In the past, distance education was used as a method to meet the educational needs of citizens with limited options to attend an institution of higher education. Nowadays, it has become irreplaceable in higher education thanks to developments in instructional technology. But the question of why students choose distance education is still important. The purpose of this study was to determine Turkish students' reasons for choosing distance education and to investigate how these reasons differ depending on their financial circumstances. The author used a Chi squared Automatic Interaction Detector (CHAID) analysis to determine 18,856 Turkish students' reasons for choosing distance education. Results of the research revealed that Turkish students chose distance education not because of geographical limitations, family-related problems or economic difficulties, but for such reasons as already being engaged in their profession, increasing their knowledge, and seeking promotion to a better position.