Apply Tibet Visa from Nepal: The first Thing You Need to Know before Entering Tibet from Nepal
As Nepal and Tibet share a long border line, many tourists choose to travel to Tibet from Kathmandu, the capital of Nepal, by air or by road. But before entering the holy land of Tibet, the first thing you need to do is to obtain the required travel permits: Tibet Visa and China Group Visa.
The Tibet Visa (also known as Tibet Travel Permit) can only be obtained through a local travel agency in Tibet. To make it go smoothly, it is recommended to contact us to apply for the Tibet permit 20 days before you leave for Tibet.
As for the China Group Visa for travelling from Nepal to Tibet, it should be applied through the Chinese Embassy in Kathmandu with the help of your travel agency. You are suggested to arrive in Kathmandu at least 4 days in advance for the group visa application.
Except for Tibet permit and group visa, you may need to apply for more permits when you visit some remote and restricted areas beyond Lhasa, like the Aliens’ Travel Permit for Everest Base Camp tour and Military permit for Mount Kailash tour.
Besides, if you want travel to China after your Nepal Tibet tour, you’d better tell your travel agency your entire travel plan, so that they can help to get the group visa with the longest period of validity, up to 30 days.
For more information, just follow our ultimate guide below to figure out how to apply Tibet permit and visa in Nepal, and make clear more details about Tibet permit and China Group Visa, so as to prepare yourself a hassle-free tour from Nepal to Tibet.
Required Travel Permit and Documents for Entering Tibet from Nepal
Tibet Visa (Officially as Tibet Travel Permit)
In fact, the Tibet Visa for a Nepal Tibet tour refers to Tibet Travel Permit, which is required for all foreign tourists to enter and exit Tibet. With the permit, you will be allowed to enter and travel around Lhasa, the provincial capital of Tibet.
Also known as Tibet Permit, Tibet Travel Permit can only be applied through a local travel agency authorized by Tibet Tourism Bureau. Your travel information including the entry and departure date, itinerary, tour number will be written on the permit.
Chinese Group Visa (Different from Ordinary Chinese Visa)
China Group Visa, on the other hand, is a special type of single entry Chinese Visa. According to the regulation, all travelers who enter Tibet from Nepal are required to apply for the Chinese Group Visa, through the Chinese Embassy in Kathmandu.
Since individual application to the embassy is not permitted, tourists need to entrust a local travel agency to apply for the group visa. Normally, the group visa is valid for the duration of your stay, no more than 30 days.
Unlike the Chinese Visa that is obtained from mainland China, the Group Visa will not be stamped on your passport. It is an A4 size sheet of paper, which lists all the names of your group members, your nationalities, birth dates and passport numbers.
Difference between Group Visa and Chinese Visa
|Differences||Group Visa||Chinese Visa|
|From Where to Tibet||Nepal to Tibet||Mainland China to Tibet|
|Times of Entry||Single entry visa||Single entry, double entry or multiple entry|
|Applied in Person or not||Only through local Tibet travel agency||By yourself or through travel agency|
|Issued by||Chinese Embassy in Kathmandu||Any authorized Chinese Embassy in your home country or the third country|
|Holders of Visa||The whole group member||Individual|
|Entry and Exit Regulation||All group member should enter and exit at the same time and same place||Free to choose which port to get in and out|
|Extend or not||Cannot be extended||Can be extended once or twice|
1. If you do not have a fixed plan in China, you should work with the agency to apply for the longest period of time, up to 30 days.
2. Please be aware that the Group Visa is a special type of visa to Tibet. Tourists with a Chinese visa need to reapply the group visa when they enter Tibet from Nepal.
3. A Chinese visa obtained before will automatically expire when the new one is given. Thus, it is suggested to enter Tibet directly from the mainland China if you already get a Chinese visa.
How to Apply Tibet Permit and Visa in Nepal?
3 Steps to Get Your Tibet Permit and Visa in Nepal
When depart from Nepal to Tibet, you will need to apply for your Tibet Travel Permit and Group Visa through a local authorized travel agency, for neither Tibet Tourism Bureau nor Chinese Embassy in Kathmandu accept individual applications.
The two documents are obtained by your tour operator, using your passport, once your tour has been booked. Check the following guidelines to know the details about how to get Tibet permit and China Group Visa in Nepal.
Step 1: Confirm your tour itinerary and mail passport copy to us
Before leaving for Tibet, you should confirm your Nepal to Tibet travel itinerary and tour services with a local tour company, like ChinaTibetTrain. We will help to apply the Tibet permit on your behalf.
