Traveling to an unknown country is always exciting and full of surprises. Unfortunately, the surprises are not always pleasant. Professional travelers know how to plan the trip. Before picking up the things for the journey, you need to learn important information about the country: sights, transport, means of communication and, of course, the most important information about travel safety. Today in our article we will try to provide you with the most detailed and useful information regarding the travel safety in Iran. You will learn what you реаллы should be afraid of and what are only the myths, we’ll also tell you about the rules of public behavior and the strict dress code.
For political reasons Iran for long a time remained a “closed” country for tourists, and only in the past couple of years, the flow of tourists into the country has doubled. However, it should be noted that Iran has great potential in tourism. Iran is one of the most ancient countries with a rich culture. For its ancient sights, the country is quite attractive.
Travel Safety in Iran: Rules before entering the country
The first thing to remember about the country that it is not a Christian country, and the life is radically different from what you are used to seeing in the European countries. The country has raised the question of strict dress code for both locals and tourists. If you do not adhere to the dress code, you simply wouldn’t be allowed pass the border. Men should not wear a shirt opening the arms above the elbows. Women should wear long dresses with sleeves to the wrist. The dress should not a bodycon one; it can also be a special cloak that can be worn over other clothes. Dress code also depends on where you are. You can see women with hair not appropriately covered, but in the religious cities everything is much stricter: in those cities, you will have to wear the hijab. Must have accessory for woman’s outfit is a handkerchief (rusar) covering the hair. Of course such a dress code is extremely unusual for a tourist, but you have to respect the customs and laws of the country.
Travel Safety in Iran: Crime rate in Iran
Myths about the high level of crime are fundamentally different from the reality. Compared with European countries, the crime rate is low, you can safely travel the country. However, you must follow the rules for minimal safety in Iran and any other country; do not walk alone in empty places late at night or stay in a company of strangers.
Travel Safety in Iran: Communication with the locals
Iranians are peaceful and friendly people, but, again, let’s not forget that this is an Islamic country with its own rules. The only conflict with the tourists may be due to “improper” appearance. Despite this, even in cases of non-compliance with the dress code, you will not experience an unpleasant communication with local like in other Islamic countries. Important note for women: when dealing with Iranian men do not have a long eye contact with them. This can be regarded as a flirt and ambiguous invitation to continue the dialogue. Also, avoid any physical contact like handshakes, clap on the shoulder and other innocent gestures that can also be considered ambiguous. It is not advised to use gestures when speaking, as many gestures in Iran have a different meaning.
Another feature of the country, which may surprise some, is the reaction of the locals to couples. Since Iran is an Islamic country with strict and restrained manners, showing feelings publicly is utterly unacceptable and is prohibited. Some hotels may require a marriage certificate to stay in one room.
Travel Safety in Iran: Prohibitions in Iran
One of the most important prohibitions in the country is drinking. Here you will not find pubs and bars, cafes and restaurants; here it is impossible to order a drink, even illegally. It is also forbidden to smoke in public places, and for violating the law you will be discharged a considerable fine.
Photographing sights goes without any restrictions but is prohibited to photograph officers in uniform, military objects, and government offices. Locals may be photographed only with their permission. In case you take a photo or video in prohibited places you can be accused of espionage.
Finally, in a conversation with a local, do not touch the religious and political topics, and do not discuss or criticize the relationship between men and women.
If you have any problems or conflicts, you can always contact your country’s embassy and get the necessary help.