Tour FAQ

Back to TopIs independent tour allowed in Tibet?

No, you cannot have 100% independent tour in Tibet; instead, you will have either a private tour or a group tour including a guide, driver and etc. Even before 2008, independent tour in Tibet is rare, and after 2008, the restriction has been reinforced by adding many checking-points on the way, particularly if you travel outside of Lhasa or visit some sensitive areas. There are always someone checking your permit, and you must have a tour guide to help you go through those formalities.

Back to TopHow much tour freedom do I have if I must need a tour guide?

Your tour guide is neither your 24 hours guardian nor nanny, so long as you do not visit scenic spots without him or her, you can hang out any where you like. Just tell your guide you want to spend today alone and he or she will be waiting for you somewhere else at your disposal or even stay home. But you must follow the rules not visiting scenic spots alone. If you were caught by the policemen, not only you but also your guide, your travel agent would be in great trouble. So, please travel responsibly while you want to have a free day in Tibet.

Back to TopWhat all travel permits do I need to apply for if I travel to Tibet?

There are several kinds of travel permits in Tibet tourism. To make it simple, you only need a TTB (Tibet Tourism Bureau) permit if you just want to have a few days in Lhasa city or somewhere near Lhasa. However, if you travel outside of Lhasa to some areas like Mt. Everest, Tsedang, Nyingchi, you still need PSB permit and ATP permit, your agent will take care of them all if you book tour with them.

Back to TopCan I get the permit in my country before arriving in China?

Generally not, because this will make the cost high if international delivery is used. As a common practice, you will get your permit after your arrival in China, such as Beijing, Shanghai or Chengdu where you enter Tibet by train or air. Your travel agent will deliver the permit to the hotel that you book in a specific city; you must provide your agent with the name, address and phone number of this hotel.

Back to TopIs it possible to extend my visit in Tibet after my permit expires?

Yes, it is possible to extend if you only intend to overstay one or two days in Lhasa not somewhere else. And you must tell your plan to your agent in advance, and they know how to help for you. It will make extension more difficult if you tell them at the very end of your tour.

Back to TopCan I travel in Tibet by public bus as the private vehicle rental is expensive?

No, public bus is not allowed for non-Chinese tourist in Tibet. And even no public bus driver would like to let you get on board; they will be fined if been caught. Private vehicle rental in Tibet is expensive as most time your tour agent has to use a land cruiser for you due to the poor road condition; while in Lhasa, you can choose not to use a private vehicle as Lhasa city is really small, from Potala to Johkang Temple, it only costs 15 minute by walking. And if you want to travel to a certain monastery that is located on the outskirt of the city, a taxi costing USD 3 is pretty enough. So if you just some few days tour in Lhasa, you can choose not to rent vehicle in order to save.

Back to TopCan I stay in Tibet without a guide, or can my driver be my guide at the same time?

It is impossible as explained above. Besides, it is also impossible to have your driver to be your tour guide at the same time even your driver speaks fluent English. This is just the rule of Tibet tourism.

Back to TopHow much is a Tibet permit?

Please note that we never just SELL a permit as this is illegal. We only help you obtain a permit from the Tibet Tourism Bureau. The cost for a permit includes both the charge by the government and the service fees by our travel agency. The cost will be calculated into the quote of the whole tour package including tour guide and other items.

Back to TopWhat are the hotels like in Tibet?

Tourism is Tibet is in its infancy and the number of 4 Star hotels is quite limited. The newer hotels have been built away from the city center in order to protect the city history and environment. These hotels have central heating which is used in winter but no cooling is available in summer. We would still warn that the facilities and service standard may not be as you would expect from a hotel with this rating in other parts of the world. Older hotels located in the city have a good location but will not provide the level of comfort of the newer hotels and may not have any central heating. The level of service and facilities may be quite basic. Staff will probably not speak much English. Hotels in small cities and the Everest Base camp are very basic. They will usually have a public bathroom with squat toilet.

Back to TopCan explain what the budget guesthouse, comfortable hotel and best available hotel are?

One thing you should bury in mind is that hotels in Tibet concerning its facility and service are not what you imagine. Not like hotels in big cities in China and other cities abroad.

Budget guesthouse has a few kinds. One is the twin room with or without the bathroom in it. The other is triple, four-bed rooms, and more beds rooms named dormitory which all have no private bathroom in them. Former one can be easily found in Lhasa and Shigatse, while later one is often the choice in remote area in Tibet.

Comfortable hotels on our website refer to middle class hotels, or standard hotels regarding to its location, or price, or comprehensive service ability. They are usually three star hotels, or comparatively good 2 star hotels.

The best available hotels are the 4 star hotels. 4 star hotels can only be reached in Lhasa. The best available hotels in the region out of Lhasa are generally 3 star hotels, and in some places hotels with no star, but comparatively of good condition.

Back to TopWhat are the hotel rooms like in hotels in Tibet?

Often, in a room, there are two beds which we call twin-sharing room. Some hotels have queen bed room and some even have triple room. But the number of queen bed room and triple is very limited. Twin-sharing room with two beds inside is commonly used in Tibet.

Back to TopDoes the hotel room have access to internet?

Some hotel rooms, not all, in Lhasa have access to internet, so you should inquiry your travel advisor for accurate information before making decision. But some hotel has business center where you can use internet service.

