How to Get From SAW Airport to Kadikoy: 5 Ways (Metro, Bus, Transfer, More) + Detailed Guide 


You’ve packed your bags, whipped up an awesome travel plan, and are ready to travel to Istanbul — but wait, how will you travel from SAW Airport to Kadikoy?

That’s where this guide comes in! In our airport travel guide, we explain 5 ways of getting to Kadikoy from Sabiha Gökçen Airport, including taking the Istanbul metro, Havabus (airport shuttle bus), taxi, private transfer, and regular bus

There are two major airports in Istanbul: the huge Istanbul Airport (IST) on the European side and the smaller yet still very busy Sabiha Gökçen Airport (SAW) on the Asian side. Since you’re here, we’re going to assume you’re flying into Sabiha Gokcen Airport. 🙂

QUICK TIPS | SAW Airport to Kadikoy Travel Tips

SAW Airport is mostly used for domestic flights and budget airlines — Pegasus Airlines (Turkey’s biggest low-cost airline) has its headquarters at Sabiha Gokcen Airport. Thankfully, both SAW Airport and Kadikoy are located on the Asian side of Istanbul, which makes traveling between the two locations easier. 

The distance from SAW Airport to Kadikoy is about 34 kilometers (21 miles), and there are many transportation options from Sabiha Gokcen Airport to Kadikoy — here’s a quick cheat sheet: 

Cheapest option: The Metro 
Most comfortable option: Private transfer 
Quickest option: Taxi (although it also depends on the traffic!) or the metro

📍 The metro works from 6 am to midnight on weekdays, and 24 hours on weekends. This is an excellent option if your hotel or accommodation is near one of the metro stations.

📍 Rush hour is from 7 am to 9 am and again from 4 pm to 6 pm+ . Take this into consideration if you plan to take a bus or taxi.

📍 If you’re arriving into SAW Airport late at night, your best option is booking a private transfer.

BY METRO | SAW to Kadikoy by Metro

One of the most common questions that we get asked is, Is there a metro that goes to Sabiha Gokcen Airport?  — and we’re happy to report that yes, there is! 

The M4 Metro line, whose full name is the Kadikoy-Sabiha Gokcen Airport Metro Line, is the metro that you’ll use to travel between Kadikoy and SAW Airport. 

The M4 Metro begins at Kadıköy Station (conveniently located within walking distance to the Kadıköy ferry station and IETT bus terminal) and ends at Sabiha Gokcen (SAW) Airport. This is great, because there’s no way one can miss the airport station — it’s literally the terminal station. 🙂 

The length of the M4 metro is almost 34 km and has a total of 23 stations. It takes about an hour to travel from Kadikoy to SAW Airport on the metro, plus an extra 5 minutes to walk from the underground terminal station to the airport lobby. 

The M4 runs every 4 minutes (during peak hours) to 10 minutes during regular hours. On the weekend, the frequency is a little lower. 

Comfort & Amenities

The M4 metro line comes in either a four- or eight-car train. It may get crowded on the metro during peak times (at 9 am and at 5 pm), although there should still be plenty of seats if you get on at one of the terminal stations (SAW or Kadikoy). 

Some metro trains have a charging port on the wall, and each metro station has elevators for travelers with large luggage. There are  escalators at most metro stations. Likewise, at the SAW Airport metro station, there are moving walkways that make it easier to get between the station and airport. 

Patiently waiting for the M4 at the Sabiha Gokcen Airport metro station 🙂

Departure Times

The Istanbul Metro works from 6 am to midnight on weekdays, and 24 hours on weekends (Saturday and Sunday). 

The Istanbul Metro agency has a very convenient page where you can check the working hours of the metro line that you’re planning to take. Click here and then click the pink circle with the M4 (this is the metro line you’ll take).

Where it says “Choose the station,” open the drop-down and choose the metro station that’s closest to you (which is most likely going to be Sabiha Gökçen Havalimanı if you’re traveling from the airport or Kadikoy if you’re traveling to the airport). 

After, click the direction you’ll travel. 
Kadikoy → Sabiha Gökçen Havalimanı is if you travel from Kadikoy to SAW Airport. 
Sabiha Gökçen Havalimanı → Kadikoy is if you arrive to SAW Airport and want to travel to Kadikoy. 

From there, choose the date that you plan to travel. Additionally, you can click ‘First and Last Train’ to see what time the metro line will begin working and when it stops.  Be sure to keep this in mind, especially if you have a flight that’s early in the morning or late at night. If your flight falls outside of the metro’s working hours, other options include the bus (whose first departure is at 4:15 am) or a taxi. 

Payment

As you can probably tell, the cheapest way of getting from SAW Airport to Kadikoy is via the metro. The price of a one-way metro ticket is 15 TL (as of 2023) and no, that’s not a typo. 🙂 

There are multiple ticket machines (called biletmatik) near the metro entrance at the airport. You can even buy an IstanbulKart if you plan to use public transport a lot. Although the machines usually accept credit cards, sometimes this function is broken — be sure to have small banknotes just in case. There are a few ATMs near the metro entrance and inside the airport.

PROSCONS

📍 Avoids traffic: Since the metro is underground, you can escape the legendary Istanbul traffic 😉  

📍 Direct: Goes directly between SAW Airport and Kadikoy (although if you live in Moda, you’ll need to walk a bit) 

📍Cost-effective: Taking the metro is the cheapest way of traveling from SAW Airport to Kadikoy!

