Entry Permit & Visa
With The Exception Of Visitors From India, Bangladesh & Maldives, All Other Visitors Travelling To Bhutan Need A Visa.
Indian, Bangladeshis and Maldivian nationals can obtain a permit at the port of entry on producing a valid passport with a minimum of 6 months validity (Indian nationals may also use their Voters Identity Card (VIC)).
All other tourists must obtain a visa clearance prior the travel to Bhutan. Visas are processed through an online system by your licensed Bhutanese tour operator directly or through a foreign travel agent.
You are required to send the photo-page of your passport to your tour operator who will then apply for your visa. The visa will be processed by the Tourism Council of Bhutan (TCB) once the full payment of your holiday (including a USD $40 visa fee) has been wire transferred and received in the TCB bank account. Once received, the visa clearance will be processed within 72 working hours.
At your point of entry you will be required to show your visa clearance letter, the visa will then be stamped into your passport.
Bhutan Travel Permit
Application form can be filled and submitted through us for all Indians and Bangladeshis. You can apply Bhutan travel permit by filling up the online Bhutan travel permit form below. Indians/Bangladeshis are given travel permit in Bhutan and not a visa. We will process and get you the permit in advance.
We charge a nominal administrative fee for the travel permit. The travel permit do not cost anything if you apply it yourself at the entry points but usually it involves several hours of waiting in queue.
Check Online visa application form for other tourists (beside Indians and Bangladeshis) below.
Once we get your basic information with your supported documents we process your visa. We will process your travel permit within five working days. Online travel permits are approved based on the date of travel so you should expect to get it about two weeks before your date of travel if you have applied more than two weeks before.
If you are traveling overland there is no hassle of having to wait for several hours in the immigration office in the border town. You can directly drive with the online Bhutan travel permit we provide you in advance.
With this travel permit you can travel to all the towns in Bhutan without having to go to the immigration office in Thimphu to make another special permit to restricted areas.
Advantage Of Online Bhutan Travel Permit
You don’t have to stand in queue outside the immigration office to make permit especially in the border towns. Sometime when the number of applicants are more getting a travel permit will take several hours.
You don’t have to make another special travel permit in Thimphu to travel to other places.
Permit is given to you in advance saving time and hassle of having to go through several protocol.
Important thing to note for online Bhutan travel permit
The online applications have to be scrutinized/verified and approved by Department of Immigration. Government offices are closed on weekends and Government holidays so any online application(s) submitted on a holiday will be processed only on next working day.
Documents Required For Bhutan Travel Permit
- Passport/voter card
- Clear picture/photo
- Travel itinerary with dates
- Hotel booking
- Guide name
How to get or apply Tourist Visa to Bhutan
You can’t personally apply for tourist Visa yourself. Application has to be done by an authorized travel agent in Bhutan on behalf of you.
Requirements for Bhutan visa:
- Scanned copy of your passport in colour.
- Full payment to Bhutan Government account.
- Confirmation of logistics and ground arrangements.
- Confirmation of guide.
- Confirmed travel itinerary.
- Round trip airline confirmation.
- Passport valid for minimum 6 months from the date of travel.
Bhutan Visa Requirements
Every visitors to Bhutan requires a tourist visa. Exception are India and Bangladesh passports holders.
Visas are only issued to tourists whom booked tour packages with local tour operators, directly or through a foreign travel agent.
Visa application is submitted by tour operator on behalf of visitors.
Visa is issued by Tourism Council of Bhutan in Thimphu, Bhutan.
The Royal Government of Bhutan sets minimum selling prices for packages to Bhutan and this must be paid in US dollars prior to arrival in Bhutan.
This is the steps which you have to take:
- Book a Bhutan tour package with a licensed tour operator
- Purchase & confirm your air-tickets of Druk Air or Bhutan air
- Ensure that you have a passport with at least six months validity at the point of arrival in Bhutan.
Embassies & Consulates:
Bhutan has a number of embassies and consulates, including those listed below:
India: Royal Bhutanese Embassy – Chandragupta Marg, Chanakyapuri, New Delhi 110 021. Tel: 609217/ 609218, Fax: 6876710
U.S.: Consulate General of Bhutan – 2 UN Plaza, 27th Floor, New York NY 10017. Tel: (212) 826-1919, Fax: (212) 826-2998.
Canada: Honorary Consul of Bhutan – 150 Isabella Street, Ottawa, Ontario K1S 1V7. Tel: (613) 232-1222 Fax: (613)569-4667
Hong Kong: Honorary Consul of Bhutan – 32/F, New World Tower, 16-18 Queen’s Road, Central, Hong Kong, China. Tel: (852) 28443117, 2844-3111, Fax: (852) 25247652 Email: email@example.com
Thailand: The Royal Bhutanese Embassy in Bangkok – Jewelry Trade Center Building, Rm. 1907, 19th Floor, 919/1 Silom Road, Bangkok 10500. Tel: 2671722, 630119 – Fax: 6301193.
