2017 Tibet Permit and Tibet visa updates

August 15th, 2017  |  Published in Tibet Travel News  |  3 Comments

2017 Tibet Travel Permits and Tibet Visa updates

Dear travelers and business partners,

According to announcement from Tibet Tourism Bureau today, Tibet Travel Permits will be suspended during Shoton Festival(Yogurt Festival) from August 21st – August 28th. Which means all the offices will be taken off and no Tibet permits will be proceeded during this festival. So if you are traveling to Tibet at the end of August and beginning of September, please send your passport and visa copies soon. Tibet Travel Permits process will be resumed after the holiday starting from August 29th, 2017.

SnowLion Tours

2015 – 2016 Tibet Travel Permits and Tibet Visa

  • June 28th, 2016 updates: Tibet travel regulation finally stabilised after constant changes made by Tibet Tourism Bureau due to Nepal earthquake and other political reason. As it is now, Tibet Travel Permits are issued regularly and no ban or restrictions are made for the coming days. There is no restrictions on groups size and nationality. You can travel to Tibet as small group as 1 person or as many as you want. You can also travel with many different nationalities. We just had a group of 11 nationalities in the same group and there is no problem to obtain Tibet Travel Permits. That been said, the Tibet and Nepal border are still closed for all foreign nationalities except access for  Indian pilgrimage to entry Tibet from Kyirong border to visit Mt. Kailash.
  • latest Tibet Travel Updates:    Tibet Tourism Bureau issued a new ban after the earthquake in western Tibet. Travelers are not allowed to visit the following places from May 12 to May 17th: Shigatse, Mt. Kailash, Ngari (Ali), Tsethang, Nyintri and all the regions under these prefectures jurisdiction. Which means 90% of Tibet Autonomous Region has been closed until May 17th. Those groups whom are already in the region, they can travel in the same prefecture or return back to Lhasa. No cross other regions are allowed. We will keep you up-to-date.
  • Due to a massive earthquake in Himalayan Region in Nepal and smaller one in west of Shigatse, Tibet Tourism Bureau closed the following roads in Central Tibet:  Lhasa to Gyantse – Shigats, Lhasa – Mt. Everest overland trips, Lhasa – Mt. Everest Base Camp – Zhangmu Overland trips, Lhasa – Mt. Kailash overland trips.  The reopen of the date is still unknown.
  • Tibet likely be closed since Feb 15th til March 28th 2015. If you are planning to travel to Tibet during this time, you need to move your travel date after April 10th.
  • Feb 20, 2014.  Tibet is closed to foreign tourists which is became an annually practice. However, the reopen of Tibet is still unknown but we believe it will be around March 25th, 2014.
  • April 15, 2013.  Tibet is fully opened to tourists now. No more tourists restrictions. You can travel by one person or 3-4 nationalities together.
  • March 30th, 2013, Now there is no restrictions on group size to apply Tibet Travel Permits, you can travel as small as one person group. Though Tibet Tourism Bureau start checking the copy of deposit receipt sent from oversea clients. The number of deposit can be as small as 300USD per person for normal tours and 500-600USD for bigger trips like Mt.Kailash Kora, trekking tours.etc.  Mt.Everest Base Camp is still closed to foreign tourists. However, it may reopen sometime in the summer time.
  • Tibet is open again!!!   March 26th, 2013, Tibetan Tourism Bureau(TTB) had a meeting on 23rd and discuss about the permits policy for 2013. Though TTB didn’t announce anything on the paper but Tibet Permits for Lhasa and Tibet Autonomous Region(TAR) started being process on March 26th.   For now, travellers only need to be in a group of 2 minimum from the same nationality. People from Japan, Philippines and Norway most likely will NOT be given permits. Everest Base Camp remains closed. Chamdo(Chi: Changdu) prefecture in the eastern TAR remains closed as it has been closed since 2009.


  • March 20th, according to insider source: Tibet Tourism Bureau is going to start process permits on March 28th and travellers are able to entry Tibet from around April 5th or 6th. But entry Lhasa after April 8th is recommended due to the instability of the permits procedure in the beginning. The exact procedures of permits still unknown and to be confirmed next week. We will update any  new info on Tibet Travel Permits and Tibet visa as soon as we know.


