Just a couple of points for the curious :
- The disparity between money changers and Revolut is enormous. I converted SGD 500 to 8500 Turkish Lira with a local money changer. When I used Revolut, I got 9843 for the same amount. I guess the trick is to minimise the amount of cash you must carry when travelling.
- There's almost zero probability that my group would not get scammed. Some tips I got include picking things that belong to someone other than you on the ground, even if it seems like you are helping somebody else. Taxis can drive halfway and then claim that their meters are broken. Shopkeepers wrap up stuff for you when you are making enquiries on prices.
- If the price is not too unreasonable, you should close the deal and move on without much drama. I will focus on buying as little as I reasonably can since I'm not a shopper anyway.
For this trip, I may have overplanned, reading one travel guide and then giving myself a crash course on the history of Istanbul from the classical Greek era as the town of Byzantion to modern Istanbul.
I'll catch you guys on this blog when I return!