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Saturday, December 3rd 2016

"I'm a travel junkie who's hooked on deals from YYC." - Chris Myden



2012
12
June
Calgary to Istanbul, Turkey - from $700 roundtrip after taxes!

I've been waiting a long time for this! Turkey has always been near the top of my list of places on this planet that I want to check out (and it's a long list). Fares are *never* cheap though, and usually hover around a minimum of $1300-$1400 roundtrip after taxes.

But then KLM decided to have a contest, and thanks to a little assistance from YYC Deals followers, well, here we are. I can't emphasize enough how rare an opportunity this is. If you've ever wanted to visit Turkey at an insane price, this is your chance.

At the time of this writing they haven't officially announced the winner, but I can see that they've already loaded the cheap fares to Istanbul into the system on KLM.com. In fact, I just bought my tickets. The bottom price looks to be $700 roundtrip after taxes, but the majority are in the range of $750 roundtrip after taxes (as KLM promised they would be), depending on the dates.

To find them, you can just go to http://www.klm.com and search for flights from Calgary to Istanbul.

The cheap fare period is from mid October 2012 to May 5th of 2013 ! So it's a pretty wide date range that you can choose from. KLM has stated that the cheap fares will be in the system for 48 hours.

Personally, I would aim for October 2012 or late April 2013. Both would be great times to visit Turkey, with good weather and less tourists. Here's a link to historical weather for Istanbul.

Update: People have also reported booking with a multiple-day stopover in Amsterdam for pretty much the same price. 2 trips in one! For those that don't know how to do this, it's really easy. I've created a short tutorial, which you can find in the forums.

screenshot from KLM.com


I've already created a Google Map to outline the places in Turkey I want to check out:

http://tinyurl.com/7moz2s9

Istanbul, Turkey


Cappadocia, Turkey


Pamukkale, Turkey


If you can't tell, I'm pretty excited about this deal! If anyone has any recommendations on places to check out in Turkey, please leave a comment.

See you in Turkey!

(NOTE: If you're interested in visiting Amsterdam, give it a try, you'll find it's a lot cheaper than usual as well, although not as good a deal as Istanbul.)

HEADS UP: Looks like Air Canada is matching the prices to Amsterdam and Istanbul...

http://www.aircanada.com/en/offers/air/ams_ist/ams_ist.html#YYC-INT-YYCIST

HEADS UP 2: Now it looks like every airline is matching the insanity to Istanbul !

Air France (should be possible to get a free stopover in Paris)
Austrian Airlines
Delta
Lufthansa
United

Example search on Kayak: http://www.kayak.com/flights/#/YYC-IST/2012-10-17-flexible/2012-10-31-flexible

If anyone needs help on planning their trip to Turkey, there is a great resource from the guy who literally wrote the book on Turkey (for Lonely Planet and others) - http://www.turkeytravelplanner.com/

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41 Responses to "Calgary to Istanbul, Turkey - from $700 roundtrip after taxes!"


    Has Dae been here?
       Dae on June 12th, 2012

    Go here it rulz
    http://www.kadirstreehouses.com/

    Has Michelle been here?
       Michelle on June 12th, 2012

    I just searched the exact same dates as you and there is no sale price!

    Has Chris_Myden been here?
       Chris_Myden on June 12th, 2012

    Hi Michelle, they're definitely there, I just searched again.

    Are you using KLM.com to search ? Did you choose Canada as your country on the first page? (Shouldn't matter, but just to be sure).

    Has Chris_Myden been here?
       Chris_Myden on June 12th, 2012

    Thanks Dae, I definitely want to check out the Olympos area and that looks like a great place to stay.

    Has Mary been here?
       Mary on June 12th, 2012

    How expensive are accommodations in Turkey?? Do you have any recommendations of where to book accommodations/hotel at??

    Thanks!!

    Has Mary been here?
       Mary on June 12th, 2012

    Also, how many days do you think would be sufficient for a trip like Turkey??

