Bhutan Open For Tourist
Bhutan open for tourists in 2022

Is Bhutan open for tourist? Bhutan has remained closed for tourism ever since the COVID-19 pandemic struck. The last Shangri-La has continuously endeavored to maintain its natural glory. 

As Bhutan reopens, The Kingdom’s Tourism Council of Bhutan (TCB) has stated that the reopening brings a renewed focus on the tourism industry’s sustainability.

Bhutan will reopen to visitors in September 2022 after being closed for more than two years. But, going forward, infrastructure and services, travel-related experiences, and environmental concerns are the three primary aspects of the tourism industry’s evolution.

Within this policy, Bhutan opens for tourists to develop high-value experiences for visitors and well-paying and professional jobs for its own people.

At Norbu Bhutan Travels  we are happy to inform all the travel enthusiasts that Bhutan is open for tourists in 2022. Read on to know all about tourism in Bhutan!

This blog includes:

  • Bhutan Open for Tourists for the First Time Since COVID-19
  • Bhutan Open For Tourists: Tourism Levy Bill of Bhutan
  • Why Was The New Tourism Levy Bill Introduced?
  • Will The SDF for Regional Tourists Remain The Same?
  • What is the Covid-19 Procedure For Tourists in Bhutan?
  • What is the Current COVID-19 Pandemic-Related Scenario in Bhutan?
  • Is Bhutan Open for Tourists for all countries In 2022?
  • What Will The New Tourism Policy Cover?
  • Final Thoughts

Bhutan Open for Tourists for the First Time Since COVID-19

Bhutan Open For Tourist
Bhutan Open for Tourists for the First Time Since COVID-19

The tiny Himalayan kingdom of Bhutan is opening for tourists in September for the first time since the pandemic started more than two years ago.

When the first COVID-19 case was discovered in March 2020, the government of Bhutan took immediate action to limit the community spread of the virus and prohibited tourists.

Now, after 2 years, with covid more or less under control, Bhutan is open for tourists starting on September 23, according to the Tourism Council of Bhutan (TCB).

Bhutan Open for Tourists: Tourism Levy Bill of Bhutan

Tourism Levy Bill of Bhutan

As Bhutan opens for tourists, there will be some significant changes. After Bhutan opens to tourists, the Sustainable Development Fee (SDF) will be raised to USD 200 per night for visitors under the Tourism Levy Bill of Bhutan 2022. This will be used to reinvest in making Bhutan a high-end travel destination.

The minimum daily package rate (MDPR), which includes the royalty of USD 65, would be eliminated with the Tourism Levy Bill of Bhutan 2022.

The goal going ahead is to invest in the industry and promote Bhutan as a luxury travel destination, all the while keeping the climate effects of the industry in check. Investing in the industry and to improve it would include enhancing the guides, sanitation and hygiene, food services, and social safety.

The revised policy after Bhutan opens for tourists will allow the government and TCB to concentrate on promoting Bhutan as a sustainable travel destination worldwide.

Why Was The New Tourism Levy Bill Introduced?

Bhutan Open For Tourist
SDF will be raised to 200, and MDPR will be removed when Bhutan open for tourists in 2022

The MDPR was dismissed in order to promote and ensure that tourists have the freedom to choose and spend more money each day, and the USD 200 SDF will go into Bhutan’s Sustainable Development Fund.

Since most service industry workers are now unable to support themselves, the goal is to increase tourist spending so that more revenue can be generated for Bhutan’s development plans. 

Despite tourists spending USD 500 or more, “middlemen” have often made more money to date. The idea is to connect local vendors directly with the visitors.

Additionally, the SDF rise is consistent with Bhutan’s “High Value, Low Volume” tourist strategy. The SDF, however, exempts day travelers who do not travel over the first designated point, children under five, and children aged six to twelve, who pay a 50% concessionary on the SDF.

Will The SDF for Regional Tourists Remain The Same?

