Study in Turkey #3: How to get student residence permit?


Hey guys!
As every year (or even every few months) some changes are made regarding the residence permit procedures, I would like to advice you to check the web page of Göç Idaresi Müdürlüğü (Directorate of Migration Management), where you can get all the infomation. 
Since the procedure of getting your residence permit (ikamet) can be quite long and stressfull, I hope this post will help you reduce some of the stress or at least prepare you for it. The main difference this year is, that the applications for extension of ikamet are no longer made via post (this was possible only last year), but again in person. So you have to take an online appointment. Don’t forget that there might be difference in procedures among countries of origin. For example, the residents of Serbia and Montenegro cannot apply for renewal of ikamet, but only for the ”First application”. In case you’ve changed your passport, there might also be special requirements.

Every year there might be some small changes in the system or some extra documents needed for obtaining students’ and other types of residence permits. This year’s change happend in late May and since than, all the procedures regarding the foreigners which were carried by the police, are now carried by the Ministry of Interrior Directorate General of Migration Management.
Applications are made online. There you can also find more info about which documents you need. The fee for residence permit varies according to country, but there is an administrative fee of 50TL.
This is the official page, where you can also apply for your #ikamet.

UPDATED 15/09/2014

When writing this blog post I had in mind especially all those ”new” foreign students in Turkey. Since I study in Istanbul, this blog post will be especially helpful for all the foreing students in Istanbul, however the process of getting the residence permit should be same all over Turkey.

Especially those of you, who came to Turkey with Turkiye burslari probably already got single entry student visa for Turkey. Here I must say, that residence permit and visa are two different things. Visa can be tourist one or student one. Generally Turkish embassies abroad give foreign students the single entry student visa, which means that until you don’t get student residence permit you cannot leave Turkey – or better said, you cannot enter Turkey again. Student residence permit is usually valid until the end of academic year or until the end of Turkish language course – the finish date is usually written on the student certificate (öğrenci belgesi). Once you get student residence permit, also called ikamet in Turkish (I bet you will learn this Tukish word quickly ;), you can leave and enter Turkey how many times you want.

Where and how can I apply for ikamet?

I advice you that you ask for appointement online. On the day of your appointment, you will have to go to the Göç Idaresi Müdürlüğü (Directorate of Migration Management).  In Istanbul, the office  is located in Fatih, next to the main police stationcalled ”Emniyet” It’s huge building- you cannot miss it once you are there. It’s easy reachable by metro line which goes to/from Aksaray. Go off the metro at the stop EMNIYET/FATIH.
The full address is:

İstanbul İl Emniyet Müdürlüğü Fatih Vatan Caddesi Hizmet Binası A Blok Kat:1


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But before going there personally, you need to get appointement online. It is very quick, but due to many foreigners in Turkey, all the available dates are full quickly. When applying for appointement online, you must choose one of the following options (only when applying for the first time):

As I’ve heard, they are publishing new appointment dates every day in the mornings, around 8 am. So you need to wait in front of your computer to get it. You can get an appointement also from your home country, few days before going to Turkey.

If you cannot get appointement online, you can go directly to Fatih and get one. But you must be ready to wait there for hours (except if you are lucky!).

Which documents I need to get ikamet?

On the day of appointement you will need to bring with you the following documents:
  • passport
  • copy of first passport page (the one with your photo and personal information)
  • copy of passport page with visa (you need to do the copy of this page after arriving to Turkey, becasue they want to see when you entered to Turkey for the last time)
  • 4 photos (for documents)
  • student certificates (it has to be new, not more than a week old)
  • ikamet beyanname forumu (this is actually a document you will need to print, when you will get your appointement online) +  document where you live (you can get it at student dormitory, or if you live in a flat you need a contract written on your name)
  • Health insurance (even if if your scholarship covers it, you need to proove it – I had an document from ilçe SGK office and it was sufficient)
New ikamet card
The documents above are only valid for student ikamet/residence permit. It is also good to bring with you both students certificates (university one and the one you got at the Turkish language center) and also the scholarship agreement.

FEES: You will need to pay a fee (approximately 50 tl).

You must also know, your dormitory’s/flat’s address, since they will send your ikamet there. You will get your residence permit 4-5 weeks after appointement. It can take even longer! So it’s not a good idea to plan some holidays abroad during this period.
For example- to get my ikamet, it took almost 4 months! I came to Turkey at the end of September, I reserved my appointement in the first week of  October. It was really crowded in Istanbul, so I got appointement in the first half of December! I finally got my ikamet book in January!
When you finally get your ikamet, take good care of it and always have it with you (as well as your passport).
I hope this blog post is helpful! If you have more questions, please write a comment to this post.

