Associate Press: Iran Preparing for ‘Tsunami’ of Tourists

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When I was on my way this morning to the Suvarnabhumi airport in Bangkok, I came across this Associate Press article about the coming tourism development in Iran.

AP Press Interview Iran Preparing for 'Tsunami' of Tourists

The Iran has eased the visa-on-arrival process for many nationalities (I wrote about my experience here), although US, UK and Canadian citizens still require visa issues at Iranian embassy and likely booking a tour as well (not allowed to roam freely).

You can read the entire Associate Press piece on ABC News website here of which below is an excerpt:

Iran’s vice president told The Associated Press on Sunday his country is preparing for a “tsunami” of foreign tourists as Iran and world powers are set to begin implementing a landmark nuclear deal that will lift sanctions in return for curbs on Iran’s nuclear program.

Even before sanctions are lifted, the number of foreigners visiting Iran has grown 12 percent in each of the past two years. In 2014, Iran hosted over 5 million tourists, bringing in some $7.5 billion in revenue.

“We need to increase our four and five star hotels from 130 to 400 in 10 years. We are providing low-interest funds out of the National Development Fund to private investors to build modern hotels,” Soltanifar said.

Iran needs more than 400 new passenger planes to compensate for shortages due to sanctions over the past three decades. Of its 250 passenger planes, 100 are currently grounded because of lack of spare parts. The remaining 150 aging aircraft need to be renovated.

Conclusion

I will try to get piece about my anecdotes of visiting Tehran done before the end of this week. There are quite a few interesting sites in Iran worth visiting and I will definitely return.

As was pointed out in the article above, they really need to develop the hotel industry and get foreign operators to return like what Accor has done with the two hotels at the Tehran airport.

There really needs to be some talent development too. I felt that at the hotel where I stayed at some employees were super sour (no Compensation Clinic cases coming from Tehran though).

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