A Tourist’s Guide: International Flights to Nepal
Nepal beckons adventurers from across the globe with promises of breathtaking landscapes, rich cultural tapestries, and unparalleled trekking experiences.
For those considering the journey to this enchanting destination, it begins with a flight to Nepal. This comprehensive international flights to Nepal guide tells you exactly how you should prepare and fly to Nepal.
Visa requirements for Travelling Nepal
Foreigners from most countries can get an on-arrival visa at Tribhuvan International Airport or other immigration checkpoints along Nepal's borders. The tourist visa costs 30 USD for 15 days, 50 USD for 30 days, and 125 USD for 90 days. Minors below 10 receive free visas. Please visit: nepaliport.immigration.gov.np for more information.
Taking a flight to Nepal
There are three international airports in Nepal, these are:
- Tribhuwan International Airport
- Pokhara International Airport
- Gautam Buddha International Airport
1. Tribhuwan International Airport
It is the oldest International Airport in Nepal (TIA) and is the key to international destinations and most domestic flights.
It started as a pasture, and the first flight took place in 1949. Today, TIA connects around 40 cities in 17 countries, and it has become very busy, but as this airport lies at the center of Kathmandu, there is little land to expand into.
Hence, as an alternative, the Nepal government has recently designated two more airports as international airports - one in Pokhara (Pokhara International Airport) and the other in Bhariahawa (Gautam Buddha International Airport).
2. Pokhara International Airport
Pokhara is the most popular tourist destination in Nepal. Mainly, for this reason, the Nepal government has recently built a new airport at Chhine Danda in Pokhara. This airport is about 200 kilometers from Kathmandu and provides an air route facilitating travel to western Nepal, including the Annapurna region, Mustang, Manang, and the famous Muktinath temple.
3. Gautam Buddha International Airport (GBIA)
This airport that serves south-central Nepal was first built in 1958 and used to play a vital part in transporting people to Lumbini, the birthplace of Gautam Buddha.
Nepal's government recently upgraded this domestic airport into an international airport as an alternative to Tribhuvan International Airport. GBIA is the second international airport in Nepal.
Entering Nepal through air routes
Though these are the three international airports in Nepal, only TIA is fully functional, and you will probably arrive at Tribhuvan International Airport. You can fly directly to Kathmandu through select airports in Asia, the Middle East, and Europe. Right now, only Jazeera Airways from Kuwait flies to Gautam Budhha Airport.
The national flag carrier of Nepal is Nepal Airlines, and it conducts direct flights to Doha, Kuala Lumpur, Dubai, Bangkok, Hongkong, Narita, and New Delhi.
Additionally, other airlines connect Kathmandu to Beijing in China, Dhaka in Bangladesh, Abu Dhabi in UAE, Riyadh in Saudi Arabia, Seoul in Korea, and Singapore. Turkish Airlines connects Kathmandu to Europe.
- Doha, Delhi, and Dubai are well-connected large cities. You can fly to these cities and then take a connecting flight to Kathmandu.
- As of now, there are no direct flights from Nepal to North America, South America, and Australia.
- The demand for flights to Nepal peaks in autumn (September, October, and November), perhaps because autumn is a favorable trekking season. Autumn is also a festive season, and many Nepalis in foreign countries choose to visit Nepal in autumn.
Arrival Procedures and Customs
Many airlines provide you with an immigration form before landing in Kathmandu. Filling out this form will save you time.
Getting on-arrival Visa
On the arrival building, you will see several desks with signs - foreigners with visas’, ‘foreigners without visas’, ‘diplomats’, and ‘Nepalese’. These signs are self-explanatory.
If you do not have a visa, you must fill out the on-arrival visa form and head to the “foreigners without visa” desk. You must finish on-arrival procedures and pay visa fees based on your planned stay period.
After getting visa clearance, you will enter the luggage section. You might find agents approaching you to “rent” a trolly or help you carry your luggage.
The trolleys are free, and you need not hire them. Please remember that your baggage might take up to two hours to appear on the luggage belt. After collecting your luggage, you must submit custom forms and head to the exit.
Reaching your hotel
After you leave the airport terminal, you can easily get a taxi outside the airport premises. They can take you to your hotel. We hope this International Flights to Nepal guide will come in handy as you plan to fly to Nepal.
If you have booked a trek with Discovery World Trekking, our staff member will receive you outside the luggage clearance area. They will be holding a pamphlet with your name on it.