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Is It Safe to Travel to Iran?

Providing a safe and secure environment for foreign tourists and giving them the opportunity for safe sightseeing, should be considered as the first and most basic need. In other words, at the first step of traveling, the issue of travel security has particular importance to any tourist anywhere in the world. The health and protection of human lives are very important. Security and tourism have two-way relations. So, how do foreign tourists feel safe in Iran and what factors make tourists feel it is going to be safe to travel to Iran in the first place?

 

About Iran

Iran is a large country, located in Asia in the Middle East with a population of about 84 million. A place of great beauty with a rich heritage, immense history, and incredibly welcoming people. Iran is bounded on the north by the Caspian Sea and the south by the Persian Gulf and the Sea of Oman. Iran shares its borders with Afghanistan and Pakistan to the east, Iraq to the west, Turkey, Azerbaijan’s Armenia, and Azerbaijan to the northwest, and Turkmenistan to the northeast. Tehran is its capital and the most populous city in Iran. The official language in Iran is Persian. Among the important and tourist cities of Iran, we can mention Isfahan, Yazd, Kerman, and Tabriz.

People enjoying the view of a square in Iran Tourists enjoying the view of a square in Iran

The word “Persia”, based on the historical texts and some educational schoolbooks, means greatness and magnificence. Iran is home to one of the world’s oldest civilizations, Includes 24 cultural and natural historical UNESCO World Heritage Sites, and boasts beautiful landscapes stretching from dense rain forests to snowcapped mountains to desert basins. That is why there are many tourists and enthusiasts around the world who like to visit beautiful Iran. Many tourists are completely surprised after coming to Iran and seeing its unique natural, historical and cultural beauties. There are people who decide to travel to Iran again after their first trip.

 

Iran Safety: Facts and Fiction

There are foreign Ministry websites of some countries that have warned their people about traveling to Iran. Moreover, there is misinformation about Iran’s security which could negatively affect tourists’ decision to choose Iran as their travel destination. Nonetheless, many tourists assert that Iran is very safe and secure after visiting. According to numerous opinions obtained from tourists who visited Iran from around the world including Europe and the United States, the Iranians are kind and hospitable. Their respect for tourists stems from their hospitality, generosity, and understanding of Iranians.

 

A tourist is respected by Iranian families as a human being and a guest. They religiously believe guests are like “gifts from God”. For this reason, Iranians take good care of the security and well-being of tourists who visit Iran. This message means that the security of all tourists entering Iran from other countries is fully guaranteed, and these respected guests enjoy complete safety and security. Many travelers describe Iran as one of the ‘safest countries they have ever been to’. As they said, it is more possible to get mugged in Europe than in Iran. Also, violent crimes opposing foreigners are exceedingly rare and in fact, by following local customs and dress codes, you will presumably not face any threat.

 

 

Iran’s Degree of Security for Tourists

In this section, we will discuss the degree of security in Iran for foreign tourists including female tourists, tourists who travel alone, or European and American tourists. We shall also have a look at the opinions of tourists from all over the world. We will also talk about the security score in Iran based on international surveys.

The results demonstrated by an international institute show that Iran’s level of security in 2020 for foreign tourists is at medium risk. The International SOS Risk Assessment Institute assessed the tourist risks of the world in 2020 in terms of four risk parameters, including “tourism safety”, “health of the tourist destination”, “road safety and tourist traffic”, and “natural disaster risk (earthquake)”.

 

At the end of each year, the International SOS Institute publishes a “Travel Risk Map” which informs organizations, investors, and tourists about the dangers of the countries where they operate and travel. Iran travel security risk reported by International SOS in Figure 1. The plan described the trip to Iran as “Medium Risk” (November 2020) which is similar to that of Turkey, Turkmenistan, Saudi Arabia, India, Ukraine, and Russia. You can see this status in orange on the map. While neighbouring countries such as Iraq and Afghanistan are dark red in color, security in these countries is “Extreme”. Of course, some parts of Iran, especially on the eastern border, have turned red, indicating a “high” level of security risk. The region of Sistan and Baluchistan is also completely red on this map.

 

Travel to Iran Risk Map

Fig 1: Iran travel security risk which is medium as reported by International SOS (November 2020)

 

Women Tourists Travel in Iran and Safety Issues

When a female tourist decides to travel to Iran, she usually has two main concerns: First, what is the security situation in Iran for a woman to travel? If a woman wants to travel to Iran alone, is it possible?  According to the real individual experience of female tourists who have traveled to Iran, Iran is one of the safest countries they have ever traveled to. As they confirmed, there are no worries about women’s safety in Iran. The peace and safety of this country surprised many women tourists and completely changed their mind about its people. Also, they said there are no negative or tense vibes in the street at all. The Iranians whom they have encountered are extremely friendly and helpful. They found Iran to be absolutely safe. So, enjoy your visit!

The second issue is the dress code in Iran. There is plenty of useful information about the dress code in Iran on Iran Travel Advisory page.

 

Is It Safe to Travel to Iran as a Solo Female Traveler?

