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Nepal Visa & Airport Tips

Effective from 16 July 2008

Tourists who travel to Nepal must hold both a valid passport and visa.

Tourist entry visa can be obtained for the following durations from Nepal Embassy, Consulate or Mission offices abroad, or at the following immigration offices in Nepal: (the easiest being upon arival, at the airport.)

  • Tribhuvan International Airport, Kathmandu
  • Kakarvitta, Jhapa (Eastern Nepal)
  • Birganj, Parsa (Central Nepal)
  • Kodari, Sindhupalchowk (Northern Border)
  • Belhiya, Bhairahawa (Rupandehi, Western Nepal)
  • Jamuna, Nepalgunj (Banke, Mid Western Nepal)
  • Mohana, Dhangadhi (Kailali, Far Western Nepal)
  • Gaddachauki, Mahendranagar (Kanchanpur, Far Western Nepal)

Tourist Visa

Visa Facility Duration Fee
Multiple entry 15 days US$ 25 or equivalent convertible currency
Multiple entry 30 days US$ 40 or equivalent convertible currency
Multiple entry 90 days US$ 100 or equivalent convertible currency


Tourist Visa Extension

  • The Visa extension fee for 15 days or less is US $30 or equivalent convertible currency and visa extension fee for more than 15 days is US $2 per day
  • Tourist visas can be extended for a maximum period of 150 days in a single visa year (January – December).

Gratis (Free) Visa

  • Gratis visa for 30 days available only for tourists of SAARC countries.
  • Indian nationals do not require visa to enter into Nepal.

Transit Visa

Transit visa for one day travelers can be obtained from Nepal’s immigration offices at the entry points upon the production of departure flight ticket via Tribhuvan International Airport in Nepal, by paying US $ 5 or equivalent convertible currency.

For further information, please, contact
Department of Immigration
Maitighar, Impact Building, Kathmandu,
Tel:00977-1-4221996 / 4223590 / 4222453
Web site:

Getting a Visa

If you did not already buy an entry visa for Nepal from your home country, you may buy one at either the border, or the airport. In most cases it will be cheaper if you pay for the visa in Nepal rather than paying for the service of “getting” the visa in your home country.

Upon arriving in Kathmandu (or occasional Pokhara), there are a few things you should have ready for the quickest exit of the airport. First, you will need to have two small pieces of paper filled out: a customs/declaration form and visa application form. Sometimes the airline will provide you with the visa application form on the plane, but they usually do not have the customs form which asks for the same information as the visa form but has a different paper format. To find the customs form, walk into the airport and you will see a group of tables to the left with papers scattered around. The customs form and (if you need another copy) the visa application form will be one of these, so have a pen( there won’t be any there) ready as well to fill this out and get into the visa line as quickly as possible.

The visa line can take some time to get through, especially when not all the passengers are as prepared as you with the two papers filled out, and particularly during the tourist season (September-May). When you approach the counter to buy your entry visa, have your passport, money (price of visa is available online and at the airport), and a passport-sized photo of yourself ready to surrender to the Nepali officials. (If you did not get a photo before you left your home country, they have a photo booth where you can buy one for a few dollars.) But if you are trying to avoid much time spent in this line you will already have the photo in hand when you get off the plane.


All baggage must be declared and cleared through the customs on arrival at the entry. 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, cigarette (200) or cigars (50), 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: binocular, movie or video camera, still camera, laptop computer, and portable music system.

Export: The export of antiques require special certification from the Department of Archeology, National Archive Building, Ram Shah Path, Kathmandu. It is illegal to export objects over 100 years old like 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.

For more information on customs matters, contact the Chief Customs Administrator, TIA Customs Office (Phone: 4470110, 4472266).

Once you get through the visa line, you head down the escalator to baggage claim. There are only two conveyor belts and a limited space on them at any one time. It is normal for people to take bags off the conveyor belt and put them around the room in order to have more room for the other bags to come off the plane. So do not panic if you see someone else handling your bag, and if you do not see your bag, make sure to do a thorough walk-around before claiming your bag is missing.

If you walked around and there are no more bags coming off the plane and your bag(s) are missing, do not panic. The chances are there was not enough time between one of your connecting flights somewhere to transfer your bags to your plane. Your bags will most likely be on the next “whichever airways” flight into Kathmandu. To report your bags, have your baggage claim ticket and walk to the person behind a desk against the wall and give them your information (also get their phone information this way you can call and check in with the airport about your bag status and/or next incoming flight).

Now you have your bags in hand and you are ready to leave the airport. If you or your travel agent has not set up someone to pick you up, you can take a cab. There are plenty of cabs available for you. In fact you will be approached by many people asking if you need a cab. Do not expect the taxi to be in perfectly clean conditions and by this I mean shiny like-new. Also do not expect a seatbelt, there is no law that says you have to wear a seatbelt in Nepal and you will find almost everyone does not wear one. You can negotiate a fare price before you leave the airport.

Leaving the airport

If you are taking a taxi or your scheduled ride (by means of travel agent) then traveling to your next destination should not be difficult. However, if you are planning to walk to your next destination or walk to another form of transportation (for example: a bus), there might be a few things to consider before walking away from the airport and taxi.

Expect traffic conditions that you may have never seen before. In Nepal, they drive on the left side of the road and the streets seem to be very chaotic with narrow roads and no determined lane dividers. Stoplights? Crosswalks? You’re kidding right? Forget it! Actually, this chaos, when you get used to it, adds to the Nepali charm. There could be a dog, cow or even an occasional monkey roaming in the streets. There really are not too, many respected driving rules besides common sense. But whichever your mode of transportation, you can trust that the driver knows what they are doing because they grew up in this environment so it is normal to them.

There might be alarming noises that you are not used to like cars or motorcycles honking their horns repeatedly, but they use this as a driving tool to say to other drivers “do not swerve this way because I am here!” The roads may be congested with so many pedestrians, bicyclists, and other vehicles all trying to go in different directions but the Nepali traffic negotiating skills are of elite nature. Cars that seem to be coming right at you with no space to pass seem to have magic to stretch and shrink before your eyes and make it by each other without a nick of the paint taken off.

When crossing the street by foot make sure you can see everything that is happening and everything that is about to happen. You must anticipate a drivers every move. If you are hit by a car or other vehicle it is your fault. In Nepal you must be flexible and able to take one step forward and one back and just be patient and make sure that if you are unsure, just watch how the Nepali locals do it. Also be flexible with your time. You can not always be in charge of how or when traffic moves, so instead of getting anxious, sit back and enjoy people-watching. In general, if it’s you first time in Nepal it’s just best to arrange an airport pick up with a travel agency. It makes the, “OMG where am I?” a lot more simple for both you and your next contact in Nepal.

To view pre-designed Nepal travel packages, see our programs page or the encyclopedia for more Nepal Travel items.