US tourists heading to Iran after sanctions lift
American tourists are heading to Iran in the aftermath of last month’s sanctions removal which saw Iranian tourism boom again, a new report says.
According to the New York Times, tour operators speak of a surge of bookings by many Americans who, undeterred by a State Department warning about travel risks to Iran, are keen on visiting the country.
Tour operators say the demand has been so acute that they are racing to add new departures and selling them in record time.
“It’s similar to Cuba in my mind where suddenly it’s both OK to go there officially but also with travelers thinking this place is going to change,” said Barbara Banks, director of marketing and new trip development at the Berkeley, California-based Wilderness Travel, which sold out its spring trip to Iran and is planning a fall trip focused on the saffron harvest.
“They want to experience the destination before it gets watered down by lots and lots of people going,” the report quoted her as saying.
Tourism in Iran is already popular with Europeans.