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FAQ’s

How do I get to Nepal?
Tribhuvan International Airport (TIA) in Kathmandu is the only international airport in Nepal. The national flag carrier, Indian Airlines, Thai airlines, BB airways and other international airlines connects Kathmandu with major cities around the world. Alternatively, you can enter Nepal through surface via India.

While entering Nepal by land, what are the entry points?
There all together 7 points through which all visitors coming to Nepal by land can enter country
– Pani Tanki/Kakarbhitta 
– Raxual/Birgunj
– Sunauli/Belahiya 
– Rupaidiya/ Nepalgunj
– Mohana/Dhangadi                
– Banbasa/Mahendranagar, Gaddachauki 
and Khasa,Liping/ Tatopani on the Tibet,China-Nepal border. 
Overland travelers’ ’ entering the country with their vehicles must possess an international carnet or complete customs formalities.

What are the travel custom formalities in Nepal ?
Custom : 
All baggage must be declared and cleared through the customs on arrival at the entry point. Personal effects are permitted free entry. Passengers arriving at Tribhuvan International Airport (TIA) without any dutiable goods can proceed through the Green Channel for quick clearance without a baggage check. If you are carrying dutiable articles, you have to pass through the Red Channel for detailed customs clearance. 
Import: Apart from used personal belongings, visitors are allowed to bring to Nepal free of duty: cigarettes (200 sticks) or cigars (50 sticks), distilled liquor (one 1.15 liter bottle), and film (15 rolls). You can also bring in the following articles free of duty on condition that you take them out with you when you leave: binoculars, movie or video camera, still camera, laptop computer, and portable music system. 
Export: The export of antiques requires special certification from the Department of Archeology, National Archive Building, Ram Shah Path, Kathmandu. It is illegal to export objects over 100 years old, such as sacred images, paintings, manuscripts that are valued for culture and religious reasons. Visitors are advised not to purchase such items as they are Nepal’s cultural heritage and belong here. Driving into Nepal:
Overland tourists entering Nepal with their vehicles must possess an international carnet.

Do I need a visa to enter Nepal?
Nepal visa can be obtain upon arrival in the entry place or Tribhuwan International Airport. 
Make the process easier by downloading & completing the application form, having the correct USD cash and two passport photographs.
Multiple entry visa for 15 days : US$ 25 or equivalent Nepali currency
Multiple entry visa for 30 days : US$ 40 or equivalent Nepali currency
Multiple entry visa for 90 days : US$ 100 or equivalent Nepali currency
(For more information, please, contact Department of Immigration, Kalikasthan, Kathmandu,
Tel: 00977-1-4433934 / 4429660 / 4438862 / 4438868, Email : mail@immi.gov.np ; Web: www.immi.gov.np)

What to wear?
Light, loose garments are recommended in spring (March, April and May) and summer (June, July and August), while woolens and jackets or similar warm clothings are needed from November to February.

What are common Cultural Etiquette in Nepal ?
Some tips on the common etiquettes practiced by Nepali people should be useful to visitors.

  • The form of greeting in Nepal is “Namaste” performing by joining both palms together. It literally means “the divine in me salutes the divine in you”.
  • As a mark of respect Nepalis usually take their shoes off before entering someone’s house or place of worship.
  • Food or material that has been touched by another person’s mouth is considered impure or “jutho” and, therefore, is not accepted unless among close friends or family.
  • Touching something with feet or using the left hand to give or take may not be considered auspicious.
  • Women wearing skimpy outfits are frowned upon especially in the rural parts of the country.
  • As a part of the tradition some Hindu temples do not allow non Hindus to enter.
  • Leather articles are prohibited inside some temple areas.
  • Walking around temples or stupas is traditionally done clockwise.
  • To avoid conflict photography is carried out after receiving permission from the object or person.
  • Public displays of affection are considered scandalous.
  • Nodding of head means “Yes” while shaking of head means a “No”. A slight dangling of head from left to right means “OK”.

    What is the currency of Nepal?
    The Nepalese currency is the rupee and is divided into 100 paisa. Bank notes come in denominations of Rs. 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 500 and 1,000. Coins are of 1, 2 and 5 rupee denomination.

    Are credit cards accepted in Nepal?
    Major hotels, restaurants and curio shops accept AMERICAN EXPRESS, VISA and MASTERCARD. You can contact the banks for credit card services.

    What inoculations are recommended before visiting Nepal?
    Although specific immunization is not required to enter Nepal, it is, however, best to protect yourself against diseases such hepatitis, meningitis and Japanese encephalitis. Malaria has been reported in the Terai plains of Nepal, so take precautions against being bitten by mosquitoes. Please notify the authorities or the hotel of any symptoms of bird or swine flu or any endemic.

