Do You Know About Iranian Gestures?

Iranian Gestures

Just Imagine you could omit language from human life, how would life be like then? Probably humankind will go back to the caveman era. Thanks to our ancestors, human beings are equipped with verbal language for thousands of years. But traveling to a country with a different language, sometimes makes people use body gestures to communicate with locals. Funny stories rise using gestures with different meanings in other countries. Sometimes you may insult others unintentionally using a gesture. To avoid these situations, here you can find 10 useful gestures you need to know before traveling to Iran. You can use these body language signs in different situations while you are in Iran.


It's common to shake hands with people of the same gender. But if you want to greet someone the opposite sex, it`s more appropriate to put one hand on your chest and bow slightly or bend your head a little bit. This can send a message of respect while paying attention to social norms.

Saying Yes

In Iran, people say yes (Bale) or send a confirmative message by moving their heads downward. Confirmation Gesture in Iran Description: Saying Yes in Iran - Useful Iranian Gestures. Another respectful way of saying yes in Iran, especially when one is asked to do something is by moving the palm of your hand toward one`s eye and keeping there for a second. This can be followed by saying “Chashm” which means eye and is a metaphorical way of saying yes in a polite manner.

Saying No

To say no or refuse something you can simply move your head slightly to right and left. Another way of saying no is moving your head and eyebrows upward while making a notch sound with your mouth. Any combination of moving eyebrows upward, moving the head upward and making the notch sound means no.

Be quiet

It's like always there is someone who makes more noise than your threshold, right? Well if you decide to shush people in Iran using a gesture, it's quite similar to the international sign of index finger close to the mouth, except in Iran people bring their index finger higher up the tip of one's nose. The sound Iranians make to shush other people is different, instead of saying “shhh” Iranians say “Hisss”.


Moving one hand and head to the sides is a sign of making another person sorry or ashamed. It’s used when someone does a wrong action and another person wants to punish him/her or make them feel guilty.

A little

There are many situations when you want to inform another person that you need a little bit of something, like when you want to ask the waiter to add a little bit of pepper to your dish, or you want to taste a little bit of a sweet before buying that. In such situations, you can stick your thumb to your index finger to show a little.

In my heart

People express their feelings using sign language. In Iran, you may see people hitting on their left chest using their palm. It's a nice Persian gesture which means that you are in my heart.

On my eyes

Another common gesture in Iran is moving palms of both hands toward the eyes and hold them there for a second. This Iranian gesture is a sign of respect and carries messages like “you are on my eyes” or “you can walk on my eyes”.

After You

When you want to enter or leave a room, you see people leading you forward by showing the door using their hand saying “Befarmaeed”. This is a polite gesture in Iran which is similar to “after you”.


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About Iranian Gestures

Like any other country, there are things you need to know before traveling to Iran. Knowing useful Iranian gestures can help you to communicate better while you are in Iran. Also if you need any help with planning your trip to Iran, don`t hesitate to contact us. You can also start planning your amazing trip to Iran right here, using the form below:


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