NATRAJ TREKKING     Since 1967
One of the leading trekking agency for Nepal, Bhutan & Tibet tour
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Tibet Visa & Permit

More about Tibet Visa & Permit

Why a permit needed for foreigners? Considering the special ethnic traditions, the cultural relics, the environmental protection and the transportation capacity of Tibet, when non-Chinese citizens, including foreign tourists, Taiwan tourists and overseas Chinese travel to China, you need not only a Chinese Visa but also Tibet permit.

Tibet Permits & Visa Categories

Please be noted that Chinese Visa and Tibet Permit are two things totally different. There are overall four documents required if you want to travel freely in Tibet.

  • Chinese Visa - you can apply for in Chinese Embassy in your country.
  • TTB (Tibet Entry Permit) - It is issued by Tibet Tourism Bureau and is a must for foreign tourists entering Tibet
  • PSB (Alien's Travel Permit) - It is required when you are planning to travel to the closed areas in Tibet, which you can obtain it after you arrive in Tibet;
  • Military Permit - you have to obtain if you are planning to travel to some military sensitive areas.

Travel to Tibet from Nepal

If you enter Tibet from Kathmandu, Nepal, you are required to obtain a Chinese visa in the consulate of P.R China in Kathmandu; the opening time for the Consulate of P.R China in Kathmandu is only available between 9:30 A.M and 11:00 A.M on each Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Please note this visa application is compulsory despite you have already had a Chinese visa in your country or not since this is regulated by the border treaty signed between Nepal and China.

The Chinese visa you get in Kathmandu is a "group visa". A "group visa" is not entered in travelers' passports but is a separate sheet of paper issued in duplicate by the Chinese consulate in Katmandu, listing all members of the group. It usually allows a stay of 15 or 20 days. Obtaining a group visa requires at least two clear days in Katmandu.

Tips When Planning Your Trip to Tibet

  • It is not a good idea to mention that you plan to travel to Tibet on your Chinese visa application.
  • Do not plan to travel to Tibet in late February, through the month of March or the first week in April. This is a sensitive time when the Chinese government has closed access for the past 5 years.
  • Always discuss with the travel agency their cancellation policy should entrance to Tibet be restricted after you have made plans or paid deposits.
  • Even though you are required to hire a guide, you do not need to spend 24/7 with the guide. You can negotiate some free time for wandering or shopping but if you wander off to someplace that you aren't supposed to go, your guide and the travel agency may get in trouble.
  • If you have a special interest, there is probably a company and a guide who can fulfill provide the services you want.

Important issues about Tibet Travel Permits

  • You have to tell us your real occupation because journalists and people involving in political matters (such as diplomats and government officials) require more complicated procedures to be issued a permit.
  • All kinds of people can get Tibet permit through a travel agency except diplomats, journalists, and government officials who need to contact the Foreign Affairs Office of Tibet Government to arrange a permit.
  • It's advisable to apply for your travel permits at least 10 days prior to your entry date.
  • After you have got a TTB Permit, your travel agency can buy the air/train tickets for you. And only with the permit in hand can you pass the airport check-in counter.
  • Beware that no travel agency can provide "permit-only" service according to the Tibet Government and Tibet Tourism Bureau. A MUST service includes vehicle and tour guide. So if you don't book any tour from us, we cannot help you get any Tibet permits.
  • It will cost us 3-5 working days to get the travel permits if you could supply the full necessary documents in time.
  • We never SELL a permit. We only help you obtain a permit from local authorities.
  • Only the tour guide could hold the TTB Permit after you establish yourself on Tibet land. You may not carry it by yourself or travel with it to anywhere in Tibet. PSB Permit is required for travel outside of Lhasa.

Client Reviews

QuoteHi Anil
MANY, MANY, MANY thanks for organising our tour itinerary while in Nepal. We had an ABSOLUTELY fantastic time in Chitwan, Pokhara and Dhampus. We shall never forget it, and so enjoyed the experience, the wonderful and friendly people, the culture, the food, the country, the mountain trekking, jungle walks, bird watching, wildlife, elephant rides, canoeing, village walks, photography, and other general "tourist stuff".

Howard Adam
President & CEO

Client Reviews

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