Currency Exchange in Iran: A Guide for Tourists
If you are planning to visit Iran, it is essential to familiarize yourself with the country’s currency and money system to have a smooth and hassle-free experience during your trip. So let’s see comprehensively how is the currency situation in Iran and review the exchange tips as a tourist.
Currency, Banknotes and Denominations
The official currency of Iran is the Iranian rial (IRR). However, due to the prevalent usage of toman in everyday transactions, prices are often quoted in toman rather than rials. So don’t be surprised if you come across prices stated in rials but referred to as toman in conversation. The toman is equivalent to 10 rials. For instance, if you see a price tag of 100,000 tomans, it means 1,000,000 rials. Therefore, it is crucial to clarify whether the quoted price is in rials or tomans to avoid confusion.
Iranian banknotes come in 20,000, 50,000, 100,000, 500,000, 1,000,000, and 2,000,000 rials. Coins, on the other hand, are less commonly used in daily transactions due to their limited value.
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Exchange Rate and Currency Exchange
It is important to note that Iran is under international sanctions and faces certain restrictions when it comes to currency exchange. As a result, exchanging Iranian rials outside of Iran can be challenging. Therefore, it is advisable to exchange your currency for Iranian rials upon arrival in the country.
Other than banks that offer lower exchange rates, currency exchange offices, known as “Sarrafi,” can be found in major cities and tourist areas. These offices offer competitive exchange rates compared to banks. It is recommended to compare rates and fees before making a transaction.
ATM Withdrawals and Credit Cards
Iran is still a cash economy so foreign credit cards are not a reliable way for bringing money to Iran, as credit cards are not accepted in Iran, so, it is advisable to carry enough cash with you. While credit cards are not widely accepted in Iran, some hotels, upscale restaurants, and larger stores may accept international credit cards. However, it is always prudent to carry cash for day-to-day expenses. ATMs are available in major cities but they don’t accept international cards.
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Tips for Handling Money in Iran
Here are a few tips to ensure a smooth experience when handling money in Iran:
- Carry larger bills for convenience, as finding change for small denominations of banknotes may be challenging and those will be bought at lower rates.
- Keep your money secure and consider using a money belt or a secure wallet.
- Be cautious when exchanging money on the street or with unauthorized individuals, stick to reputable exchange offices or banks.
- Familiarize yourself with the current exchange rate to avoid being short-changed during transactions.
- USD, EUR, GBP, AED are wildly-accepted currencies and can be exchanged almost everywhere in Iran, but other currencies can be exchanged in certain banks.
Knowing Iran’s current currency and exchange system is essential for tourists who travel to this country. Familiarize yourself with exchange rates, and currency exchange options to ensure a smooth financial experience during your trip. By following these tips, you can safely go through money exchange in Iran and enjoy your time exploring the rich cultural heritage of this beautiful country.
What to visit in Iran?
Our tour packages offer a comprehensive and immersive experience of Iran’s diverse culture, architecture and nature at reasonable rates. You can select one from Iran Cultural Tours or Iran Budget Tours or Iran Adventure Tours.
If you’re interested in exploring Iran’s cultural and historical treasures, there are many destinations worth visiting. Here are a few suggestions:
The Caspian Sea: The Caspian Sea, located in the north of Iran, is the largest inland body of water in the world. It offers opportunities for water sports, fishing, and a chance to relax on its beautiful beaches.
Persepolis: Located in the southwestern province of Fars, Persepolis is an ancient city that was once the capital of the Achaemenid Empire. The city is home to stunning ruins, including the Gate of All Nations, the Apadana Palace, and the Hall of 100 Columns.
Isfahan: Known as the “half of the world,” Isfahan is a beautiful city with a rich history and stunning architecture. Highlights include the Naqsh-e Jahan Square, the Chehel Sotoun Palace, and the Shah Mosque.
Shiraz: Located in the southern province of Fars, Shiraz is known for its beautiful gardens, historic mosques, and vibrant bazaars. Highlights include the gardens of Eram and Narenjestan, the Vakil Mosque, and the Nasir al-Mulk Mosque.
Let us know your experiences of visiting or your questions about exchanging money in Iran in the comment box below, we will be happy to hear from you!