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12 Frequently Asked Questions on Tibet Permits

Written by Kelly PangUpdated Aug. 29, 2023

1. How do I get a Tibet permit?

You can't apply for the permits by yourself. So you have to contact a travel agency (Chinese travel agencies are recommended). The steps to apply for a Tibet Entry Permit are as follows.

  • Book a tour with a local travel agency and hire a guide.
  • Get a Chinese visa (you don't have to mention "Tibet" in the visa application). Then send your travel agency copies of your China visa and passport.
  • The travel agency will send you either a photocopy or a real copy of the Tibet Entry Permit by email or courier service.

2. I'm working in China, would this make any difference when applying for the permits?

Apart from China visa and passport ID page photo/scans, foreigners who work and reside in China must provide extra document,depending on what type of China visa you are holding.

Certain extra documents as follow:

  • Tourist visa (L) - no additional documents are required
  • Business visa (F)/Work Visa (Z) or Residence Permit- proof of employment. A letter from your company or employer with the official stamp.
  • Student visa (X) - a letter of recommendation from your school with the school stamp and a scanned copy of your student ID card

3. How much is a Tibet travel permit?

The permit price is actually zero, and on the permit it will state very clear that the permit is free. But it's only fair for travel agencies to charge for arranging the permits.

They need a lot of connections in governmental departments to get the permits. Travel agencies also need a lot of insurance to arrange foreigners' permits,which is related to politics and security.

If you get into any trouble in Lhasa,the tour agency that helped you to get the permit will take full responsibility. Some "offenses" committed by foreigners may seem to be very minor,but will still have big consequences for tour agencies.

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4. Can we apply for a Tibet Permit for November?

Sure, you can apply for the Tibet Entry Permit for November. We can help you apply for a permit for all months except February and March. And if Tibetan New Year is in January,we can't apply for a Tibet Entry Permit then either.

5. When will I get my Tibet Permit?

Your Tibet Entry Permit will be issued by the Tibet Tourism Bureau after our local Tibet agent presents the permit application,together with a copy of your passport and China Visa. Our Tibet agent will send the original permit by express mail service to our local agent (or to your hotel) in your final city before departing for Tibet.

  • China Visa: Before you apply for the Tibet Entry Permit,you have to hold a China visa. It is usually no problem to get a China visa within one working week.
  • Tibet Entry Permit: Because you are not allowed to apply for a Tibet Entry Permit by yourself,you'd better contact a Chinese travel agency to help you apply. Usually a travel agency needs 20 days to apply for this permit. So please send the required documents to your travel agency as early as possible.
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6. Can I travel to Tibet from Nepal?

Yes,you can travel from Nepal to Tibet. Please apply for China visa in Nepal,even if you are not a permanent resident in Nepal. Please apply at a Chinese embassy or consulate in Nepal.

According to Chinese government regulations,foreigners are required to obtain a Tibet Entry Permit to enter Tibet,and the permit cannot be obtained by the tourist himself/herself,but can only through a travel agency,with which you have booked a Tibet tour.

>>Read more on How to Travel fron Nepal to Tibet

7. How to obtain a China visa in Nepal?

To obtain a China Visa in Nepal,you will need to allow a minimum of 4 days in Nepal for the visa application and Tibet permit to be processed.

It takes at least 2 working days to obtain a visa from the Chinese Embassy in Nepal and the Embassy only works on Monday,Wednesday and Friday. You will need to use an authorized travel agency in Nepal to help with your application.

You cannot apply for a China Group Visa in Nepal independently according to government policy. You must find a travel agency, like China Highlights, to help you with the application and Tibet tour arrangements.

8. How do I get Tibet permits if I come to China from Nepal?

  • Apply for a China visa in Nepal.
  • Book a Tibet tour and find a Chinese travel agency to help you apply for the Tibet permits.

All travelers entering Tibet from Nepal have to apply for their China Visa in Nepal,which is valid for 15 days.

This visa is usually not placed in your passport,but is a sheet of paper that lists all of the names of the people in your group along with their nationalities,birth dates,and passport numbers.

This group visa is usually not able to be extended. A visa issued in other countries will be invalid. With the group Chinese visa,members of your travel group need to enter and exit at the same time and the same place.

To obtain a China Visa in Nepal, you will need to allow a minimum of 4 days in Nepal for the visa application and Tibet permit to be processed. You will need to use an authorized travel agency in Nepal to help with your application.

China Highlights can help arrange the Tibet permit for travelers who book their Tibet tours with us.

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9. I need a China visa. I need to submit my Latvia visa in Latvia embassy in Nepal. Please would you help me get a visa for China in 5 to 10 days?

Our company is a travel agency, we do not have the authority to offer China visas,and we can't send you an invitation letter unless you book a tour with us. However,I can give you some hints on how to apply for a China visa.

For visa application, prepare these documents: Your passport (original,not a copy),which must be valid for at least 6 months from the date of travel,with at least one blank visa page (amendment pages and pages with bar codes are not acceptable for visa stamping).

One completed,signed Visa Application Form for each passport,with two passport photos. The Chinese consulate requires a photo similar to the one in your passport.

They will only accept photos which are head-only,front view,with a white background,approximately 1½" by 2" (35 mm by 45 mm). Cut outs from personal photographs are not acceptable.

Check with the Chinese Embassy in Nepal ( If you enter via Tibet a Tibet Entry Permit is needed,which we can help with.

China Highlights does not handle visa application service,but we can help you book flights,hotels,transport,or tours around China

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10. If I want to travel to Shangri-la,do I need to apply for a Travel Permit?

No,you don't need an Alien's Travel Permit for Zhongdian,but you must apply for a Tibet Entry Permit to enter Tibet.

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11. Is it OK for me to continue traveling if my Chinese visa expires but I have a longer Tibet Permit?

No. You must have a valid Chinese visa to cover the whole period of your stay in Tibet. Sometimes the Tourism Bureau may give you a longer permit by mistake, but it doesn't imply any visa extension.

You will have to leave Tibet even if you still have some days left on the Tibet Permit. Note that no visa extension will be allowed in Tibet for travelers under any circumstances.

So make sure that your Chinese visa covers the period of your Tibet tour before you apply for the Tibet Permit.

12. Can I extend my stay in Tibet by one or two days after I arrive there?

Tibet Tourism Regulations do not allow any change to the departure date from Tibet you have submitted your Tibet Entry Permit application. Please work with your travel adviser to decide and settle on your itinerary before we apply for your Tibet Entry Permit.

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You might like to Read following information about Planning a Tour to Tibet.You can contact us to create a Tibet tour for you.

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