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5 Ways to get a PCR Test in Istanbul as a foreigner: Booking & Cost

5 Ways to get a PCR test in Istanbul

This is our complete guide to PCR test for foreigners in Istanbul, at the best price.

Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, most countries require passengers returning from Turkey to present a negative COVID-19 PCR test result before departure.

In this guide, we answer the most frequently asked questions about PCR testing in Istanbul and provide useful tips as a foreigner, so that you can enjoy your stay in Istanbul and have a stress-free flight home.

In this article, we also give you our 2 favorite recommendations that provide secure PCR Tests in the laboratory in Taksim district, Sultanahmet district or at your hotel/home, at the BEST price in Istanbul and surroundings, thanks to our 5% discount !

Perform your PCR, Antibody, or Antigen test in the lab, or better yet, have the lab come to your hotel, home or Airbnb. 

Find more information below!

Where to do the PCR Test in Istanbul?

1. Certified Labs in Istanbul (recommended)

PCR Test Lab Istanbul

Advantages: 

  • No crowds: Unlike hospitals, laboratories do not have patients or visitors who coming to the hospital for daily visits, so it is safer and there are no waiting times.
  • Multilingual staff: The staff in the laboratories usually speaks English. So there are no language barriers.
  • English test result: The test result is in English and Turkish
  • Fast: At most labs, you get the results within a few hours. Some even offer same day results, if you take the test within a specific time frame.
  • Optional: Some labs, like the one we recommend, offer the service of coming to your hotel and performing the test there.

Disadvantages:

  • Certification: Before making an appointment, make sure the lab is certified by the Turkish Ministry of Health, as in our recommendation below:
  • PCR Test Cost: Reduced price with a 5% discount through our link.
  • PCR Test Result Time: Same day test result within a few hours. Only tests after 5:00 pm will get the results the next day.
  • Hours:  Cihangir lab is open daily between 8:30 am - 5:30 pm

To book your test online, please check our offers and get a 5% discount through our links :

2. PCR Test at your hotel, home or Airbnb in Istanbul (recommended)

covid-19-pcr-test-in-istanbul-hotel-

Advantages: 

  • Easy & stress-free: This is the easiest and most stress-free way to have a PCR test, in the convenience of your own accommodation.
  • Safe & convenient: Since the lab comes to your home and you do not have to go to a hospital, this is the safest and most convenient way to have a PCR test done.
  • Save time: You don’t have to spend your precious time waiting in lines or searching for a hospital/ testing center nearby. Taking the test by the professional staff at your hotel/home takes only couple minutes, and you can continue sightseeing. 

Disadvantages:

  • Price/ Extra Fees: Some laboratories charge an extra fee for the service. 
  • Certification: Make sure the lab that send their medical staff to your hotel/home is certified by the Turkish Ministry of Health, as in our recommendation below:
  • PCR Test Cost: Reduced price with a 5% discount through our link.
  • PCR Test Result Time: Same day test result within a few hours. Only tests after 5:00 pm will get the results the next day.
  • Hours:  The test will take place between 8:30 am and 5 pm. The laboratory will inform you about the exact time 1 day before your PCR Test.

To book your test online, please check our offers and get a 5% discount through our links :

3. Istanbul Airport PCR Test

PCR Test in Airport

If your hotel, home or Airbnb is not in Sultanahmet area, you can take advantage of the optional Cihangir laboratory service mentioned above. They will send you their lab staff to any other part of Istanbul for a service fee. 

Just click the appropriate button in the “Want to do the PCR test in my Hotel or Home?” section on the booking website of our partner Istanbul Welcome Card.

PCR Test in Istanbul Airport or Sabiha Gökcen Airport

  • Long Process: To get tested at the airport's testing center, you will need to wait in several lines and complete the following steps:
  • First, you will first need to get a queue number and pay the testing fee of 250 TL. 
  • After that, you have to register at the counter, where you will be given a barcode. 
  • Finally, to perform the PCR test, you will need to wait in line again to enter the testing cabin. 
  • Waiting time: Both airport test centers are very busy. As you will have to wait in several queues, long waiting times are to be expected. Those wishing to have the PCR test performed at the airport are therefore strongly advised to arrive as early as possible, but at least 6 hours before departure. Be sure to plan enough time for the PCR test, the test result and check-in.
  • Risk: If you do not allow enough time or take your PCR test late for other reasons, such as traffic congestion, but must present a negative PCR test to fly to your home country, you run the risk of missing your flight.