    When is the best time to travel in Nepal?
    Because of its elevation, Nepal can be divided into three zones – the high mountains, the mid-hills and the flat plains called the Terai. The Everest, Langtang and Annpurna trekking destinations in the mountains are cool throughout the year. The mid-hills, including Kathmandu and Pokhara, are cool except in the summer months from May to July. Temperatures in these cities during the summer remain much cooler than in many cities of the region. Lumbini, Chitwan and Janakpur in the Terai plains are hot in summer (March –July) but cold in winter (December-February). So if you are going trekking, the best months for walking are between September and November and between February and May when the weather is fair during the day and the temperatures do not drop rapidly during the night.

    What is Acute Mountain Sickness and how do you prevent it?
    Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS) is caused by thin air at high altitudes starting from 3, 000 meters upwards and may even lead to death. The main precaution that needs to be taken while trekking is not to go up too high too fast. So the body should be given enough time to acclimatize. If you suffer from initial symptoms like headaches, shortness of breath, fatigue, nausea, inability to sleep, swelling of the face, hands and feet and loss of appetite, descend to a lower elevation immediately, and seek medical help.

    Is travel insurance necessary to go trekking in Nepal?
    Helicopter services are available should you fall sick or meet with an accident while trekking. However, such rescue services are expensive. So comprehensive travel insurance is advised to cover emergencies like helicopter rescue and medical treatment. 

    How safe is Nepal?
    It is safe to take a walk around the city from morning to late evening until the shops are closed. But you are advised not to trek alone. Trekking with a guide from a registered agency is the best security. Do not display your cash or expensive items. Always lock your room and baggage. The Tourist Police at Bhrikuti Mandap is there to help you with security and travel-related problems. If any valuable item is lost, you can contact the Tourist Police to prepare documents for theft to claim insurance. Tel: 4247041 (email: policetourist@yahoo.com/policetourist@nepalpolice.gov.np)

    What is the time difference in Nepal?
    Nepali time is GMT plus 5 hours 45 minutes.

    Electricity Voltage
    Electricity in Nepal is 230 volts, alternating at 50 cycles per second. A voltage converter is needed for a device that does not accept 230 volts at 50 MHz. Sockets in Nepal accept only round three or two pins. So if your electrical device uses flat pins, please bring a universal electric plug adaptor.

    What are some basic Nepali customs that I need to know?
     
    When visiting a temple, always circumambulate it is a clockwise direction.
    – Take off your shoes before entering a temple or a Nepalese home.
    – Entrance to some temples is forbidden, so look out for such notices.
    – Seek permission to take photographs inside temples or of religious ceremonies.
    – You can accept a handshake offered by either a male or a female but never offer your hand first.
    – Show decency in dress and avoid any show of public affection.

    How do I get around in the cities and to other destinations?
    There are metered taxis, buses, battery-operated three-wheelers and rickshaws in the cities. Long routes are served by buses. Nepal does not have a railway system connecting cities. The only other travel option is by plane, and Nepal is well connected by air. There are Intercity Tourist Buses to popular tourist destinations like Pokhara, Chitwan and Lumbini from Kantipath in Kathmandu, while you can board a bus to Jiri and Dhunche at the New Bus Park.

    Accommodation
    There is accommodation ranging from 5-star chain hotels and resorts to comfortable lodges in Kathmandu and major tourist destinations. The hotels offer specialty restaurants, conference facilities, exclusive health clubs and business centers. You also have the option of home-stay where you can stay in local houses with the local people and enjoy their traditional food.

    What kind of food is available in Nepalese restaurants?
    Kathmandu is a melting pot of international cuisine. Dining out is, therefore, a pleasure. The Nepali staple is rice, dal (lentils) and curry. Apart from Nepalese cuisine, there are restaurants serving Continental, Indian, Chinese, Mexican, Japanese, Italian and Korean food. Fast foods like burgers, pizzas are found everywhere. There are two KFC outlets in Kathmandu.

    What souvenirs can I take home?
    Popular among visitors are handmade apparels like woolen sweaters, jackets, trousers and caps. And the Pashmina shawl is a highly coveted item. Then there are ethnic and contemporary carpets, gems and jewelry, metal and wooden products, Khukuri (the curved metal knife, music CDs, Nepali paper products, pottery, spices, tea and Thangka paintings to take home.

    There are exclusive showrooms at Durbar Marg, Asan, Thamel, Patan and Bhaktapur Durbar Square area which specialize in these items.

