Suppose you are an international student seeking to study in Turkey. In that case, you may have been asked to prove that you have sufficient funds or financial resources to sustain your life in the country you will stay in during your short-term residency. This is also often a prerequisite to getting a visa, whether a student or not.
You can show you have the necessary financial means via a blocked bank account.
Here is everything you need to know about blocked accounts and what you might need to open one in Turkey.
What Is a Blocked Account?
A blocked account, Sperrkonto in German, is a particular bank account required by migration laws for international students to apply for a visa or a residence permit.
Under German law, this account stores a deposit of money the government requires from international students as proof of financial resources to live in the country. The government's money is calculated to cover living expenses for one year.
Similarly, Turkey has recently adopted the German practice, or its interpretation, for residence permits. (It is still not an official requirement, but it may benefit your case.) Consider including your contract for freelancing work, which details your compensation, etc.
Hence, having a blocked (savings) account in Turkey could be helpful in case you are asked to show proof of adequate funding for your short- or long-term stay.
What Do Turkish Authorities Mean by ‘Adequate Funding’?
According to early 2023 calculations, this amount is estimated to be around TL 17,100, 1.5 times the minimum Turkish national wage (TL 11,400).
For each additional family member, this minimum requires an extra month of the minimum wage (TL 11,400).
An Example: A single adult must have TL 205,200 (approximately USD 7,900) in their bank account to obtain a 12-month Turkish residence permit. In turn, a couple must show they have at least TL 342,000 in funding. A couple with a child should expect at least TL 478,800 to show as financial proof through a savings account.
So, Applicants must have enough money to show they can support themselves in Turkey to obtain a Turkish residence permit. One person requires TL 17,100, two require at least TR 28,500, and three require TL 39,900 per month from regular income. Regular income can come from various sources, including employment, pensions, investments, etc.
The minimum wage for 2023 is a net of TL 11,400 (11 thousand 400 TL). The above is for illustration purposes only.
How to Show That You Have Sufficient Funds
There are a few essential points to remember when providing documentation to prove you have the financial means to live in Turkey.
If you plan to show proof of sufficient funds from your current employment or pension, you must provide statements from the last three months and a remote work contract. A work contract is the best way to prove your employment status and income.
If you plan to submit proof of sufficient funds through your savings or credit cards, you must provide recent statements from the last six months from a Turkish bank account, each page wet-stamped and signed by an authorized representative.
For example, if you earn a salary abroad, we recommend transferring funds (17,100 TL) to your Turkish account monthly. This will allow you to provide a Turkish bank statement, which most regions require. If you have your salary directly deposited, that's okay, but you should have a copy of your work contract in case you are asked.
We recommend transferring funds through Wise to your Turkish account. This way, you can manage your finances more efficiently and reduce the risk. Make a minimum (17,100 TL) transfer each month and then use this account to pay for necessities like rent and utilities.
Here are some additional tips for submitting proof of sufficient funds:
- Make sure that the statements are recent and from a Turkish bank account.
- If you use a credit card, ensure the statements show you have available credit.
- If you are using savings, make sure that the statements show that you have the required amount of funds available.
- Be prepared to provide additional documentation, such as a work contract or a letter from your employer, if requested.
The rule of thumb for proving that you have adequate funding for your stay is still a self-declaration form, which you can see on pages 4-5 here.
Using Foreign Bank Statements
International statements must be translated and certified by a notary public or apostle for most foreigners. They can be downloaded, printed, and presented as proof of funds from a local or international bank account or credit card statement.
Here is some additional information about the translation and notarization of bank statements:
- Translation: The translation of a bank statement must be certified by a translator who is qualified to translate documents.
- Notarization: The notarization of a bank statement must be done by a notary public authorized to notarize documents.
How to Open a Bank Account in Turkey
Although having a bank account is not a requirement for foreigners applying for a visa or residence permit in Turkey, as it may be up to the immigration officer’s discretion during your residence permit appointment, it is best to be prepared to provide additional documents.
Opening a bank account is simple; you only need a few documents. Head here to read more.
Additionally, check our expat blog to learn how to apply for a Turkish residence permit or health insurance.
Drop us a line or call if you have any questions or would like to speak to an agent for general immigration advice.