Visa information

Nepal makes things easy for foreign travellers. Visas are available on arrival at the international airport in Kathmandu and at all land border crossings that are open to foreigners, as long as you have passport photos to hand and can pay the visa fee in foreign currency (some crossings insist on payment in US dollars). Your passport must be valid for at least six months and you will need a whole free page for your visa.

Customs Regulations

All baggage is X-rayed on arrival and departure, though it’s a pretty haphazard process. In addition to the import and export of drugs, customs is concerned with the illegal export of antiques.

You may not import Nepali rupees, and only nationals of Nepal and India may import Indian currency.

There are no other restrictions on bringing in either cash or travellers cheques, but the amount taken out at departure should not exceed the amount brought in.

Officially you should declare cash or travellers cheques in excess of US$2000, or the equivalent, but no one seems to bother with this, and it is laxly enforced.

Antiques

Customs’ main concern is preventing the export of antique works of art, and with good reason: Nepal has been a particular victim of international art theft over the last 20 years.

It is very unlikely that souvenirs sold to travellers will be antique (despite the claims of the vendors), but if there is any doubt, they should be cleared and a certificate obtained from the Department of Archaeology in central Kathmandu’s National Archives building. If you visit the department between 10am and 1pm, you should be able to pick up a certificate by 5pm the same day. These controls also apply to the export of precious and semiprecious stones.

Visas

Tourist visas (15-, 30- and 90-day) available on arrival; bring two photos and cash in US dollars