You wouldn't believe the number of banks in Tehran! There are several long streets where about half of the shop-fronts are banks, often five or six in a row. And they all have their name in Farsi and English, so I don't believe it's a misunderstanding on my part.

We arrived in Iran with cash in euros only so we needed to change some into rials. A friend -- not our host -- took us out to do the necessary. As we sailed past rows of banks we wondered which one he was going to choose. 

Then the car stopped and two guys approached us from another car. Police? Were we speeding? Heated exchange between our fiend and the two strangers.

"He says 41000 rials." For what? "That's the exchange rate per euro." The shady guys were freelance money dealers. After more discussion and lots of brandishing of calculators we drove away with almost 25 million rials.

Millionaires at last!


  1. The street you have been for the exchange must be Istanbul crossroad of Tehran which is special but in general I guess are very right for the observation. They boosted, sometimes in fake ways of making branches specially in recent years although the lands in Tehran are not generally cheap. The sanctions and big infrastructure projects may have also been the case as they border and limit the circulations of the money and capitals internally to them, and let them to take part in state biger projects the same.


Be nice!