Arriving on a flight, after you pass Customs and emerge from the secure area, turn right and walk toward the end of the terminal. The left luggage/baggage check office is on the right-hand side. Your luggage must be lockedwhen you give it in for safekeeping.
There are also Baggage Lockers in the Departures hall of the International terminal, at the far end of the Row B check-in desks near the toilets/WC.
If you have a longish layover at the airport (four hours or more), you can leave your luggage here and go by Metro and tram into Istanbul to see a few of the top sights. Allow an hour to go from the airport to the city center, and another hour to return to the airport by Metro and tram.
Remember that you should be at the airport for check-in two hours before the departure of your international flight, and 1-1/2 hours (90 minutes) before the departure of a domestic Turkish flight.
Luggage storage at the airport is not cheap. You pay the following amounts to store an item for up to 24 hours:
—Plastic bag TL12
—Hand Luggage TL15
—Big Bag TL25
So if you leave a large suitcase on Monday and retrieve it on Thursday, the charge would be TL100 (about US$56 or €43).
(Your Istanbul hotel will probably agree to hold spare luggage for you for free, or a small charge. You might even arrange to have it transferred from the hotel to the airport by an airport transfer service so you don’t have to go back to the hotel to retrieve it. More…)
The left luggage office is open 24 hours a day. When you return to pick up your baggage, you will pass through the first security check to enter the terminal and reach the Emanet Bagaj office.
There is luggage storage at Istanbul’s Main Bus Terminal, and self-service luggage lockers at Istanbul’s railroad stations, but no train station in Turkey has a left luggage/baggage storage facility any more, alas.
|Atatürk International Airport|