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Nepal Visas and Arrival

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Nepal entry requirements and borders


Nepal visa requirements

(for the latest Covid-19 updates, click here)

You should always check official advice for your nationality, but the majority of travellers will need a visa for Nepal.

Fortunately, the process is quite simple and a Visa on Arrival can be issued at the airport and some land borders. You’ll need a passport valid for at least 6 months, two passport photos, the address of your hotel and cash to pay the visa fee.

If you want to complete the application in advance, or need a special visa (e.g. study visa, business visa) then you should do so through the official Department of Immigration website;

Fees should be paid in cash on arrival – USD is preferable, but other major currencies will be accepted. Fees are subject to change, but as of January 2021 the standard Tourist Visa costs are as follows;

15 days – US$30 / 30 days – US$50 / 90 days – US$125

If you significantly overstay or tamper with your visa, then you can be fined or even jailed in extreme cases, so please respect the visa!

Visa extensions can be granted in the Kathmandu and Pokhara Immigration Offices, up to a maximum of 150 days per calendar year, and subject to a minimum fee of US$30.

NOTE: Citizens of the following countries are not currently eligible for an On Arrival Visa, and will need to contact their nearest Nepal Embassy before travel;

Afghanistan, Cameroon, Ethiopia, Ghana, Iraq, Liberia, Nigeria, Palestine, Syria, Somalia, Swaziland, Zimbabwe 

Arriving in Nepal by air

Being a landlocked country, the vast majority of international visitors arrive by air at Kathmandu’s Tribhuvan International Airport, which is currently the only international airport in the country. Most people choose to spend a few days in the capital to acclimatise and explore, but you can also opt to take an onward domestic flight if the schedules allow.

There are many international airlines offering flights into Kathmandu, and most will transit at a hub airport in the Middle East or elsewhere in Asia.

On 16th May 2022, Nepal’s second international airport was opened – Gautam Buddha International Airport, near Lumbini (the birthplace of Lord Buddha). This is particularly exciting news for anyone looking to follow the Buddhist Circuit through Nepal and northern India.
At present, only Jazeera Airway operate here, flying from their Kuwaiti hub. More airlines are expected to begin flights to and from here in the coming months and years, opening up new possibilities in Nepal travel.

IMPORTANT: if your flight transits in India, only Air India offer a service that checks your baggage through to Kathmandu. All other Indian airlines will require you to go through immigration (for which you’ll need an Indian visa), collect your bags and then check-in for your new flight to Nepal. We would recommend avoiding this option, if possible.

Tribhuvan International Airport has only one runway serving both international and domestic flights, so delays to landing and take-off, as well as long queues at immigration, are not uncommon and you should keep this in mind when making your plans.

Once you’ve made it through immigration (see visa info below) and collected your baggage, you can exit the airport through the arrival lounge. Be prepared that it can be a little overwhelming, with sometimes hundreds of Nepalese drivers holding placards with names on them, or trying to sell you taxi rides and other things.

If you’ve withdrawn cash at the airport, then you can negotiate with a taxi driver (NRs 750 – 1000 is the going rate), but we’d recommend pre-booking an arrival transfer to make things easier and less stressful. In this case, just look for a placard with your name on it. Your driver will also wait for you if your flight has been delayed.

Arriving in Nepal by land

You can travel to Nepal by land from neighbouring India through the main transit points at Bhairahawa Border, Raxaul Border, Nepalgunj Border, Biratnagar Border, Kakarvitta Border, and Mahendranagar Border.

From the north, you can also enter through China (Tibet) at the Kerung Rasuwa Border, or via Hilsa as part of a trekking group.

These borders can be a little slow and chaotic at times, but the basic formalities and requirements are the same as if you were arriving by air. You may be required to complete the online visa application in advance at some points of entry.

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