Please find below some of your possible great questions and our answers regarding the present visa rule and regulation of Tibet.
Question: Do I need to apply for a Chinese visa at my home?
Answer: Well, if you are coming to Tibet from Kathmandu then it’s not necessary to apply for a Chinese visa at your home town since the Chinese embassy in Kathmandu will cancel your Chinese visa while applying for the Tibet group visa.
Question: Can I travel to Tibet from Nepal with an Individual Chinese visa?
Answer: If you are planning to travel in Tibet via Nepal, an individual Chinese visa is not valid. The Chinese army will not allow you to enter Tibet with an individual Chinese visa.
Question: What type of visa should I obtain to travel in Tibet? Where can I get it?
Answer: The Chinese Embassy in Kathmandu issues a different type of visa that is called Tibet group visa which is valid in Tibet and mainland China as well. The Tibet group visa will be given in a different paper sheet. The Embassy doesn’t put the visa stamp on your Passport. But you will have an official stamp in your passport once you reach Nepal - Tibet border or Lhasa airport.
Question: Can I apply for the Tibet group visa by myself?
Answer: No! Tourists are not allowed to apply for the Tibet group visa directly. So, you have to take the help of a Tibet tour operator/agency like Alpine Eco Trek. First, you have to book a package tour with us and we will apply a Tibet group visa for you.
Question: Do I have to go to the Embassy while applying for the Tibet group visa?
Answer: No! Your presence in the Chinese Embassy is not required. We Alpine Eco Trek can apply it on your behalf.
Question: How long the visa process takes?
Answer: The visa process doesn’t take several days. It can be applied and collected within a day too but the Embassy will charge a rush fee to issue the visa on the same day. If you would like to avoid the rush fee, you have to apply a week (5 working days) in advance. This is a normal process.
Question: What documents do I have to submit while applying for the visa?
Answer: Your original Passport is the most essential document that is required with the visa application. Apart from this, you need to fill out “the Visa Application Form” and duly sign it. Also, you need to submit one passport size photo with a Visa form. The photo must be very simple if you have worn sunglasses and hat in the photo that is not a valid one.
Question: Can I process the visa application with Photocopy of the Passport?
Answer: Absolutely not! The Embassy directly refuses the visa application without the original Passport.
Question: Can I apply for the visa in advance?? How long in advance I can I process the visa application?
Answer: We can apply for the visa for only one week (5 working days) in advance. We can’t apply for the visa earlier than one week. But, if there is a Chinese festival OR Chinese official holiday (within a week's time), they accept the visa earlier than one week too.
Question: Can I travel in Tibet only with a Tibet group visa?
Answer: No! You are not allowed to travel in Tibet only with a Tibet group visa. You must buy a complete tour package through a tour operator. The tour package should include a tour guide (for the entire journey), a private transport (Land cruiser or Van) and all necessary travel permits.
Question: I want to travel in the group to keep the tour cost lower, but after Lhasa, I would like to travel on my own. Is it possible?
Answer: Yes! This is possible! We can manage a separate group visa for you and you can still travel in the group up to Lhasa. From Lhasa, you can simply split with the group and travel to mainland China or fly out from Lhasa to mainland China or Kathmandu.
Question: After finishing the tour in Lhasa, can I split with my group and travel in Tibet on my own?
Answer: After finishing tour in Lhasa, you can split with your group and travel on your own but staying in Tibet without company is not allowed so if you would like to stay some more days in Lhasa then you have to buy at least the accommodations with travel agency because of they need to know that where you are staying during your stay in Lhasa city.
Also, The Chinese officials would like to make sure that you are not remaining in Lhasa illegally after the end of the hotel service so that you must have an onward ticket to leave the country after the end of the extra days stay in Lhasa.
Question: Can I Travel in mainland China with a Tibet group visa?
Answer: Yes! The Tibet group visa is valid for mainland China as well. After finishing the tour in Tibet, you can travel to mainland China with the same group visa.
Question: What is the longest possible Tibet group visa can I get from the Chinese Embassy?
Answer: The longest Tibet group visa that can be arranged from the Embassy in Kathmandu is for 30 days only. This means, even you book 8 days OR 10 days, we can still provide a visa that will be valid for 30 days. After Tibet, the same visa can be used in mainland China.
Question: Once the Tibet group visa is expired in Mainland China, can I extend it?
Answer: No! The Chinese government won’t extend it.
Question: If the Tibet group visa is not extendable, can I obtain an individual Chinese visa in mainland China?
Answer: No! Normally, it is not possible to obtain an individual Chinese visa in mainland China. But, you can try your luck anyway. If you apply through the local Chinese agency, some times it may work. Most of the time, it doesn’t work.
Question: Can you apply for the Tibet group visa in the Chinese Embassy (Kathmandu) every day?
Answer: No! Not every day. We can apply for the visa only on Monday, Wednesday and Friday.
Working time table of the Chinese Embassy visa section in Kathmandu
The visa section of the Embassy opens only on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. The Embassy accepts the visa application form only in the morning time and distributes the visa only in the evening time.
|Days||Morning (to collect the visa applications)||Evening (to distribute visa)|
|Opening time||Closing time||Opening time||Closing time|
|Monday||09:30 am||11:45 am||04:00 pm||05:45 pm|
|Wednesday||09:30 am||11:45 am||04:00 pm||05:45 pm|
|Friday||09:30 am||11:45 am||04:00 pm||05:45 pm|