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This article is just a small guide about how to find a cheap accommodation when you are travelling in Turkey. Mostly foreign tourists are using travel agency services and hotel price is included to the full cost of the tour. But if you are individual traveler and have no special requirements for comfort you can save a lot of money with our tips.
1. Find cheap hotels using special internet resources
I can recomment you two online services to find and book cheap hotels in Turkey: Booking.com and Etstur.com.
It’s a famous travel fare aggregator website which provides a good service for lodging reservations. In March 2017 Booking.com activities in Turkey were halted by a Turkish court because of violation of local competition law. But it still contains a big database of Turkish hotels mostly in the Western part of this country.
There is no problem for lodging reservations when you are outside of Turkey. But if you have already arrived in Turkey you should use proxy or VPN services for Booking.com. For example Opera internet browser with built-in VPN.
It’s biggest Turkish website for booking hotel rooms online. Etstur.com has a biggest database of hotels in Turkey and provides some special promotions. It has two big differences from Booking.com:
- Mostly you need to pay online when making your reservation. Foreign bank cards are accepted.
- This website has only Turkish interface. If you are not fluent in Turkish you can use Google Chrome web browser with in-build translation service.
2. Find hotels when you come to the place
Turkish people are really adherents of traditions and do not take technical innovations seriously. For example there are a lot of hotels on Van city but you can find only a few of them using websites like Booking.com and Etstur.com.
If you have enough time and didn’t have big luggage you can go and check rooms availability and price in several hotels. You can even bargain to get the best price of the room. How to find hotels? Use Google Maps or just ask locals.
It’s most famous online service for renting different types of short-term lodging. Also it’s very popular in Turkey and useful when you are interesting in communication with local people. There is an example for Van city below: private room with 2 beds with “Superhost” status just for 79 TL.
It’s a popular social networking and hospitality service which can help you to find a place to stay for free. Couchsurfing very popular in Turkey and it’s not hard to search accommodations in big cities using it. But you should plan your trip and ask host owners beforehand.
5. Special Turkish Facebook groups for travellers
There are several closed Facebook groups for Turkey which provide service like Couchsurfing to find accommodation for free. But search time is minimal and you can ask for host even on the day of arrival. Also you don’t need to pay for “Verified” status.
To become a member of this groups you need to fill special form in Turkish and send request and/or get an invite from member. Examples: