Visiting Istanbul and eager to explore the vibrant district of Taksim? In this comprehensive guide, we’ll cover all the essential information and transport options you need to get from Istanbul Airport (IST) to Taksim smoothly and swiftly. We’ll also provide you with valuable tips and suggestions for your return journey to ensure a hassle-free travel experience in this bustling city.

Where is the New Istanbul Airport (IST)?

The New Istanbul Airport, also known as Istanbul Airport (IST), is one of the busiest airports globally and serves as the primary hub for the city of Istanbul. Located 35 kilometers northwest of the city center, it connects millions of passengers to various domestic and international destinations every year. See the location…

How Far is Istanbul Airport (IST) from Taksim?

Istanbul Airport (IST) is approximately 40 kilometers from the Taksim district, one of the most popular tourist destinations in the city.

Layover Tours: The Perfect Solution for Short Stays

If you find yourself with a layover in Istanbul, consider taking a layover tour to maximize your time and explore the city without worrying about transfers and landmarks.

General Tips for a Smooth Journey

To make your transfer from Istanbul Airport to Taksim or vice versa as seamless as possible, consider these helpful tips:

  • Get Turkish Liras – Be sure to have some Turkish lira on hand, as most transportation options do not accept credit cards, foreign currencies, or large Turkish lira notes. Withdraw cash from an ATM at the airport and keep smaller notes (5, 10, 20, or 50) readily available.
  • Get an Istanbul Kart – Purchase an Istanbul Kart at the airport and load sufficient funds for public transportation. This card is not only more affordable but also mandatory for most public transportation lines in the city.
  • Hotel Address – Write down or print your hotel’s exact address and phone number. Istanbul is a vast city with countless hotels, so having this information handy will make it easier to ask for directions or communicate with taxi drivers.
  • Plan Your Trip or Book Transfer Online – To ease your route, consider planning your trip or booking your transfer online.
  • Airport Arrival Time – For domestic flights, arrive at the airport at least 1.5 hours before departure, and for international flights, arrive at least 2.5 hours early. This allows for ample time to navigate the large airport and complete check-in processes.
  • Minimum Transfer Time – To ensure a timely arrival at Istanbul Airport from Taksim, plan to leave the city center at least 3 to 4 hours before your flight.

Transport Options from Istanbul Airport (IST) to Taksim

Here are the most popular transport options to get from Istanbul Airport to Taksim, along with their estimated travel times and costs:

Havabus Shuttle1 hour 40 min87 TL
Private ShuttleAbout 40 minAbout $30 (approx. 580 TL)
TaxiAbout 40 minNo fixed price, but approx. 850 TL
Public Transport (Metro + 46T/46C Bus)1 hour 45 min30 TL
Public Transport (H-3 Bus + 89C Bus)2 hours 20 min45 TL
Car RentalAbout 40 minFrom 650 TL for 24 hours + gas

Havaist Shuttle (Havabus Airport Shuttle)

For those seeking a balance between affordability and convenience, the Havaist Shuttle stands out as the best public transportation option for direct transfers between Istanbul Airport and Taksim, excluding private transfers and taxis.

Istanbul, Turkey – 25 December 2019: Airport shuttle bus (Havaist) at main bus terminal (Esenler/Bayrampasa Otogari) in Istanbul

The Havaist Shuttle journey typically takes around 1 hour and 40 minutes, but it may be longer during rush hour. Buses depart every 30-90 minutes. Tickets cost 87 TL and can be purchased directly from the driver or at the Havabus kiosks near the airport’s arrivals area.

Find info about schedule on the official site.

Private Shuttle from Istanbul Airport to Taksim

For a more comfortable and efficient transfer, consider booking a private shuttle. Services like Welcome Pickups in Istanbul offer door-to-door service and typically reach Taksim within 40 minutes. Prices start at around $30 (approximately 580 TL), making this a convenient and reasonably priced option for those who prefer a more personalized experience.

Make Your Arrival in Istanbul a Breeze with Welcome Pickups

We know that traveling to a new city can be both exciting and a bit daunting. That’s why we want to share with you our personal recommendation for a hassle-free airport transfer experience in Istanbul: Welcome Pickups.

Welcome Pickups provides reliable and affordable private transfers from Istanbul Airport straight to your accommodation. Their friendly, English-speaking drivers will greet you with a warm smile at the arrivals hall, holding a sign with your name on it. It’s like having a local friend waiting to welcome you to their city!

What makes Welcome Pickups our top pick for Istanbul Airport transfers?