Despite the differences and limitations compared to European and American countries, Iran is safe, accessible, and totally easy to navigate as a solo female traveler. While organized tours are still dominating Iran’s tourism, it’s not uncommon to find many people traveling solo.

Is it safe to travel to Iran as a solo female traveler?Solo female traveler taking a photo in Tehran, Iran

 

You must see and travel to Iran closely to realize that what the media says about Iran is far from the truth. Iran is home to the most hospitable people, who make your journey as a solo female traveler safe, rewarding, and fun.

 

Is it Safe to Travel to Iran as an American?

Iran and the United States do not get along well. US government warns against traveling to Iran, claiming that authorities might harass U.S. citizens or might arrest them while traveling in the country. Despite all the misinformation about the security in Iran, there are a lot of Americans who have visited Iran and have recounted their journeys to clarify the true face of this country.

Many of these American tourists who visit Iran, make videos of their trip and talk closely with citizens. Before they travel to Iran, most of them receive hundreds of messages, all saying Iran is not a safe country and they will be in trouble. But all of them claim that they cannot understand such a negative attitude towards Iran after visiting. In the following section, we will read some comments by the tourists who have visited Iran.

Opinions of European and American Tourists after Traveling to Iran

Mark Orwoll is a seasoned traveler and Travel, and  Leisure’s Managing Editor. He suggested that there is no problem using American passports and get a tourist visa. Also, Tara Bahrampour who is an Iranian-American wrote an article about traveling to Iran. You can find the article “A Return to Iran” in Travel + Leisure.  She traveled to Iran with the Americans, using her American passport, and described the Iranians as generous and hospitable.

American Tourist in Iran

Rick Steves, a well-known American traveler, taking a selfie with Iranians

 

Iran is one of the top destinations for tourists in the Middle East in 2008 (around 2.5 m travelers). According to a German tour operator, there is a considerable demand for German tourists to visit Iran. A female German tourist, Dorothea Wisse, 26, talked to Tehran Times magazine. As a German tourist, she found Iran the safest country she has ever visited. She has traveled to many countries across Europe, North America, and South Africa.  She did not face any threats, fears, or theft in Iran, she adds.

 

Hugo Bardi is a university professor of chemistry at the University of Florence in Italy. He traveled to Iran with his wife for a week. Hugo describes Iran as a country that retains its charms in ancient times. He said in Tehran, unlike many western cities, they did not see any security issues or control.

 

More about Iran:

Iran Travel Advisory

Ramadan in Iran

Ashura in Iran

Yalda Night

Chaharshnabe Suri

 

Is It Safe to Travel to Iran?

Providing a safe and secure environment for foreign tourists and giving them the opportunity for safe sightseeing, should be considered as the first and most basic need. In other words, at the first step of traveling, the issue of travel security has particular importance to any tourist anywhere in the world. The health and protection of human lives are very important. Security and tourism have two-way relations. So, how do foreign tourists feel safe in Iran and what factors make tourists feel it is going to be safe to travel to Iran in the first place?

 

About Iran

Iran is a large country, located in Asia in the Middle East with a population of about 84 million. A place of great beauty with a rich heritage, immense history, and incredibly welcoming people. Iran is bounded on the north by the Caspian Sea and the south by the Persian Gulf and the Sea of Oman. Iran shares its borders with Afghanistan and Pakistan to the east, Iraq to the west, Turkey, Azerbaijan’s Armenia, and Azerbaijan to the northwest, and Turkmenistan to the northeast. Tehran is its capital and the most populous city in Iran. The official language in Iran is Persian. Among the important and tourist cities of Iran, we can mention Isfahan, Yazd, Kerman, and Tabriz.

People enjoying the view of a square in Iran Tourists enjoying the view of a square in Iran

The word “Persia”, based on the historical texts and some educational schoolbooks, means greatness and magnificence. Iran is home to one of the world’s oldest civilizations, Includes 24 cultural and natural historical UNESCO World Heritage Sites, and boasts beautiful landscapes stretching from dense rain forests to snowcapped mountains to desert basins. That is why there are many tourists and enthusiasts around the world who like to visit beautiful Iran. Many tourists are completely surprised after coming to Iran and seeing its unique natural, historical and cultural beauties. There are people who decide to travel to Iran again after their first trip.

 

Iran Safety: Facts and Fiction

There are foreign Ministry websites of some countries that have warned their people about traveling to Iran. Moreover, there is misinformation about Iran’s security which could negatively affect tourists’ decision to choose Iran as their travel destination. Nonetheless, many tourists assert that Iran is very safe and secure after visiting. According to numerous opinions obtained from tourists who visited Iran from around the world including Europe and the United States, the Iranians are kind and hospitable. Their respect for tourists stems from their hospitality, generosity, and understanding of Iranians.

 

A tourist is respected by Iranian families as a human being and a guest. They religiously believe guests are like “gifts from God”. For this reason, Iranians take good care of the security and well-being of tourists who visit Iran. This message means that the security of all tourists entering Iran from other countries is fully guaranteed, and these respected guests enjoy complete safety and security. Many travelers describe Iran as one of the ‘safest countries they have ever been to’. As they said, it is more possible to get mugged in Europe than in Iran. Also, violent crimes opposing foreigners are exceedingly rare and in fact, by following local customs and dress codes, you will presumably not face any threat.

