Lavanta swimming

Living in Kalkan

Kalkan Living

Living in Kalkan

Buying a property for residential use

Low property prices, living costs that are considerably less than many other countries and a wonderful climate are the fundamentals that bring so many people to the Turkish Mediterranean to settle.

As an expat in Turkey, you’ll witness a modern country rich in heritage and tradition. Understanding the intricacies of everyday life in Turkey might take some time though, and so here, we provide a valuable resource of information to answer the questions you will have about the practical aspects for moving here, and also to paint a picture of Kalkan life.


A residence visa permits you to stay in the country for a period of between 1 and 5 years, depending on the duration of visa applied for and granted.A tourist visa, which is issued at entry at your arrival airport allows for multiple entry over a period of 90 days, but you must leave the country before the 90 days is up, and your maximum stay must not exceed 90 days in a 180 day period. 

How do I apply for a Turkish residents visa?

The Turkish government have agreed new legislations with regard to Residency visas. This new law will become effectve on the 10th April 2014, and as the full detail emerges, we will update this section. For the time being, all applications prior to the 10th April 2014 will be dealt with under the current law.

The foreigners department of the regional police office in the area in which you live are responsible for processing visa applications.

The following documents are required to support your application;

  • Your passport and passport copies
  • Your property title deed (a copy will do) or if you are entering into a rental agreement, a copy of a notarised rental agreement for the duration of the period you are making a visa application for.
  • Four colour passport photos
  • Proof that you have sufficient financial resources to support yourself for the duration of the period your visa application is made for.
  • The visa fee. The latest information on fees is available on the Turkish Consulate website
  • The completed application form. These are available from the Police staion dealing with your application or from the Turkish Embassy in your home country.
  • A photocopy of the page on your passport showing the last entry and exit stamps into Turkey.

Making the application

You will need to visit the police office and submit your application in person and pay the visa fee. Consider that your application takes between 2 and 3 weeks, and you will need to return to the office to collect your residents visa. It is usual for first applicants to be granted a residents visa duration of between 1 and 3 years, rather than the maximum duration of 5 years. The visa will enable you to bring your possessions into Turkey without paying taxes and import duties, allow you to set up utilities, and register a vehicle in your name. You will no longer have to pay the £10 tourist visa fee on entry into Turkey.

Working in Turkey

To apply for a visa that gives you the right to work in Turkey , you will need to have a job offer or employment contract from a Turkish employer. 

Your application should be made from the country of origin, that is via the Turkish Consulate in London for British nationals, as well as foreign nationals resident in the UK. If you already hold a Turkish residence permit which is valid for at least 6 months, your application can be made from within Turkey. Applications for extension of a given work permit can be made in Turkey if accompanied by a valid residence permit.

The fees for a work permit and subsequent entry clearance are charged once the application is approved. The fees are £321 GBP for British nationals. The Consulate does not withhold the passport during the processing of the application.

The work visa application procedure also involves your prospective Turkish employer making a simultaneous application in Turkey by submitting a file to the the Ministry of Labour and Social Security, Department for Work Permits for Foreigners. There should not be more than 10 working days between the employee's and the employer's applications. Some employers who are experienced in employing foreign staff members  are well informed about this procedure, but others may be unaware. It is worth making sure that before you make your application, that the employer submits the required paperwork at the same time as you.

The documents required from the employers are specified in the web page of the Ministry of Labour and Social Security. The web page is currently available only in Turkish, but can be translated using Google translate. 

The processing time for visa applications is around 2 months. Once approval has been received, the applicant must visit the Turkish Consulate in their home country to have their passport stamped with the work permit. Upon receipt of the approval of the Ministry for a work permit application, the applicant is immediately notified of the result and is required to come to the Consulate again with his passport to get the work visa that is the stamping of the work permit in his passport. If applicants fail to make an appointment with a Turkish consulate within 3 months, the application process must start again. Issuing the work visa itself takes a maximum 3 working days and it can be collected from the consulate, or posted to the applicants address.

Foreigners who enter Turkey on the basis of a work visa are expected to get a residence permit within 30 day's of their entry. Some occupations are banned to foreigners, and a work visa will not be granted for these professions;

  • Diving
  • Maritime navigation
  • Working on ships
  • Extracting wreckage
  • Exportation of fish
  • Other sea creatures
  • Sand and pebbles
  • Mining
  • Working as executive director in travel agencies

Professional occupations;

  • Midwife
  • Dentist
  • Vet
  • Carer
  • Pharmacist
  • Optician
  • Executive director in hospitals
  • Judge
  • Lawyer
  • Prosecutor
  • Security guard
  • Notary


Turkey has a two tier health system, comprising state and private hospitals. Treatment is free in state hospitals, provided you are paying into the state Universal Health Insurance scheme, and in Private hospitals you pay for the treatment received. The Turkish governments health care scheme, referred to as “Universal Health Insurance scheme” (UHI), enables non Turkish nationals access to healthcare, provided they have been permanently resident in Turkey for at least one year, have a resident permit and are not covered by any other social insurance scheme. Eye and dental care are included in the scheme. Pre-exisiting chronic conditions will not be treated under the UHI scheme.

The Universal Health Insurance scheme (UHI) has a number of sub-schemes, but the majority of foreign nationals will need to subscribe the Sosyal Güvenlik Kurumu (SGK).

The UHI scheme cost 230 Turkish Lira (TL) per month in 2013, and is expected to increase with inflation each year. This premium covers a married couple and any dependents under 18 years old. Married people with no dependants and single people are charged the same rate.

Private health insurance is provided by many banks and insurance companies and may be a viable alternative to the government scheme, which is not a condition of residency.

Joining the Government scheme is straight forward, and the local SGK office is in Kas. You will need to take your passport and residence permit (Ikamet), and photocopies. A married couple will also need to take their marriage certificate and a copy that has been translated and notorised.

Hospitals and Doctors

There are state hospitals in Fethiye (one hour from Kalkan) and Kas (25 minutes from Kalkan), and a range of private medical services are available in Fethiye. Several doctors practice in Kalkan itself. Many doctors speak English, and some hospitals have a liason officer to help foreigners with insurance paperwork and any communication problems. There is an ambulance service in Kalkan which is reached by dialling 112.

Bringing Pets into Turkey

To bring your pets into Turkey, you will need to have a "pet passport” that proves all necessary innoculations have been carried out. 

Bringing home contents to Turkey

You can bring your possessions to Turkey. Provided you have documents that prove you own a property (title deed or TAPU) or rent one (a notorised rental agreement is required) and have a residents visa, you can avoid paying import duty and taxes.


Kalkan’s current population is around 4000 inhabitants, and a thriving expat community of predominately British and European permanent residents exist very successfully alongside Turkish nationals. The numbers swell significantly during the summer months when Tourism brings guests from all over the world, although the majority of guests are from the United Kingdom.

The expat community have established clubs to participate in that cover a variety of interests and in general, Kalkan is very open and sociable. The locals are, on the whole, interested in getting to know you and extend their hospitality.

Although, there is no substitute for being able to speak the language of the country in which you reside, English is very widely spoken in Kalkan, and it would be possible to get by with just a few words of Turkish.