Can you get a visa to Iran easily? Yes, you can arrange a visa for Iran yourself and you won’t need a visa agency. A visa on arrival can be obtained as of lately as well. But when I was preparing my trip to Iran that wasn’t possible yet and therefore arranged my visa for Iran with the Iranian embassy.
If you are travelling to Iran you’d need a tourist visa. How do you arrange a visa for Iran?
How to get a visa via the Iranian embassy in your country?
Many visa agencies will give you the idea that you can only get a tourist visa for Iran if you have an invitation. This invitation is also known as an authorization code. This isn’t correct. You can arrange a visa by yourself without having to deal with an agency and without needing an invitation. I’ve been to the embassy in The Netherlands and this blog has been written according to my experiences.
Which documents do you need for a visa for Iran?
• A fully completed and signed request form. This form can be found on the website of the Iranian Embassy.
• A pass photo: this must be a recent one, with an even background and has to be printed on high quality photo printing paper. Measurements need to be 35mm * 45mm with a frontal view of the applicant. No head cover is allowed, unless for religious reasons (face still needs to be visible).
• A passport and a copy of your passport. Your passport has to be valid for at least 6 more months after departure from Iran. Your passport also needs to have two empty pages, next to each other. There can be no Israeli stamps in your passport.
• Healthcare card and a copy of this card.
What to look out for when requesting a visa for Iran?
• Maximum stay in Iran is thirty days.
• When requesting the visa, you need to list the countries you have visited prior. Pay attention to not list Israel.
• You have to specify your occupation. “Blogger” for example is seen being a journalist in which case you aren’t eligible for a tourist visa.
• After getting your visa it remains valid for three months.
How does requesting a visa at the Iranian embassy work?
• You can arrange your visa by visiting the Iranian embassy in your country. You need to bring above mentioned documents and hand them over. A few business days later you can pick up your passport with visa or you can have it send to you by courier/ registered post.
• The embassy is open on Mondays, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday from 14:00 until 16:00.
• The embassy is not open on local and Iranian holidays.
• Make sure you arrive at the embassy on time, so you will be at the front of the line, in which you will be helped quickly. I advise to be there at around 30 minutes prior.
• As a woman, you can show respect to the rules of Iran by adjusting your clothing accordingly. For example, you could wear a shawl as scarf.
• A visa costs € 50,- (in the Netherlands) Besides that, you’ll also pay € 10, – for having your passport send. You have to use your bank card to pay the € 50, – and you can pay the € 10, – in cash or by card.
• The embassy has a copy machine, where you can make copies for a fee. You have to do this before it’s your turn!
• The embassy also has a machine where you can make pass photos.
My experience when requesting a visa for Iran
It’s easy to fill in the form online. I arrived on time (around 30 minutes before opening) at the embassy and was the first to draw a number. Best advise is be on time! I had to wait for about twenty minutes and when it was finally my turn it only took a couple of minutes. As I am not living near The embassy I decided to have my passport send back to me. After 4 days, I received the passport with the visa. In short, the procedure was very smooth!
Visa on arrival Iran
You can also buy your visa on arrival in Teheran, Esfahan, Shiraz, Mashad and Tabriz at the airport. At the moment this costs about € 75, -. The land borders don’t have this possibility to arrange a visa on arrival. Carefully check beforehand which documents you need!
At the moment, information regarding contact information from the first place of stay and possibly hotel or hostel reservation are needed as well as a proof of health insurance and two pass photos. The embassy advises travelers to contact their airline to inform them that they are travelling to Iran per Visa on Arrival.
More information can be found on the website of the Iranian embassy.
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