We entered Iran via Norduz border on October 9th, 2016. This is the only crossing along the Armenia Iran border. The crossing went smoothly, although it is quite a lengthy process.
As upon entering Armenia, this border crossing left a pretty random and not very organized impression, as well. First thing to do, once we were let into the border station, was to do the customs clearance for our vehicle.
We were ping-ponged around four different counters of customs officers and brokers. Fees were AMD 8000, payable at a bank counter. There is an ATM in the building.
Anna, as passenger, then got her passport stamped in the same building, while Heiner drove the car out of the customs compound. Upon crossing the gate, his passport was examined and the border official took a look into our vehicle. At this point, it was not very obvious, where Heiner would get his passport stamped and the official did not really want to answer questions. She just waved down the road.
We then drove in indicated direction for approximately 300 meters, and stopped where two small buildings stood on either side of the road. Heiner got off the car. The border official on the left side of the road examined his passport for almost 10 minutes before stamping it. He also complimented on Heiner’s well made German passport. You could say, this guy had found a passion for his job.
Then another look into our car, before we were allowed to cross the bridge into Iran.
Nice and big buildings and a well organized crossing into Iran. Nobody took a look inside our vehicle. We heard “Welcome to Iran” for the first time, after we had crossed the bridge. A couple of border soldiers let us through the gate and noted down some vehicle and some of Heiner’s details. “Husband is enough!”
Then, we had to go into the large passenger’s hall. An official without uniform asked several questions regarding our martial status, family background and itinerary. Basically the stuff you have to fill into your visa application, as well. Another officer in uniform then stamped our passports.
We drove through the next gate, where one guy took a quick peek into our Carnet and gave us a gate pass for the vehicle. Inside the customs building, we first had to get some copies from the copy shop within the building. The customs officer found a translator for Heiner, told him what he needed and this guy made the arrangements with the copy shop guy. The copy shop doubles as a exchange office, that prefers US Dollars and gives OK rates. So the copies can easily be paid in US$. We paid around 50 cents and received the change back in our first rials. Mind that otherwise, the closest exchange office is in Jolfa.
Then, the Carnet was filled in and we were ready to leave. After handing our gate pass to the official at the exit gate, we were free to go.
There is an insurance office in the far back corner of the customs building. But the shop owner was not present. Nobody asked us for insurance and we did not buy any during the seven weeks we stayed in Iran.
If you have crossed the same border crossing and want to share your experiences, please leave a comment!