A simulation-based approach for improving the largest border crossing between Europe and Turkey

Ulengin F., ÇEKYAY B., Isik M., Ozaydin O., Kabak Ö., Toktaş-Palut P., ...More

Transport Policy, vol.114, pp.350-363, 2021 (SSCI) identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 114
  • Publication Date: 2021
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.tranpol.2021.10.011
  • Journal Name: Transport Policy
  • Journal Indexes: Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, Aquatic Science & Fisheries Abstracts (ASFA), Business Source Elite, Business Source Premier, Geobase, Index Islamicus, PAIS International, Pollution Abstracts, Public Affairs Index, Civil Engineering Abstracts
  • Page Numbers: pp.350-363
  • Keywords: Border crossing, Policy suggestion, Process analysis, Simulation
  • Yıldız Technical University Affiliated: Yes


Kapıkule border crossing, connecting Turkey to Bulgaria, is one of the largest customs gates at Europe via road transportation. Although it has a high capacity and large land area, there occurs long delays in the custom services due to inefficient operations resulting with long queues of trucks and long service times. To overcome this problem, in this study we investigated the strategies that could be implemented to increase the efficiency of the Kapıkule border crossing. In-depth interviews were conducted with the Kapıkule customs gate authorities to determine the process flows. The current situation at the gate was analysed using discrete event simulation. Furthermore, several improvement scenarios were tested to identify those that will have the highest impact on reducing the queues and delays at the border. As a result, specific suggestions were delivered for the import and export processes. According to the results, Turkey's export to European countries by road is expected to increase by at least 5% by the suggested improvements made at the Kapıkule Border.