    Has Brian been here?
       Brian on June 12th, 2012

    Technically this also means you can fly to Amsterdam and back for 700 too right? Just don't use the Istanbul legs of the trip...

    Has Chris_Myden been here?
       Chris_Myden on June 12th, 2012

    I went with just over 2 weeks. 3 or 4 in Istanbul, 3 or 4 in Cappadocia, 6 or so in the SW area of Turkey which seems to have a lot to do.

    Haven't decided if I want to check out the island country of Cyprus as well.

    It's only about $50 to fly anywhere within Turkey.

    Has Chris_Myden been here?
       Chris_Myden on June 12th, 2012

    Try searching for Amsterdam, you'll find that it has dropped as well. I think KLM likely had to drop the price of that route to get Istanbul down, since Amsterdam is their hub.

    You don't want to book a flight to Istanbul and then skip a leg, because airlines can and will cancel your return flight.

    Has mickey kolody been here?
       mickey kolody on June 12th, 2012

    Thanks for the deals, to bad about spain, Much easier to other places. have fun but dont forget its a muslium country.

    Has Shivji been here?
       Shivji on June 12th, 2012

    I can't seem to find the same rate, all prices are in the 1400+ range

    Has Chris_Myden been here?
       Chris_Myden on June 12th, 2012

    Shivji: What dates are you trying? Make sure your departure is after October 15th.

    Has Matt been here?
       Matt on June 12th, 2012

    Have a great trip. Istanbul is a nice city. Stay in Sultanahmet. You can walk everywhere.

    Has Alyson been here?
       Alyson on June 12th, 2012

    I can't find them either. Checked through to the end of November... is it over already?

    Has Mister Smith been here?
       Mister Smith on June 12th, 2012

    Thanks Man! Booked a trip for next Easter - just couldn't resist.

    Has Chris_Myden been here?
       Chris_Myden on June 12th, 2012

    Alyson: Just tried late November, and still showing fine...

    screenshot:

    http://s16.postimage.org/h7bkh69cl/Clipboard01.jpg

    Has Alyson been here?
       Alyson on June 12th, 2012

    Okay, I figured it out. Any idea how long this will last for?

    Has Chris_Myden been here?
       Chris_Myden on June 12th, 2012

    KLM stated that this deal would be around for 48 hours.

    Has raj been here?
       raj on June 13th, 2012

    Thanks for this. Just booked our trip for Istanbul and Amsterdam for the four of us for less than $3k. Awesome!

    Has don been here?
       don on June 13th, 2012

    What about visas?

    Has Christine been here?
       Christine on June 13th, 2012

    Better for you to check, but last ime I went, you could just buy a visit upon entry to Turkey.. Sultanahmet is definatley the area to stay in, walking distance to blue mosque, aya sofia etc.. and we flew within turkey using atlasjet to cappadocia and it was super cheap!! hot air balloom ride over cappadocia is a must!!!

    Has Mariane been here?
       Mariane on June 13th, 2012

    I just booked for the two of us! 10 days in Istanbul, yippee! We will probably rent a motorcycle and ride over to Greece or another area in Turkey. What an adventure!

    Has AJ been here?
       AJ on June 13th, 2012

    In Istanbul, do not stay in Sultanahmet. It's an overpriced tourist trap. People are rude, it's crawling with pickpockets, and there's no good food to be found. Stay elsewhere and take the tram to go see the sights.

    We enjoyed Antalya - feels much more middle-east than Istanbul. Be sure to go to hamam (turkish bath) while there.

    We also enjoyed Selcuk - near the Roman city of Efesus

    Go see Pattara and stay in Gelemis. Roman ruins, birth place of St. Nicholas, nice laid-back town, wonderful undeveloped beach.

    Go stay in a town in the interior, away from British beach resorts and discotheques. Meet the locals, practice speaking Turkish, and eat some great food. Cheap and fun.

    Some of my travel photos
    http://www.arievandervelden.com/Lycea/index.html
    http://www.arievandervelden.com/SelcukIstanbul/index.html

    Enjoy. Turkey is backpacking heaven. Cheap, friendly, safe, interesting, efficient transportation, amazing food.