    Useful Tips for Health guide
    Health care services in Kathmandu Valley are sound. All kinds of medicines, including those imported from overseas are available in Kathmandu. Kathmandu Valley also offers the services of major general hospitals and private clinics. Health posts have been set up by the Government in different parts of rural Nepal. For major health crisis or emergency, one may have to be evacuated to Kathmandu.

  • A travel insurance policy that covers medical treatment is recommended for all tourists.
  • Similarly, we recommend you to make sure that the insurance covers activities such as trekking, rafting etc. that you will be undertaking during your stay in Nepal
  • Getting special vaccinations are not necessary when visiting Nepal.
  • We still recommend that you consult with your physician regarding special immunizing against any tropical disease.
  • It may be a good idea to get a complete check up before departure.
  • We recommend that you undertake training programs to be physically fit if you plan to go high-altitude trekking or mountaineering when you’re visiting Nepal.
  • Please read up on altitude sickness (AMS), diarrhea, Giardia, Dysentry, Cholera, Hepatitis, Rabies, Typhoid, Tetanus, Meningitis, Diptheria, Malaria and HIV/ AIDS. Information and little precautions can often save lives.
  • Please make sure that food is thoroughly cooked and served hot when eating out.
  • Please make sure that salads and fruits are washed with purified water or peeled when eating out.
  • Beware of food that has been kept out in the open for long.
  • Always make sure that your water is clean by opting for boiled and then cooled water, treated water or sealed water from reputed brand.
  • Always carry a bottle of water when trekking or venturing off away from the city/ town.
  • Do not walk bare feet on damp mud and grass in unknown areas.
  • Please do not swim in lakes and water bodies, especially where depth and vegetation are not known.
  • Always carry and use mosquito repellant when in Terai region or during summers.
  • Please have a handy medical first aid kit ready for any situation.

    Medical Kit:
    A simple but adequate medical kit can be very useful while traveling. The following items are recommended: Aspirin of Panadol, for pain or fever; Antihistamine, as a decongestant for colds, allergies and to help prevent motion sickness; Antibiotics, useful if traveling off beaten track but they must be prescribed; Kaolin preparation (Pepto-Bismol), Imodium or Lomotil, for upset stomach; Rehydration mixture – for treatment of severe diarrhea; Antiseptic, mercurochrome and antibiotic powder or similar dry spray- for cuts and grazes.

    Other things to be included are: Calamine lotion to ease irritation from bites or stings; bandages and band aids for minor injuries; scissors, tweezers, thermometer, insect repellent, sun block lotions, chopsticks, water purification tablets, throat lozenges, moleskin, Sulamyd 10 percent eye drops, paracetamol and antacid tablets.

    MOUNTAINEERERS AND TREKKERS

  • Please obtain your TIMS (Trekking Information Management System) Card before trekking.
  • Mountaineers and high-altitude trekkers, please look up on information regarding Acute
  • Mountain Sickness (AMS), which can develop and lead to fatal consequences while trekking above 3,000 meters.
  • Please do not consume alcohol while trekking above 3,000 meters.
  • Please use designated routes and do not deviate from normal trekking routes.
  • Please trek in groups rather than trekking alone.
  • When trekking around high altitude and steep areas, please use walking sticks to balance the
  • body and probe the ground. This will also help avoid pressure on the knees when descending.
    Please carry torch, raincoat and first aid kit.
  • Please carry mosquito repellant while traveling to southern lowlands.
  • For altitude sickness and medical help in high-altitude areas please contact the Himalayan Recue Association (HRA).
  • For helicopter evacuation while trekking or mountaineering, please contact your local agency.

    How you can be part of Responsible Tourism in Nepal ?

  • “Leave only footprints, and take only photographs.”
  • Use designated routes, campsites and resting places to reduce trampling and other negative environmental impacts.
  • Respect local culture and traditions, use home stays, locally owned hotels/ lodges or campsites as much as possible to support the local livelihood.
  • Avoid/ minimize using firewood. Use common space for heating. Option for alternatives to minimize deforestation.
  • Maintain cleanliness and hygiene. Use the litter box locally available. Carry back your own garbage while traveling through ecologically sensitive areas.
  • Encourage to place mobile toilets at a considerable distance from sources of water, river banks and springs while camping along the river sides.
  • Use the services of local guides and porters as much as possible to explore more about local environment and culture.
  • Money spent here will contribute directly to the local livelihood, women’s empowerment and environmental conservation.

    Before you begin your journey we request you to abide by the above guidelines in order to safeguard the nature and culture of the area and be a responsible tourist.