Its packed, its convenient but can get expensive on some routes
The Dolmus – or shared taxi – is a type of minibus that runs on defined and controlled routes. They seat between 14 – 18 passengers but this limit is often ignored by drivers and passengers. The buses are privately owned and the routes are purchased. Fares are clearly displayed near to the driver and are fixed. The frequency of the service is also displayed. Times vary depending on season and time of day. It’s worth checking the evening times and the last Dolmus home if you are going out for the night.
The Dolmus displays the route in the front window. Stand anywhere on its route, wave at it and if the driver thinks he can stuff you in, he will pick you up. If you are standing at the side of the road they will often flash their lights and sound their horn to see if you want to be picked up. Just put out your arm and they will stop.
When you get on check the price, say where you are going and pay the driver. It is much easier to pay when you get on than when you get off as this slows down the journey for everyone.
Don’t be surprised if, when the Dolmus is busy and you are sat near the front, that people hand you their money. The money is not for you; you need to hand it to the driver. You may need to pass back the change too. Make sure you keep the cash visible at all times as you don’t want to get into a dispute over short change etc.
The male / female divide is important to some sectors of the community so generally men sit next to men and women next to women. If you can’t find a suitable seat then stand. It is also very good manners to give up your seat to ladies if there are no other seats available. Good manners never go out of fashion!!!
When you get near to your stop just say ‘here’ and catch the drivers eye in his mirror. They will pull over where it is convenient (but not always safe to do so). If you don’t know your stop agree with the driver when you get on. If you want to say it in Turkish, you say (phonetic) “Moo side be yer day” which means stop at a convenient place, or “in ejek var”.
For local timetables see here.
Prices vary. Those routes heavily used by tourists are generally more expensive, eg the journey between Fethiye-Ovacik-Hisaronu-Olundeniz.