Kathmandu, March 3
The Nepal Tourism Board has said foreigners are no longer allowed to trek without a guide.
The board director Maniraj Lamichhane informs this decision will be implemented from April 1.
According to the NTB, around 50,000 tourists trekked without a guide or a porter in Nepal in 2019. These tourists trekked by obtaining a route permit and a TIMS permit from NTB.
Lamichhane says that such a decision has to be taken to make trekking safer after many tourists went missing the over the past few years.
Read also: Is trekking to Everest base camp alone–without a guide or porter–possible?
“This decision has been made for the tourists’ benefit,” says Lamichhane, adding employment will go up significantly thanks to this decision.
With this decision, the TIMS permit will no longer be issued to tourists without a guide. They will have to trek via a trekking company, says Lamichhane.
The board has also increased the price of the TIMS permit to Rs 2,000 per person. Prior to this, people who travelled in large groups paid Rs 1,000 for the TIMS card while those who travelled alone paid Rs 2,000. TIMS permit for SAARC nationals has also increased to Rs 1,000.