You are required to mail the scanned copy of your passport to our tour company in Lhasa. Then, we will get the Tibet Travel Permit and Group Visa invitation letter issued by Tibet Tourism Bureau.
Step 2: Arrive in Kathmandu and hand your original passport to us
Arrive in Kathmandu at least 3 working days in advance. Contact the local office of ChinaTibetTrain in Kathmandu, give your original passport to our staff and pay for the Chinese visa application and visa service.
Step 3: Get the issued group visa
Our staff will deliver the visa to your hotel in Kathmandu as soon as it is issued. When you leave for Tibet, remember to bring the three documents: Chinese Visa, photocopies of Tibet Travel Permit, and the application form.
Document Required to Apply for Tibet Permit and Visa in Nepal
Valid Passport and its Scanned Copy
Your passport should be valid for at least 6 months. If your passport is due to expire in less than 6 months, you should renew it before you apply for your visa. Besides, at least one black visa page is required in your passport.
When applying for the group visa, your original passport will be needed. While the scanned copy of your passport will be used to apply for Tibet permit.
You will also need to prepare recent photos with white background. The photo should be in passport size of 48mmX33mm. It is suggested to prepare several photos at a time, in case you may need them in different situations.
How Long to Obtain Tibet Permit and Visa in Nepal?
For Tibet Visa, it normally takes 5-7 working days to go through the whole process. But it is recommended to apply for the permit at least 2 weeks in advance to successfuly get the issused permit before entering Tibet.
While as for China Group Visa, it will take at least 3 full working days for the visa process at the Chinese Embassy in Kathmandu. In urgent situation, the Group Visa can also be issued in 2 working days.
The working days of the Chinese Embassy in Kathmandu is from Monday to Friday. The visa application must be submitted before 11am at the Embassy, so that visa will be issued in the afternoon of the third day.
Besides, if your departure date happens to overlap with traditional Chinese Festivals or holidays, like China National Day or Chinese Spring Festival, you need to arrive in Kathmandu much earlier to get your group visa. Since the application may be temporarily suspended during these days.
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Price of Tibet Permit and Visa Application in Nepal
In fact, Tibet Travel Permit is free. But travel agencies may charge service fees. To apply for the Chinese Group Visa, you need to pay the visa fee as below.
|Nationality||Times of Entry||Ordinary (US$)||Urgent (US$)||Extreme Urgent(US$)|
|Albanian Citizens & Micronesian Citizens||Single||50||55||75|
1. The above price information is only for your reference. We will offer the latest updates of China Group Visa fee. You can also check the most accurate price of China Group Visa from the official website of Chinese Embassy in Nepal.
2. Ordinary: 3 working days; Urgent: 2 working days; and the extreme urgent visa process has not been available so far.
What else Documents are Required for Nepal Tibet Tour?
In addition to the Tibet Travel Permit and China Group Visa, which are the prerequisite for your Tibet Nepal tours, you may need to apply for more permits when you visit some remote and restricted areas beyond Lhasa.
These travel documents are separately issued by different department of Tibet, but you don’t have to bother with them, as our Tibet guide will help to handle the application and ensure you a smooth travel experience in Tibet.
Alien’s Travel Permit for Everest Base Camp Tour
If you are going to visit Everest Base Camp in Tibet, you will further need to obtain the Aliens' Travel Permit and Frontier Pass. Except the EBC area, other regions including Nyingchi, Ngari, and Tsedang also require the Alien’s Travel Permit.
The Alien’s Travel Permit can only be applied after you arrive in Tibet, with your original passport, Chinese visa and Tibet Permit.
Military Permit for Mount Kailash Tour
If your itinerary refers to Ngari region, like Mount Kailash, you are also required to get the Foreign Affairs Permit and Military Permit as well. Your Tibet permit and passport will needed for the application. It normally takes 10-15 working days to get them all.
Frontier Pass for Border Regions
When you plan to travel overland from Kathmandu to Lhasa, you also need a Frontier Pass to cross the Gyirong Border between Nepal and Tibet. And if you visit other border areas like Mount Everest region, the Frontier Pass is also required.
What If I Want to Travel to China after my Nepal Tibet Tour?
The China Group Visa can be used for travelling in both Tibet and mainland China. Thus, it is feasible to continue your trip to China after the sightseeing in Nepal and Tibet. However, the China Group Visa cannot be extended and is valid for no more than 30 days.
Under this circumstance, you are strongly advised to tell us your entire travel plan before we help to apply for the Chinese Group Visa and Tibet Permit, so that we can make sure to get the visa with the validity to the maximum.
Besides, if you have a valid Chinese Visa, it is highly suggested to enter Tibet from mainland China. You can take an overland tour from Lhasa to Kathmandu and then enjoy a Nepal tour after your trip in Tibet.
