Bhutan has carried out early and decisive measures to contain the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) spread, including tourist restrictions since March 2020.
As a result, Bhutan has seen a low covid positive rate and promising trends of high recovery rate.
Now, the tiny Himalayan country bordered by India is ready to revamp its economy!
Bhutan’s Tourism Council has announced that the tourism sector will be revamped, focusing on three major areas. Bhutan prioritizes the infrastructure and services, visitor trip experiences, and environmental effects.
Norbu Bhutan Travels is pleased to inform all travelers that Bhutan will be open to tourism in September 2022!
Learn more about Bhutan COVID Travel Advisory for Indian Tourists and everything there is to know about tourism in Bhutan, only with Norbu Bhutan Travels!
Is Bhutan open to Indian Tourists?
According to the Tourism Council of Bhutan, Bhutan will be open to tourists for travel from September 23, 2022.
Bhutan COVID travel advisory recent update states that travelers will no longer require to do a five-day quarantine. Instead, travelers must do mandatory 24 hours hotel quarantine with a “Test -and-Go” COVID policy.
Bhutan has always believed in a High Value, Low Volume tourism policy, and covid has only highlighted how Bhutan can improve its tourism sector.
Covid-19 has allowed Bhutan to reset, to rethink how the sector can be best structured and operated so that it not only benefits Bhutan economically but socially as well while keeping carbon footprints low.
Can Indian citizens visit Bhutan for free?
Indian travelers must pay a tax to enter and explore the country.
In a recent update, Bhutan has increased its Sustainable Development Fee for Indian tourists to INR 1,200 daily.
You can stay updated with the latest Bhutan COVID Travel Advisory/travel restrictions with our Information for Indian Travelers.
Bhutan COVID Travel Advisory Protocol for Indian Tourists
Indians Tourists coming to Bhutan by road are required to obtain an ‘Entry Permit’ based on a valid Travel Document from the Immigration Office of the Royal Government of Bhutan at Phuentsholing, located on the Indo-Bhutan border opposite Jaigaon, West Bengal.
Similarly, Indians coming by air must possess entry documents in advance through your travel operator and get the Entry Permit stamped at the Paro International Airport.
The ‘entry permit’ allows an Indian tourist to visit Thimphu and Paro only.
However, any tourist going beyond Thimphu and Paro must acquire a ‘special area permit’ from the RGoB Immigration Office at Thimphu as per Bhutan COVID Travel Advisory.
Find out more about travel Accessibility from Norbu Bhutan Travels, including a Druk Air fare chart and road trip information.
Do Indians Need a Visa to Visit Bhutan?
India is one of the few countries which shares a border with Bhutan and is on excellent terms till now. Indian passport holders do not require a visa to travel to Bhutan.
As a result, a Bhutan visa for Indians is not necessary like the citizens of other countries. Instead, as an Indian citizen, you must carry other credentials to gain entry to Bhutan.
However, you are still expected to follow Bhutan COVID Travel Advisory like all tourists strictly.
Do Indian Citizens Require a Permit to Gain Entry into Bhutan?
Yes, Indian passport holders must obtain a permit valid for seven days from the Immigration Office in Phuntsholing to enter Bhutan.
The Bhutan Immigration Department issues the permit to Indian citizens for a fee of Rs 1200 per person per night..
You must have a valid permit to travel within Bhutan and produce it at each checkpoint for verification.
Indians who wish to stay longer than seven days must go to the immigration office in Thimphu and apply for an extension and pay the daily levy for Indian Citizens for Issuance of the Permit, according to Bhutan COVID Travel Advisory.
Documents Required for Indian Citizens as per Bhutan COVID Travel Advisory
Indian citizens must carry the required documents to enter Bhutan.
The documents listed below are necessary to obtain an “Entry Permit” as per Bhutan COVID Travel Advisory at the Immigration Office while entering Bhutan.
- A copy of your passport.
- An identification card for adults (Passport or Voter ID card issued by the Election Commission of India).
- Birth Certificate and valid school identity card for children below the age of 18.
- Two passport-sized colored photographs for each traveler.
- Accommodation, lodging and guide details, including the address of the hotel.
Note: As per Bhutan COVID Travel Advisory rules, “Entry Permit” allows you only to visit Thimphu and Paro. If you want to see other places in the country, you must acquire a special Bhutan permit for Indian citizens from Thimphu immigration office.
The documents necessary to apply for the “Special Area Permit” are as follows.
- A photocopy of the Route Permit is included in your Entry Permit.
- Duly filled application form.
- If you are driving your private car, you will also require an Extension Permit, which can be obtained at the Road Safety and Transportation Authority (RSTA).
Do you want to make reservations ahead of time? Discover the Himalayas by booking one of our special tour packages. We are happy to handle the paperwork so you can enjoy a hassle-free Bhutan tour with us!
After the curtailment of COVID, Bhutan, like any other country, still has to cope with long-standing challenges such as unemployment in the tourism sector owing to border restrictions.
So far, Bhutan’s victory in staving off the worst of the pandemic may give Bhutan the confidence and motivation it needs to confront these challenges on its terms.
After all, moving on after a disaster is another component of resilience!
Bhutan swiftly realizes that, while the country must embrace globalization and technology, it must also look to its heritage to survive difficult times.
Amid the COVID pandemic, India’s connections with Bhutan are anchored in centuries-old cultural ties, yet kept pace with the changing times, retaining the old and receiving the new.
Do you want to stay informed on all the latest Bhutan COVID Travel Advisory news for Tourists traveling to Bhutan? Read Important Travel Updates of Bhutan and plan your Bhutan tour from India!