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Over year’s experiences of dealing with hundreds of customers, we came across lots of questions that are frequently asked by our esteem customers, so here we have collected most important questions with exact answers to insure our customers get the right information without your precious time by sending emails for every single question. All the questions and answers are well selected by their importance and updated time to time, and we are pretty sure that from these 66 questions/answers, you will find answers for all questions that come into your mind during your planning session. If there don’t find answer for your question, then please feel free to fill the Want a Quick Answer form and we will reply you within one working day.

Tibet Travel General FAQs

When is the high or peak travel season?

The peak travel season is from May-September, these are the best and most popular months to visit. The rainy season starts at the end of July and lasts almost all of August; fortunately, most of the rain falls during the night and there is not much heavy rainfall in the day. Despite the rain, there are many festivals in August you can't miss if you are interest in Tibetan culture and tradition.

The tourism seasons in Tibet are defined below:

High season: June 1st to October 30th

Shoulder season: March 1st to May 30th and November

Low season: November 1st to February 30th

High season marks the best time of the year to travel in Tibet; the climate is comfortable, there are many festivals, local activities, holidays and lush green surroundings. During this period, all the hotels and airlines will be at their busiest making traveling costs higher than the rest of the year.

If you are taking a train in Tibet, you should try to avoid the first week of May (May Days Holiday), the first week in October (China National Day), and late January/early February (Chinese Spring Festival). Train Tickets during these times are heavily booked by mass Chinese tourists and you will probably have to pay an expensive surcharge to acquire the tickets or you might not even be able to get the tickets at all.

How to get into Tibet?

There is only one international flight that enters Tibet, from Nepal (Kathmandu), but domestic flights are available from most cities in mainland China like Beijing, Shanghai, Chengdu, Kunming, Chongqing, Guangzhou, Zhongdian (Shangrila) and so on. If you would like to take a train to Tibet, trains are available from Beijing, Shanghai, Chengdu, Guangzhou, Xian, Lanzhou, Chongqing and Xining, but trains from Xian are comparatively harder to get because it is not an originating station and all trains passing through are in transition.

If you would like to drive into Tibet, you will only be able to travel from Chengdu, Qinghai and Yunan from within China or from Kathmandu in Nepal. The overland drive takes longer but can add an element of adventure. When you decided your traveling dates, please check with us regarding the availability since parts of the Chengdu-Tibet and Yunnan-Tibet routes are frequently closed due to political sensitivity and landslides during the monsoon season.

When is the best time to travel to Tibet?

Generally speaking, the months from April to October are the best time to visit Tibet. However, having a winter tour from November to February can be pleasant if you don't mind the cold weather. If you decide to travel in the winter, you can avoid the tourist crowds and costs are comparatively much cheaper. Nevertheless, you can experience the mass of local pilgrims around the monasteries all year round. Choosing the best season to travel to Tibet mainly depends on the tour you are interested in. If your tour is going to EBC, the best time to visit would be in May, June, the beginning of July, September and October. In these months, EBC is warmer and clear, blue skies allow you to view the mighty peak of Mt. Everest clearly. If your tour is going to Mt. Kailash, the best time to visit is during the months of May, June, July and September. In these months it is warm and you will have no rain during your Kailash trekking days; you will also have the opportunity to see local pilgrims doing the Kora (trek). If you are interested in experiencing Tibetan festivals, the best time to visit is in August, in which there is a number of popular festivals both ritual and cultural celebrated in Tibet.

Do you sell Tibet permits separately?

No travel agency in Tibet can sell Tibet permits separately, when you book your tour with us we will arrange all the travel permits for the tour collectively.

Are independent travelers allowed in Tibet?

Independent travel has been prohibited in Tibet since 2008, so all the travelers must be in an organized tour group or a private tour can be arranged per your request.

VISA & Documents FAQs

What documents do I need to send you to apply for TTP?

Once you have confirmed your tour with us, we need you to send us clear scanned copies of Passports and China Visas for every member of the group to apply for the Tibet Travel Permit. If your China Visa is not an “L” visa, then you must also provide additional documents such as student certificates, work permits, residence permits and so on.

How long does the Tibet Permit application process take?

Normally, Tibet permits can be issued in 3 working days, but if your tour itinerary covers some restricted or unopened area like EBC, Mt. Kailash, Sichuan-Tibet highway and Yunnan-Tibet highway, you may need several different permits which could take around 7 working days.

What kind of trip requires the Military Permit, PSB Perm

Military and PSB Permits are only needed for those trips going through sensitive areas or a border region; these trips include the Mt. Kailash trip, Sichuan-Tibet Overland Tour, Tibet-Kashigar Overland Tour and so on. Alien's Travel Permits are necessary if you are going to Mt. Everest Base Camp, Samye Monastery (southern part of Tibet), Nyinchi (Eastern part of Tibet) and Mt. Kailash, but these can be issued from the local PSB just before you enter the region.

