  • Basilica Cistern: 30 TL
  • Lunch: 60 TL
  • Water: 1 TL per bottle

Day 3:

  • Princes’ Island ferry: 12 TL (6 TL one way)
  • Bike rental: 40 TL for two hours
  • Food: 60 TL
  • Water: 1 TL per bottle
  • Clubbing: 50 TL (for a high end club) – 20 TL (for an average club)

Buffer:

100 TL

Overall budget for one person in Istanbul: ~ 650 TL or Rs. 23000

Overall travel budget for one person to Istanbul (including air and hotel fare: ~ Rs. 120,000

This budget excludes all shopping expenses that you might have on souvenirs and gifts, etc.

As you can see, a three day trip to Istanbul isn’t very costly if you exclude the ticket and hotel. Being smart with regards to those two chunky expenses, such as booking much in advance and finding discounted deals can make your overall budget go down tremendously.

For information on why you must see some of the sites listed above, read here.

If this budget isn’t inspiring enough for you to plan a travel to Istanbul, then maybe these reasons to visit the city might inspire you.

For some basic information such as visa requirements for Istanbul, read here.

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