What To Pack For Your Tibet Trip?
Deciding what to pack for your travel is never easy, especially when your destination is the roof of the world- Tibet! However, with insider knowledge from our local Tibet travel expert, you can easily get yourself started on the preparation tasks. The No. 1 packing principle we like to tell our travelers is to pack enough but travel light! You also need to consider special gear depending on your activity or destination in Tibet. We have come up with two detailed packing lists below that we wish would be helpful. Not every item is mandatory and we have given explanation accordingly.
Tibet Packing List For Regular Tibet Culture/Landscape Tour
* Chinese Visa or Chinese Tibet Group Visa (depending on whether you travel to Tibet from China or Nepal)
* Tibet travel permit original or copies (depending on whether you enter Tibet by air or by train)
* Printout itinerary with important addresses and contacts
* International travel adapter
* Chinese sim card (if your China tour or Tibet tour is more than 20 days, it is convenient to have a local Lhasa sim card which we can purchase for you in advance and ready to use when your trip starts)
* Flight or train reservation to and from Tibet
* Debit card, cash in RMB, or USD, Euros, etc. Checks and credit cards are less commonly accepted. (Only a handful of major shops and hotels accept international credit card.)
* Essential medicine and first aid items (see Medicine in detail as below)
* Water bottle
* Day backpack
* Gloves (especially for easy tour in winter seasons, December - March)
* Insect repellent
* Down jacket (especially for spring, fall, winter)
* Quality socks
* Towel (for train travel)
The following medicine can be very useful during your travel in Tibet:
* Aspirin-for pain or fever
* Diamox (info about it-just for reference only: http://www.healthsquare.com/newrx/dia1131.htm)
* Cold and flu tablets, throat lozenges and nasal decongestant
* Dietary supplements, such as multivitamins-consider for long trips when such intake may be inadequate
* Scissors, tweezers and thermometer
Additional Packing List For Tibet Trekking Tour
* One or two pairs of water-proof trekking boots
* Sleeping bags
* Walking sticks
* Cold weather trekking trousers (fleece inside)
* Fleece jacket
* Cool Max Socks
* Torch or headlight
Tibet Travel Tips on Money
As in the rest of China, Renminbi or Chinese Yuan (RMB & CNY) is the legal currency in Tibet. It is also the most convenient payment method. You can exchange foreign currency at local Bank of China branches in Lhasa. Alternatively, there are many private money exchangers in Lhasa that offer very competitive rates. Your travel agency, guide or hotel are all familiar with their contacts and can help you if you need.
When you exchange at the bank, please prepare new and large value bills because only those are accepted. You can also cash travelers' checks or withdraw cash from major credit cards (MasterCard, Visa, and Amex) at the bank. Its main office is located on Lingkhor Bei Lu 28 9 (behind of Potala Palace), north of the Yak Statue and its hours of operation are 9:30 am -1pm and 3:30 - 6:00pm, Monday to Friday. Another convenient sub-branch lies on Beijing Dong Lu, between the Kyri Hotel and the Banak Shol Hostel. Its hours of operation are 9:30am-6:00pm, Monday to Friday, and 11am-3pm, Saturday and Sunday. The Bank of China Shigatse office, near the Shigatse Hotel, can provide travelers' checks exchange services too. Cash advances on credit cards are not available here.
Credit card use is not popular in Tibet. Only a few high-end hotels or supermarkets accept international credit card. Paying by credit card is also more expensive due to extra 3-4% processing fee. Read more about Tibet money tips on Tibet currency and Money exchange.