We have found that many foreign visitors to Tibet would like to travel there by first visiting Chengdu. A common question we get is “I would like to get to Lhasa by train or by air from Chengdu, but how can I get a Tibet visitor’s permit in Chengdu?” This is a major concern for people planning to travel from Chengdu to Tibet as all foreign visitors must have a visitor’s permit in order to enter Tibet
Chengdu, the economic center of southwest China, is the most popular gateway city to Tibet as it is the nearest city from which to fly into Tibet – a 2-hour flight to Lhasa and a 1.5 hour-flight to Nyingchi. Chengdu is also connected with Lhasa by a 3,360 kilometer railway that transports millions of tourists each year. Is it possible for foreign tourists to get a Tibet Travel Permit in Chengdu? The answer is definitely YES.
Before the Qinghai-Tibet Railway was put into operation in July 2006, Chengdu was the only city with direct flights to Tibet. Those flying to Tibet from other cities in Mainland China such as Beijing and Shanghai had to make a stopover or transfer to another flight in Chengdu. Chengdu has therefore long played a key role for travelers to get into Tibet. Many Tibet travel agencies have set up reception offices in Chengdu.
Chengdu also enjoys a close bond with Tibet both in economy and culture, attracting many Tibetans to settle down in this city. Many government departments have also opened offices in Chengdu to serve local Tibetans and handle relevant affairs. The Tibet Tourism Bureau is one of them. Its Chengdu office used to issue Tibet travel permits to foreigners for many years, during which tourists were usually able to get the permit within 3-5 working days and sometimes within just one working day with an emergency request. At that time, tourists were even allowed to travel in Tibet independently after obtaining the permit.
However, the Chengdu office of Tibet Tourism Bureau was deprived of its right to issue Tibet travel permits in late 2006. Instead, the Lhasa head office has been placed in charge of issuing Tibet Travel Permits for all foreign visitors. All of the necessary documents must be sent to Lhasa and reviewed by the local tourism bureau, public security bureau, foreign affairs office and other relevant government departments. Once approved, the issued permits will then be handed over to local travel agencies before being delivered to the city where the tourists will begin their trip.
Traveling from Chengdu to Tibet is considered the fastest way to get a Tibet Travel Permit. With our rich experience and the geographical advantage of being located in Chengdu, we at the Tibet Odyssey Tours reception office in Chengdu can rapidly obtain the necessary travel permit to visit Tibet We will help travelers to apply for the permit in the shortest time possible and deliver it to your Chengdu hotel just as soon as the permit is issued. We can even deliver it to the Chengdu airport for those who just have a couple of hours to transfer to Lhasa via the airport.
Generally, we are able to complete the application process within 3-5 working days (including delivery if travelers request the permit in Chengdu). For emergency cases, sometimes we can deliver the travel permit from the Tibet Tourism Bureau to the traveler’s hand within just 4 to 5 hours. We are pleased to be at your service if you have an urgent need for a Tibet Travel Permit – feel free to contact us and we will be happy to assist you.