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Tibet: Visas

All this information is for informational purposes only as requirements change often. All travelers should check to see if entry requirements and fees have changed.

Tibet

The Tibet Travel Permit will be handled for you as they can only be issued in Nepal or China.

More information on your Nepal visa >>

If you are traveling through China to get to Tibet, you will also need to get a Chinese visa ahead of time. You must spend the night in Chengdu or other city in China. Your Tibet Travel Permit will be delivered to there.

As per updated rules from the Chinese Embassy in Nepal, we need a minimum of 3 working days to process the Chinese Visa in Kathmandu. The Chinese visa application form must be submitted in the Chinese Embassy before 12 noon. If you have an early morning arrival in Kathmandu, we can submit the application form on the same day before noon. However, if the arrival time is later, the documents can only be submitted on the next working day. To be on the safe side, we recommend travelers book at least 4 nights in Kathmandu in case of flight delays or other problems.

NEPAL:

Most travelers get their visa upon arrival at the Kathmandu Airport. People need to bring 2 passport-sized photos. Fill out the application at the airport and have $40/person in cash. You will need to email AWR a scan of your passport photo page.

BHUTAN:

We will arrange for the visa in Bhutan. The visa will be delivered to their hotel the day before flying to Bhutan. Travelers do not need to bring photos or cash for the visa. You will need to email AWR a scan of your passport photo page. We will then send you the Bhutan visa authorization letter two weeks before the trip date, which you will have to carry when flying to Paro. When flying to Bhutan, you should also carry a printed copy of the tickets along with your passports.

TIBET:

If traveling to Tibet from Kathmandu, we will arrange for the Chinese visa and Tibet Travel Permit. Travelers need to plan on at least 3 full business days in Kathmandu before flying to Lhasa. To be on the safe side, we recommend travelers book at least 4 nights in Kathmandu in case of flight delays or other problems. Everyone should bring 2 passport-size photos and fill out the Chinese visa application (we will provide). The Chinese visa is $200/person, which you pay in cash in Kathmandu.

If traveling to Tibet from China (Chengdu), travelers need to arrange their Chinese visa ahead of time on their own (and do not mention traveling to Tibet). We will arrange the Tibet Travel Permit, which is included in the trip price. No photos or application are required.

You will need to email AWR a scan of your passport photo page.

INDIA:

You will need to arrange your India visa ahead of time. You cannot get the visa at the airport. You will need to email AWR a scan of your passport photo page. If you are entering India more than once (for example, before and after Bhutan), you will need to get a multiple entry visa.

China

The Chinese visa must be acquired before arrival if you are flying through a Chinese city that is not Lhasa. The Chinese visa is currently $198/person for U.S. nationals and $114/person for other nationals.

You either need to apply for your visa at a Chinese visa consulate in person, or you need to use a visa service (you cannot mail in for a visa).

You will need to send in the following to apply for your Chinese visa:

  • Passport – must be valid for at least 6 months after your trip and must have at least 2 blank pages (remember you may need more blank pages if you are going to Nepal or Bhutan or elsewhere).
  • Chinese visa application form – do not mention Tibet or Hong Kong on your application form or it will be denied.  You must list your hotel and contact information. 
  • Flight itinerary – must show flight into Chengdu, no exit flight is necessary.
  • Hotel confirmation – we will send you this for your hotel in Chengdu.
  • One passport size photo -- 2” x 2” on white background.
  • Visa service application form
  • Photocopies of all documents – keep on file.

Unless you are requesting rush service, allow 7 business days for processing, which does not include shipping time.  We recommend that you send your visa application by Fed Ex or certified mail to protect your passport.

Need Help with your Passport and Visa?

U.S. and Canadian citizens can use Travisa, a fast and easy way to help speed up the process of obtaining your passport and visa.

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