7 Common misconception about traveling to Tibet, In this post we will share some common misconception traveler encounter.
We are a local Tibetan travel agency. We have the day to day experiences in Organizing tours and getting travelers to visit Tibet.
Following information base on our practical knowledge
Visit Tibet is possible for everyone
The majority of Our client tells us, they thought it was impossible to visit Tibet. The fact is Tibet is never so open to foreign travel in the history of Tibet as it is now. But there are some regulations in visiting Tibet. Beside all these regulation it is easy to get to Tibet.
Travel website use the term Tibet Visa to address for Tibet travel permit. Tibet is a part of the People’s republic of China. So they is only one visa required to visit Tibet and another part of the country, that is Chinese Visa. Using the term Tibet visa has course many confusion over years. Some travelers even ask if they would need a page in their passport for TIBET VISA.
So using Tibet visa is a wrong term.Tibet travel permit is a permit issued by Tibet tourism Bureau. Your travel agency in Tibet will apply for you. Without this Permit, you will not be able to enter into Tibet autonomous region of China.
Tibet permit without tour
There is lot of search in search engine with term Tibet permit without Tour. Poeple often ask us if we can help them the Tibet travel permit with out having their tour organize by us. There is no travel agency, who can make your Permit without booking a tour services with them.
Some travelers tells us, they saw an advertisement in hostel about permit only services. As a matter of fact Tibet tourism policy state no independent travel in Tibet.
Traveler needs to join a group tour to Travel to Tibet
This year, there are people asking us. If it is compulsory for travelers to join a group tour. And there is some website telling so.
Tibet group tour is to bring down the tour cost by sharing the cost of Private Vehicle and the Guide fees. Which is a significant amount of total tour price. It is good for individual travelers. if you are more then four, i would recommend you in doing a private tour.
You need to book with a Chinese travel agency
There are travel websites telling. You will need to book your Tibet tour with a Chinese travel agency. For some reason foreign travelers get confuse with this. This creates a great complexity for any one trying to visit Tibet.
How every weird it might sound, but it does happen to us a couple of times. Legally speaking all the Citizen People’s Republic of China are Chinese. Unlike a popular labeling of Han ( the majority) as Chinese. Tibetan in China are Tibetan Chinese and Han people as Han Chinese.
So when those website states Chinese travel agency. it also mean any travel agency own by a Chinese citizen in China. So it is OK to book your tour with a Tibetan travel agency too.
Permit delivery and need of Original Tibet permit
This year, We have a clients from Canada. As per the tour contact and tour plan. They are suppose to come to Tibet by a Train from Shanghai. We told them, since they are coming to Tibet in train, they would not need the original permit. But they would need an original permit if they are taking a flight to Lhasa. And decide to come by train.
Some how in the last minute, they decide to take a flight from Beijing to Lhasa and would only inform us in last minutes. As the per the regulation. Travelers are suppose to show an original Tibet travel permit at the Airport before Lhasa.
Because of this. e loose a lots of money for getting them to flight tickets to Xining and Train tickets from Xining to Lhasa which they refuse to repay. At the end, We end up loosing lots of money on their tour.
On their side, they had to sleep at the Beijing Airport for a night and extent their travel time to Lhasa. they were death tired on arrival in Lhasa.
So. We thought is it important for every one to know the differences in coming to Tibet in train or via flight. Please read details about coming to Tibet from China here
If you are changing from train to flight. You will have to inform you travel agency in Lhasa at least five days before and they will have to send you the original permit to you.
Do tell the Chinese embassy about your Tibet travel Plans.
Almost all the Tibet travel website, i have come across in many years, tells travelers not to mention about their travel plans to Tibet while applying for Chinese Visa. This only makes it hard for travelers to apply for the visa.
First they will have to produce a book flight detials, Hotel reservation in China and tour itineraries. and it is a lot of work for travelers of make a flight booking which they will later cancel after printing, as well as lots of other details.
When ever we have a client booking a tour with us we clearly tell them . If they might need a VISA invitation from us. We can send it to you. As it is very easy to travel agency in Tibet to send you a visa invitation.
After receiving tour booking confirmation and the deposit, you can send us the copy of your passport. Our travel agency in Lhasa can initiate the Tibet travel permit. upon finish a process with Tibet tourism Bureau, your travel agency can ask the Tibet tourism bureau to write a visa invitation for you. Which they always do.
After getting the securing a visa invitation from Tibet tourism bureau. your travel agency can send you the scan copy of Visa invitation and you can submit it with your visa application. So far we have 100% success rate in securing visa in this process.
I dont really know why any travel agency would ask client to go around the bush when the visa can be easily secure.
Above are some of the most common misconception about traveling to Tibet. If you may any further questions about Tibet tourism. please do mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org or you can send us the direct massage on WhatsApp.