KATHMANDU, Sept 30: As Nepal opens trekking and mountaineering activities, tourists, instead of on-arrival visa are now required to get pre-approval from the Department of Immigration before entering Nepal.
The criteria set by the Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation has stated that all tourists must have acquired their visas before coming to Nepal and if there is no body to issue visas for Nepal in their countries, they can come to Nepal in coordination with Nepal-based travel or trekking agencies. For pre-approval for their entry to Nepal, tourists coming to Nepal will be recommended to the Department of Immigration through the Department of Tourism for mountaineering and Nepal Tourism Board for trekking. Related agencies will be informed about the recommendation. If the tourist does not have a visa, s/he can show pre-approval documents at the immigration. Such tourists will be provided with visas at the immigration point upon their arrival at the airport.
According to the ministry the guideline has been prepared for the tourists to minimize the risk of spread of COVId-19 in Nepal. When tourists arrive at the Tribhuvan International Airport, they are required to produce documents stating their PCR tests carried out 72 hours prior to their entry to Nepal are negative.
It is also mandatory for any tourist to stay in hotel quarantine for seven days before heading out to their designated destination, for which the hotel booking document and an insurance worth US dollar 5,000 should be produced at the airport. Tourists will have to go for the PRC test on the fifth day with their own expenses. If their result comes out negative, they can go for trekking or mountaineering and if it is positive, they need to be hotel quarantined until their tests come negative.
The criteria also requires the trekking or mountaineering team to bear the cost of insurance worth Rs 100,000 for the workers who accompany them in their journey.
All trekkers and mountaineers are required to abide by the safety rules issued by the Ministry of Health and Population after their entry to Nepal. The ministry has said that travel and trekking agencies, while dealing with tourists should inform them about the provisions.