 

 

Iran’s Degree of Security for Tourists

In this section, we will discuss the degree of security in Iran for foreign tourists including female tourists, tourists who travel alone, or European and American tourists. We shall also have a look at the opinions of tourists from all over the world. We will also talk about the security score in Iran based on international surveys.

The results demonstrated by an international institute show that Iran’s level of security in 2020 for foreign tourists is at medium risk. The International SOS Risk Assessment Institute assessed the tourist risks of the world in 2020 in terms of four risk parameters, including “tourism safety”, “health of the tourist destination”, “road safety and tourist traffic”, and “natural disaster risk (earthquake)”.

 

At the end of each year, the International SOS Institute publishes a “Travel Risk Map” which informs organizations, investors, and tourists about the dangers of the countries where they operate and travel. Iran travel security risk reported by International SOS in Figure 1. The plan described the trip to Iran as “Medium Risk” (November 2020) which is similar to that of Turkey, Turkmenistan, Saudi Arabia, India, Ukraine, and Russia. You can see this status in orange on the map. While neighbouring countries such as Iraq and Afghanistan are dark red in color, security in these countries is “Extreme”. Of course, some parts of Iran, especially on the eastern border, have turned red, indicating a “high” level of security risk. The region of Sistan and Baluchistan is also completely red on this map.

 

Travel to Iran Risk Map

Fig 1: Iran travel security risk which is medium as reported by International SOS (November 2020)

 

Women Tourists Travel in Iran and Safety Issues

When a female tourist decides to travel to Iran, she usually has two main concerns: First, what is the security situation in Iran for a woman to travel? If a woman wants to travel to Iran alone, is it possible?  According to the real individual experience of female tourists who have traveled to Iran, Iran is one of the safest countries they have ever traveled to. As they confirmed, there are no worries about women’s safety in Iran. The peace and safety of this country surprised many women tourists and completely changed their mind about its people. Also, they said there are no negative or tense vibes in the street at all. The Iranians whom they have encountered are extremely friendly and helpful. They found Iran to be absolutely safe. So, enjoy your visit!

The second issue is the dress code in Iran. There is plenty of useful information about the dress code in Iran on Iran Travel Advisory page.

 

Is It Safe to Travel to Iran as a Solo Female Traveler?

Despite the differences and limitations compared to European and American countries, Iran is safe, accessible, and totally easy to navigate as a solo female traveler. While organized tours are still dominating Iran’s tourism, it’s not uncommon to find many people traveling solo.

Is it safe to travel to Iran as a solo female traveler?Solo female traveler taking a photo in Tehran, Iran

 

You must see and travel to Iran closely to realize that what the media says about Iran is far from the truth. Iran is home to the most hospitable people, who make your journey as a solo female traveler safe, rewarding, and fun.

 

Is it Safe to Travel to Iran as an American?

Iran and the United States do not get along well. US government warns against traveling to Iran, claiming that authorities might harass U.S. citizens or might arrest them while traveling in the country. Despite all the misinformation about the security in Iran, there are a lot of Americans who have visited Iran and have recounted their journeys to clarify the true face of this country.

Many of these American tourists who visit Iran, make videos of their trip and talk closely with citizens. Before they travel to Iran, most of them receive hundreds of messages, all saying Iran is not a safe country and they will be in trouble. But all of them claim that they cannot understand such a negative attitude towards Iran after visiting. In the following section, we will read some comments by the tourists who have visited Iran.

Opinions of European and American Tourists after Traveling to Iran

Mark Orwoll is a seasoned traveler and Travel, and  Leisure’s Managing Editor. He suggested that there is no problem using American passports and get a tourist visa. Also, Tara Bahrampour who is an Iranian-American wrote an article about traveling to Iran. You can find the article “A Return to Iran” in Travel + Leisure.  She traveled to Iran with the Americans, using her American passport, and described the Iranians as generous and hospitable.

American Tourist in Iran

Rick Steves, a well-known American traveler, taking a selfie with Iranians

 

Iran is one of the top destinations for tourists in the Middle East in 2008 (around 2.5 m travelers). According to a German tour operator, there is a considerable demand for German tourists to visit Iran. A female German tourist, Dorothea Wisse, 26, talked to Tehran Times magazine. As a German tourist, she found Iran the safest country she has ever visited. She has traveled to many countries across Europe, North America, and South Africa.  She did not face any threats, fears, or theft in Iran, she adds.

 

Hugo Bardi is a university professor of chemistry at the University of Florence in Italy. He traveled to Iran with his wife for a week. Hugo describes Iran as a country that retains its charms in ancient times. He said in Tehran, unlike many western cities, they did not see any security issues or control.

 

More about Iran:

Iran Travel Advisory

Ramadan in Iran

Ashura in Iran

Yalda Night

Chaharshnabe Suri

 

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