Hijab rules for visitors to Iran

Hijab rules for visitors to Iran

Question: I’m planning on visiting Iran before the end of the summer and don’t know what to wear? Here are Hijab rules for visitors to Iran!

Answer: Dress codes for female visitors are specific and defined and there are some guidelines which we will explain. A scarf over your head is needed as per law, while showing skin on arms on legs is best avoided when entering the airport–even if you are a foreigner.

After the 1979 revolution in Iran, the new Islamic laws enforced women to have Hijab outside. Since then, all women wear hijab in public places. Also, international visitors are required to dress like residents of Iran. In recent years, the fashion of the manteau has shifted away from tight fitting coats to more loose garments (better in the heat). There are several shops available online to find styles like this before you fly over.

How should I cover in Iran?

The Manteau. This word coming from French has become one of the most common forms of covering Hijab rules for visitors to Iran. The loose long coat (better in summer) effectively acts as a cover for your regular tops and pants.

You will see women wearing entire black cloaks called the “chador” literally meaning tent. As a visitor, you are not required to cover like this if you do not wish to, and it is often reserved for the more pious women of Iranian society.

There are some exceptions to this rule, including in the cities of Qom and Mashhad and shrines, where it is advised to wear a larger cover like a chador in shrines.

Sandals and flip-flops (jandels for you Aussies) without socks are acceptable for women and men and you don’t need to cover your toes.

Covering inside: Hijab rules for visitors to Iran

Inside commercial places like malls, women are still expected to wear a headscarf and manteau, while inside people’s homes there is less of an expectation to wear covering unless in a religious household.

Hijab for female tourists in Iran

As stated above, when visiting you should respect Hijab rules for visitors to Iran. But most of the time, they don’t have to wear it as strictly as Iranian do. But remember, in holy places such as Imam Reza Holy Shrine, Fatima Masumeh Shrine, or Jamkaran Mosque in Qom, wear a chador.

Burqa in Iran

The use of the burqa is very unusual in Iran. There is a type of veil in the country’s south that can be found in Hormozgan Province, but if you are visiting cities and tourist areas of the country, you will not likely come across this style. If you do visit Hormozgan, you will find women wearing boregheh which is like a mask! Very exotic even for most Iranians.

Recent changes

In recent days, news has come out of Tehran that the Gasht Ershad (Morality Police) who monitor the hijab rule and enforce it have been pulled from public view due to the ongoing protests over the death of Mahsa Amini. Local newspapers are reporting that a potential rule change may be in order that the hijab rule may be only monitored via CCTV and fines given out accordingly.