All students which are without scholarship which covers their health insurance, should read also this information (PUBLISHED AT TURKIYE BURSLARI Facebook page):


Important Announcement About Universal Health Insurance For International Students.

Pursuant to the amendment made on paragraph 7 of Article 60 of the Law No. 5510 in accordance with the Law No. 6486, all international students studying in our country, as of 29/05/2013, shall be registered as universal health insurance holders provided that they submit a written application to Social Security Provincial Directorates/ Social Security Centers within three months following their enrollment at school.

In case the international students who enrolled at school for the first time after 29/05/2013 submit a written application and student certificate indicating the first enrollment date to the Social Security Provincial Directorate/ Social Security Center in the place of their school within three months following the first enrollment date, they shall be covered in one-year universal health insurance as of the day following the submission date of written application. The international students, who are registered as universal health insurance holders by this procedure are required to pay universal health insurance premium calculated over thirty – day amount of one thirds of lower limit of daily earning subject to premium determined in accordance with Article 82 of the Law (This amount is 45.36 TL per month for 01/07/2014 – 31/12/2014).

On the other hand, the universal health insurance of international students, who were registered under the current Laws, shall be terminated for the reasons determined in this Law.

In case the international students do not submit a written application to our Institution for universal health insurance within three months following their enrollment at school, they cannot be registered under universal health insurance during their study.

Accordingly, the international students who would like to have universal health insurance are required to submit a written application to our Institution within three months following their enrollment at school.

Respectfully announced to the public.
Türkiye Scholarships Team.

Published by spelayla

Welcome! My name is Špela. I love to travel, read and learn. And of course, share all these experiences.

38 thoughts on “Study in Turkey #3: How to get student residence permit?

  1. I'll be studying in Ankara. Thank you for the information and the link.

    Just some clarification, so the Turkish Language Center will issue me with the student certificate (öğrenci belgesi), on arrival, that isn't more than a week old? Or where do I get this student certificate?

    So it's advisable to get this student certificate after you have booked for an appointment at the police office to make sure it isn't more than a week old?

    The website is in Turkish. I'm not yet fluent. I would like to book for an appointment before I leave my home country.


  2. You will get student certificate at the Turkish language center and at university when you register there. If your appointement will be more than 7 days after registration, you will need to get new student certificates (every student certificate has its issute date on it).

    Get one student certificate right away, because you will need it to get student bus card, dormitory registration, acess to the camputs, etc.

    Don't worry- you can click to e-randevu, after this you can choose the language.


  3. Thank you very much as always.

    In order to get the student certificate I'll need to have my documents translated to Turkish first. It seems I'll be running around as soon as I arrive.

    You mean I will not be allowed to sleep in the dormitory if I don't have the student certificate? Surely even the first night?


  4. I think that Language center doesn't need any translated documents, but yes, for university you will probably need.

    Don't worry, you will be able to sleep in dormitory because they'll have the list of all who received scholarship.


  5. Hi, Spelaya! Very useful posts for those who are going to Turkey with the scholarships and have a lot of questions, like me.

    How hard is it to learn Turkish? I will course a Masters degree in social sciences in Turkish and I want to know if one year is ok to understand it easily. The two opportunities that I had to speak in english with people from the scholarships (the interview and once i called the callcenter) were very difficult to understand.

    Also, have you been in Izmir? Is it cheaper or more expensive than Istambul? I am very excited about the experience.

    Thanks in advance. 🙂


  6. Thanks alot as always 🙂
    In the e-randevu of Istanbul emniyet müdürlügü Which case should we select at unit selection to get an appointement in the Emniyet office you indicated ?


  7. Hi!
    Thank you! I'm glad to hear that is helpful!
    About Turkish: it really depends on you- which is your mother language and how fast you learn foreign languages…and also if you attend classes frequently and if you study. For sure it will be easier, because you will live in Turkey and you will have to speak Turkish everyday. Probably your first semester at university it can be little difficult, but not impossible. Don't be affraid 🙂

    I've been in Izmir, but just as tourist so I cannot say if it's cheap or expensive, but I guess that every city in Turkey is cheaper than Istanbul.


