Tour company recommendations for Iran

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Jan 15th, 2012, 07:10 PM
  #1
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Tour company recommendations for Iran

I have wanted to visit Iran for some time and have been unable to do so. It looks to me like it is now or never. Several companies have openings in April and I want to pick one soon. Has anyone used Geo Ex or Serious Traveler or Spiekermann or Distant Horizons? I am willing to pay for real added value. I am an American female, and not really interested in traveling alone with just me and a guide. Any thoughts about good or poor options for such a trip from someone who has been there relatively recently?

Thanks so much!
redcheetah is offline  
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Jan 16th, 2012, 02:19 AM
  #2
 
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affordabletours.com bood options for you. "G" adventures
a few others with decent relations are still offering these.
Might check consular advisories not the wisest time to travel there for a multitude of reasons world sanctions they are threatening to close Hormuz and Israel may target their noke plants. Check consular advisories best operators that are
local work out of Dubai.NEVER wire money for me CC only.
Pretty outside major cities and quite historic years past
for me. Good luck!
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Jan 16th, 2012, 07:10 AM
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What nationality are you? Getting a visa may be a big hurdle.

If I were going with a tour I'd probably opt for Bestway - http://bestway.com/ . I have traveled with GeoEx (to Bhutan), and although the guides were good I felt a bit too "cocooned". Plus we missed the best part of a festival performance because they took us off for lunch.

Ignore qv, pushing the same web sites ad nauseam with no evidence he's actually traveled with any of them.
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Jan 16th, 2012, 10:44 AM
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Hi,

I've read mixed reviews about Bestway. Hard to know. You've had good experiences with them? I am comparing itineraries now. I am most worried about Israel doing "sneak" attacks. The US will not invade without lots of warnings - and it takes time. I am American and I know it is complicated to go there. But I do feel if I do not go now, I may never be able to do so due to the political tensions. Would not go to Syria (have been) or Libya (wanted to) now. So I want to get this in before it is too late.
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Jan 16th, 2012, 11:28 AM
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No, I haven't traveled with Bestway, but they seem to have the best combination of itinerary and price, so if I were going to take a tour I would try them. Where have you been reading reviews?

I entirely understand your desire to go now, I've been wanting to go for some time. Last time I waited until after the election because I thought it would be easier to get a visa, and of course it became impossible. (I went to Syria, Lebanon and Jordan instead, glad I went before the current troubles.)

Good luck!
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Jul 3rd, 2012, 01:42 AM
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redcheetah, I am attempting to do the same as you.
american college student trying to go to Iran before the destruction.

have you made any decisions on a good tour company?
It will be easier to get a visa I am told if you have a tour hired.
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Jul 3rd, 2012, 05:42 AM
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I have used Caravan-Serai in the past for Syria, Oman and Jordan and was very happy with them and they have tours to Iran(also on my list!). They came highly recommended to me and are located in Seattle but the woman I worked with was from Jordan and knew the mideast well. Iran looks fascinating.
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Jul 3rd, 2012, 08:24 AM
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I travelled to Iran without being on a tour, a fascinating and interesting country. I was well treated by the people and had no problems. I am a Canadian.
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Jul 11th, 2012, 07:25 PM
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I am American. My daughter and I travelled in Iran for three weeks in 2008, part of the time with a small group tour and part of the time independently with a driver/guide. Iran is a beautiful country with a fascinating culture, world-class historical sites and warmly welcoming people and I am yearning to get back and see more of it.

My earlier trip was with Magic Carpet Travel Ltd, a company operated by Zohreh Majidian, a native Iranian living in the UK. Zoreh did a wonderful job and I recommend her highly. Everything about the trip, including cost, itinerary, guides, drivers, etc, was just as I hoped it would be and I had no complaints whatsoever. Much of her website hasn't been updated in some time so I'm not sure about the status of her business at this time.

Here are some photos if you're interested: http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?s...1&l=6e661b21cf

I am looking to go again in 2013. I am seriously considering Caravan-Serai for my next trip because their spring itinerary visits places I haven't been before. I have traveled with them in the past and they do a very nice job.

Serious Traveler comes highly recommended but I have some reservations because they won't confirm that a tour is a 'go' until three months before departure and I know their two Iran tours didn't go earlier this year due to inadequate numbers.

Distant Horizons also comes highly recommended. They organize customized group travel for a number of universities and organizations. Their 'Gardens of Persia' trip in April was cancelled. I haven't heard if their other scheduled trips to Iran went as planned or were cancelled also.

At the time my daughter and I visited Iran it was extremely difficult for Americans to get a visa and permission to enter the country without either joining a group tour or working with an in-country agency to make arrangements. I believe that is still true at this time.

If you're interested, you can check out my trip report from 2008. The link in that report to photos doesn't work because my host, fotopic, went belly up. For photos, use the link above. http://www.fodors.com/community/afri...ome-photos.cfm
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Jun 9th, 2013, 12:25 PM
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Julia1 - Which company did you decide to travel with? If you have already done the trip, were you pleased?
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Jun 11th, 2013, 05:28 AM
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Mir out of Seattle. Just returned from a private trip to Uzbekistan. Reasonable price and reliable. They do trips to Iran and have office in country next door
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Jun 11th, 2013, 05:29 AM
  #13
 
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Also have used Geo Ex. A bit pricier but great service!
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