  • Feb 21st: Tibet Tourism Bureau stopped issue permits. Tibet is officially closed to foreign tourists. But Tibet will be reopen in the end of March or beginning of April. The estimate of entering Tibet is around April 5th or April 6th.  According to some insider info, Tibet Permits regulation is likely change when it’s open. But for how it is going to change still unknown. We will have some more and clear updates around March 25th.  Hopefully there is some good news about Tibet Permits.


  • Jan 1st:  The Tibetan Autonomous Region is open to foreign travelers. However, all visitors to the region require a Tibet Travel Permit, which can only be arranged through a travel agency. Those wishing to obtain a Tibet Travel Permit to visit Lhasa and other locations in the Tibet Autonomous Region must book a tour through a travel agency.

Since 2008, travel information on Tibet is always changing and SnowLion Tours aims to provide the most up-to-date information possible. If you’ve read other news about the travel situation in Tibet, especially if it was written before 2008, it is likely out of date.

May 5th, 2012, Tibet permits has been changing twice in May. Now, in order to obtain your permits. foreign travelers need to be in a group minimum 5 people from same country.

June 10th,2012, Tibet permits situation is not positive. Tibet Tourism Bureau stopped issuing permits which means foreign travelers are unable to access Tibet until TTB reopen Tibet and issue permits again. Let’s hope this won’t take long.

June 20th, 2012, Tibet permits are scheduled to resume sometime this week. So we are able to arrange permits for most of nationalities except citizens of Norway, Britain, Austria and S Korea. In order to obtain permits,  you need minimum 5 people in one group with same nationality.

August 20th,2012, In order to obtain Tibet permits( or Tibet “visa”), one group has to meets with the following regulatory requirements:

1). Minimum group size 5 people
2). All the members of the group has to be same nationality. A this moment, there are only 2 mixed groups be able to obtain permits if you can proof the relationship (by providing marriage certificate or immediate dependent relative proof).
3. Clients need to pay 500USD per person as a deposit to a direct bank of travel agency in Lhasa.
4. The rest will be taking care by your travel agency.

There is not much way to go around with these rules, however, if you are a group of 3-4 people and only travel in Lhasa or nearby, then some travel agencies still be able to arrange your permits.

According to Tibet Tourism Bureau(TTB) inside info, Tibet is going to close from Sept 20th till end of Oct, 2012 which means TTB is not going to issue any permits for groups entry after Sept 20th. This info has not yet confirmed.

If you are interested in experiencing Tibet culture, Tibetan life style, Tibetan homestay, trekking, climbing and overland tours,etc, we recommend to visit Amdo or Kham region of Tibet, these two regions are  located outside of Tibet Autonomous Region,  therefore, permits is not required.  

SnowLion Tours also arranges Tibet Group visa

This special visa is only applicable for travellers who entry Tibet from Nepal by air or overland

All foreigners traveling to Tibet from Nepal require a Tibet Group Visa. This visa only can be obtained in the Chinese Embassy in Kathmandu. This visa is printed on a A4 size paper with your essential information such as all the group member’s name, passport number, gender, nationality, date of birth and occupation. The dates of entry and exit are precisely noted on the visa paper. All the members of the group must entry Tibet and exit China together. The Chinese embassy in Kathmandu issues two copies of original Tibet Group visa. One copy will be collected by immigration office when you entry Tibet and the other one need to show at the exit gate in China. If you entry from Nepal, then make sure you are not apply Chinese visa in your home country or elsewhere. Because if you do obtain a normal Chinese visa, it will be cancelled and you need to apply Tibet Group visa at the Chinese Embassy in Kathmandu.


  1. Aarti says:

    June 19th, 2012at 10:35 am(#)

    We are from Mauritius travelling to Kalaish from Nepal from 3rd August 2012.
    Is it possible that you arrange the permits.
    Thank you

  2. snowlion says:

    June 19th, 2012at 11:32 am(#)

    Dear Aarti,

    Yes, we can arrange your tour to Mt.Kailash. However, there are some restrictions for Tibet permits. You will need minimum 6 people to travel together with same nationality. Please send us an email: info@snowliontours.com for further information. Thank you!
    SnowLion Tours Team

  3. rako says:

    August 19th, 2012at 8:08 pm(#)

    I’m from Canada and would like to travel to Lhasa and surrounding areas on November. However, I’m travel solo, so is it possible to get the Tibet Permits.

    Thank You

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