Transportation in Ankara
If you don’t wish to drive in Ankara, there are several alternative means of transportaion. In general, the public transportatiion system is cheap and easy to use. Municipality buses, public buses, dolmuş, taxi and subway are among Ankara’s public transportation alternatives. You only need to learn where the stops are.
Buses are cheap, however especially at peak times they are very crowded and they are not comfortable. There are two types of buses in Ankara which serve the entire city.
One is run by the municipality, Belediye Otobüsü, these buses are either red or blue and dark blue striped. Since electronic tickets are required for traveling on these buses, they should be bought in advance. They are sold in minimum packages of five and each ticket costs 1.65 TL.
The second type of bus is privately run Halk Otobüsü, which are green or blue. Tickets are not valid on those buses and only cash is accepted, however the price is the same. The green double-decker buses are also privately owned and require cash. Some of them are covered by colorful advertisements.
Underground (Metro-Hafif Metro)
In Ankara, the underground has two routes. Ankaray (Light metro) and Metro. They are both very comfortable and speedy. Connections between Metro and Ankaray are in Kızılay. The fare for 1 unit is the same as the bus and your electronic bus tickets are also valid here. A map of the route and electronic cards can be obtained from any underground station. Working hours are 06.00-00.00
The first line of the Ankara Metro runs from Batıkent, north of the city to Kızılay, in other words the Centrum.
Ankaray (Light metro) runs from ASTI (Ankara Intercity Bus Station), west of the town, passing through Kızılay and ending in Dikimevi.
Dolmuş is a special service found only in Turkey. This is a collective taxi, which follows specific routes. It may be a car or a minibus. Each passenger pays according to the distance traveled and can get off at specific or requested stops. In order to get off, the passenger need only say, inecek var meaning “someone to get off here” and the dolmuş stops. The municipality fixes the relatively cheap fares. This is a very practical means of transportation and much cheaper than a taxi. You pay the fee to the driver. Prices differ depending on distance traveled. They usually have a sign in the lower or upper right-hand corner of their windshield that specifies the direction in which they will be traveling. The relatively cheap prices are set by the municipality and are displayed in a visible location within the vehicle.
Taxis are numerous in all Turkish cities and are recognizable by their yellow color and word taksi on top the car. All taxis have the letter T in their license plates. The fare shown on the meter reads according to distance traveled. The ride will start at 2.20 TL, and the rate is 1.90 TL per kilometer.
Here are a few phrases we think you might find useful:
Turn off the music – müziği kapatın, Close the window – camı kapatın, Open the window – camı açın, Stop here – burada durun, Left – sol, Right – sağ, Turn on the meter – taksimetreyi çalıştırın, Wait – bekleyin, Turn right – sağa dönün, Turn left – sola dönün, Please – lütfen.
Suburban Train (Banliyö Treni)
There are suburban trains traveling from Sincan a district on the west of the city to Kayaş which is on the east end of Ankara. Suburban trains may be an alternative when traffic is an issue, however since they are the most affordable way to travel longer distances, they can be extremely crowded and dirty. Tickets can be bought at the station. Monthly discount cards are also available.