Most Frequently Asked Questions About Travel In Nepal
Frequently Asked Questions: Nepal can seem a distant and exotic destination for a first-time visitor and this can give rise to a range of pre-departure questions and worries. Here we try to answer some of the most frequently asked questions about travel in Nepal.
After reading through these we hope that pre-trip worries and questions will be replaced with nothing but pre-trip excitement because although Nepal really is a distant and endlessly exotic land, it’s also one that’s easy, safe, and wildly addictive to travel in.
1. Do I Need A Visa To Visit Nepal?
Frequently Asked Questions: One of the most commonly asked questions about travel in Nepal concerns visas. The simple answer is that everybody (except Indians) needs a visa to enter Nepal. For most nationalities, these are available on arrival at the international airport or major land border crossing points. Available visas and their costs are:
- 15 days: US$25
- 30 days: US$40
- 90 days: US$100
All visas are valid for multiple entries so you can visit Nepal and, for example, Tibet on the same trip and then return to Nepal for a flight home without having to get a new visa (so long as the original is still valid).
It’s possible to apply for visa extensions and get transit visas.
Link to online visa application. To get a visa on arrival you must bring the correct amount in US$ cash and a passport-sized photo.
2. Is Nepal a safe country?
Frequently Asked Questions: Nepal has a low crime rate and is generally a safe country. There are some safety concerns following the 2008 elections when the country became a secular republic. Avoid demonstrations, rallies, and public gatherings. As with any international travel, please be aware of your surroundings.
Check with your guide or representative about the safe/ unsafe areas of town and use caution when traveling alone. Also, always make sure your purse is zipped and wallets are in sealed pockets. In the markets, be vigilant of pick-pockets and distraction scams. Additionally, at the train/bus stations and airports, please monitor your luggage at all times.
There is an armed Maoist presence on many of the major trekking routes who demand a ‘tax’ before allowing trekkers to pass. Trekkers are advised to stay on established routes and walk in a group or with professional guides.
3. Is It Easy To Stay In Touch With Home When In Nepal?
One of the questions everyone poses about travel in Nepal is how easy is it to stay in touch with loved ones at home? In Kathmandu, Pokhara, and all larger towns as well as most villages outside of the high mountains. Mobile phone reception is good and either 4 or 3G data is available and internet speeds are reasonably quick. This means that staying in touch with people at home is easy in more populated parts of Nepal. In the high mountains though it’s a different story altogether.
In general, a mobile phone or internet access is very limited or non-existent. However, this is changing. On more popular trekking routes with lots of teahouses (trekking lodges), Wi-Fi is becoming more and more common. On the main Annapurna or Everest treks, you can now find internet availability at the majority of the main night halts. In lesser trekked parts of the country then it’s easier to just keep your phone switched off.
It’s cheap, quick, and easy to purchase a local SIM card in Kathmandu or Pokhara, and talk time and data is very cheap by international standards.
4. Is Nepal Safe For Women Travelers?
Lots of women tourists travel independently or in a small group all around Nepal with no problems. Most Nepalese (especially Nepalese women and families) will go out of their way to welcome and help female travelers and the experience of traveling around Nepal for a foreign woman alone can be very rewarding.
However, as in most parts of the world, a woman traveling alone can garner unwelcome attention from men. Normally this will just take the form of staring, catcalling, and, occasionally, a groping attempt (mostly this happens on overly crowded city streets or on buses).
To lessen the risk of unwanted attention wear non-revealing clothing. Avoid hanging out in bars and, if you can, team up with another traveling woman. If a situation does start to develop then call on the help of passers-by. Invariably people will jump to your defense and loudly admonish a man giving you unwanted attention. Rape and violent crime against female travelers are very rare, but it does occasionally occur.
5. What should I Pack?
It all depends on your destination and season of travel. Generally speaking, Nepal is a conservative country. We recommend that travelers not wear clothing that is too short, tight, or revealing. Medium-weight and easy to wash cotton are recommended year-round in the Kathmandu valley. From October to February, we also suggest woolen sweaters, jackets, or similar warm outfits. Pack comfortable walking shoes, including sandals and athletic shoes. A headcover may be required for women and men at sacred sites and places of worship. For trekking and adventure itineraries, a list of suggested clothing items and supplies will be provided.
6. What Is The Time Difference In Nepal?
Nepal is five hours forty-five minutes ahead of UTC. This means that when it’s noon winter time in London it’s 5.45 pm in Kathmandu and when it’s noon in New York winter time then it’s 10.45 pm in Kathmandu. There’s no daylight saving in Nepal so during the summer in Europe and North America, you should deduct one hour from the time difference.
