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  #1  
Old 6 Jun 2009
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Driving in Iran - June 2009

Thought I'd put an update regarding driving in Iran, given the experience we have had.

We came in through Turkey at the Northern border crossing, coming into Maku.

1. Carnet. It was chaos in customs, but you soon get ushered around, and someone signs the carnet.
2. Money. Don't change any money at the border if you can avoid it. We had to and got ripped off.
3. Passport. Make sure you have plenty of copies of your passport AND your visas.
4. Fuel card. We fought hard to get this at the border, and eventually got it free. We just kept shoulding diesel card, and this did the trick, but it took about an hour.
5. Diesel is almost free. It cost up $2 for 75 litres! Usually the attendants keep the change, but it is so cheap, who cares. You must look for garages with trcks queueing if you want diesel. You will usually be ushered to the front of the queue.
6. Insurance.We forgot to get this at the border, but got it in Tabriz. for a couple of dollar tip the gus in tourist information will help you with this. It cot us £20 for a month.
7. The guys at tourist information said don't worry about picking up Iranian plates, so we haven't.

The driving in Tabriz, Esfahan and Tehran is crazy. It can be fun if you dont mind a dent!

Think thats it, email me if you have any questions.

Cheers

Ollie
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Old 6 Jun 2009
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Nice advice - very similar to our experience a month ago. Only thing I would add was regarding the fuel card. We were in a petrol/unleaded car and also tried to get a fuel card at the border, but couldn't manage to buy one. We had no problems getting fuel without it though all across Iran.

The 'local' rate for petrol/unleaded is 1000R/litre and once the locals go over their ration they need to pay 4000R/Litre. (about 20p/litre) We were often asked for our fuel card, and it seemed like we wouldn't get fuel without it, but offering to pay 4000R/Litre always got us fuel. If you could get a fuel card for free it would be worth it, but if you need to pay for it (which we understood you need to), don't bother and just pay the 4000R rate.

Oh, and no dents for us!
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Old 10 Jun 2009
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Fuel Card?

Hi Ollie,

We're leaving the UK end of June and will be in Iran for end of August. What is the fuel card and how do you go about getting it?

Also, are you going through Pakistan? We were considering shipping our van into India, but I'd really like to hear your views.

Hope the trip is going well,

Jo
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Old 12 Jun 2009
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Fuel card

To buy petrol or diesel you need a fuel card. As a foreigner you cna beg/borrow from Iranian allowances, and this is normal, but it does make it easier to have one, especially as it only took an extra hour at tthe border. we had a helpful man at the border who fought our corner for us.

They have only recently introduced the diesel card, but it is now normal.

As for Pakistan we haven't been here yet, and will only go in September. All the travellers we have met said that as a traveller in Pakistan you feel very safe, although at least two reported hearing bombs going off. You have to make up your own mind I think ...

Goodluck!
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Old 12 Jun 2009
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Hi Ollie/Jenny

Glad to hear the trip is still going well. If you get into any tight spots while you're driving, just keep shouting INSHALLAH, INSHALLAH at the top of your voice!

Also glad to hear the fuel situation has settled down. It was awful for us when we were passing through there nearly 2 years ago. Quite ridiculous how the Iranian government, at least the last time I heard, isn't making any effort at all to increase domestic petrol refining capacity. Makes it rather easy for anyone who wants to to bring Iran to a standstill.

Regards

Mark
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Old 15 Jun 2009
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We were there with a Dutch couple and a Kiwi about ???? months ago, us and the Kiwi on bikes and them in their 1980s Ford Transit van (all petrol) and none of us got a fuel card or had any problems getting fuel, just turn up at the pump and when they ask for your fuel card, shrug your shoulders! Like Golfish said you just end up paying a little more for your fuel.

We all managed to escape dent free too but watch out for the roundabouts (especially the one outside Tabriz) they are complete mayhem!!

First Impressions Of Driving In Iran - about halfway down the page, quite funny to read now, especially after India
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  #7  
Old 15 Jun 2009
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Hi Ollie

Glad to hear you're both doing well. It's not clear whether you plan to cross from Iran into Pakistan directly, but just in case have you seen this (scroll to the bottom)

http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/hub...pakistan-43447
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