We suggest that you go for a comprehensive eye and dental examination. Most health insurance policies don’t cover these. A typical eye exam is about $75 and a pair of spectacles is $200. Dental problems are even more expensive to correct – anywhere in excess of $500! So we repeat, please take care of any eye/teeth problems before leaving Turkiye.
Bring your immunization records if possible. The university requires incoming students to take TB (Mantoux) test as well, so please try to get that done in Turkiye.
If you are on prescription medicines/drugs, carry sufficient supply to last at least a few weeks. Bring your doctor’s prescription in case the customs officials ask for it or you need fresh supply here.
Unless you aren’t too particular about what you eat, invest some time in learning basic cooking skills before leaving home. You can bring some spices but make sure they are sealed and packed properly. Regarding meat and milk products (i.e. beyaz peynir), US customs laws prohibit entrance of these substances. There are some Turkish, Greek and Arabic shops around where you can find almost everything.
When buying a ticket to US, try to arrive in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (known as “Philly” to the locals). If your travel agency books you to New York or some other city, then try to get a connecting flight to Philly. BEWARE – make sure you are not booked to a flight to Newark, New Jersey which is about 2.5 hours drive from here! Remember, Newark, Delaware does not have an airport.
Please contact TASA or someone from the university and inform them of your travel plans. Feel free to contact TASA with any questions or concerns you might have. If someone in US contacts with us on your behalf make sure that they tell us your full name, and ALL the flights you will be taking in addition to your final time of arrival in Philly. This is so in the case of a delay we know where you are!
Make sure that your tickets are confirmed well in advance – the last thing you’d want is to be rushing around at the last hour trying to get your tickets confirmed.
MONEY – When you arrive at the airport, you may need to give some tip to the people carrying your luggage or for the busses; so carry around some $1 or $5 dollar bills with you. UNLESS people ask for money, DON’T give money to people. They will ask for it. Nobody accepts bills greater than $50 here, so don’t carry any $100 bills and if you do, DON’T show it to anyone. $20 is a large amount here. Do not carry all your money with you. Either use a credit card or traveler’s check. There is a few Turkish Banks, but they are mostly at large cities and you may not reach them for a long time. Traveler’s checks are accepted at almost every local bank. In case you use a credit card, there will be a small amount (between $1.00 and $3.00) of charge every time you use your credit at the ATM machines. And be warned that every time you withdraw money from ATM machines, you will be charged an extra amount for cash advance.