    Has Chris_Myden been here?
       Chris_Myden on June 13th, 2012

    Sounds like some great advice AJ, thanks!

    A few people have also recommended http://www.turkeytravelplanner.com as being a useful site for planning.

    Has AJ been here?
       AJ on June 13th, 2012

    That looks like a good site. We found the Rick Steves guide to be helpful in planning.

    Has Chris_Myden been here?
       Chris_Myden on June 13th, 2012

    I've always liked Rick Steve's advice too. We often use some of his itinerary ideas as a starting point to build our own.

    Here's his itinerary for 13 days in Turkey...

    http://tours.ricksteves.com/tours/turkey (click on Daily Itinerary)

    Only problem is, his hidden gems are no longer so hidden! But I guess that's the case with most everywhere now.

    Has Jody been here?
       Jody on June 13th, 2012

    Is anyone having a problem at the last step? Once I enter my CC info and go to the next page...it states that all the economy ones are sold out...but when I search they are still available (I have tried a few times throughout the today already). Are my flights sold out?

    Has Chris_Myden been here?
       Chris_Myden on June 13th, 2012

    Is that on KLM.com Jody ? Are you able to try slightly different dates?

    It could also be worth trying through a site like Kayak to see if you have better luck.

    Also note that airlines other than KLM are matching, and might have availability on your dates.

    Has Erin been here?
       Erin on June 13th, 2012

    Thanks for the info....great site! Just booked a week in Istanbul and a week in Paris (april 12 - 26) for $834 all in...great that you can combine it with multiple stops and still get a great, deal!

    Has Chris_Myden been here?
       Chris_Myden on June 13th, 2012

    Nice! Was that on KLM or Air France Erin?

    Has Erin been here?
       Erin on June 13th, 2012

    I booked through the KLM Canada website....but looks like the actual metal from Istanbul to Paris is Air France...the only drawback is that we have to wait until 2013 to travel!! ; )

    Has Chris_Myden been here?
       Chris_Myden on June 13th, 2012

    Well it's always nice to have something to look forward to!

    Has Krista been here?
       Krista on June 13th, 2012

    My sister and I opted out of Turkey, but we are heading to Europe for New Years! Amsterdam for $845, Dec 27 to Jan 6. Thanks for the awesome tip off Chris!

    Has Chris_Myden been here?
       Chris_Myden on June 14th, 2012

    Nice! That's definitely a great price to Europe for holiday travel.

    Has Christina been here?
       Christina on June 14th, 2012

    Hi Chris,

    When you mentioned the $50 flights from anywhere in Turkey, which site are you looking at?

    Thank you for the alert on this!

    Has Shemin been here?
       Shemin on June 14th, 2012

    Thanks for the heads up Chris. We booked a family vacation for 7 for 2 weeks in March 2013 during spring break and only costed $699.08 each.
    Any tips on where to stay in Istanbul? Any tips on taking a cruise to Greece?

    Has brad been here?
       brad on June 15th, 2012

    Missed it dang

    Has Alex been here?
       Alex on June 15th, 2012

    Booked for Amsterdam Dec 28-Jan 4, then Istanbul Jan 4-12. Super excited. Got lots of friends in on the deal and 6 of us are on trip (with different portions overlapping). Istanbul will be great!

    Has Chris_Myden been here?
       Chris_Myden on June 15th, 2012

    Amsterdam at New Years should also be a good time :)

    Brad: If you sign up for alerts you can make sure you don't ever miss a deal:

    http://www.yycdeals.com/alerts

    Has Ken Anderson been here?
       Ken Anderson on June 18th, 2012

    Did I miss it? Can't find it anymore.

    Has Chris_Myden been here?
       Chris_Myden on June 18th, 2012

    Ken: The cheap fares were around until Thursday night.

    If you sign up for alerts you can make sure you don't ever miss a deal:

    http://www.yycdeals.com/alerts

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