Bhutan Open For Tourist
Bhutan open for tourists – Regional tourists will have to pay SDF of Nu. 1200 per night

With Bhutan open for tourists, the regional tourists will be required to pay an SDF of Nu. 1,200 per night. They would have to hire a guide in Bhutan and use local vehicles or drive their own vehicle for a standard fee per day.

The new regulations for local tourists will be observed for about three years and changed if necessary.

What is the Covid-19 Procedure For Tourists in Bhutan?

Bhutan Open For Tourist
Procedure For Tourists in Bhutan

The COVID-19 pandemic outbreak has led to restrictions on foreign entries into the Kingdom of Bhutan. To visit Bhutan you require proof of vaccination certificate or evidence of Covid 19 infection six months prior to visit.

                          – Upon arrival RT-PCR test sample will be collected.

                          – Hotel quarantine for 24 hours or until a negative RT-PCR result is declared.

As a result, tourists who want to travel to Bhutan can do so by agreeing to 24 hours required quarantine and the additional requirements listed below:

  • Pay the Sustainable Development Fees.
  • Book your own trip or select a travel advisor.
  • Guests pay for the RT PCR test upon arrival. 
  • Adhere to Covid 19 Protocol
  • All guests must have travel or health insurance.

What is the Current COVID-19 Pandemic-Related Scenario in Bhutan?

Bhutan Open For Tourist
Bhutan has managed to curb the rise of COVID-19 cases in the country

Bhutan experienced a total of 21 fatalities from COVID-19 throughout the pandemic. Bhutan kept its case-load low by upholding a strict zero-covid policy. This situation altered when the less harmful omicron form debuted in March 2022. 

Bhutan has since decided to move forward with the “live with Covid” strategy and is progressively easing travel restrictions and other travel measures.

Is Bhutan Open for Tourists from all countries In 2022?

Bhutan Open For Tourist
Bhutan open for tourists by September 2022

Bhutan opens for tourists and require proof of vaccination certificate or evidence of Covid 19 infection six months prior to visit. 

– Upon arrival RT-PCR test sample will be collected.

 – Hotel quarantine for 24 hours or until a negative RT-PCR result is declared.

As in the past, authorized tour operators must process visas and permits. You can now apply for visa with the Department of Immigrations or through your tour operator.

At this moment, only flights to Paro are accepted as means of arrival and exit by air, and there is a reduced flight schedule. September 23 onwards you can travel by road to Bhutan.

Bhutan Open For Tourist
Bhutan Open for Tourists as a Luxury Travel Destination

What Will The New Tourism Policy Cover after Bhutan Open for Tourists? 

The whole package, which includes hotels, a guide, transportation, meals, sightseeing and SDF, will often cost as follows if a guest is coming for a sightseeing tour, trekking, etc.

  • Groups: USD 350-USD 385 per person, per night
  • Couples: around USD 400 – USD 450 USD per person per night
  • Solo Travelers: USD 450 – USD 500 per night

The prices listed above are our best estimates, and they could change depending on various variables, including accommodation, itineraries, services availed etc. 

Additionally, visitors can go to Bhutan for 200 USD per person/ night and then book accommodations through travel agents such as Norbu Bhutan. They may take a taxi or a bus for transportation and  must have a guide with them at all times during sightseeings.

Bhutan Open For Tourist
All tourists must produce Covid-19 negative certificate to visit Bhutan

Final Thoughts

Without a custom-tailored tour package, visitors will likely see and do far less in a shorter amount of time than they could with a well-planned itinerary, a private vehicle, and a knowledgeable guide.

However, Norbu Bhutan Travels is always here to help you regarding travel and tourism. Contact us to find out more details about the new Tourism policy in Bhutan! 

Although the tourism policy has changed a bit this year, Bhutan has always been one of the best places to visit on earth. 

If you want to learn more about the new tourism policy, have a look at the Important Travel Updates brought to you only by Norbu Bhutan!

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