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How to plan a Tibet Tour in 2019 and 2020
For many travelers, traveling to Tibet is an unforgettable journey. Since Tibet is a sensitive area in China, foreign travelers are not allowed to travel independently to Tibet by Tibet Tourism Bureau. You should plan your Tibet tour in advance through an authorized Tibetan operator to ensure that your Tibet tour goes smoothly.
Here are some useful tips for planning a Tibet tour
1 Plan your trip to Tibet - points of interest
When planning a trip to Tibet, it is important to decide where you want to go, how long you plan to stay in Tibet and what's your travel budget. Since Tibet is a very large plateau, there are many places you can choose, such as Lhasa, Shigatse, Mount Everest Base Camp, Namtso Lake, and Mount Kailash. If you only would like to stay in Lhasa, a 4~5 day Lhasa city tour is enough. If you would like to visit Mount Everest, you need to plan an 8-day Lhasa Everest tour. Besides, you would like to travel center of Tibet like Mount Kailash, a 12~15 days Lhasa Mount Kailash tour is needed.
The tour cost is USD450~USD1700 from 4-day Lhasa tour to MT. Kailash. The cost will be a little different depending on months you travel to Tibet and Tibet tour operates. Usually, from July to September is the peak seasons for a Tibet tour, the cost includes hotel fee, tour guide fees, airfare to Tibet will a little bit increase. From April to June, and from October to December is the off-season for Tibet tour, so the tour cost will be much cheaper. You can determine this Tibet tour duration according to your schedule and budget.
2 Find a Trusty Local Tibet Travel Agency
As a foreign traveler, you need to obtain a Tibet travel permit to enter Tibet from Tibet Tourism Bureau. Since Tibet Tourism Bureau does not allow foreign travelers to travel independently to Tibet, you need to find a trusted local Tibetan travel agency that can get your Tibet travel permit and arrange a trip to Tibet. All you need to do is tell them about your Tibet travel plan and send a copy of your passport and Chinese visa to get a Tibet travel permit. To experience first-class travel services, it is important to find a local Tibet travel agency that you can trust. Because they can provide you with excellent English-speaking guides, comfortable accommodation, spacious cars, as well as an excellent travel consultant, who can handle most of your problems on this trip to Tibet.
3 Choose the Right Way to Enter Tibet
Usually, there are three ways to get to Tibet, by plane, by train or by overland. It’s very convenient to get to Tibet by plane. Since there are no direct international flights to Lhasa except for Kathmandu, you need to choose a Chinese city like Beijing, Chengdu, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Xi’an as a transfer station, then fly to Lhasa. If you have a limited budget and want to experience natural plateau landscape along Qinghai-Tibet Plateau Railway, it’s wise to take a train to Lhasa from a Chinese city, such as Xining, Chengdu, Beijing, Shanghai, etc. What’s more, if you enter Tibet from Kathmandu, you can fly to Lhasa directly, or take an overland tour from Kathmandu to Lhasa via Gyirong border.
4 What pack when you travel to Tibet
No matter where you travel, you have to pack it! Remember, Tibet is located at the roof of the world, and most of it is a remote area. You should consider what you want to pack in advance. A large backpack and a small backpack is enough for this Tibet Travel. The small one can be used for daily activities and pockets for property and important documents. The large one can be used for carrying clothes and other items. It’s wise for you to travel light for your Tibet travel. In Tibet, you really don't want to carry large luggage which is filled with unnecessary equipment. Here's a packing guide for a 7-10 day Tibet tour, although it depends essentially on what you carry.
You need to bring necessary documents such as your passport, Chinese visa, and Tibet travel permit.
Ideally, the clothes should be thin and light, so you can add multiple layers, which is better for keeping warm on the Qinghai-Tibet plateau. Warm sweaters and jackets are essential to carry as even in the summer months, the morning and nights in Tibet will be very cold. Whenever you travel to Everest Base Camp or Namtso Lake, winter clothes are indispensable. Women should avoid wearing dresses and skirts, especially shorts or low-cut shirts, as this is not possible in Tibet. It is wise to have a pair of comfortable sneakers if you plan to hike in Tibet.
Because the sunshine in Tibet is very strong, you'd better bring sunglasses, Sunscreen, lip balm and so on.
4)Bring some cash
Usually, in Tibet, Tibetan people use cash in RMB at the most time. Sometimes, you can use USD in some superior hotels, store, and restaurant. Though there are many ATMs or Banks which can exchange US dollars or other currencies to RMB, you are suggested to bring some case in RMB when you plan to travel to Tibet.
6) Take some medicine to avoid altitude sickness
As Tibet located on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, the third pole in the world, if you travel from a low-altitude place to a high-altitude place like Tibet, you may be worried about altitude sickness. Here are some tips for you to avoid altitude sickness as below,
Diamox and Suoluomabao Capsules (known as Hongjingtian Capsule in Chinese) have been found to help avoid altitude sickness. Since Diamox takes a while to work, it is best to start taking it 24 hours before arriving in Tibet and continue taking it for at least 5 days at a higher altitude. In addition, you can carry some medications to prevent headaches and diarrhea. To better adapt to altitude sickness, you are also suggested to take a train to Tibet from a Chinese city and stay 2~3 days in Lhasa.
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