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singapore
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Turkish Lira down

Will be in Istanbul in July. I read about the decline in the Turkish Lira but the hotel room rates remain the same in US dollar terms. Surely the Istanbul Hotels quote in Lira and not US dollars which means the search engines are not passing through the reductions. But that cannot be because of the competition. Thanks for any enlightenment.

Istanbul, Turkey
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1. Re: Turkish Lira down

Hi Richard,

The hotel rates are quoted either in euros or in USD in Turkey. Obviously the devaluation of lira will not bring any savings in your hotel stay expenses. However, you will be paying less for rest of the shopping items which are quoted in lira.

Hope this helps,

Borus

2. Re: Turkish Lira down

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Sydney, Australia
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for Train Travel
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3. Re: Turkish Lira down

The three times I have stayed in Istanbul, I have paid my hotel bills (and everything else) in Turkish Lira.

Istanbul, Turkey
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4. Re: Turkish Lira down

Nick, of course you can pay your bills in lira, it's our currency. However, paying all your bills with lira does not mean all the prices are quoted in lira.

Istanbul
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for Istanbul
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5. Re: Turkish Lira down

SingaporeRichard8, To protect themselves against the fluctuations in the value of Turkish currencies, a huge majority of Turkish Hotels quote prices in Euros on their websites. However booking websites like booking.com will quote these prices in any hard currency (market rate as of the time of booking). So you can pay in any currency if you use an intermediary website. On the other hand in Turkey, if you want to pay in TL, naturally that is possible and the hotel will convert their Euro quote to TL at the market exchange rate (or slightly worse) at the time of payment.

enigma...

Melbourne, Australia
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6. Re: Turkish Lira down

I completely despise the fact in Turkey that any establishment whether it be hotel, restaurant, service provider etc quotes their prices in any other currency other then Turkish Lira. Why don't they use their own currency for quoting, well there are 2 reasons.

1. It benefits them financially. How you may ask. Well for example 2 months ago a 100 eur balloon ride in Cappadocia translated to 280 lira in Turkish currency. Today the same 100 eur balloon ride equates 310 lira in Turkish currency. The service provider just made 30 lira sitting on their backside while the tourist is worse of by 30 lira for what? I call this a sort of scam and the sooner this practice stops in Turkey the better.

I saw a friend today that just got back from Bali and he complained about the same thing saying all prices are advertised in USD and things worked out more expensive then they should have.

2. Lazy tourists. Ship tour people or other travellers that can't be ar$ed about researching the destination currency or any information for that matter and offer to pay in a foreign currency. Now what is a shop that continually keeps getting asked by travellers to pay in a foreign currency going to do. The first few times they may have said no we only accept lira but after they figured their actually better off (refer to point 1) due to the exchange rate fluctuations being in their favour they went wth it.

Classic example of this in practice is money exchanger (doviz) places. I visited so many of them over the past 2 months that I've been able piece together an elegant scam some of them have put in place. Again if you don't do your research you will get stung by them as well.

Let's say you want to exchange USD 1000 in Sultanahmet at 2000 on a Thursday, you go to an exchange place that gives 2.20 for the rate when you know clear well the rate is 2.30 and you question it their response will be the market/banks are closed so therefore this is the rate. Okay fair enough.

You go back to the same store the next day at 1000 when the markets are open and see the rate is the same and question them they will then proceed to tell you this is the rate with a blank look on their face.

The basic principle of some establishments (some not all) is to basically try and extract as much money as possible from with as little negative effect on possible to themselves.

I play their game and never ever changed money without bargaining on the exchange rate. This doesn't effect everyone as not everyone carries foreign currencies changing them in Turkey but use bank cards and atms however every money exchange place I went to seemed very busy.

You be the judge.

singapore
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7. Re: Turkish Lira down

I never expected to get so many kind and informative responses. ResmeN, thank you especially. I have since checked and my hotel quotes in Euro. Am on holiday so I will go with the flow but when you read about the plummeting Lira every other day it does beg the question why the hotel prices remain static. Now I know.

Istanbul, Turkey
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8. Re: Turkish Lira down

Turkish lira has started to gain value against the hard currencies again. At today's monetary council meeting, the Turkish Central Bank is expected to increase the interest rates and you will see a much sharp valuation of lira in the coming days. Just be prepared.

Borus

Melbourne, Australia
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9. Re: Turkish Lira down

As Borus advised the Turkish reserve bank is increasing interest rates in order to devalue foreign currencies dropping the foreign exchange rate (USD/EUR/AUD/CAD/GBP etc) back to where they were a few months ago to keep them there and hopefully further strengthen the lira.

My advice to foreign visitors to Turkey is to never ever pay for anything in foreign currencies and to always negotiate purchases whether they be goods or services in lira and lira only.

By paying in foreign currencies you are not only encouraging the local businesses to keep quoting prices in foreign currencies but as a side note you are worse off in the hip pocket due to the exchange rate fluctuations.

This is slightly similar to the recently closed down fake goods thread. As wrong as it is to sell & buy fake goods so long as the demand is there the corrupt will keep making crooked goods to supply the market.

So long as foreign travellers insist in paying in foreign currencies in Turkey (demand) the local businesses in Turkey will give you the opportunity (supply) to do just that.

singapore
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10. Re: Turkish Lira down

I hope for the Turkish people that the Lira stays strong as a result of the interest rate intervention. But India did a similar thing and after a short term rebound their currency weakened again. From my reading there is a crisis of confidence that will stall foreigners from investing in Turkey. The country was doing really well with it's secular government but I understand that Erdogan over the last few years is moving away from this status quo. Marshalled against him are some powerful forces, interesting enough the religious group with an enlightened view on the matter. So the country is polarised and one group must back down before the Lira stabilises. An opinion only.

ResmeM, apart from my hotel, I will be paying with local currency. It's a practice I follow wherever I go. Similarly if I am staying for a while in a city will purchase a local SIM card for my phone. Hope you approve but I must confess I am booked on a cruise that disembarks in Istanbul which I expect to be the highlight of my trip.