Back to TopIs there 24-hour hot water running?

Due to basic condition in Tibet, sometimes with the poor pressure, the water flow may small and water sometime is not hot but just warm. In remote area, the condition can be even worse.

Back to TopWhat can I eat in Tibet?

In Lhasa, you can choose Chinese food, western food, Nepali food and Tibetan food as well. But in remote towns and areas, choice is limited, Chinese food or Sichuan cuisine is the best choice.

Other Travelers' Questions

The questions raised by our past customers can help you get a more clear picture about tours to Tibet, read them or tell us your own questions via the form on the right side, our specialists will reply you within 24 hours.

user portrait Mr. Eric Thornton from: How to apply for Tibet Permit
Since I noticed that Tibet should not be mentioned on my Chinese visa application form, I just want to clarify that I will not receive an extra sticker / passport stamp upon arrival in Tibet via Mainland China. Since I presently reside in China, I want to ensure that a visit to Tibet will not harm my chances to renew my Chinese residence permit.
Answered by Nancy

Dear Mr. Eric Thornton,

Greetings from Nancy Chung at BTT. Please worry free you will not accept the extra sticker on your passport if you will travel to Tibet, and the Tibet permit is A4 paper alike files and you just show it when you check in at airport or train station, and also you will need it many places in Tibet. We will use your passport and China visa copies plus your work permit/study permit copy if you live in China. this will not affect your stay in China at all. I will send the details to your email. Have a nice day to you. 

Email to Nancy about any question or tell us your own questions via the form on the right side

user portrait Mr. Samm Clemente from: 7 Days Lhasa to Kathmandu Tour via Everest Base Camp
I am planning to visit Lhasa and take your 7 day Lhasa to Katmadu tour on June 26, which is indicated as available. I plan to take a train from Xinxing. Can I go to Lhasa and stay there on my own two days before the start of the 7 days tour ( arriving in Lhasa June 24 )? I'll pay on my own my board and lodging for these 2 days. Thanks.
Answered by Nancy

Dear Mr. Samm Clemente,

Greetings from Nancy Chung at BTT. No problem we have the group tour on 26th June. And no problem for you to arrive in Lhasa two days earlier to adapt the high altitude. And I will send you the tour details to your email, please check it. Best regards.

Email to Nancy about any question or tell us your own questions via the form on the right side

user portrait Mr. Manfred Moll from: 9 Days Lhasa to Kathmandu Tour via Mt. Everest Base Camp plus Namtso Lake
What is the price for this private tour (9 Days Lhasa to Kathmandu Tour via Mt. Everest Base Camp plus Namtso Lake) in September? we are 2 person.
Answered by Nancy

Hi Mr. Manfred Moll, Greetings from Nancy Chung at Budget Tibet Tour, No problem for us to arrange the private tour for you in Sep. and I will send you the quote details to your email. Please check it. Best regards.

Email to Nancy about any question or tell us your own questions via the form on the right side

user portrait Ms. Lora from: 8 Days Tibet Mt. Everest Base Camp Group Tour

I am interested in the 8 Days Tibet Mt. Everest Base Camp Group Tour in November ($730 p.p). I would like you questions:
1. Of a total of 8 days, can we just follow 6 days only? Where we started the tour on the 2nd day but we did not follow the activity because your 2nd day is the day we arrived in Lhasa, and we will use it to rest. Only then will we follow your tour. We want to visit Potala Palace, Johkang Temple, and Sera Monastery (we are eager to see the debate).

2. Then on the 7th day where the activity is to return to Lhasa and stay overnight, instead of returning to the hotel we ask directly transfer to the airport because there are flights above at 4 pm.

3. If we do not participate in the 2 days activity, can we get discount?

We are 4 persons interested.

Many thanks



Answered by Nancy

Dear Ms. Lora,

Greetings from Nancy Chung at Budget Tibet Tour. No problem for you to arrive in Lhasa later than the group fixed departure date, and also we can arrange the transfer from Shigaste to airport directly on Day 7 but you need to book the late depart flight please. And for the quote, I will send you the details by email. Thanks and have a nice day to you.

Email to Nancy about any question or tell us your own questions via the form on the right side

user portrait Mr. Kreshnik Ndreu from: 8 Days Tibet Mt. Everest Base Camp Group Tour
Two people USA passport with 10 year Chinese visas.
Arrival at Lhasa by air August 26 from Chongqing.
8 days tour to base camp
Leaving Lhasa Sept 2nd, by air.
what's total cost including entrance +transfer deposit fee. Are more hidden fees? Can I pay with USA Credit Card ? do I need to pay all or I can reserve and pay later?
Answered by Nancy

Dear Mr. Kreshnik Ndreu,

Greetings from Nancy Chung at Budget Tibet Tour. For our group tour, we do not include the entrance fee as you can pay it one by one there on your own. And the entrance fee for this tour would be around 150$ in total. Transfer will be included in the quote if you will catch our three transfers between airport and hotel on arrival and departure date. You need to pay the guide and drive tip on your own, and take care of the meals which are not listed in the itinerary. No problem for you to pay deposit by your card with PayPal account. You can pay the deposit when you want to confirm the tour, and pay the balance when you arrive in Lhasa. Best regards.

Email to Nancy about any question or tell us your own questions via the form on the right side

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