From various sources, you may have learned about Iran tourist visa and how to obtain it. Generally speaking, people come up with three major approaches to apply for a tourist visa to Iran. I’m trying to introduce these three outlooks so that you see which one could be the best solution for you.
Please keep in mind that I don’t consider any of the methods impossible or wrong. The reason to publish this post is to let you know what you should expect in each method. The decision will be yours.
Here are the three ways people choose to get their visas to Iran:
1. Apply for an Iran Tourist Visa upon Arrival
Some travelers think as they have read or heard that Iran grants visa to foreign tourists upon arrival, the easiest way to get it is to take no steps before arriving in Iran. So, when they arrive in Iran, they expect the tourist visa to be easily issued for them, but it’s not always the case!
Since the announcement of this news by Iranian authorities, several changes and exceptions have been applied to this arrangement. First of all, UK and US citizens as well as some other nationalities have never been included in the list of the nationalities obtaining their visas upon arrival. Secondly, this was meant for the travelers who wanted to visit Iran in less than a couple of weeks. To stay for a longer duration, they have had to extend their visas. To renew such visas, you will have to go to the same port of entry to renew your visa. Are you sure you will get it extended?
In addition, we’ve been recommended by the ministry of foreign affairs to inform our tour applicants that they should apply for a visa before they arrive in Imam Khomeini International Airport (IKIA) if they have planned to obtain their tourist visas upon arrival over there! Such visa application process could be both started by them or us.
Tip: If this method is how you want to obtain the visa, make sure you’ve applied for it and received the visa authorization number. Then, when you arrive it the port of entry, submit that number to get your visas in your passports. You can get this visa either by applying yourself or letting your tour operator to apply for you. The result should be the visa authorization number in your hand.
2. Apply for Iran Tourist Visa by Yourselves
Some independent-type travelers with lots of experience in traveling overseas select this option as they plan every step of their ways themselves. This is not an impossible solution to obtain a tourist visa to Iran, but could bring about some unexpected obstacle in your ways, consume a lot of your time, lead to issuing of visa in a time which is too soon or too late, etc.
Remember that you’re traveling to a country that is very much unknown to you in terms of how its administration system works. You’ll have to expect things not working as you had predicted. The reason is that applying for tourist visa and obtaining it isn’t exactly the same process all over the world. Also, from cultural point of view, you may not be treated exactly like how German, Australian, etc embassy staff will respond you.
Tip: If you prefer to choose this method, spare some more time to make sure you will be able to obtain your visas in due time.
3. Leave it to Your Tour Operator
Some decide to leave visa application process to their tour operators. These are usually the people who select a tour package planned by local tour operators or their agents in their own countries. This may not seem very professional by the second group, but it definitely reflects the long-term experience of the travelers who have seen very different countries of the world.
This method saves a lot of time for the foreign tourists who want to plan everything ahead of time and prefer not to have any headaches in the process of visa application to Iran. On the other hand, as it doesn’t take a lot of time by the local tour operators, some of them don’t even include extra charges for such service. It could be part of the package.
Tip: If you prefer to receive the visa in your passport using this method, you should remember that you will pay the official authorities for issuing the visa anyway – like in other methods. It’s a fee paid to them directly.
If you are interested in learning more about the process carried out by a local tour operator to obtain Iran tourist visa, you can read:
- Iran Visa Services explained by Destination Iran
What Do You Think?
You may have gone through one of these methods or intend to do so. You may have some questions in this regard as well. Please feel free to pose your questions here. I’m sure you understand that I cannot answer some questions like why you’ve not been granted visa in certain cases, etc. That’s something you can ask the ministry of foreign affairs!