FAQs about Tibet Visa Application from Nepal
1. Do I must join in a group to get the Chinese Group Visa?
According to the visa policy and regulation, individual applications of the Group Tourist Visa to the Chinese Embassy in Kathmandu are not permitted. Also, all international tourists travelling in Tibet have to be accompanied with a guide.
Therefore, you need to either customize your private tour or join the group tour via an authorized travel agency to get your "Group Tourist Visa" and "Tibet Travel Permit" to legally enter Tibet from Nepal.
To solo travelers, however, there is no need to worry too much about getting the group visa. As a leading Tibet tourism operator with local office in Kathmandu, we can help to organize a tourist group based on your needs to get the group visa.
All you need to do is to follow the steps about how to get Tibet Visa in Nepal as mentioned above. Please feel free to contact us for more details.
2. Can Bhutanese passport holder get Tibet Visa for Lhasa tour?
So far, Tibet Travel Permit is only available for a limited number of Bhutanese tourists via Pilgrim Center. For the majority of Bhutanese tourists, Tibet Permit is hard to get. Hopefully, it will be fully open to all Bhutanese tourists.
3. Where to get the newly-issued Tibet Visa and Chinese Group Visa in Kathmandu?
Once the Chinese Group Visa get issued, our local staff will immediately deliver it to your hotel in Kathmandu, or you can also get it yourself in our office in Kathmandu. You will be promptly informed about where and when to get the visa by our travel consultant.
As to the Tibet Travel Permit, it will not be sent to you in Kathmandu. Our Tibetan guide will keep the permit and make it ready to be checked at each checkpoint throughout your stay in Tibet.
4. How to use my Group Visa and Tibet Visa when entering Tibet from Nepal?
If you plan to take a flight from Kathmandu to Lhasa, you will only need to take your original passport and group visa. Upon your arrival in Lhasa Gonggar Airport, our Tibet travel guide will greet you with your original Tibet Visa and then transfer you to the reserved hotel in Lhasa.
If you choose to enjoy an overland tour from Nepal to Tibet, you will also be required to bring your original passport and China Group Visa when cross the border at Gyirong Port. And our guide will be expecting you with your Tibet permit on the Tibetan side of the border.
5. Should I apply for the Tibet visa in advance or just after arriving in Kathmandu?
Before travelling to Tibet from Nepal, many tourists tend to visit some neighboring tourist destinations, like Bhutan and India. So some may doubt how to arrange the time for the group visa and permit application.
The Tibet permit can be applied during you stay in India or Bhutan, since only the copy of your passport is needed. But it is suggested to apply for the permit at least 2 weeks before your departure date to Tibet.
However, you should arrive in Kathmandu at least 3 days in advance to obtain the Group Tourists Visa, another required document for travelling from Nepal to Tibet.
To make it much easier, you can book from our India Nepal Bhutan Tibet tour. Not only will we arrange the appropriate itinerary according to your needs, but also offer the services of permit application, transportation, accommodation etc., to ensure you a worry-free and comfortable travel experience.
In conclusion, for all foreigners planning to travel to Tibet from Nepal, you need to first apply for Tibet Visa and China Group Visa, whether you choose to take a flight or road trip from Kathmandu to Lhasa.
Both Tibet Visa and China Group Visa can only be obtained through an authorized local travel agency, while the group visa can only be issued by the Chinese Embassy in Kathmandu.
Only using your valid passport and scanned copies, you can get the Tibet permit and visa in 3 simple steps, with the help of our professional staff in both Kathmandu and Lhasa.
It is recommended to apply for Tibet Permit at least 20 days before your Nepal Tibet tour. And tourists should arrive in Kathmandu 4 days earlier to go through the visa application.
Since the group visa cannot be extended and is only valid for up to 30 days, you are strongly suggested to confirm your travel plan with us, especially when you want to visit mainland China after touring Nepal and Tibet.
In addition, when your tour in Tibet refers to Everest Base Camp or Mount Kailash, you will also need to obtain the Alien’s Travel Permit and Military Permit as supplements.
For tourists who are going to visit Tibet from mainland China, you can read the related information on how to apply for Tibet visa in China.
If you are still in doubt about the Tibet visa application in Nepal or have any other questions about your Nepal Tibet tour, please feel free to leave a comment below or contact us for inquires.
Best Time to Visit Tibet and Nepal
When choosing the best time to visit Tibet and Nepal, there are different aspects each person will consider, like the best scenery, Everest trekking, experiencing local culture etc. Check this guidance to choose your best time for Tibet and Nepal tour according to your own needs.
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