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Visa for Iran questions

Travel Forums Africa and The Middle East Visa for Iran questions

1. Posted by Mel. (Travel Guru 4567 posts) 9y

How long before i travel to Iran, can I get the visa? If I want to go, in December, is July too early to apply, for the visa?
Does it start on the day of issue, or on the day I arrive, in Iran?

Mel

2. Posted by wouterrr (Travel Guru 3379 posts) 9y

for me it took approximately 5 weeks. i arranged it with a travelagency. you also need an invitation letter. this is basically a two nights stay in an expensive hotel in Tehran. the visa has a validity of two months in which u can stay 30 days, it starts on the day u enter Iran (so u can enter for last at the last day of the validity date, and then you can stay 30 days).

it not so difficult to extend your visa at the so called police departments of alien affairs. if u are lucky u can extend up to three times for about 3-5 days each. i was only able to extend 2 times (probably because i was a guy:(). u can avoid the costs for an invitation letter by booking a room in a top-end hotel in Tehran. supply the reservation slip when applying for the visa. if u got the visa cancel your hotelreservation (i discovered that too late).

So mel! are u going to Iran?

3. Posted by Mel. (Travel Guru 4567 posts) 9y

Yes. I am going to Iran. Nervous boyfriend says, I should go, if I want, even if it makes him nervous.

I want to go, in December, for 9 days. My boyfriend should have enough days off work, by then.

So is this correct?
I book a hotel room, at fancy hotel, in Tehran. They will mail me or fax me a reservations slip. I send this with the visa application form, instead of an invitation letter.

I have to wait, until July, to apply, for the visa, because I cant hand over my passport, for 5 weeks, before then. I am going someplace every month, until then.

I send off visa form, fee, reservation slip. Then I wait for visa. Then I book the ticket, to Iran. Then the 30 days I am allowed to stay in Iran, will start in December, when I arrive in Iran.

Is the above all correct?

4. Posted by wouterrr (Travel Guru 3379 posts) 9y

Quoting Mel.

So is this correct?
I book a hotel room, at fancy hotel, in Tehran. They will mail me or fax me a reservations slip. I send this with the visa application form, instead of an invitation letter.

I have to wait, until July, to apply, for the visa, because I cant hand over my passport, for 5 weeks, before then. I am going someplace every month, until then.

the hotelbooking is a trick. i can't guarantee that it works, but there is a good chance (it should work instead of an invitation letter and will save a lot of money). i don't know if authorities are aware of this trick by now (its worth a try). otherwise arrange with a travelagency.

I don't understand why u already want to start in July when u are going in december. u can easily start with the visa procedure in october or even later. it doesn't mean that your passport is there for 5 weeks. the procedure just takes long. the guys in Tehran first need to look at it, and need to decide wether u are going to spread atheism in Iran or not;). for the rest it seems correct.

I just found out that since 2006 tourists can get a (transit)visa for seven days when arriving at the airports of Tehran, Mashad, Tabriz or Shiraz. unfortunately ist not possible to extend this visa (u could give it a try with a bribe).

[ Edit: Edited on Feb 18, 2007, at 6:48 AM by wouterrr ]

5. Posted by Mel. (Travel Guru 4567 posts) 9y

Quoting wouterrr

the hotelbooking is a trick. i can't guarantee that it works, but there is a good chance (it should work instead of an invitation letter and will save a lot of money). i don't know if authorities are aware of this trick by now (its worth a try). otherwise arrange with a travelagency.

I don't understand why u already want to start in July when u are going in december. u can easily start with the visa procedure in october or even later. it doesn't mean that your passport is there for 5 weeks. the procedure just takes long. the guys in Tehran first need to look at it, and need to decide wether u are going to spread atheism in Iran or not;). for the rest it seems correct.

I just found out that since 2006 tourists can get a (transit)visa for seven days when arriving at the airports of Tehran, Mashad, Tabriz or Shiraz. unfortunately ist not possible to extend this visa (u could give it a try with a bribe).

I did that same hotel booking trick, when I went to cuba, to get the tourist card. They did not ask for my credit card number or any advance payment, so I just did not show up. When u booked the hotel room, in Iran, did u have to give your credit card number?

I suppose, I was planning to apply for the visa, in July, because that will be when I dont need my passport for anything. But I usually do things ahead of time. Having the visa and ticket will also prevent me from whimping out.

I like the sound of that transit visa, if it is easier to get, than the other visa. I could just go for 7 days instead. Can I get a transit visa, at the airport? How much does it cost? And can I fly out of the same airport, after the 7 days?

[ Edit: Edited on Feb 18, 2007, at 12:11 PM by Mel. ]

6. Posted by t_maia (Travel Guru 3289 posts) 9y

I got the visa on-arrival at Tehran Mehrabad airport when I went to Iran. It is true that officially it is non-extendable, but in Tabriz I was offered an extension within a day for another week if I paid the normal visa extension fee.

Nevertheless I would not get the visa on arrival again.

I flew in with Turkish Airlines. The plane landed in terminal 2. Yet the visa department is in Terminal 1 (or vice versa, I forgot.) So I had to leave my luggage, go all the way to the other terminal, return - and find my luggage gone.

If I had not been helped by an Bulgarian-Iranian couple who needed a visa too, I would never have made it to my connecting flight to Shiraz in time. The whole visa process was quite confusing to me, as I did not speak the language.

As you live in Munich Mel, you need to apply to the

Generalkonsulat
der Islamischen Republik Iran in Frankfurt
Raimundstr. 90, 60320 Frankfurt a. M.

Tel: 069 - 56 000 - 739 / 740
Fax:069 - 56 000 - 713 / 777
E-Mail: Info (at) Irangk.de
www.irangk.de

The Iranian Consulates and the Embassy in Germany do not require an invitation for visa to Iran. All they want is that you fill the form (you can find it online), pay the visa fee and include a photo and your passport.

http://www.iranembassy.de/d-konsular/visa/hilfe4.pdf

So there is no need for the hotel reservation trick.

The consulate in Frankfurt has a good reputation btw - they say that it takes about 3 weeks after you placed your passport into the mail until it is returned to you with a tourist visa and I believe it.

[ Edit: Edited on Feb 18, 2007, at 2:24 PM by t_maia ]

7. Posted by Mel. (Travel Guru 4567 posts) 9y

Thanks for the information t-maia.
I have an Irish passport. Do I need the invitation, with that?
Thanks for your information too, Wouter.

Mel

[ Edit: Edited on Feb 18, 2007, at 11:41 PM by Mel. ]