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Big News: Tibet has Opened to Expats Living in China Now!

Permit without Tour

Any foreigner travelers who plan to travel to Tibet should obtain a Tibet Permit which can only be applied by the Tibet travel agencies. Unfortunately, due to governmental regulations, we are not allowed to help with Tibet Travel Permits for independent travelers anymore.

Since the strict regulations of Tibet tourism release in 2008, all foreign travelers traveling to Tibet should book Tibet tour services. An experienced tour guide and a car should involve in the whole tour in Tibet. When applying for the Tibet Travel Permit from the Tourism Bureau of TAR, the Tibet travel agencies have to submit their elaborate tour schedule for approval. Once the permit is issued, tourists are not able to change their trip schedule and travel itinerary at all.

Travelers, especially backpackers have to travel to Tibet with a high price and limited flexibility because they will pay a lot for renting a car and hire a tour guide for the whole tour. Therefore, it is necessary to book a Tibet Tour with an organized Tibet Travel Agency. If you wanna obtain the Tibet Permit without a tour, we have no choice but to say “no” to your inquiry. However, we do have found some solutions to increase flexibility and reduce your cost as much as possible.

1. To increase flexibility

In order to increase the flexibility of your Tibet tour, you are suggested to apply for more destinations and a longer time than planned which makes it possible for you to extend or shorten your trip in Tibet flexibly within the validity of your permit.

2. To reduce the cost

As a professional Tibet travel operator based in Lhasa, Great Tibet Tour has designed some Tibet group tours to help tourists to get down the expenses. We have specially designed two kinds of tour packages for our tourists including the Group Tour and Private Tour.

If you book a group tour with us, you can travel to Tibet at a cheaper price. Meanwhile, you should share the Tibetan guide and vehicles with others and the itinerary and hotels are fixed. There is no need to worry about our service because the group size is 12 persons at maximum, but mostly 4-8 persons which make it possible for the tour guide to take care of every tourist. Our popular Tibet tour packages such as Lhasa to Everest Base Camp or Kathmandu to Lhasa Overland Tour are the budget tours for tourists.

Tibet Private Tour we offer to you is a little bit higher than the group tour. However, choosing a private tour, you can have a private Tibetan guide and vehicle. Moreover, you are able to have a flexible itinerary that is fully customized, and a flexible hotel to meet your standard. The private tour is specially designed for you according to your demands so other visitors will not join in.

3. To obtain more free time

You can spend 1-2 free days shopping, resting, or doing other things you are interested in.


In total, there are three kinds of Tibet Travel Permit.

If you just want sightseeing around Lhasa, a Tibet Entry Permit will meet your requirement;

If you want to explore places outside Lhasa such as Mount Everest, you need to obtain both the Tibet Entry Permit and Alien Travel Permit;

If you want to travel to backend areas such as Mt Kailash, you need to get an extra Military Permit.

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Typically Asked Questions from Our Clients

Asked by Wa***

Hello, my Chilean husband and me (i am Hong Kong resident) would like to stay at Lhasa for 7-9 days. Then join a group tour 4d3n to Everest base camp. How much please? Does it include 2 nights hotel & 1 night camping? Thank you.

Answered by Cherry 2018-12-20

In your inquiry, you mentioned you would like to have a Lhasa &Everest Base Camp tour. We have 8 Days Lhasa Gyantse Shigatse Mt. Everest Group Tour. May I know when would you like to have this group tour?

You can stay more days in Lhasa before or after you have this group tour. 

Asked by Harl***

My entry point in China is Shanghai I will only have 1 hour and 50 minutes layover then to Xi'an were I only have 1 hour and 55 minutes of layover before Lhasa. Is this a problem we can get around. I already have confirmed flight and hotel. I think we talked about this before. I don't want to ball out of this trip if its possible to achieve. Harlan

Answered by Caroline 2018-11-04

Your Tibet tour is possible. Then we will hire a guide to deliver the permit to Xi'an airport. 

Please don't worry. Just let me know when you have the new schedule and members of your group.