Ask Mehmet: Valentine's Day in Turkey

  • Published
  • By Mehmet Birbiri
  • 39th Air Base Wing Public Affairs
Ask Mehmet is a forum for people to ask questions of the local area, as well as the outer confines of the region and the country as a whole. To submit a question, send an email with the subject "Ask Mehmet" to Then, look for an answer to the question on the 39th Air Base Wing's official website at and Incirlik Air Base's Facebook page.

Question: Mehmet, do the Turks celebrate St. Valentine's Day?

Answer: Although it is not as old as in the Western world, St. Valentine's Day is celebrated in Turkey. Shopping malls and big shops are decorated with hearts and Cupids, and TV channels are filled with Valentine's Day ads.

Banks even offer special credit interest rates for Valentine's Day expenses.

Some Turkish airlines will charge only one euro between Istanbul and any European city for a second passenger in a party for those traveling that day. Many hotels and restaurants have special programs and menus for that day and are usually fully booked. Many shops, especially jewelry stores, design and prepare gifts for the day.

Just as I'm sure is the case in the U.S., there are some in Turkey who feel simplicity is best and a bouquet of flowers is enough to express your love.