Government policies in Nepal require some of the trekking areas to have a special permit especially if the trekking area is an open border or has a connection with another country. Upper Mustang trek also needs a special permit before entering in this area. The hidden world of the Buddhist kingdom Mustang also shares the border with China (Tibet). Some of the trek routes, such as Tsum Valley trek, Lark pass Manaslu Circuit Trekking, Kanchenjunga Trekking also share the border with Tibet.
Any trekking route which has open border with Tibet China requires a special permit. If you are planning to explore Upper Mustang, then you should be prepared to get a special trekking permit. In this article, we are giving you some essential ideas on how and where to get the Mustang Trekking Permit. Please scroll down below for further answers to the following details.

Upper Mustang Trek Permit

How much is the fee of the Upper Mustang trek permit?

Upper Mustang Trek is one of the most expensive trekking in terms of the cost of trekking permit for foreigner tourist. The trek requires two different types of the permit, which are:

  • Mustang restricted permit all nations including Indian:   US$ 500 per person for the 10 days and USD 50 per additional day.
  • ACAP (Annapurna Conservation Area Project Permit) US$ 27 or NPR 3000
  • For SAARC Nation ACAP permit cost NPR 1,000 and TIMS NPR 200
  • ACAP entry fee for a local tourist (Nepali nation) NPR 100

Do I need a TIMS card for Upper Mustang Trek?

Trekking Information Management System (TIMS) card is not necessary only if you doing Upper Mustang. As long as you hold a restricted trekking permit in Nepal, TIMS card isn’t required in any restricted trekking region in Nepal. (In 2019 If you are traveling via overland to the trailhead you are required to bring TIMS card as well) But it is always advisable to check in advance with your local company (Contact Us). For example, if you have a connecting trip after Mustang, such as Upper Dolpa trek, Everest region trek or any other region apart from Annapurna.

If you want to extend your trip to Annapurna Base Camp, Lower Mustang then TIMS card is compulsory. Especially after Mustang if you still want to continue your journey to Lower Mustang and would like to trek further Jomsom Muktinath, Annapurna Base Camp and end up at Pokhara then you must require having TIMS card. But the good news is you don’t have to buy again ACAP permit. The same permit you bought for Upper Mustang will valid for anywhere around Annapurna as long as you don’t exit the park.

Where can I get Upper Mustang trekking permit?

All restricted trekking permits including for the Upper Mustang the permit will be issued in the trekking department of the Nepal immigration office in Maitighar, Kathmandu.  For your information, Nepal Tourism Board and TAAN don’t issue Mustang trekking permits, but other trekking permits such as ACAP, MCAP and Everest base camp permits are issued here.

Can I apply Myself?

This is a very important question that every traveler should know.  Please note that individual trekkers are not allowed in Upper Mustang. The following requirements by the Nepal government to file the upper Mustang trekking permit:

  • You are required to hire at least one authorized person from the local trekking agency, either a professional guide or a porter.
  • Should be at least two people in one group (not including the guide or porter).
  • You must file your special permit through an authorized local trekking agency.

What documents are required to issue the Mustang Trekking permit?

If you are able to meet the government requirements as discussed above, you should also provide these documents to your trekking agency in Nepal order to apply for your permit.

  • Original passport with your Nepal entry visa with the arrival stamp.
  • 3 passport size photos  (if you have one online passport photo, you will only need 2 printed ID photo)
  • Travel Insurance (Optional) that covers emergency evacuation up to 6000m.
  • Of course, money

Can I apply in advance?

This completely depends on the local trekking company you choose and whether they are able to deal with the immigration staff.  You should check in advance with your company (contact us) if this is possible.  But in our company’s experience, we are able to issue the Upper Mustang trek permit in advance upon the request of our clients. Please be reminded, however, that this is also not under our control and will depend on who we might be dealing with in immigration or what your situation might be.  The documents we require are:

  • Clear scanned copy of passport
  • Copy of Nepal visa obtained in advance from your country (In 2019 It is recommended but not compulsory)
  • A copy of your return flight ticket that clearly shows your arrival and departure date.

It is understandable that this might be required due to the traveler’s required time frame.  Other reasons could also be that the immigration office opening time and public holidays could affect your application. Note that the immigration office only opens from Sunday to Friday between 9 am to 5 pm. It is also closed during public holidays and Saturdays so it’s always a good idea to check in advance if you are arriving during holiday time.

If everything is on track and all requirements are complete, the Upper Mustang Trek special permit should be ready within a 2 to 3-hour timeframe.  If you need to know anything apart from what we mentioned above, please do not hesitate to contact us.  We are happy to give you additional information.NEST Adventure Article Rating

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Rajendra Khanal (Raj)

Born and raised in Gorkha, Nepal, I am proud to call the Manaslu region my home! I have been in the travel business for over a decade from being assistance guide, leader, to being a manager. And finally today I am the founder of NEST Adventure. So you could say I know my way well enough in the Himalayas, especially in some of the off-the-beaten-trails in Nepal like Manaslu, Kanchenjunga and Mustang!

I am passionate about travelling and I strongly believe that seeing the world shouldn't break the bank (at least not too much!). I have backpacked to over 15 countries in Asia, Central America, USA, Canada, one-third of Europe, the Caribbean Islands, and Latin America.

I studied in the UK and moved to the United States. During that period, I had the opportunity of working with multinational companies which taught me how to deliver quality customer service in the business. As a world travelling backpacker myself, and travel expert for the Nepalese Himalayas, I started writing about my own country. Which I would love to share with you. In case you required free information about Nepal or join a group with our existing departure, (particularly If you are a solo hiker for the restricted area) please do not hesitate to visit my office in Thamel. We are located in the centre of Kathmandu called Thamel. I am happy to share a cup of Nepali tea and free information.

Our team at NEST has earned 5/5 star ratings on TripAdvisor. Don't forget to visit our customer feedback page on TripAdvisor. If you believe our expert team can be helpful in planning your next trip to Nepal, then please do not hesitate to contact me at nestadventure@gmail.com. I am also available 24x7 on WhatsApp  +977- 9851052042. If you are interested to know more about my travel journey follow me on  FacebookTwitter, and Instagram.

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