Foreign travelers have to apply for a Tibet Travel Permit before they head to the Tibet Autonomous Region in China. There are 3 kinds of the permits including the Tibet Entry Permit, the Aliens’ Travel Permit, and the Military Permit.
Usually, foreign travelers need the Aliens ‘Travel Permit to tour in Tibet. In addition, a Chinese Tourist Visa and the passport which is valid for more than 6 months are necessary during the journey in Tibet.
Tibet Entry Permit
Only Chinese travel agencies can get the Tibet Entry Permit. Travelers have to join in a tour group to get this permit. The price of the Tibet Entry Permit is about 200 CNY.
The Aliens’ Travel Permit
The Aliens’ Travel Permit, also called travel permit is the must permit in the restricted areas. This permit is issued by Foreign Affairs Section in the local Public Security Bureau in Tibet.
According to the latest news, the Tibet Tourism Bureau still restricts permits for the nationals from the UK, Norway, Austria, Korea, Vietnam, and the Philippines.
The Military Permit
Ngari, Nyingchi, and Nagqu are the military sensitive regions in Tibet, so the Military Permit is a necessary document in these areas. Passport and Tibet permit are the documents to apply for the Military Permit which is only issued by the Lhasa military office. Usually, the Military Permit takes one or two weeks and cost about 100 CNY per person.
Necessary documents to apply for the permit
Travelers need to prepare a scanned copy of the Passport and the Chinese tourist visa and offer real and true personal information such as full name, nationality, and occupation.
Travelers can apply for an individual permit or a group permit which can be only handled by travel agencies in Tibet or other cities in China. It is the absolutely wise choice to ask a travel agency to handle the Tibet Travel Permit. The permit usually takes one to ten days which relys on the tour plan.
When to apply a Tibet Travel Permit
In order to travel in the restricted regions, it is better for foreign travelers to apply for the permit at least 20 days prior to the date of entry. And it is at least 10 days prior to the date of entry for a tour to the open places such as Lhasa (the capital of Tibet), and Mt. Everest
Restricted regions in Tibet
Although visitor can travel in Tibet, some parts in Tibet are still not open to the public. However, travelers with a travel permit can travel in the restricted regions. The restricted regions are consisting of Tsedang, Shigatse, Gyangtse, Ngari Region, Nyingchi Region, and Chamdo Region.
Additional information about the Tibet Permit
Foreign travelers can go to Tibet from both China and Nepal. The Tibet permit is on the must-prepared document list on the journey from other cities in China to Tibet. The permit is necessary when travelers check in the airport or travel on the train to Tibet.
If some travelers plan to enter Tibet from Nepal, the Chinese Embassy in Katmandu can handle the permit. Traveler need to keep a fax copy of the permit from the Embassy.