World globalization, increasing close economic ties, growing competition and many other objective factors force states to be as flexible as possible in regulating labor migration flows. Most countries seek not only to provide jobs for their own citizens, but also, based on the needs of the economy, to attract scarce specialists from abroad. This is fully applicable to modern Turkey.

Work visa to Turkey

Work visa to Turkey is one of the main requirements for foreigners, the fulfillment of which will allow them to legally carry out professional activities on Turkish territory. Moreover, the norm applies to both ordinary labor migrants and foreign entrepreneurs planning to open a business in Turkey. Further, we will talk about how to get a work visa to Turkey in 2024.

Labor migration and work visa to Turkey

First of all, let us briefly dwell on the peculiarities of employment in Turkey. Despite the aggravation of the political situation in the country and the instability of the Middle East region as a whole, the local economy continues to develop and the demand for foreign workers remains. Citizens of different countries can find vacancies in tourism, construction and information technology.

The average salary in Turkey in 2024 in the region of 1,000 euros per month, unemployment is kept at the level of 8-10%. In order to support the field of tourism for many countries of the world, the Turkish government has significantly simplified the visa regime. In particular, most foreigners can freely visit the resorts of Turkey without prior issuance of a visa and stay in the country for up to 2 consecutive months. Some applicants use this time to look for a job.

In no case you should not stay in Turkey without preliminary registration of permits that give the right to work. Visa-free entry for tourist purposes does not allow you to work in Turkish companies. Nevertheless, cases of illegal employment of foreigners in Turkey, especially in the field of unskilled labor, are ubiquitous. Local authorities are actively fighting this. Large-scale raids and inspections are carried out, violators are fined and deported.

Penalties for illegal employment in Turkey in 2024

  • for the employee – 6,423 liras.

  • for the employer (for each illegal worker) – 12,854 liras.

Stages of official employment in Turkey

Stages of official employment in Turkey

  • Finding a job in a Turkish company.

  • Conclusion of an employment contract.

  • Registration of a work permit.

  • Opening a work visa.

  • Moving to Turkey and obtaining a residence permit.

Only step-by-step fulfillment of all the above points gives the right to legal presence and employment in Turkey. Take these requirements more than seriously. In principle, if the norms regarding the minimum wage and priority employment of Turkish citizens are met, then a foreigner can count on a work contract in almost any field. Exceptions are a few professions, which by law are reserved for local citizens.

Prohibited in Turkey professions for foreigners

  • Lawyer, notary.

  • Judge, prosecutor.

  • Security guard (private and public companies).

  • Customs broker.

  • Nurse, midwife.

  • Pharmacist, optician.

  • Veterinarian, dentist.

  • Director of a private hospital or travel agency.

Procedure for obtaining a work visa to Turkey

Registration of a work visa to Turkey for foreigners is carried out in close cooperation with the Turkish employer. Accordingly, before applying for a visa should be found a workplace and signed a labor contract. Only after this begins the procedure of obtaining 2 main documents that allow you to work in Turkey:

  1. At the Turkish Ministry of Labor and Social Security (MLSS) a work permit is issued (mainly handled by the employer). At the Turkish Consulate in his country, the foreigner gets a work visa.


At the first stage, the applicant submits a list of documents for a work visa to the Turkish Consulate. After that, within 10 calendar days the employer starts to issue a work permit for a foreign specialist.

Important. If the foreigner has a residence permit in Turkey, valid for at least 180 days, it is possible to apply and obtain a work permit directly to the MLSS without prior registration of a work visa in his country. The exception is the residence permit issued for studying in Turkish universities.

Depending on the applicant's profession, other Turkish authorities besides the MoLSA may also issue work permits. For example, the Ministry of Health or the Council of Higher Education. One of the main requirements for foreigners applying for employment in Turkey is to have a graduate diploma or other certificates confirming qualifications. The documents must be translated into Turkish and officially certified.

Documents for work visa to Turkey

Conditions for issuance of a work permit in Turkey

  1. The company employs a minimum of 5 Turkish citizens. In the field of tourism and entertainment, the number increases to 10.

  2. At the time of application, the foreigner's salary must exceed the minimum wage in Turkey in the following amounts:

    • 6.5 times for senior managers, including engineers and architects. For branch managers of companies, the amount may be reduced to 4 times.

    • 3 times for professions requiring high qualifications and experience, including higher education teachers.

    • 1.5 times for unskilled labor, such as domestic staff (nannies, housekeepers).

Note. In 2024, the minimum monthly wage in Turkey is 20,002.50 lira.

The decision to issue a work permit in Turkey, which is the basis for obtaining a work visa, is made within 30 days. From the moment the visa is issued, the foreigner has a maximum of 180 days to enter Turkish territory. Within a month after arrival, the applicant applies to the local Ministry of Interior and applies for a residence permit in Turkey.

Usually the first work permit is issued for a period of up to 12 months or the period of the contract with the right of further extension up to 3 years. After continuous employment in Turkey for more than 6 years, there is a possibility of free employment, including change of company and direction of professional activity.

Documents for work visa to Turkey

A work visa to Turkey is issued by the applicant in person at the Turkish diplomatic department (Consulate) in the country of residence. First you need to register on a special website – and fill out an online form. Here you can also make an appointment at the Consulate. On the appointed day and time it is required to appear for an interview and provide the following documents:

  1. A completed visa application form in printed form (see website above).

  2. Two color photos of the established sample (size 5x6).

  3. Copies of all pages of the passport, where personal data are indicated. The validity of the document must exceed the period for which the visa is requested by at least 60 days.

  4. Copies of civil passport pages with registration.

  5. Official invitation to work (letterhead of the Turkish company).

  6. Original labor contract with the Turkish employer.

If necessary, additional information may be requested, for example, diplomas (certificates) of education. After submitting the documents, the foreigner will be assigned a special number, which will be given to the Turkish employer for issuance of a work permit to the MLSS of Turkey. This procedure takes 10 calendar days (from the date of submission of documents to the Consulate).

The period of consideration of documents for a work visa to Turkey is up to 30 calendar days. After making a positive decision, the employees of the diplomatic department will ask the applicant to bring a passport, where the visa will be pasted. The procedure may take up to 5 calendar days.

Cost of work visa to Turkey

The fee for a work visa to Turkey is paid in US dollars in cash and includes several steps.

  • During the application process, a consular fee of $50 is charged.

  • After a favorable decision to issue the visa, another $150 is paid.

  • An additional fee of $24 is required for authorization to apply for a residence permit.

In total, the cost of a work visa to Turkey in 2024 is $224.

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