How to Get Iran Visa
* Important Note: “All the information are FYI and provisional. Please check with your airline or an Iranian consulate in your country before setting out to travel to Iran. Laws or regulation may change without prior notice.”
Most but not all nationals of all countries can apply and are likely to get that visa without much of hassle. In order to travel to Iran for tourism and general purposes you need a tourist visa. There are two types of tourist visa for Iran:
1. Standard Tourist Visa
This visa is issued ahead of your travel date and you received it at one of Iran’s embassies, consulates or mailed to you before your planned departure to Iran. Good for those who like to plan ahead and make sure everything is in order before boarding the airplane.
A new “e-visa” system has been put in place since January 2017, that allows travelers to get their authorization code without going through a tour operator. You still need to visit the embassy to pick up your visa though, but you no longer need to visit the embassy to apply.
In short, it is not a real e-visa. Instead, it is a way to get the authorization code needed to apply for your visa (see below) without the help of a tour operator.
2. Iran Visa On Arrival (VOA) or Iran airport visa
You apply and get this visa up on arrival. The scope and purpose of the visa is to give a number of nationalities to get their visa at the main entrance gateways of Iran like Tehran, Isfahan, Shiraz, Tabriz Kish and Mashahd airport and more recently at a couple southern ports of Iran at the Persian gulf.
There are pros and cons to either of these visa categories. The Visa on arrival is a relatively new thing and works great most of the time but not always. It is perhaps a great option if you like to take the chance and get your visa up on arrival. The Visa on arrival is cheaper because you don’t pay us that $60 for the processing fee but you are still going to have to pay for consular fees when you are receiving your visa.
Note: Visa on arrival fees that you need to pay in cash at the airport to get your visa. Add to that some 20 Euro for the Travel insurance fees. These fees are subject to change at around March of each year.
Iran Visa on Airport Needed Documents:
- A confirmed return ticket
- A valid passport with at least 6 months validity
- A photo to be attached to the Iran visa application form. Bring two passport size pictures with you. recently visa officers are using digital camera to take the needed pictures but still try to bring your own pictures just in case.
- Visa fee, which is payable to the Iran Visa & Passport Office at the airport. Iran airport visa fee depends on the applicant’s nationality. I am going to leave a list of visa fees that we just got from MFA down below.
- On case by case bases sometime an invitation letter or hotel reservation voucher is asked for. The invitation letter can be sent from the Iranian travel agency to Iran Ministry of Foreign Affairs at least 48 hours before your arrival to Iran airport.
- Travel insurance clearly showing that it is valid for Iran.
Always check the needed documents with the consulate, as there may be differences from one consulate to another.
Where can you get Iran VOA?
Iran visa on arrival has 14-30 days validity and issued currently at the six airport & ports in Iran. The number of these gateways are in rise and hopefully soon you might be able to get your Visa on arrival at any point of entry. But for now these are the airports/ports that you issue visa on arrival for tourism related travels to Iran on a case by case base.
- IKA: Tehran Imam Khomeini International Airport
- THR: Mehrabad International Airport
- MHD: Mashhad International Airport
- SYZ: Shiraz International Airport
- TBZ: Tabriz International Airport
- ISF: Isfahan International Airport
- BND: Bandare Abbas Port.
- Shahid Bahonar Harbor, Bandare Abbas
- KIH: Kish international Airport
Travel insurance for Iran
In general it is always recommended to be covered by a reliable travel insurance when you travel abroad to a country where you are not covered by your domestic insurance. But in the case of Iran, this is mandatory, as you have to be covered by a travel insurance to get your visa for Iran (does not matter what kind of visa). To be accepted at the time of issuing your visa, your insurance policy must clearly state that it is valid for Iran.
Iran Visa on Arrival Tips:
- Journalists and reporters on mission cannot get Iran visa on arrival.
- Iranian nationals holding other nationality’s passport are not allowed to get Iran visa on arrival.
- Iran visa on arrival is issued for tourist purposes only (ordinary passport). Diplomatic passport, official passports, etc. cannot apply for this type of Iran visa.
- Iran visa on Arrival is not issued for USA, UK, Canada, Colombia, Somalia, Bangladesh, Jordan, Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan and India nationalities. US , Canadian, and British Citizens are required to either be on a personal or general guided tour.