How do I obtain the Tibet Travel Permit?

To obtain Tibet Travel Permits, it is necessary to make your travel arrangements through a genuine local travel agency, providing clear scanned copies of you passport and China visa. Please note that it’s impossible to board any flights or trains to Tibet without the Travel Permit. The permits themselves specify every destination and all the towns that you would visit during the tour and cannot be changed once you have arrived in Tibet; therefore, be sure to detail all possible destinations as well as the route before you decide your trip. It usually takes 3 working days for the Tibet Travel Permit to be issued. I can take 5 to 7 days if your particular tour requires the Military Permit and PSB permit.

What documents do I need to visit Tibet?

To visit Tibet you should have a valid passport, a Chinese visa and a Tibet Travel Permit, also called a Tibet Entry Permit or Tibet Visa. We will obtain the Tibet Travel Permit for you from the Tibet Tourism Bureau.

Health & Safety FAQs

Is there any way to prevent the Altitude Sickness?

To prevent the occurrence of altitude sickness, visitors should have a proper rest and avoid strenuous activities days before you go to Tibet. After getting off the plane, you should try not to carry heavy things or run and avoid outdoor activities. Nifedipinum, Nuodikang Capsules and Suoluomabao Capsules (known as Hongjingtian Capsules in Chinese) may help some people prevent the occurrence of altitude sickness when they are taken three days before arrival to a highland. Note: Acetazolamide (Diamox) is a drug used to stimulate breathing and reduce mild symptoms of mountain sickness. This drug can cause increased urination, so when taking this medication, make sure you drink plenty of fluids and do not drink alcohol; if you don’t drink enough water, it may result in serious dehydration, which can worsen AMS.

What are the causes of Acute Mountain Sickness?

Altitude sickness, also known as Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS), is a pathological effect of high altitude on humans, caused by acute exposure to low air pressure (usually outdoors at high altitudes). It usually occurs around 3,000 meters above sea level. Cold temperatures, high fever and extreme fatigue can all lead to altitude sickness.

What kind of people should avoid traveling high altitude

Visitors with a severe cold, a high fever, acute or chronic pulmonary diseases, severe cardiovascular diseases, women with an advanced pregnancy and children under three years of age should avoid traveling to regions with a high altitude.

What are the symptoms of AMS (Acute Mountain Sickness)?

Symptoms generally associated with mild to moderate altitude illness include:

·         Difficulty sleeping

·         Dizziness or light-headedness

·         Fatigue

·         Headache

·         Loss of appetite

·         Nausea or vomiting

·         Rapid pulse (heart rate)

·         Shortness of breath with exertion

 

Symptoms generally associated with more severe altitude illness include:

·         Bluish discoloration of the skin (cyanosis)

·         Chest tightness or congestion

·         Confusion

·         Cough

·         Coughing up blood

·         Decreased consciousness or withdrawal from social interaction

·         Gray or pale complexion

·         Inability to walk in a straight line, or to walk at all

·         Shortness of breath at rest

What is the rates of Altitude sickness cause?

Altitude (meters above sea level)

Percentage of those Affected

3,000

40%

3,700

57.3%

3,900

63.8%

4,520

89.24% -

5,300

100%

The rates of acute altitude sickness 3,000 m, 3,700 m, 3,900 m, 4,520 m and 5,300m above sea level are 40 percent, 57.3 percent, 63.8 percent, 89.24 percent and 100 percent, according to a survey Although these values are typical, experts point out that the human body is very adaptable and has a magical capability for acclimation. As breakthroughs have been made in determining the cause of altitude sickness and in the treatment, the cure rate of the two most common forms of acute altitude sickness -- high altitude pulmonary edema (HAPE) and high altitude cerebral edema (HACE) -- has reached 99%. Therefore, altitude sickness is not that scary and should not be a major concern.

Tibet Trains & Flights FAQs

What is the China domestic flight luggage weight allowan

Weight allowance of China domestic flights are as follows:

Luggage type

First Class

Business Class

Economy Class

Baggage size

Carry-on baggage

5kg * 2 pieces

5kg

5kg

55cm/20cm/40cm(L/B/H)

Checked-in baggage

40kg

30kg

20kg

100cm/60cm/40cm(L/B/H)

 

The maximum carry-on baggage allowance is 5kg. First class passengers can have 2 pieces of carry-on luggage but passengers in other classes can have only one. The size may not exceed 55x20x40cm. Passengers with carry-on baggage in excess of the above limits will have to check their bags and will be charged an extra baggage fee.

