A complete guide to Tibet Permit and Tibet Visa

A complete guide to Tibet Permit and Tibet Visa

Tibet Permit is an official travel document that is required for travelers who want to visit and travel Tibet.  It is a single paper document where the group number, date of travel, trip itinerary, number of people, and the name of the tour operator is written. It is issued by the Tibet Tourism Bureau to the authorized tour operator.

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What is Tibet permit?

Tibet Permit is an official travel document that is required for travelers who want to visit and travel Tibet.  It is a single paper document where the group number, date of travel, trip itinerary, number of people, and the name of the tour operator is written. It is issued by the Tibet Tourism Bureau to the authorized tour operator.

Is Tibet open for tourists to travel in 2023?
Yes, Tibet is open for International tourists except Indian citizens. 

What are the documents needed for a China Group Visa and Tibet Permit?

Your required documents for Tibet Permits from HWW

  1. Original Passport (valid up to 6 months or more)
  2. Passport-sized 1 Photo of you
  3. Fill out an application form
  4. Pay the visa fee

We will prepare your following documents 

  1. Tibet Travel permit
  2. Visa Invitation
  3. China Group Visa


Where to get Tibet Permit?

Tibet permit is mandatory for all Travelers to enter Tibet either from Nepal or mainland China except citizens of Hongkong, Russian, and overseas Chinese holding Chinese Identity. Tibet travel permits can be only obtained through tour operators for tourists. Every train, bus, and flight heading to Tibet will ask for a Tibet permit. If you don’t have the original Tibet Permit then you are not allowed to take a flight or train to Tibet.

How to get my Tibet Permit?

You will get the permit in Just 4 Simple Steps.

  1. Step: Inquiry your tour plan and preferences with our travel experts; agree with the customized tour itinerary and tour cost and later sign the tour that you choose.
  2. Step: Apply for a Chinese Visa from your closest Chinese Embassy; prepare your necessary travel documents (passport, tour booking, flight tickets, etc) at the same time. If it is too difficult to let us assist you. After submitting your Chinese Visa application, pay the visa fee, and get the visa.
  3. Step: Email us your passport copy and one photograph by scan and your Passport should not be valid for less than 6 months, more is better. Additionally that please send us a copy of the Chinese Visa if you already had one. We will help you submit the Tibet Permit application to the Tibet Tourism Bureau. It will take 10 -15 business days for processing of Tibet Permit in Lhasa.
  4. Step: Tibet permit is an important travel document for your Tibet travel. So, for safety reasons, we don’t deliver the Tibet Permit to your home country or places outside mainland China. Our staff will provide you the permit in person when you arrived at the Kerung border of Nepal or any train station in China.

How long does it take to get Tibet Permit or Visa?

Generally, the time duration to process your Tibet Permit in Tibet Tourism Bureau is 8-10 working days. For an urgent permit, it takes 4-5 days to process and an extra charge is required.

Who does and who doesn’t need Tibet Permit? Or which nationality does and doesn’t need Tibet Permit?

Tibet permit is mandatory for all international tourists who are going to visit Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR) from Nepal or either from Mainland China. In the case of a diplomat, journalist, or government official, Tibet Foreign Affairs Office can only handle your Tibet Permit application. Till now Tibet permit is available for 178 countries, established diplomatic ties with China. Some of them include US citizens, Canadian citizens, UK citizens, German citizens, French citizens, Spanish citizens, and other tourists from the west and Asian countries. The below table will provide you a brief answer to your question.

Who Need TP? Who Doesn’t Need TP? Who can't get TP?

International tourists
Chinese Living in Taiwan

Residents of HK SAR
Residents of Macau
SAR Overseas
Chinese with Chinese ID

Diplomat Journalist Government Officials Indians Visiting Ngari


What are the Aliens’ Permit and Military Permit?

Aliens’ Permit is a travel permit similar to the Tibet Permit issued by the Public Security Bureau (PSB) that is required when tourists are planning to visit restricted areas of Tibet. Those who already have Tibet Permit and Original Passport can apply for an Aliens’ permit in Lhasa after their arrival also. The PSB will issue within a couple of hours after submitting all your required documents. It will cost 50 CNY per head per permit. Military Permit is a travel document required for all tourists who are planning to some military sensitive areas in Tibet like Rowok in Chamdo and Kailash in Ali region.

In which places do we need Aliens’ Permit?

You need an Aliens’ permit for the below 6 regions.

S.N  Regions  Places to visit 
1 Tsedang Samye, Monastery, Tomb of Tibetan King, Trundruk Monastery, Yumbulakhang
2 Shigatse  Sakya Monastery, Mt. Everest, Rongbuk Monastery
3 Gyangtse PelkorChode Monastery &Kubum Stupa
4 Ngari Mt.Kailash, Lake Manasarovar, Tsaparang, Years, etc.
5 Ngari Region Basum-tso, Pomi, Rawo-tso, etc.
6 Chamdo Region  Chamdo, Riwoche, Tengchen, etc.


When and where will your Tibet Permit check?

Your Tibet Permit will check in all airports or train stations in Mainland China during your boarding to Lhasa. If you are traveling from Kathmandu, Nepal via the Kerung border by land then your permit will check at the Nepal China Sino border. For those who take a direct flight from Kathmandu to Lhasa, your permit will be check at Lhasa Gongga Airport. Though there are multiple permit check posts when you bypass different places on the way. Don’t worry all permits will be kept safely by your guide.

How to get Tibet permit while traveling from Kathmandu Nepal?

After signing your tour to Tibet with Himalayan Wander Walkers please do send us your copy of your Passport (valid up to 6 months or more) and a Passport-sized 1 Photo of you. We will help you to get your both Tibet permit and Chinese Group Visa. Once we received your documents we will get them done for you. If you are planning to visit Tibet from Nepal your Chinese visa must be issued by the Chinese embassy in Kathmandu. Your tour advisor will inform you in detail about the process and time duration via mail.

Do I need a Chinese visa to travel/visit Tibet?

A big yes, a Chinese visa is mandatory for all tourists who are traveling to Tibet. You can apply for a Chinese visa from your nearest Chinese embassy. For international tourist Chinese visa is known for the “L” visa category. Himalayan Wander Walkers offer the services of Tibet Permit invitation letter and Chinese Visa application. Please do contact us.

Unpredictable circumstances when applying for Tibet permits

Unforeseeable events are out of our control. If there are any political events or social conflicts happening in Tibet then the Tibet Tourism Bureau will not issue the Tibet Permit in any situation. Thus, we cannot guarantee that you will get your Tibet permit under those circumstances. Please do understand and take into consideration if you are planning to travel to Tibet. What so ever, there is nothing to worry about as it rarely happens? It is our responsibility to inform our guests.

* Travelers must be sincere and submit the related credential, license, or certificate while we are applying for your necessary permits for Tibet travel. If we found any counterfeit documents from any traveler, Himalayan Wander Walkers reserve the full right to cancel your booked tour without any refund.

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