General Information:  

  • PCR Test Cost:  The price of PCR test in Istanbul airports is 250 TL. It is possible to pay cash or by credit card.
  • PCR Test Result Time: On average, it takes 2.5 to 4 hours to obtain the results of the PCR test. You can have your results printed out at the Covid-19 test center/ information desk on site by submitting your barcode. Turkish citizens can access their results at enabiz.gov.tr.
  • Hours:  PCR testing is available 24/7 at Istanbul and Sabiha Gökcen Airport.

Need an airport transfer? See here are all airport transfer options and book your hassle-free transfer now with a discount of -5% through our link!

4. State Hospitals in Istanbul

PCR Test State Hospital Istanbul

The COVID-19 antigen PCR test is performed in state hospitals in Istanbul. However, we do not recommend PCR testing in public hospitals because you are likely to face the following disadvantages:

Disadvantages:

  • Waiting Time: Performing the PCR test at public hospitals is the most commonly chosen option by locals. For this reason, you should expect a long waiting time of at least 1-2 hours. 
  • Test Result: Compared to the other PCR testing options, you will have to wait a rather long time to get your PCR test result.
  • Language: In state hospitals, it can be a problem to find nurses and other healthcare workers who are able to communicate clearly in English. In many cases, they speak no or only poor English.

General Information:  

  • PCR Test Cost:  The fee per PCR test is 250 TL in state hospitals.
  • PCR Test Result Time: Within 24 hours
  • Hours: PCR testing in state hospitals is available 24/7

5. Private Hospitals in Istanbul

PCR Test Private Hospital Istanbul

Advantages: 

  • Save Time: In private clinics, there are no or only short waiting times. This means you can get your PCR test done quickly instead of waiting in long lines
  • Appointment: Private hospitals provide the option of making an appointment in advance. This completely eliminates any possible waiting time.
  • Communication: Communicating with the staff should be no problem at private hospitals.  For the most part, the staff speaks English, and in some cases they also speak other languages like German or Russian.

Disadvantages:

  • Price/ Extra Fees: While many private clinics take the standard price of 250 TL for performing the PCR test, there are also hospitals that demand higher prices for benefits, such as no waiting time or faster results. It is wise to ask in advance.

General Information:  

  • PCR Test Cost:  Basic price is 250 TL, but several private hospitals charge higher prices/ extra fees up to 750 TL for benefits.
  • PCR Test Result Time: Within a few hours
  • Hours: PCR testing in private hospitals is available 24/7

FAQ of PCR Tests in Istanbul

Where to do PCR test in Istanbul?

You can take your PCR test either in a public hospital in Istanbul, in a private hospital, in a laboratory or convenient at your hotel/ home or Airbnb. Latter is the most recommended option, as it is the safest and most hassle-free way to get a PCR test in Istanbul. If your hotel, home or Airbnb is around Sultanahmet area, we recommend you the certified BurGen laboratory. Through our link you can benefit from a reduced price with a discount of 5%.

Another great option is getting tested at the approved and certified Cihangir laboratory, located 2 minutes from Taksim Square. Using our link you can benefit from a reduced price with a discount of 5%.

How much does a PCR test cost in Istanbul?

The standard price for a PCR test in Istanbul is 250 TL. This is the fixed price in all state hospitals and airports in Istanbul. 

However, there are some private hospitals, laboratories or providers who charge higher prices due to benefits, such as no waiting time, faster results or if they send their medical staff to your accommodation. We recommend that you check the price before making an appointment.

Can I do PCR test in Istanbul Airport?

Yes, there is a Covid-19 Test Center on the arrival floor of Istanbul Airport (exit gate number 14).

How much is a PCR test in Istanbul Airport?

The fee for a PCR test in Istanbul Airport is 250 TL.

Bottom Line

Considering the limited capacity at the airport and state hospitals, which cause very long waiting times, we do not recommend performing the PCR test there.

At the same price, you can get a private service, in your language, and with an easier process at a certified lab in Istanbul.

The easiest, safest and most stress-free option is to get tested directly at your hotel/ home, which is why it is our favorite.

Feel free to ask us more questions and to consult our other articles for more help for your journey in Istanbul.

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