  8. There is only one choice with Fatih but it is written “Fatih Ilce Emniyet Müdürlüğü” there is no “IL” all choices are marked with “Ilce” except 2 ;
    1- Yabancılar Şube Müdürlüğü (VATAN)
    2- Yabancılar Şube Müdürlüğü (VATAN – GİRİŞ KAT)


  9. any updates regarding the documents I need to have at the foreigners department? or they are the same as the last year?


  10. I'm not sure about the price this year, but I think it's 100 tl. When scholarship team will send you leaflet with information, the price will be stated there. Anyway, you pay this tax at the time you'll have appointement, so they will tell u.


  11. Hi,

    Why is it that Fridays are the only days that are available when I'm trying to book for an appointment for the residence permit? All the other days are booked. Is it okay if I book my appointment on a Friday?

    What is the disadvantage of booking a Friday appointment? Friday doesn't look popular so it seems it wouldn't be wise to book for mine on a Friday

    Kindly advice.


  12. I'd also appreciate if you could also advice me on the best time for booking an appointment considering i'll be going for my Turkish language course classes.

    Or what time are the language classes? From what time to what time? This will help me when booking for an appointment


  13. There are now good or bad days. Just apply on the day you get. Soon many foreign students will come, so it will get crowded.
    Turkish classes are in the mornings or afternoons, depends which group you get.


  14. Thank you for the prompt feedback.

    One more question: When booking for an appointment, there are two options when selecting the type of residence permit, for students. There is:

    2.Ogrenci Ikamet Izni 2

    Which of the two should I select? The first option has so many days available for one to book an appointment (even up to December) but the second option only has two days available (11.09.2014 and 12.09.2014)


  15. Hi spelayla,

    I'm in Turkey now, your information has been a savior for me 🙂

    I just wanted to ask about the insurance , you mentioned SGK ilce what is that and wher is it?

    Can you provide me with the address.

    Thanks again for all your help.


  16. Hoşgeldin!

    If you are Turkiye burslari student, they will arrange SGK for you (this is short for health insurance here in Turkey). I think they arranged it for us after we got ikamet or even few months later. Anyway, if you'll go to appointment for visa, maybe take acceptance letter with you (or a paper where it's written that scholarship will cover your health insurance). This rule is new this year, so everyone is little confused. This week I was renovating my ikamet and one policeman wanted my SGK paper and other you never know.
    In short, if you are Scholarship student, you don't need to arrange your special insurance, because they will do it for you. But when you'll go to Vatan they might want some extra document for you.

    btw- ilçe is dictrict not main…since you will apply for ikamet for the first time, you need to go to Vatan, not ilçe 😉


  17. Hey, how do I get to this ilçe SGK place . I need to get the health insurance letter. My appointment is around the corner. Thanx in advance.


  18. Hey!
    This depends on where you live…just search it in google, however if you don't have insurance SGK office cannot help you. If you are new Turkiye burslari student, than you don't need it.


  19. Hey, thanx for the reply. I live in Atasehir, Istanbul. In yo post you wrote “…..Health insurance (even if if your scholarship covers it, you need to proove it – I had an document from ilçe SGK office and it was sufficient)”. I am in the same situation and thats why I also wanted to get this document that you took with you for yo appointment. I am a new Turkiye burslari student.


  20. Hi!
    So if you already had an SGK insurance in your past or u still have one than search in google atasehir ilçe sgk and you'll see where it is. If you just came to Turkey and this will be the first time to apply for ikamet, than you can take with you just a document that confirms that you are YTB student and that they will cover your health insurance.


  21. Salam! I got the email saying i got accepted to business Adm. but if they didn't mention whether its in english or turkish, does that mean that i'll study the major in turkish??


  22. Hi
    I've got my letter of acceptance and where I'll be studying, but i don't have any idea about the steps I'll follow after arrive, how to register in the uni or in the tomer institute or in the accommodation or what's the require documents?
    can tell me about that and how to do it?

    thank you for your help ^_^


  23. Hey!
    I think that you will get a short guide in a few weeks. Anyway, registration at Turkish language school is pretty easy, you will need only a passport (and a copy) and acceptance letter.
    For university you will need translated documents (university or high school graduation paper), passports, etc.

    For sure you will receive some more news about the documents from the Scholarship team.

    I only advice you to bring many photos with you, because for registering at uni and for other formal processes you will need some. And copies of your passport and letters of acceptance.


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