Frequently Asked Questions

FAQs

Are beverages served on the tour?

Yes, lots! Full day food tours definitely have more beverage servings – around 6-7 exciting and local non-alcoholic drinks. On our 3-hour-long street food tours you will try 2-3 different local non-alcoholic drinks. We do not serve alcoholic beverages on the tours.

Why is the Istanbul on Food tour cheaper than most of the other food tours? Do you serve less food or lesser quality foods?

Not at all! On the contrary, we believe we serve the very best available dishes on all our tours! In the neighborhoods we visit, usually there are more than half a dozen different food shops serving the same food/dish. We have carefully evaluated them to make sure we visit and eat the best one possible. Our tours are more about quality than quantity. On our full day tours we also serve high end Turkish main courses and kebabs. For instance, on our Two Continents tour, we eat the best ice-cream and döner kebab not only in Istanbul, but in the whole of Turkey. If the price of a food matters, then there is no other more expensive alternatives than what we pay for those dishes.

So, how are our tours still quite reasonably priced compared to others? The answer is simple: We believe you would still book and enjoy our tours if the price tag was 30% higher; but, it is our philosophy to offer exceptional experiences at a reasonable price. This is our value.

Can I shop on the tour?

Yes and no. We never visit a food shop for shopping purposes. However, we do walk some individual neighborhoods, local backstreets and food shops and find their prices for some food items (e.g. saffron, Turkish delight, spices, molasses and other local food products) to be significantly more reasonable compared to touristic areas. We don’t frown upon our guests making quick purchases. But, we kindly remind you to consider your fellow foodies and be mindful of making them wait for you. We will be more than happy to give you directions to help you find your way back to any of the places we visit on our tours, by yourself following the tour. We do not receive any discounts, commissions or kickbacks from any of the establishments we visit on our tours.

How much walking is involved?

Not more than you can handle! The pace is generally comfortable for everyone. The walking distance of our tours is around 2-3kms over flat terrain. ** Please note that there are some stairs and steep walking on our Flavours of the Old City tour. If climbing stairs is a problem for yourself or any of your guests, please do consider booking another of our tours.

If you have any other mobility concerns, please advise us during the booking process so we can consider options with you.

While at most of our food stops and restaurants we sit down at tables and chairs to enjoy our food, there are usually just 1-2 stops where we will eat standing up.

How can I pay for the food tour?

A deposit is required up-front to secure your tour, which can be paid via credit card or PayPal. The remainder of the tour cost can be paid in cash to your foodie guide at the commencement of the tour.

Do I get a discount if I join more than 1 tour?

Yes, we offer a 10% discount to those who join more than one walk.

Can children join the tours?

Children are more than welcome to our tours, and it’s free for any child 6 years or under! 50% child discount applies for children aged 7-13.

Do you offer tours in any language other than English?

Unfortunately not. Tours are offered only in English at this time.

Which tour should I take?

All of them, eventually!

Are there bathroom stops?

Of course there are! Your tour guide will let you know when the next restroom opportunity is approaching throughout the day.

Will I need dinner afterwards?

Most possibly, no. At the end of the tour (around 4pm), most people are stuffed and dinner afterwards is not necessary.

Should I tip my tour guide?

If you had a great time gratuities are accepted by our tour guides.

Can I join the tour if I am a vegetarian, pescatarian or have other food restrictions or allergies?

Absolutely! Please note, however, that there are only specific tours where we can provide enough food options for vegetarian and pescatarian guests, and those foodies with nut, gluten, and dairy allergies/preferences. Not all of our tours are suitable for guests with dietary restrictions, but we will likely have at least one tour that fits in with your food choices. Please email us at info@istanbulonfood.com and ask for tours available to your allergies/preferences.

How much will I eat on the tour?

As much as you like! Depending on the tour, you will typically stop at between 7-12 places to sample dishes along the tour. You will be offered a portion size, and it’s up to you if you choose to eat less. At most of the food stops, you will be served multiple tastings.

What is included in the ticket price?

Our food tours include all food and drink tastings on the tour, as well as water and public transportation – and an English-speaking guide, of course.

What is the cancellation policy?

Our cancellation policy is quite relaxed and enjoyable from your end. We simply require a minimum 24-hours notice of a cancellation for a full deposit refund. We are good guys and we believe if you need to cancel your tour with us, there is an important reason behind it.

Can I book a private tour?

Of course! If you have a larger group, or just wish for a private tour, please contact us so we can arrange options for a private tour.

Do you offer hotel collection?

No. We have a central meeting point and detailed instructions to reach the meeting point are provided upon booking.

How should I dress during a tour?

Flavours of the Old City tour runs through conservative and traditional part of Istanbul and therefore you may want to dress accordingly. For all our other food tours, feel free to dress your own way, but make sure that you wear comfortable walking shoes and weather-appropriate clothing.

Do the tours still run if it rains or snows?

Yes. All of our tours are held rain, snow or shine. In the event of inclement weather, we will be able to go inside many of the establishments on the tour. You should still dress appropriately for the day’s weather conditions.