|Popular in||December||High demand for flights, 1% potential price rise|
|Cheapest in||November||Best time to find cheap flights, 3% potential price drop|
|Average price||C$ 1,529||Average for round-trip flights in December 2020|
|Round-trip from||C$ 645||From Toronto to Istanbul|
|One-way from||C$ 358||One-way flight from Toronto to Istanbul|
Istanbul is one of the greatest historic cities in the world and it’s no wonder. The city straddles Europe and Asia making it as diverse as any capital city can be, while adding a bit of adventure for travellers booking flights to Istanbul. Istanbul is as Turkey’s main seaport and financial center. As one of the most popular destinations in the world, cheap flights to Istanbul can always be found. Whether you plan on touring the European side or the Middle Eastern side of the city, Istanbul won’t disappoint.
For visitors wanting to take a step back in time, visit Istanbul’s Old City and stroll through the historic area. Roman amphitheaters and artifacts decorate the streets, and ancient relics from the Byzantine Empire are everywhere. Today, Istanbul is home to more than 14 million people. Take a window seat on your flight to Istanbul and view the skyline from 35,000 feet – it’s one of the most breathtaking views of the city’s domed cathedrals and Islamic mosques.
Flights from Canada to Istanbul, Turkey range from about 12-30h. If you’re travelling from as far west as Vancouver, expect your flight to be on the longer side of the spectrum, while those departing from as far east as Montreal may expect shorter flight times. Other factors that can affect your flight to Istanbul include the time of year, the number of layovers, and the length of each layover.
Unfortunately, there are no direct flights from Canada to Istanbul. However, there are ways to limit the length of your flight. First, consider the most popular airlines flying to Istanbul, which are Emirates, KLM, Lufthansa, and Air France.
Next, consider the closest major airport to you, as these are most likely to connect with these other airlines. If you live in Ontario, booking a flight out of Toronto Pearson will help you book a quicker flight, while if you like in Ottawa, a flight out of Montreal-Pierre Elliott Trudeau will likely be the fastest option for your trip to Istanbul.
Istanbul is home to a total of three international airports – Ataturk, Sabiha Gokcen, and Istanbul New Airport, brand new and one of the world’s largest. Most international flights will currently alight in Ataturk Airport, on the European side of the city, which is 20km from centre city. There are several ways to reach centre city from Ataturk. Taking a taxi will only cost you about C$16 but takes about 45 minutes, depending on the time of day. Istanbul’s metro rail will take you from the airport to centre city, but a transfer is necessary en route. This is another thrifty option at about only C$1, with a journey that will last roughly 40 minutes. There is also a bus operated by a private company that will take you into the heart of Istanbul from the airport. It only costs about C$3.50 one way and will take about 40 minutes to complete your journey.
Istanbul, Turkey has always been a crossroads for different civilisations, making it a fascinating place to visit.
Formerly a church and a mosque, Hagia Sophia is one of the most breathtaking buildings in the world and currently serves as a museum, the perfect spot for exploring Ottoman Empire artifacts. At Grand Bazaar, visitors can traverse street after street of shops, cafes, Mosques, and hammams (traditional Turkish baths) – all in one afternoon. Any walk through the Old City will allow you to encounter numerous sites – including Galata Tower and Galata Bridge, and The Bay of Istanbul, all offering superb vistas.
Yes, Canadian residents flying to Istanbul on a Canadian passport also need a visa to enter Turkey. You can easily do so by applying for an electronic E-visa less than 60 days before your intended entry date. The fees are about C$148 with tax for each person.
Winters in Istanbul, though very snowy, aren’t as chilly as one would assume – the temperatures rarely fall below freezing. Summertime in Istanbul is steamy and humid, with average high temperatures of 28 Celsius, driving the inhabitants out of the city to beat the heat.
With snowy, scenic winters and sultry summers, Istanbul is a desirable destination for every season.
Peak Season: The sunshine of summertime may have Istanbul residents heading out of town and to the waterfront, but it’s also the most popular time for tourists to visit the city. Cheap flights to Istanbul are difficult to come by from June until the beginning of October. If you’re planning a trip to Istanbul during peak season, it’s wise to book Istanbul flights and accommodations well in advance.
Off-peak Season: Flights to Istanbul from November through the end of February are far less crowded than the planes landing at Ataturk or Sabiha during the summertime. It’s easy to find cheap flights to Istanbul during the off-season, but cold and blustery weather conditions might wreak havoc on your ideal travel plans.
There are a lot of transportation options in Istanbul, but the best way to explore is on foot. If walking isn’t your thing, you can always get a rechargeable Akbil transit pass, which you can buy at special kiosks and offers discounted fares on the local buses, trams, metro lines and ferries. Ferries and catamarans will provide great views as you float along the Golden Horn or cruise up the Bosporus. Buses go all over the city, but are usually slow and crowded. Take note that you need to buy bus tickets from ticket stands before boarding. The metro is a good way to avoid traffic jams, and trams provide some great views of the city. Like many cities, public transportation is crowded during rush hour. Ride in comfort by hailing a dolmus (shared minibus taxi) along its route, or picking it up at a dolmus stand. These shared minibuses cost less than regular taxis. When you board you should always give the driver your destination and ask what the cost will be. If you have your hotel call for a private yellow taxi, make sure the metre is running before you leave.