  • Transparent, fixed pricing with no surprise fees
  • Round-the-clock customer support
  • Real-time flight tracking to adjust for any delays
  • Free cancellation up to 24 hours before your scheduled transfer
  • A range of vehicle options to accommodate your needs

Ready to simplify your arrival in Istanbul? Click the button below to book your transfer with Welcome Pickups. We’re confident that you’ll enjoy their service as much as we do. Safe travels and have a fantastic time in Istanbul!

Taxi from Istanbul Airport to Taksim

Taxis are readily available at Istanbul Airport, offering a quick way to reach Taksim. The journey usually takes about 40 minutes, and while there is no fixed price, fares typically range from 850 TL.

Read also: Your Ultimate Guide to Istanbul Airport Taxi: How to Get Around and Save Money

Taxi Warning

If you decide to take a taxi for your transfer, please consider booking a private transfer instead. Taxi scams are common in Istanbul, and you might end up paying significantly more than the usual fare (around 1,500 TL instead of 600 TL). Booking an online transfer is a safer and more trustworthy option.

Don’t miss our guide that helps to avoid taxi scams >>

Public Transport (Metro + 46T/46C Bus)

While public transport is a budget-friendly option, it may not always be the most convenient choice, particularly for those traveling with children, carrying heavy luggage, or arriving late at night. Multiple transfers between different modes of transportation can be challenging and time-consuming, making the journey more difficult than necessary.

Taking public transportation from Istanbul Airport to Taksim is an affordable and relatively easy option. First, board the Metro (M11 line) at the airport and ride to the Kağıthane station. From there, transfer to the 46T or 46C bus, which will take you directly to Taksim Tunel. The entire journey costs 21.9 TL and takes approximately 1 hour and 45 minutes.

Public Transport (H-3 Bus + 89C Bus)

Another public transport option involves taking the H-3 Bus from Istanbul Airport to the Atatürk Mahallesi (Arenapark) station. From there, transfer to the 89C Bus, which will bring you to Taksim Tünel. This route takes around 2 hours and 20 minutes, and the total cost is 45 TL.

Read to find out how to use public buses for routes to/from Istanbul Airport >>

Car Rentals

Renting a car provides the most flexibility when exploring Istanbul, with companies like Rentalcars offering various options. Prices start from 650 TL for a 24-hour rental, excluding gas. Keep in mind that Istanbul traffic can be heavy and challenging, so this option is best suited for experienced drivers.

If you rented a car during your stay in Istanbul, simply return the vehicle to the airport or another rental point before your departure. Remember to account for any additional time needed to drop off the car and navigate the airport.

Reverse Trip: Taksim to Istanbul Airport

To ensure a stress-free return trip from Taksim to Istanbul Airport, consider the same transport options mentioned above. Be sure to leave Taksim at least 3 to 4 hours before your flight, allowing ample time to navigate the airport and complete any necessary check-in processes.


In conclusion, there are multiple transport options available for travelers looking to transfer between Istanbul Airport and Taksim. Whether you prefer the budget-friendly Havabus Shuttle or a more personalized private transfer, this guide has you covered. Keep our tips in mind, and enjoy a smooth and memorable journey in the beautiful city of Istanbul.


Q: How long does it take to travel between Istanbul Airport and Taksim?

A: The travel time varies depending on the mode of transportation chosen. Taxis and private shuttles take approximately 40 minutes, while public transportation options can take between 1 hour 45 minutes to 2 hours 20 minutes. The Havabus Shuttle takes about 1 hour and 40 minutes.

Q: How much does it cost to travel between Istanbul Airport and Taksim?

A: Costs vary depending on the transportation option. Public transport options range from 30 TL to 45 TL, the Havabus Shuttle costs 87 TL, and private shuttles can cost around 30 USD (approximately 580 TL). Taxi fares can be unpredictable but generally cost around 850 TL.

Q: Can I use the Istanbul Kart for airport transfers?

A: Yes, the Istanbul Kart can be used on many public transportation lines in the city, including those connecting Istanbul Airport and Taksim. It is a cost-effective and convenient way to travel throughout the city.

Q: Is it safe to take a taxi from Istanbul Airport to Taksim?

A: While taxis are available, it’s important to be cautious due to potential scams. Private shuttles or the Havabus Shuttle are safer and more reliable alternatives for airport transfers.

Q: Is the Havabus Shuttle a suitable option for those with luggage or traveling with children?

A: The Havabus Shuttle provides a comfortable and convenient option for those with luggage or children, as it offers spacious seating and direct service between Istanbul Airport and Taksim.

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