- Submit a scanned copy of student ID for student discounts as per sample
Visa will only be processed upon payment of tour package cost to Tourism Council of Bhutan.
*Department of Immigration would like to inform all travellers that w.e.f. 26th September 2011, the department will accept only valid passport copies (clear scan of passport page with datasheet and picture) of travellers and no passport size photographs will be entertained.
Question: I’ve paid for my tour package. How long does it take to process my visa to Bhutan?
Answer: You should expect to get your visa only between 10 to 3 days prior to your departure. Remember to print out a copy of your visa so that you can present it at the Drukair Check-in counter and also at immigration point.
Question: Do I need to send you my passport for Bhutan visa application?
Answer: No, we only require a clear color scan of the detail page of your passport as per above sample. Bhutan travel visa application is a digital submission process, thus we do not need to retain your passport but only submit a digital scan of your passport.
Question: I have just renewed my passport and my visa is issued on my old passport. What should I do?
Answer: If you have more than two weeks to your date of departure, it is advisable that you contact Druk Asia or your travel agent to have you details updated with the Department of Immigration of Bhutan. Should your departure date be too closed, you should bring along your old passport for verification at the immigration checkpoint, should it be available.
Question: How would my Bhutan visa look like?
Answer: Your visa application will be a digital submission and it will come as an electronic document. You will need to print out the document and carry it with you. Visa verification is required when you check in for your Drukair flight and when you reach the immigration checkpoint at Paro International Airport.
Question: Am I allowed to bring cigarettes & alcohol into Bhutan?
Answer: Yes, all foreigners are allowed to bring with them one liter of alcoholic spirit and up to 200 sticks of cigarettes OR 30 pieces of cigars.
*Do note that all cigarettes all be subjected to 100 percent customs duty and 100 percent sales tax (Nominally 1,600Nu per carton). Travellers should declare their dutiable items at custom and pay the admissible taxes.
Tourist Duty Free Allowance into Bhutan
- Spirits: 1 bottle not larger than one litre
- Cigarettes: 1 carton (containing 200 pieces) subject to 100 percent customs duty and 100 percent sales tax (nominally at 1,600 Nu per carton).
How and where do I apply for Visa?
Your Visa to Bhutan can only be applied and processed by an authorized and registered travel agent such as us. The Visa will come together with your travel package to Bhutan. You can’t apply Visa yourself and Bhutan embassy does not have travel visa services.
My Bhutan travel visa is issued on my old passport which was close to expiring. Will there be any problems when I reach the immigration in Bhutan?
If your Bhutan travel visa is issued on your old passport, you will have to bring along your old passport with you to Bhutan. The Department of Immigration will need to verify your details on your old passport too. A fine of up to 10,000 Nu will be imposed if traveller fail to present both the traveller’s old and new passport. Alternatively, please inform your Bhutan travel agent to update your visa if there’s still a week to go before your trip.
What does my tariff pay for?
USD 65 per night (frequently termed as royalty) actually goes toward a development fund for free health care, free education and road building in Bhutan. The remainder of the tariff goes to accommodation, meals, and services such as tour guides, transportation, drivers and entrance fees to places of ttractions.
How long does it take to get my Bhutan Visa?
Visa is usually released about 1 – 2 weeks before your arrival in Bhutan. This is to accommodate travelers who have to make last minute change of plan. We can arrange for your Visa within a one week period. So it is possible to book your trip this week and be in Bhutan in 7 day.
Is there a tourist quota to the number of people who can visit Bhutan every year?
There is no tourist quota set by the Royal Government of Bhutan. Tourist number is about 29,000 per year (2010) largely because of the limited flight capacity and shortages of good hotels currently.
Can I stay at exclusive resorts like Uma and Amankora?
Visitors who opt for more exclusive resorts like Uma Paro, Taj Tashi and Amankora will have to pay for their accommodation on top of the daily tariff specified.
I can’t find embassy of Bhutan in my country. How do I apply for the Visa?
Your Visa will be applied by your tour operator. You would not need to make an appointment with Bhutan embassy. Embassy of Bhutan does not provide tourist Visa services.
I travel frequently and I can’t send my passport for Visa application. How can I get the Visa?
We don’t need your physical passport to apply for tourist Visa. We simply need a color scanned copy of your passport to make the Visa application
I would like to travel alone, backpack style and free-and-easy. Can I apply just the Visa without the accompanying tour package?
It is not possible to separate Visa application from tour package. Having said so you can still travel alone and free-and-easy. A guide and driver will be accompanying you and the activities within the day is really up you. You don’t have complete the tourism circuit.
When is the best time to travel to Bhutan?
You can travel to Bhutan all year round, but the best months are March to May and September to November. For more information please visit Best Time To Visit Bhutan
Is it possible to travel alone in Bhutan, without the minimum spending / tariff (USD 250 for high and USD 200 for low). Can we arrange our tour in private?
That’s not possible. Your visa is tied to you purchasing or spending the minimum spending above.