You will probably require a Bhutan visa in order to travel to Bhutan.
Bhutan’s government upholds a “High Value, Low Impact Tourism” policy in an effort to protect the nation’s cultural legacy. Therefore, the majority of visitors—aside from those from a few nearby nations—will require a visa to enter Bhutan.
Obtaining a visa costs at least $200 USD per day and is only possible through travel arrangements. Yes, I realize it may sound like a steep amount to pay, but the majority claim that it is well justified because you will get to catch a peek of a truly unspoiled and lovely nation. You won’t need to pull out your money at all while you’re there because everything—including lodging, all meals and fees, transportation, and tour guides—is included in the price.
Who Needs a Bhutan Visa?
Everyone must have a visa to enter Bhutan, with the exception of residents of India, Bangladesh, and the Maldives. After filing for visa clearance through a travel operator, visas can be obtained on arrival.
As long as their passports are still valid for another six months, citizens of India, Bangladesh, and the Maldives are permitted to visit Bhutan with only their passports. Throughout their stay in Bhutan, they are still required to pay a “sustainable development charge” of around $17 USD day.
There is a US$65 sustainable development fee for anyone who is not a citizen of the three nations stated above. The Minimum Daily Package that tour operators give accounts for this. Read more about it under the heading “Bhutan Visa Cost” lower down the post.
Official Bhutan Visa Clearance
You qualify for official visa clearance if you are visiting Bhutan thanks to a government agency or organization’s invitation. The Bhutan Ministry of Foreign Affairs must receive an application form and an official invitation letter from the company/agency before the visa can be cleared. If your visa is approved, you won’t be required to pay the same daily tour fee of $200 as visitors do.
What Are the Bhutan Visa Requirements?
To obtain a visa for Bhutan, you must:
- Booking a tour with a licensed tour operator is required.
- You must be prepared to pay the minimum daily tariff established by the Tourism Council, which ranges from $200 to $250 USD.
- From the day you enter Bhutan, your passport must be valid for at least another six months.
- You must provide evidence of your employment.
- You must include your address and method of contact.
How to Apply for a Bhutan Visa?
A licensed tour operator must submit your visa application to the Bhutan Tourism Council on your behalf if you want to visit the country. The procedure for obtaining a visa for Bhutan is as follows:
- To make your reservation, speak with a licensed tour operator. A list of the authorized tour providers is available on the website of the Bhutan Tourism Council. There are a lot of them, so conduct your research and choose the one that seems the most suitable to you. There may also be a travel agency in your nation that is affiliated with a business in Bhutan and will support you in the application procedure.
- Send the necessary paperwork and information to the tour operators after paying for the trip.
- scan of your passport in color. As of the day you enter Bhutan, confirm that the passport will remain valid for at least another six months.
- a document demonstrating your employment. You should submit your student ID if you are a student in order to receive a discount. Discounts are also available for kids.
- Your address and contact details.
- Your visa application will be submitted to the Bhutan Tourism Council by the tour operators.
- Your application is examined by the Bhutan Tourism Council, which then gives a visa clearance letter. This letter must be printed out and brought with you to the airport.
- Purchase trip health insurance. The packages offered by the tour operators do not contain this.
- Show the immigration agents at the airport the visa approval letter before entering Bhutan. They will examine it before stamping the actual visa on your passport.
Bhutan Visa Cost
The visa for Bhutan itself costs $40 USD per person. This charge is non-refundable. However, you must additionally pay for the tour in addition to the visa charge. For all excursions to Bhutan, the Bhutan Tourism Council has established a set Minimum Daily Package:
- In peak season, each person would pay US$250 per day (March to May; September to November)
- Other times of the year, each person would pay US$ 200 per day.
The following is included in this price:
- Arrangements at a three-star hotel
- daily three meals (breakfast, lunch and dinner)
- Bhutan’s internal transportation
- a tour guide who speaks English
- costs for admission to tourist attractions
- Gear for trekking tours and camping gear
- Government fees, sometimes known as the $65 “sustainable development charge,”
Given that this is a set fee, tour operators are free to put on other services to entice customers. Additionally, be cautious of any trip that offers a lesser price than the one listed above as it is probably a scam. For learn more you can query to Holidays Story Ltd.
How Long Will It Take to Get a Bhutan Visa?
Depending on when you apply, it may take some time to receive your Bhutan visa. The Tourism Council of Bhutan typically issues visa clearances 1-2 weeks prior to your scheduled departure, however may can take longer and grant them at the last minute.
Therefore, it is advised that you apply for a Bhutan visa at least a week before your anticipated departure date, though it is definitely a better idea to do so a few months before.
What Is the Validity of a Bhutan Visa?
Bhutan visas are good for six months starting on the day of entry. There is just one entry.
Can I Extend a Bhutan Visa?
Through your tour operator, who will make a request to the Tourism Council on your behalf, you can extend your visa for Bhutan.
Can I Apply For a Bhutan Visa Independently?
No, you must work with a travel operator to apply for a visa to Bhutan. No visa services are provided by Bhutan embassies; the only sources for all visa applications are tour companies and the Bhutan Tourism Council. The only times you can enter the nation without taking a tour are when you are an invited guest of the government of Bhutan or when you are traveling with a volunteer or tour group. Bhutan wants to avoid overpopulation of tourists and to preserve the country’s natural environment and cultural treasures in their original state. The Bhutanese government therefore restricts the quantity of visitors entering the nation at one time.
If My Bhutan Visa is Rejected, Will I Get a Refund of the Tour?
The tour operator’s refund policy will determine whether you get a refund for your trip to Bhutan. This is why getting trip disruption coverage on your travel insurance is a wise idea.
Can I Work in Bhutan?
Find a job where your employer must submit an application for a valid work visa to the Bhutanese Chief Labour Officer, Department of Labour, if you wish to work or reside in Bhutan for an extended period of time. You should be aware, nevertheless, that Bhutan does not frequently grant long-term or work visas. If you work as a volunteer in Bhutan, that is the most typical motivation to stay there permanently.
Otherwise, you should be aware that there is a UD$200–US$250 minimum daily cost if you enter as a tourist, making an extended journey not really feasible.