How To Get A Tourist Visa On Arrival In Iran For Philippines Passport Holder
If there’s one country I’ve wanted to visit for a long time, it has to be Iran. There’s something about them which greatly piques my interest-- the locals’ great love for tea, their interesting history, the intricately preserved customs & tradition, and their gorgeous natural setting be it rivers, deserts, mountains, islands, lakes, and lagoons.
I am on the quest to visit every country in the world and definitely one of it will be Iran so I’ve been doing my extensive research for my upcoming trip to this side of the world. I am already thinking about smelling the freshly cut grass as I walk around The Persian Garden, immersing myself in history as I pass through the streets of the Historic City of Yazd, and hiking on their gorgeous mountains.
Enough daydreaming and let’s go back to reality-- Philippines Passport Holder (I included as I still have a Philippine Passport) need to apply for a Visa On Arrival (VOA) to enter Iran.
WHERE TO GET AN IRANIAN TOURIST VISA ON ARRIVAL FOR PHILIPPINES PASSPORT HOLDER
Iran is the 17th Largest Country in the world and you simply cannot apply for the VOA at any of their airports. Applications for Visa on Arrival can only be done at:
IKA: Imam Khomeini Airport
TEH: Tehran Mehrabad Airport
SYZ: Shiraz International Airport
MHD: Mashhad International Airport
TBZ: Tabriz International Airport
ISF: Isfahan International Airport
KIH: Kish International Airport
PEOPLE WHO ARE NOT ELIGIBLE TO APPLY FOR A TOURIST VISA ON ARRIVAL FOR IRAN
1. Those traveling for any other purpose other than tourism;
2. Journalists and reporters who are on a mission;
3. Applicants whose applications for Iran Visa have been rejected before; and
4. Iranians holding foreign passports but still maintaining their Iranian nationality.
REQUIREMENTS FOR AN IRANIAN TOURIST VISA ON ARRIVAL FOR PHILIPPINES PASSPORT HOLDER
1. A confirmed return ticket;
2. A valid passport with at least 6 months validity;
3. A photo to be attached to the application form;
3. Visa stamp fee of $69 which is payable at the airport;
4. A hotel reservation voucher; and
5. A Travel Insurance which is valid for Iran. I highly recommend SafetyWing for this. They are super reliable!
STEP-BY-STEP GUIDE ON HOW TO APPLY FOR A TOURIST VISA ON ARRIVAL FOR IRAN
STEP 1: Once you get off the plane, follow the sign that leads to the Visa on Arrival Counter.
STEP 2: An Application Form will be given to you and all you have to do is fill it out accurately and completely. It is a basic form which will require you to answer Personal Details, Passport Details, Address in Iran, Occupation Details, etc.
STEP 3: Get your insurance validated and stamped. They will really check your insurance and you have to make sure that it is valid for Iran. SafetyWing is the best!
STEP 4: Pay the visa fee and leave your passport with them. After a couple of minutes or maybe some hours (depending on how busy the counters are), your name will be called for passport release. Thereafter, you can then cross the Immigration.
DO YOU RECOMMEND USING THE SERVICES OF A TOUR/VISA AGENCY?
Yes, I highly recommend availing the services of iVisa, if you feel more comfortable having your application submitted by a professional organisation. They have been providing expedited processing and guidance services for any e-visa applications since 2013 so they have a lot of experience. Here are some advantages of getting your visa from them:
They have 24/7 support in many languages.
Application forms are all available on one page;
You can get your Tourist eVisa, Medical eVisa, and Business eVisa within 24 hours if you apply for the Rush Service;
They provide a full refund under their approval guarantee in case your visa gets rejected!
Go to the iVisa website to discover how they can help you with your visa application.
LOVELY THINGS TO DO IN IRAN
Now this is my favorite part! After that Visa on Arrival process, I know you’d be dying to get out of the airport to explore this interesting country. Here are things you might want to do while you’re here:
1. Visit the Ruins of Persepolis- Once a rich ceremonial capital of the Achaemenid Empire, this city was burnt by Alexander the Great and its ruins are now left to be seen by the whole world. You can tell from the limestone statues, columns, and carved walls how magnificent it used to be. Get a guided tour and I’m sure you’ll have a trip of a lifetime.
2. Get a glimpse of ancient engineering by visiting the Shushtar Historical Hydraulic System- Back in the 5th Century B.C. under King Darius the Great when technology wasn’t this advanced, two main diversion canals on on the river Kârun was made to provide water to the City of Shushtar using a series of tunnels that eventually lead to mills. Up until now, you’ll be surprised to see how one of the canals are still being used.
3. Go hiking at the Stars Valley- If you’re up for some workout, hike through the Stars Valley and be rewarded with some stunning views and rock formations!
FAQS ABOUT THE TOURIST VISA ON ARRIVAL FOR IRAN AND TOURISM IN GENERAL
1. What is the effect of having an Israeli passport stamp on my passport?
You will be automatically refused entry. Israel doesn’t really stamp passports anymore but you still have to be careful. Even stamps at the common border of Egypt and Israel like Taba is not taken lightly. This could also lead to visa denial.
2. How long is the visa valid for?
It is valid for 30 days.
3. Don’t they have an e-visa portal?
Yes, they do! Now, you can directly apply for an e-visa at the Iran Ministry of Foreign Affairs Website. You only need a Scanned Copy of your Passport, ID Photo, and a card to pay the Visa Fee. All you have to do is fill in the Application Form accurately, select the Iranian Consulate you wish to get your visa from, wait for the confirmation which will also include the payment instructions, and pay the service fee. After which, you’ll receive the Visa Authorization Code which will be used to retrieve your visa at your chosen Consulate.
4. I failed to get my insurance! Can I get one at the airport?
Yes, you can purchase one at the airport but to avoid any inconvenience, it’s better to get it beforehand. SafetyWing is highly recommended!
5. Will they ask me questions at the airport?
This is possible. They could ask you about basic things like where are you staying, what are your plans in Iran, how will you finance your trip, etc. Just be honest and you’ll be fine!
6. Do the locals speak English?
Yes. It is taught in school so they know how especially in touristic places.
7. Is there a dress code for us ladies?
Yes! You have to cover your head using a scarf. You should also wear something loose to cover the body. Arms should not be bare and legs should be covered down to ankles.
8. What about for the gentlemen?
There is too! We know you’ve worked hard for those abs but avoid wearing tight fitting shirts and shorts.
9. When does the dress code apply?
This applies the moment you reach the Iranian airspace.
10. Are there prohibited items to bring to Iran?
Aside from the usual items like guns and drugs, it is also illegal to carry Alcoholic Beverages, Seeds, Soil, Aerial Photo Cameras, and any kind of Fashion Magazine.