Planning a trip to Iran in 2023? If so, you will need to navigate the process of obtaining an Iran visa. Iran’s visa application process can be somewhat complex and time-consuming, but with the right information and preparation, it can be successfully navigated. In this guide, we’ll provide you with a comprehensive overview of the Iran visa process in 2023, including the types of visas available, the required documents, the application process, and any changes or updates to the process that may occur throughout the year. Whether you’re traveling for business or pleasure, this guide will help you prepare for your trip to Iran and ensure a smooth visa application process.
Types of Iran Visa
Iran offers several types of visas for visitors depending on the purpose of their travel. Here are some of the most common types of Iran visas:
- Tourist visa
- Business visa
- Student visa
- Transit visa
- Pilgrimage visa
- Work Visa
- Media Visa
- Marriage Visa
- Medical Visa
Who must require an Iran visa?
Most foreign visitors to Iran are required to obtain a visa before entering the country. There are only a few countries whose citizens are exempt from obtaining a visa or are eligible for a visa on arrival. It is always recommended to check the latest visa regulations before planning your travel to Iran.
Citizens of the following countries are eligible for an Iran visa on arrival in Iran;
Citizens of the following countries are eligible to enter and stay in Iran without an Iran Visa;
- Armenia – up to 90 days within 180 days
- Azerbaijan – up to 30 days
- Bolivia – up to 30 days
- China – up to 21 days
- Egypt – up to 20 days
- Georgia – up to 45 days
- Iraq – up to 45 days*
- Hong Kong – up to 21 days
- Lebanon – up to 30 days
- Macau – up to 21 days
- Malaysia – up to 15 days
- Oman – up to 30 days
- Syria – up to 90 days within 180 days
- Turkey – up to 3 months
- United Arab Emirates – up to 30 days
- Venezuela – up to 15 days
Citizens of the following countries must require an Iran visa to visit Iran;
- Sri Lanka
- United Kingdom
- United States
Iran visa on arrival policy
Iran’s visa-on-arrival policy allows citizens of certain countries to obtain a tourist visa upon arrival at the airport in Iran. The visa on arrival is valid for a maximum of 30 days and can be extended for another 30 days while in Iran.
For the following airports eligible countries can apply for an Iran visa on arrival;
- Ahvaz International Airport (Ahvaz).
- Bandar Abbas International Airport (Bandar Abbas).
- Imam Khomeini International Airport (Tehran).
- Isfahan International Airport (Isfahan).
- Kerman Airport (Kerman).
- Kish International Airport (Kish Island).
- Larestan International Airport (Lar).
- Mashhad International Airport (Mashad).
- Mehrabad International Airport (Tehran).
- Qeshm International Airport (Qeshm Island).
- Shiraz International Airport (Shiraz).
- Tabriz International Airport (Tabriz).
- Urmia Airport (Urmia).
Required documents to apply for an Iran Visa
The required documents for an Iran visa can vary depending on the type of visa and the applicant’s nationality. However, here are some general documents that are typically required for most types of Iran visas:
- A valid passport with at least six months validity beyond the intended stay in Iran
- Completed Iran visa application form
- Passport-sized photo(s)
- Travel itinerary, including flight and hotel reservations or an invitation letter from an Iranian sponsor
- Proof of travel insurance valid for Iran
- Bank statement or other proof of financial means to support the trip
- Proof of employment or student status
- For business visas, a letter of invitation from an Iranian company is usually required
How to apply?
There are several steps to apply for an Iran visa:
- Iran offers various types of visas, including tourist, business, student, and transit visas. Check the requirements for the type of visa you need and gather the required documents.
- You can download the visa application form from the website of the Iranian embassy or consulate in your country.
- The visa fee varies depending on your nationality and the type of visa you are applying for.
- Once you have completed the visa application form and paid the visa fee, submit your application along with the required documents to the Iranian embassy or consulate in your country.
- The visa processing time can vary, but it usually takes several weeks.
- Once your visa has been processed, you can collect it from the Iranian embassy or consulate.
Requirements and procedure for Iran Visa on Arrival
To obtain an Iran visa on arrival, visitors must meet the following requirements:
- Hold a passport valid for at least six months from the date of entry.
- Have a confirmed return ticket or onward travel ticket.
- Have a confirmed hotel reservation or an invitation letter from an Iranian sponsor.
- Have travel insurance valid for Iran.
- Have sufficient funds to cover the expenses of the trip.
Once you arrive at the airport in Iran, you can proceed to the visa at the arrival desk. You will need to present your passport, travel insurance, and other required documents. The visa-on-arrival fee must be paid in cash, so it is important to have enough local currency (Iranian Rials) with you.
After paying the fee, you will receive a visa sticker on your passport, which will allow you to stay in Iran for up to 30 days. You can also apply for a visa extension for another 30 days while in Iran if needed.
Iran Visa Costs
The cost of an Iran visa can vary depending on several factors, including the type of visa, the applicant’s nationality, and the embassy or consulate where the application is processed. Here are some general guidelines for Iran visa costs:
- Tourist visa: The cost of a tourist visa for Iran can range from $20 to USD 150
- Business visa: The cost of a business visa for Iran can range from $50 to USD 150
- Student visa: The cost of a student visa for Iran can range from $10 to USD 50
- Transit visa: The cost of a transit visa for Iran can range from $20 to USD 50
Iran Visa Validity and Extension
The validity and extension of an Iran visa can vary depending on the type of visa and the applicant’s nationality. Here are some general guidelines for Iran visa validity and extension:
- Tourist visa: A tourist visa for Iran is typically valid for up to 30 days and can be extended for another 30 days while in Iran. However, the total stay in Iran cannot exceed 90 days in 6 months.
- Business visa: A business visa for Iran is typically valid for up to 90 days and can be extended while in Iran.
- Student visa: A student visa for Iran is typically valid for the duration of the academic program.
- Transit visa: A transit visa for Iran is typically valid for up to 7 days and cannot be extended.
Pilgrimage places in Iran
Iran is a popular destination for pilgrims of various religions. Here are some of the most important pilgrimage sites in Iran:
- Mashhad: Mashhad is the holiest city in Iran and a major pilgrimage site for Shia Muslims. It is home to the mausoleum of Imam Reza, the eighth Shia Imam.
- Qom: Qom is another important city for Shia Muslims and home to the mausoleum of Fatima Masumeh, the sister of Imam Reza.
- Shiraz: Shiraz is a city in southern Iran and a popular pilgrimage site for Zoroastrians. It is home to the Tomb of Hafez, the famous Persian poet.
- Yazd: Yazd is a city in central Iran and a major pilgrimage site for Zoroastrians. It is home to the Fire Temple of Zoroastrians, where a flame has been burning for over 1,500 years.
- Samanid Mausoleum: The Samanid Mausoleum is located in the city of Bukhara in Uzbekistan, but it is considered an important pilgrimage site for many Iranians. It is the final resting place of Ismail Samani, the founder of the Samanid dynasty.
- Shah Cheragh: The Shrine of Shah Cheragh is located in the city of Shiraz and is considered an important pilgrimage site for Shia Muslims. It is the final resting place of the brothers Ahmad and Muhammad, who were descendants of Imam Musa al-Kadhim.
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