Issued by the Tibet Tourism Bureau (TTB), Tibet Permit is a two-page A4 size document that allows you to enter and travel in Tibet. Tourists can only get this permit from a local tour operator in Lhasa whom you book a tour with to apply for the permit from the TTB, you have to send by email the scan copy of your valid passport and Chinese visa to your Tibet tour operator at least 15 days before the tour because the application & approval takes about 10 days.
There is no "permit-only" service from your tour operator, tour guide, vehicle and accommodation are all indispensable parts of this packaged tour like the Tibet permit.
Like previous years, Tibet opens to foreign tourists again from the very beginning of April after the complete closure in March. To some degree, April is seen as the beginning month for Tibet inbound tourism each year and Tibet permit policy declared in each April serves like an indicator for the whole year remains. Yet, it is still very hard to expect what's the next possible policy change could be. The new policy (restriction) could come out anytime if there is any sensitive event (anniversaries, visit by central-government officials or foreign politician) approaches or unexpected suddenness (social unrest, strike) take place. Based on our close relationship with related governmental bodies and rich experience in Tibet tourism, we will keep updating the latest Tibet permit policy in 2017 here if there is any new regulation come out.
2017 Update 6: (20-07-2017)
For some reasons, all the international tourists shall leave Tibet before 31st, August, 2015; from now on, tourism administration will not accept any Tibet travel permit application for tours in September, 2015; further news will be announced concerning when international tourists can get travel permit into Tibet in this September.
Across the world, there is only one direct international flight to Lhasa that departs from Kathmandu, Nepal; besides, the Chinese Customs at Zhangmu that borders Nepal is also the only Customs that allows international tourists to enter and exit Tibet by overland..
What follows is some fundamental and essential facts concerning how to get all documents processed in a right and quick way.