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Turkish Airlines announces direct flights between Melbourne and Istanbul from March 2024

European getaways just got dreamier with Turkish Airlines’ new direct flight between Melbourne and Istanbul.
Turkish Airlines new direct flight Melbourne Australia to Istanbul Turkiye

Turkish Airlines' new direct flight between Melbourne and Istanbul

Say goodbye to long layovers and multiple transits, Australia is finally entering a high-flying new era with the arrival of Turkish Airlines’ new direct flights between Melbourne, Australia, and Istanbul, Türkiye.

The brand-new flight path commenced last week, with the inaugural flight landing at Melbourne Airport (Tullamarine) on Saturday 2 March, 2024. It launches with three flights per week between the intercontinental cities, with economy fares starting at $1499 and business fares from $7599.

The new direct flight route will take up to an estimated 21 hours from Melbourne to Istanbul (less in the other direction at just over 19 hours), inclusive of a relatively short stopover in Singapore – with no aircraft change – to refuel. And, yes, this is considered a direct flight (but not non-stop or point-to-point) as the aircraft and flight code remain the same for the journey’s entirety.

The Melbourne-Istanbul flight allows travellers to reach their port of call faster and with less hassle. Perhaps it’s time to amend the tired adage of journeys and destinations.

That said, Turkish Airlines is known for its smooth troposphere sailing; it was recently recognised as one of the world’s most trusted and prominent airlines and awarded top honours by independent audit association APEX in 2023 for guest experience, safety and sustainability – an award received by only eight airlines last year.

Turkish Airlines business class

“Through these new services, our aim is to connect Türkiye and Australia,” chairman of the board and the executive committee of Turkish Airlines Professor Dr Ahmet Bolat said in a statement. “Our country is where ancient history, vibrant culture, breathtaking landscapes, and tantalising cuisine converge to create a destination unlike any other.”

As Istanbul is considered the doorstep to Europe due to its idyllic location on the Bosphorus Strait, which separates Asia from Europe, it’s the perfect first stop for a grand European tour.

Considering the only other direct flight operating from Australia to Europe currently departs from Perth, there’s no doubt the new Melbourne-Istanbul flight will prove popular.

Turkish Airlines TourIstanbul complimentary tours

Have some time in Istanbul before your next flight? Turkish Airlines offers unique experiences around Istanbul that offer a snapshot visit to the bustling metropolis that straddles Asia and Europe.

Offered to those who have a connecting international flight in Istanbul and a layover period between six and 24 hours, the complimentary Turkish Airlines TourIstanbul service lets you experience Istanbul’s highlights, from historic cultural landmarks to authentic Turkish and Ottoman cuisine. There are eight tours available, including sighsteeing tours, Bosphorous cruises, full- and half-day tours, evening tours, historial tours and even shopping tours. Site highlights include Hagia Sophia, Sultan Ahmet Camii (Blue Mosque), Dolmabahçe Palace, Taksim Square and Topkapi Palace Museum.

How to book:

Once you land at Istanbul Airport, sign up for TourIstanbul at the Hotel Desk in the International Arrivals Terminal or at the TourIstanbul Desk in the Transfer area. Passengers can take advantage of the free tour service by providing their ticket number for Turkish Airlines’ flights (including code share flights). Be sure to check if you require an e-visa to enter Türkiye via

Turkish Airlines’ new Melbourne-Istanbul flights start on 1 March, 2024, with the inaugural flight departing from Istanbul, Türkiye, and landing in Melbourne on 2 March, 2024. Fares start from $1499 return. Visit to book.

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