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Monday, 14 June 2010

British nationals' passports to take a European break

The British Consulate General in Istanbul has announced that it will no longer issue passports in Turkey.

British nationals living in Turkey will now need to send their applications to Dusseldorf.

Director of Consular Services in Turkey Susan Wilson said the changes were made to prevent fraud and cut costs.

Wilson claims the service will be more efficient, as Dusseldorf issues around 20,000 passports a year compared to Istanbul’s 1500. Whether the service becomes ‘streamlined’ as Wilson claims it will remains to be seen. Sending the passports to Dusseldorf is likely to take longer – up to six weeks compared to Istanbul’s two to three.

She added that the consulate will continue to issue emergency travel documents. 



British nationals visiting Turkey increased by 12 per cent last year despite the economic crisis. This year, that number is expected to rise by 25 per cent.

“The number of British nationals coming here is 100 percent higher than seven years ago,” she said. She added that when Brits plan their budget, holidays are often the last thing to be sacrificed. 

“They might give up many things, but not holidays,” she said.
They’re also buying Turkish property in large numbers. Around 30,000 Brits own property in Turkey, with around 20,000 living there at any one time.

Popular places to buy property are Fethiye, Marmaris, Bodrum and Antalya.

“Most of them are older couples who have retired. They like the warm weather and the atmosphere here,” Wilson said.

From June 15, British nationals living in Turkey will need to courier their applications to:

Passport Section
British Consulate General
Yorck Strasse 19
40476 Düsseldorf, Germany
For more information see the British Embassy website.

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