7. What Is There To Do In Nepal?
We can’t possibly list everything there is to do in Nepal in a paragraph or two (look for our more detailed blog posts on individual activities) but quite simply Nepal is one giant adventure playground and one huge gallery of art and culture. In fact, beaches aside, Nepal has almost everything. Adventure, indulgence, spirituality, adrenaline sports, wildlife, shopping, culinary thrills, and epic scenery.
In Nepal you can be pampered in a spa in a divine boutique hotel, you can take to the high trails of the Himalaya, bungee jump, raft the wild white waters, spot tigers and rhinos, feel inner peace in a temple courtyard, join a yoga course, cycle to Himalayan viewpoints, stay with a Nepalese family in a rural farmhouse, search for fossils and shop for spices in noisy, colorful bazaars. Within these small countries, small borders can be found the best in Asia!
Why is TIMS Necessary?
The following considerations have been taken into account in the process of issuing TIMS:
All important details regarding trekkers and trekking routes shall be maintained in a computerized Database Management System, which can be useful for the trekkers’ safety and security. In order to help carry out search and rescue operations for trekkers in case of natural calamities and other accidents by means of Authentic Information Service.
To maintain a record system that includes personal details of trekkers, trekking area, trekking routes, handling agencies, duration, etc. The data generated from the system will be useful to all concerned stakeholders such as tourism organizations, Government agencies, diplomatic missions, tour operators, research institute, etc.
Unauthorized trekking operations will be controlled, thus, resulting in better management of trekking services, which will not only benefit trekkers and field staff, but also trekking companies and Government agencies. Occasional untoward incidents will also be better prevented. Plus, TIMS will upgrade the service standard and will contribute to better management of sustainable mountain tourism development in Nepal.
Revenue collected from distribution of TIMS cards is shared into three equal parts for following purposes:
- Nepal Tourism Board (NTB) will use the first part for printing TIMS cards, holograms, managing issuing counters and use the remaining amount for tourism marketing, publicity and promotion.
- The second part is utilized in the welfare of trekking workers like buying medical and accident insurance policy for them and conducting rescue operations in case of accidents. The amount is also used to launch various programs as a part of corporate social responsibility (CSR) and meet administrative expenses.
- The third part is utilized to develop infrastructures, promote, conserve, maintain trekking trails. A substantial amount is also utilized to explore, develop and promote new destinations besides organizing training and workshops for sustainable and responsible tourism development.
Where and how to obtain a TIMS Card
Free Individual Trekkers:
Free Individual Trekkers can obtain TIMS cards from TIMS checkpost in Pokhara, and the offices of Nepal Tourism Board in Kathmandu and Pokhara, upon filling up TIMS application form.
Organized trekkers can obtain TIMS cards from TAAN Secretariat in Maligaun, TAAN TIMS Counter in Saatghumti, Thamel, and TAAN Pokhara Secretariat in Pokhara
TIMS Card is compulsory to trek in all trekking areas in the country. However, TIMS cards aren’t required for following:
- Expedition members with mountaineering permits issued by the government and Nepal Mountaineering Association.
- Visitors to controlled areas having permits issued by the Department of Immigration
- Foreign guests invited by the Government of Nepal
- Authorities from the various diplomatic missions present in the country, who hold official letter/s and travel at their own risk
- Visitors on certain missions recommended by the concerned Governmental Department(s)
- Foreign Nationals possessing a residential visa.
- TIMS counter at TAAN Secretariat follows regular working hours (10am-5pm) and during winter months (Nov. 01- Jan 31) it opens from (10am-4pm). It is closed on Saturdays and public holidays.
- TIMS Counter at Saatghumti, Thamel opens at 7 am and closes at 6 pm. On Saturdays and public holidays, however, the counter opens from 10 am to 1 pm.
- Nepal Tourism Board (NTB) follows government working hours i.e. 10 am till 5 pm. It, however, is closed on Saturdays and public holidays.
- Copy of Passport
- Two passport (PP) size photographs
- Detailed Itinerary
Our service for our guest
Our trips are fully supported and offered personalized service to our guests. If you’re interested to involve in these trips by your interest, time, and physical and mental preparation it’s fine.
Among the cultural programmed; Honeymoon Tour Package – 10 Days, Nepal Pleasure Tour – 8 Days, Adventure Package Tour – 14 Days, Historical Nepal Tour – 10 Days, Spiritual tour Package – 12 Days, Kathmandu Unique tour – 5 Days, Historical Gorkha Village Tour 9 Days, Nepal India Cultural Tour – 10 Days, Nepal Bhutan Tibet Tour – 12 Days.
If you are interested to plan your tour and trek yourself according to your interest we manage it. According to your time duration and schedule, please go to our Plan Trip or Customize Trip.
Robinson Crusoe Holidays is always ready to provide excellent services for our guests. Based on our cultural motto “Matri Debo Bhaba, Pitrii Debo Bhaba, Atithi Debo Bhaba.” Mother as a God, Father as a God, and Guest as a God.