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Is Iran safe to travel in 2021?

is iran safe to travel in 2021
is iran safe to travel in 2021

Tell people that you have decided to visit Iran and since then the discussions get started. Generally speaking, western citizens have some fears toward Iran because of the long political stories we all heard about. “Is Iran safe to travel?” is one of the most frequently asked question about Iran. And our quick answer is : Iran is generally a very safe place to travel in a way that many travelers describe it as the ‘safest country I’ve ever been to’, or ‘much safer than travelling in Europe’.

By sure, every cook praises his own broth; so, I will not tell you “Don’t come to Iran because it’s dangerous”. But anyway, let’s dig in and discuss about.

In addition to the usual concerns of travelers, COVID-19 is probably your newest trouble facing with. Read about traveling to Iran during the pandemic here.

Iran safety

Political authorities of some countries including America DO NOT ADVICE traveling to Iran to their citizens. These countries are almost those who have political tension with Iran. They are mostly worried about kidnapping and getting arrested which are rare in Iran.

Being in middles east which is considered as the terrorist zone, made Iran dangerous in people’s mind. But the truth is-except some border religions-there has been no terrorism attack since 2017. Tehran, Shiraz, Isfahan and other frequented cities are 100% safe in this regard.

Let’s talk about all fears you might worried about in detail:

Criminal situation

Unfortunately, because of the economical situation, the number of assaults and thefts has been rising. But based on reports received from travelers, that’s not a big deal specially for those who travel in group. If you take the below precautions, I assure you that there’s nothing to worry about:

  • On transport keep valuables, including your passport, money and camera, with you at all times.
  • Hotels are quite safe but locking your bags prevents hotel staff going through them and, perhaps, ‘sampling’ your toiletries.
  • There is a black market in stolen foreign passports so, unless it’s with your hotel reception, keep yours strapped to your body.
  • If you are to encounter a pickpocket, it will be in a crowded bazaar.

Kidnapping & Terror

Kidnapping and terror-related crime is extremely rare in Iran. As I said before, except some border religions mentioned below, travel to Iran with no worries,

  • within 100km of the Iran–Afghanistan border
  • within 10km of the Iran–Iraq border
  • the province of Sistan va Baluchestan
  • the area east of the line running from Bam to Jask, including Bam and Zahedan

 

Police & Security Forces

Uniformed police and military are ubiquitous but have no interest in hassling foreigners. In cities such as Esfahan, Shiraz and Mashhad you’ll find helpful Tourist Police – usually including an English-speaker – in conveniently located booths.

Photographing the wrong thing is the action most likely to spark police interest. If you have unwittingly aroused the attention of police for photographing the wrong thing (eg at the border, Tehran train station etc), emphasize you are a tourist and delete the pictures. Do not argue in these situations.So Iran is safe to travel .

Foreigners are expected to carry their passport at all times, but this can be tricky as hotels are also supposed to keep guests’ passports for police inspection. Always carry several photocopies of both your passport’s face page and your Iranian visa, and if you go out of town leave a photocopy at reception and take the passport. If you are stopped, show your photocopies unless you are sure the police are genuine.

On roads near borders your transport is likely to be stopped by police searching for drugs and other smuggled goods.

Roads and driving

Driving and traffic has been always a big issue for travelers. They always complain about the dangerous behavior of drivers and the traffic jam of metropolitan cities.  While there’s nothing to do about the traffic, you can warn the driver in advance to drive slowly and respect the rules. It works! locals including the drivers behave kindly toward foreigners.

To cross the road, search for a pedestrian overpass. Except the traffic light, drivers will not stop for you to cross; so it might be tricky for travelers to do that without local aid.

 

Is Iran safe for Indian tourists

Iran and India has so much in common. In addition to the common words originated from Farsi to Hindi, the people of India and Iran share significant cultural, linguistic and ethnic characteristics.

Even thought getting visa for Indians has some difficulties, Iran is safe for Indians as much as other nations. Considering the political and economical relationship of two countries, It seems that, there’s nothing to worry about.

In terms of local’s behavior, I couldn’t assure you that people would behave as kind as westerns but they are always asking you about Sholay movie. They love to approach and ask about cinema, culture and so on.

 

Is Iran safe for Canadian tourists

According to Canadian authorities, Iran is not a safe country for Canadians because of the political conflicts and coronavirus outbreak. Here’s the statement published on the official website of Canada government:

“Avoid all travel to Iran due to travel restrictions imposed following the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19). It is increasingly difficult to leave the country. Additional risks include the volatile security situation, the regional threat of terrorism and the possibility of arbitrary detention.

Canadians, particularly dual Canadian-Iranian citizens, are at risk of being arbitrarily questioned, arrested and detained. Iran does not recognize dual nationality and Canada will not be granted consular access to dual Canadian-Iranian citizens. Canadian-Iranian dual citizens should carefully consider the risks of travelling to Iran.”

With all that being said, Iran is a safe country for regular Canadian citizens according to the posts published by Canadians on social medias and locals host them warmly.

Bare in mind that Canadians have to visit Iran with a private guide or group tour

Read more here.

Is Iran safe for American tourists

Like Canadian passport holders, Americans are warned to travel to Iran for the same reasons:

“Do not travel to Iran due to COVID-19, the risk of kidnapping, and the arbitrary arrest and detention of U.S. citizens.”

Travel state government

Wait! this is a part of story bolded by American authorities. An other side of the story is the American citizens who has been traveling to Iran. Among them, Drew Binsky, -one of the top travel vlogger- shared his experience of travelling to Iran on YouTube.

“I interacted with as many locals as I could, and not once on any occasion was I disrespected or even looked at funny.  I even told people that I was both American and Jewish, and it made them even more interested to get to know me.  I was invited (dozens of times) into peoples’ houses for a cup of tea and even offered a bed to sleep in.  One time in Isfahan, I walked into a hardware store in the evening and the owner wouldn’t let me leave because he wanted to talk to me all night and he kept feeding me tea!  I made many good friends while in Iran, and I can’t wait to go back and visit them all someday soon.” Drew Binsky

Unlike more than 40 years complicated conflict of Iran and US, Iran is like a heaven for American people. Locals behave to Westerns including US citizens like their honored guest. They approach you to check if you need anything. They might invite you to their place for meal. They want to get your attention by pronouncing some basic English words like Hello. All these happening with no financial purpose! wonderful and weird…

Read more here.

Is Iran safe for women?

Is is safe to travel to Iran
Safe to travel to Iran as a woman

That’s 6 million tourists in 2017, up from 3.6 million in 2011. That’s a lot for a country that people are pretty paranoid about!The most-cited issues for the country are human rights issues, drug trafficking, and human trafficking. We can’t say “all is well in Iran,” and we don’t want to diminish the situation of Iranian people who have to deal with national and day-to-day issues that tourists won’t experience.

We’re only going to speak about travelers, and as a traveler, you get to experience the country uniquely – its best side, if you will. It’s full of sights and food and history and tradition.

A country of deserts, beautiful mosques, the ancient ruins of Persepolis, and a whole lot more awaits you in incredible Iran. Seriously, this is an amazing destination that’s made even more awesome by the strength of its extremely friendly people. Ancient civilizations to learn about, some pretty amazing food, friendly hospitable people, Iran probably isn’t what first springs to mind when you think of travel destinations, but it’s definitely a big one! And as you knew before you landed on this guide, Iran isn’t without its problems

 

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