“It’s quite easy and cheap to extend an Iranian visa!”
Generally, you can extend your visa by its original duration at least twice without trouble. On-arrival visas are issued for 30 days and you cannot extend them.
Tourist visas issued at an Iranian embassy/consulate are usually issued for one month (or issued according to what you asked/the time between your flights) and they are extendable up to three months.
The ease of obtaining an extension and the extra number of days you can obtain varies from city to city. Tabriz is normally the hardest place to try to extend your visa and people have been refused there. Usually the only difficultly in extending your visa is obtaining the extra time you want. Again this can vary between immigration offices.
The second time you apply for a visa extension, you might have to attend an informal interview at the office which is nothing serious.
Basically, the extensions are issued from the day you turn up at the visa renewal office, not the end date of your visa. However, in cities like Shiraz you can get the extension based on the end date of your original visa (it’s also the easiest office for a visa extension!) If you need a full extension and plan to do it in other cities, try showing up on the last few days.
You will need two passport photos (ladies must be wearing the hijab in their photos) and a photocopy of the bank deposit receipt, your Iranian visa, any previous extensions and the photo page of your passport.
Applying For a Visa Extension
The best and easiest place to get your extension is the main tourist center of Shiraz which issues extensions on the same day you apply for it. Out of all the cities you can apply for an extension (Shiraz, Yazd, Esfahan, Tabriz, Mashhad, and Tehran), Shiraz is slightly easier as the office is closer to the city center and the Bank Melli where you need to make a payment is nearby. It’s a less chaotic office and officers are quite easy going. The office opens early and closes early as well.
Visa extensions are available at the Police Offices of Foreign Aliens in major Iranian cities.
Here is a list of these cities:
1. Police Office of Foreign Aliens in Tehran: there are two immigration offices in Tehran. One of them is located in Dr. Fatemi Junction, towards Vali-e Asr Avenue and the other is located near Sepah sq. Applying for an extension in Tehran is quite difficult, since it’s not easy to get an extension over there and even if your request is approved, you will just get a partial extension rather than a full month.
2. Police Office of Foreign Aliens in Mashhad: The immigration office of Mashhad is located next to Azad University, Rahnamaee St. You can also apply for an Afghan visa in Mashhad which is easier than applying for it in the capital.
3. Police Office of Foreign Aliens in Shiraz: You can find the immigration office in Moddarres Blvd, near Vali-e Asr Sq. If you are in Shiraz and you need an extension to take a full visit around the country, this office is your best option. Don’t miss the chance of extending your visa in Shiraz, since it’s the easiest and almost every single request is approved!
4. Police Office of Foreign Aliens in Isfahan: Isfahan is a popular destination for tourists due to the attractions and almost hassle-free extension procedure. However, applying for a visa extension in Isfahan is not as easy as it is in Shiraz. The immigration office in Isfahan is located near Azadi Sq, Roudaki St.
5. Police Office of Foreign Aliens in Yazd: Yazd is worth a try too although it may not be a same-day process. The immigration office is located near Abouzar sq, Kashani St.
6. Police Office of Foreign Aliens in Tabriz: It is not actually the best place to get your visa renewed since many travelers have been rejected when they wanted to apply for a visa extension.
Visa Extension Procedure in Shiraz
Shiraz is the most popular place for visa extension, as a result of being the easiest place to obtain a long hassle-free extension. Being in Shiraz, you have two options to extend your visa. Take our visa extension service or go on your own.
If you choose our visa extension service, one of our agents will take you to the immigration office, follow the whole procedure over there and get your visa extension. In case you want to extend your visa on your own, you should follow these procedures:
a) Go to the immigration office
The government building which takes care of visa renewals is about a 20 minute walk from central Shiraz, not far from the huge roundabout known as Valiye-asr Square. To find it, walk down Karim khan-Zand Street, through the Valiye-asr Square traffic circle and on to Modarres Boulevard. Cross to the left side of the road and look for a small side street veering off to the left. The building is on this side street, nearly on Modarres Boulevard. There may be an army or police guard outside, a good sign you’ve found the right place.
You have to leave your backpack (in case there is a tablet or a laptop in it) and cellphone (switched off) in the entrance. It opens at 07:00 am and you should be there by 10am at the latest.
b) Go to the second floor
To complete your application, you’ll need to make a payment at a nearby Melli Bank. The officials may direct you to the main Melli Bank near the citadel but you can make your payment at a smaller branch near Valiye-asr Square. Get a bank receipt which includes the account number. The officer checks your passport and tells how much you need to pay to the following bank account. Right now, it usually is 300,000 Rials.
c) Exit the building
On the outside, there are some cab drivers who offer you to take you to a Melli Bank near there, and fill out the form for you (payment forms are all in Persian at the bank) without waiting in the queue. Take advantage of these “Tourist-Hunters” or go to the bank yourself and ask a local to help you with the application form.
d) Return to the immigration building
At the first floor, get a copy of your passport and the application form. If you don’t have the passport photos (2 photos are required), you can take a photo over there.
e) Go to the second floor
Fill out your application form and deliver it to the officer sitting behind the desk. He will check your documents and ask you to take your case to the next room, where the head of the immigration office stamps the visa extension in your passport.
f) Go to the next door
Sign your documents when you are asked to do it, pay the amount and get your visa extension.
In Shiraz, two men take care of the process in a small office and even serve tea while you wait. The whole process will take just a morning. This is where we recommend our tourists and every traveler who is looking for a visa extension in Iran.
Visa Extension Procedure in Isfahan
It’s easy to go to the immigration office by bus in Isfahan. All you need to do is checking out west of the city center and going to Rudaki Street. Cross to the south side of the river via the Si-o-Seh Pol Bridge and you’ll see a bus stop to your right. Ask for a bus going to Amirieh and ask the driver to tell you when you get to Rudaki Street. Your stop is shortly after the bus goes around a large roundabout. Walk a few hundred meters down Rudaki Street and the police station is on your left. Rest of the process is almost the same as what you need to do in Shiraz and for the payment you’ll have a good walk to get to the nearest Bank Melli.