Essentials things to know before travelling to Tibet

Visa

To apply for China visa, validity of the passport must be more than 6 months. The normal Chinese visas applied and issued from Chinese foreign missions abroad are not valid to enter Tibet from Kathmandu.

For the visa procedure, we need following information at least a month prior to your arrival date in Tibet.

  • Full name as exactly in the passport (incl. middle name)
  • Sex
  • Passport no
  • Nationality
  • Passport issued date
  • Passport expiry date
  • Date of birth
  • Occupation

Please ensure that the passport details of ordinary passports are sent to us (diplomatic passport is not issued Tibet visa). We also require the scanned copy of your passport in email attachment. The visa is issued in Kathmandu after your arrival in Kathmandu. We need at least one full visa, working day to obtain the visa in Kathmandu.

We have provided the above information as per the current regulation in force. The Chinese Embassy in Kathmandu makes frequent changes. Hence, we suggest you to enquire us for the most recent visa regulation.

Best Time to Travel Tibet

The best time to travel Tibet is from May till October when the temperature average around 10 degrees Centigrade. Between these months are the busiest tourist season in Tibet.

Services

Please note in Tibet tourism is a strictly controlled by Chinese government. Tibet has been opened to the general tourist recently (although there are many restrictions already). Traveling to Tibet will be fun and often adventurous. Although there have been improvements already, we request all our valued clients to not have very high expectation regarding the services in Tibet.

Tourist traveling to Tibet after visiting Nepal may quickly notice the lack of hospitality there. Tibet is once in a lifetime journey, we request clients to focus on their tour and not very much about the service standards. Recently, due to large tourist movements, tourism have been bit developed and the service standard is improving, but still is not comparable to that of Nepal.

Altitude Mountain Sickness (AMS)

An altitude above 3,000 meter is known as a high altitude. As much of the region in Tibet lies above this altitude, one must be aware of AMS. We at Travelsmith Nepal try our level best to reduce the effect from prior preparations.

We always keep our clients for at least one night in Lhasa to acclimatize with the high altitude. The private vehicle which we provide during the tour and transfer in Tibet is always equipped with one emergency portable oxygen cylinder.

Our guides are always vigilant regarding such situations. If you develop symptoms like a matter of discomfort, breathlessness, poor sleeping patterns or limited capacity for physical exertion, please inform our guide at your earliest. Our guide will react quickly by bringing you down to the lower altitude, which is the best cure for AMS.

Photography

Taking photographs is prohibited in sensitive areas like in check Posts/Army areas. There is an extra charge if you wish to take photographs inside Monasteries. Sometimes, monasteries charge extra for each different section of the same monastery. If you want to take a photograph of an individual please ask your guide or the individual whose photograph you are about to take.

Climate

Cold Season (September – March)

  • Thermal underwear, Down Jacket, Warm Trousers and sweaters, Woolen Shirts full sleeves.
  • Hat (ear cover), Gloves water proof, Woolen socks

Warm season (April – August)

  • Comfortable trousers, T-shirt, Windproof jacket, Fleece jacket, Scarf

Do’s & Dont’s

  • Wear proper dress code during visit holy area, remove your hat, do not interrupt prayer
  • Do not point with your finger to any holy object
  • No antique are allowed to take from Tibet
  • China time is 8 hours ahead of GMT
  • Always keep copy of your visa or permit with yourself.
  • Do not take photograph without asking
  • Do not talk about any sensitive issues
  • Important Tibetan words are Tashi Delek which means “greetings”, Thucheche means “thank you”.
  • Use always both hand whenever you give or take anything.
  • Do not touch, walk over, or sit on any religious texts, sacred objects or prayer flags.
  • Tibetan people do not eat horse, dog, or donkey, as well as fish (in some areas). While in Tibet, you should follow local dietary restrictions.
  • It is not polite to clap your palms and spit behind the Tibetan people.
  • Tibetan people stretch out their tongue to say hello to you. Also it is a courtesy to put their hands palm in front of breast.

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