Traveling from Istanbul to Tbilisi: Buses, Planes, and Private Cars

Choosing the best way to travel from Istanbul to Tbilisi depends on your priorities: speed, budget, and flexibility. Here’s a breakdown of each option:

Getting from Istanbul to Tbilisi By Plane:

  • Fastest option: Flights take around 2 hours and 20 minutes, making them ideal for short trips or those pressed for time.
  • Most expensive: Expect prices to range from $70 to $300, depending on the season and airline.
  • Convenience: Direct flights are available from both Istanbul Airport (IST) and Sabiha Gökçen Airport (SAW) to Tbilisi International Airport (TBS).
  • Limited baggage allowance: Be mindful of baggage fees and restrictions, as they can add to the cost.

Istanbul to Tbilisi By Bus:

  • Most affordable: Bus tickets start around $50, making them a budget-friendly choice.
  • Longest travel time: The journey takes approximately 27 hours, so be prepared for a long ride.
  • Scenic route: Enjoy the changing landscapes of Turkey and Georgia as you travel.
  • Comfortable options: Choose from various bus companies offering amenities like reclining seats, Wi-Fi, and onboard entertainment.

Bus Schedule

There are two daily trips from Istanbul to Tbilisi departing at 12:00 pm and at 1:30 pm. The bus departs from Aksaray Station in Istanbul and arrives at Ortachala Bus Station in Tbilisi, Georgia. The travel time is around 29 hours. Check schedule and availability or book online

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Istanbul to Tbilisi By Private Car:

  • Flexible itinerary: Explore hidden gems and stop at your own pace along the way.
  • Most expensive: Renting a car and factoring in gas, tolls, and potential border crossings can be costly.
  • Driving requirements: Ensure you have an international driver’s license and necessary permits.
  • Scenic journey: Enjoy stunning mountain views and historical sites along the route.

Additional Tips:

  • Border crossing: The land border between Turkey and Georgia is open 24/7. However, wait times can vary, so factor this into your travel plans.
  • Visas: Turkish citizens don’t need visas for Georgia, but other nationalities might. Check visa requirements before your trip.
  • Currency exchange: Exchange your Turkish Lira (TRY) to Georgian Lari (GEL) before departure or at exchange offices near the border.
  • Language: English is spoken in tourist areas, but learning some basic Georgian phrases can be helpful.

Ultimately, the best way to travel from Istanbul to Tbilisi depends on your individual needs and preferences. Consider your budget, time constraints, and desired level of comfort when making your decision.

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