📍 Eco-friendly 
📍 Seating: During rush hour, you’ll need to be quick if you want to secure yourself a seat

📍 Limited luggage space: If you have luggage bigger than a carry-on, you might find the metro uncomfortable

BY AIRPORT SHUTTLE BUS 

The Havabus (stylized as HAVABÜS) is the official shuttle bus from SAW Airport. It has three lines: SAW to Taksim, SAW to Kadikoy, and SAW to Yenisahra. 

You will take the SAW Airport to Kadikoy line. The travel time from SAW to Kadikoy is about 60 minutes, although this also depends on traffic. In Kadikoy, the Havabus departs from the Kadıköy Rıhtım İETT Bus Stop (click here for Google Map coordinates).

IMPORTANT NOTE: There are two airport shuttle bus companies in Istanbul: the HavaIST, which services only the “big” Istanbul Airport (IST), and the HavaBus, which services transportation out of Sabiha Gokcen Airport (SAW). Make sure you’re on the correct bus. 🙂 

Comfort & Amenities

You’re guaranteed a seat (buses leave when full) and there’s plenty of baggage storage under the bus. The seats are comfortable and fairly spacious, and there is an overhead shelf to store small items. 

Departure Times

The Havabus airport bus departs every half hour, starting at 4:15 am from Kadikoy, and 6:30 am from SAW Airport. The Havabus might be a better option than the metro if you have a very early flight out of SAW, since the metro starts working at 6 am on weekdays (on weekends it’s 24/7).
Click here for Havabus departure times.  

Payment

You can pay by cash or credit card. The current price is 77 TL per person for a one-way ticket. 

PROSCONS

📍 No need to struggle with luggage: There’s a huge luggage compartment under the bus

📍 Guaranteed seats: No need to wrestle for a seat 🙂 (Plus, they’re comfortable!)

📍 Early departures: If you’re traveling from Kadikoy to SAW Airport, the earliest departure is 4:15 in the morning 
📍May take longer than metro due to traffic 

📍 More expensive than the metro 

BY PRIVATE TRANSFER 

If you’re looking to avoid the hassle and stress of planning your trip from the airport, taking a private transfer from SAW Airport to Kadikoy is definitely a great option. This is the most convenient way of traveling from the airport, as you’ll get door-to-door service and complete comfort (no need to figure out timetables, lug around bags, etc.)

Comfort & Amenities

Booking a private transfer from SAW Airport is the most comfortable option: You’ll have someone waiting for you at the airport with a sign when you arrive,  the seats are super plush, and you won’t have to stress about any of the planning!

Departure Times

Most flexible, because you can choose the exact departure time (if you’re traveling to the airport).  

Payment

You can pre-book private transfers online, which means you won’t have to worry about fumbling for cash:

PROSCONS

📍 The most convenient option: no need to worry about your luggage, figuring out where the metro / Havabus is, or dealing with a language barrier

📍 Safety: Reputable private transfer services carry out background checks and employ drivers who can speak English and/or other languages. 

📍 Drive in comfort: Private transfer vans are spacious, well-maintained, and have comfortable plush seats. You can start relaxing after a long flight from the moment you take a seat!
📍 Private transfers are still subject to Istanbul’s traffic, but at least you’ve paid in advance and won’t be overcharged for the extra time (compared to taxis) 🙂 

📍 The most expensive option 

BY TAXI

We usually don’t recommend taking a regular taxi from Sabiha Gökçen Airport for a few reasons: there are much better options (see above 😉), you might get stuck in traffic, and the biggest reason — there’s a high chance you might get scammed.  

There’s an official taxi rank in SAW Airport, when you go outside of arrivals. While we haven’t encountered any issues personally, there have been numerous reports of scams and rude behavior — at the time of writing, their Google reviews page has a 2.5 out of 5 rating.  

As of October 2023, the average price of a taxi from SAW Airport to Kadikoy is 600 to 750 TL for a regular yellow taxi. Large sprinter vans will cost an extra +25%, and business taxis (black Mercedes, BMW, Audi, etc) are an extra +50%. 

If you plan to take a taxi from SAW Airport, we recommend booking a taxi ahead of time through a site like KiwiTaxi. You’ll see the final price ahead of time, the driver will meet you with a nameplate at the airport (i.e. you won’t get lost!), and there are different options to choose from. (i.e. economy, comfort, minibus for groups, business/luxury, etc)

BY REGULAR BUS 

There are a handful of regular buses that go from SAW Airport to Kadikoy. However, we don’t recommend them because there are better ways of getting to Kadikoy — i.e. the Havabus is faster, the metro is more convenient, a private transfer is more comfortable, etc.

Here are some of the busses that run between Sabiha Gokcen Airport and Kadikoy:

OTHER HELPFUL BLOG POSTS

We have some other useful blog posts about Sabiha Gokcen, traveling around Turkey, and more – click the title if you’d like to check them out:

✈️ Best Airports Near SAW Airport — In case you have an early flight and want to be closer to the airport. 😉 

✈️ Travel Around Turkey by Plane — Helpful travel tips if you plan to take a domestic flight in Turkey. 

✈️ How to Plan a Trip to Turkey — If you’re overwhelmed with planning your Turkey trip, this is a great guide to help you get started!

Photo Credits: M4 Metro stops via metroduraklari

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