The checked-in baggage allowance for all First Class passengers is 40kg; Business Class is 30kg, and Economy Class is 20kg. Passengers traveling with infants are allowed to check an additional 10kg.

Groups can combine their baggage allowances if they check their baggage on the same flight.

How far is Lhasa Airport from the city?

Lhasa airport is 68km southwest of Lhasa and takes about a one and a half hour drive upstream from Lhasa River.

What is the flight fare for kids?

For domestic flights in China, kids from ages 2 to 12(exclude 12) cost 50% of the adult flight fare. For International flights, kids tickets cost 75% of the adult fare. Infants under 2 years cost 10% of the adult fare but are not allowed to occupy a separate seat.

Can I fly to other parts of Tibet rather than Lhasa?

In TAR, there are five airports in different regions that include: Lhasa Gonga Airport, Chamdo Bangda Airport, Linzhi (Nyintri) Airport, Shigatse Airport and Ali Airport. Shigatse and Ali airports were opened in 2010 and only have flights available from Lhasa for the time being. Flights to Chamdo and Linzhi airports are only available from Chengdu and Lhasa, but not frequently so please check with us when you need exact information or schedules because they can change from time to time.

Can I fly directly to Tibet from my home country?

No, there is only one international flight to Tibet, which is from Nepal. You should fly to any city in Mainland China where you can acquire your Tibet Travel Permit and then fly to Tibet.

When I can get discounted flight tickets?

Discounted flight tickets to Tibet are available from many different airlines during the low season, which is from November to March. It is very rare to find discounted tickets during the rest of the year, but you can always double- check with us when confirming your tour.

How can I receive my flight tickets if I booked them wit

We usually book e-tickets so you won’t need to get any paper tickets from us. We will send you the detailed flight information when we book your ticket and you can get the boarding pass from the airport by providing your flight information and passport.

How do I pack for the train ride and what should I bring

The train ride to Tibet from mainland China range anywhere from 24 – 50 hrs. It is not a short trip and you will need to pack properly in order to fully enjoy the train ride and scenery along the way. We suggest you pack all of your unnecessary items in a larger bag and put all necessary items in a smaller, handy bag that you can access easily. Here is a brief packing list for your smaller bag:

1.         Slippers

2.         Toiletries

3.         Mug or cup for boil water

4.         Flash light (train cabin lights go out at 10pm)

5.         Snacks and cookies

6.         Ear plugs and eye mask

What is the train ticket cancellation policy?

Normally the train ticket cancellation fee costs 20% of the total ticket fee.

Is taking train to Tibet reduce the risk of getting AMS

It remains a question for many travelers whether taking the train to Tibet helps with Altitude sickness or not, but many experts says that taking the train doesn’t really provide that much help since the train itself is well designed and pressurized to prevent altitude sickness in its passengers. Moreover, many passengers have trouble sleeping on the train and will be very tired when they arrive in Lhasa, which will increase the risk of getting altitude sickness. The best way to prevent the Altitude sickness is to spend at least 2 days in Lhasa doing mild activities before heading to higher altitude places.

Food & Lodging FAQs

Will our guide show us where to eat?

Yes, all our guides are local and know the restaurants well. They will show you which places to eat and will stop at restaurant where you can find good food when driving outside of Lhasa.

What is the approximate cost of a meal in Tibet?

The cost of food is different in each region of Tibet. In the cities, it will generally cost about RMB 50-90 or USD 10-15 per day for lunch and dinner. Outside of cities or in towns along the road, it should cost about RMB 30-60 or USD 5-10 per day.

What kinds of food can I find at EBC?

At EBC, there is no special restaurant and all the tent guesthouses have their own kitchen. They serve noodles, fried rice and some simple dishes to order. For breakfast, they can make pancakes and omelets. You can also get a cup of instant coffee for a higher cost.

What are the meal options in Tibet?

In cities like Lhasa, Gyantse, Shigatse, Nyintri, Tsedang and Zhangmu, you can easily find clean restaurants that serve continental, western, Indian, Nepalese, Tibetan and Chinese dishes. Chinese Cuisine and noodle restaurants can always be easily found in even some small towns during your trip.

I am a Vegetarian, will I have a problem finding meals i

Buddhism is strongly practiced in Tibet so many Tibetans prefer to be vegetarian. You can find good vegetarian restaurants in cities like Lhasa and Shigatse. In small towns and villages, you can order vegetable noodles or dishes at local restaurants.
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    Kalsang was excellent, as was Kunchok, However in the beginning the communication to the guide was not good- each new guide di
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    Christ Lewington
    Our guide is knowledgeable and good commend of English, extremely helpful and attentive to our needs. a superb guide.
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    Tien Cao
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