Frequently Asked Questions
The most Frequently asked questions & Answers.
What are the best months to visit Bhutan?
If you are prepared to travel outside of the peak season periods (APR-MAY and mid SEP-NOV) there are fewer tourist visitors; you will save money & you will enjoy a far more rewarding experience.
Bhutan, like many countries in the world, is experiencing some climate change.
Broadly speaking summers (mid-June-late-September) are warm, humid and wetter and Winters (Dec-early March) cooler and dry.
Winter nights are cold however the days are often clear, sunny and surprisingly mild in the valleys. The western valleys only average 2 snow falls per annum.
The wettest period is August/early September. Bhutan’s climate guide.
Don’t let a little rain or cold nights put you off. Bhutan is no beach destination so a little rain doesn’t matter. In our humble opinion the summer & winter periods are the best times to visit. Beat the crowds and save money too!!
How far in advance should we book our trip to Bhutan?
During peak tourist travel months, Mar/Apr/May & Sep/Oct/Nov, we recommend booking at least 6-12 months ahead. For regular season travel, Jun/Jul/Aug & Dec/Jan/Feb, we suggest booking 3-6 months in advance.
Is independent travel possible to Bhutan?
Yes. Most of our travellers to Bhutan travel on private tours; as a couple or small group of friends and choose their own preferred dates and duration of travel. All tourist visitors must book a pre-paid and pre-arranged tour which includes services of a guide and driver to be granted a visa.
Bhutan prohibits independent backpacker style visitors to maintain its strict cultural and ecological values. However please be aware you can enjoy a high degree of flexibility during each day to hike, visit markets & villages and interact with locals as you wish as long as you stay in your pre-allocated accommodation at night.
What type of small group tours do you offer to Bhutan?
How do we arrange flights to/from Paro, Bhutan?
Bhutan & Beyond will book and ticket your air flights to/from Paro. These are operated by two Bhutanese airlines being Drukair-Royal Bhutan Airlines and Bhutan Airlines. Please refer to the web link below for further details. Bhutan & Beyond must book & manage your Paro flights and notify you when flight timing changes occur, which can be at very late notice, and these two airlines do not automatically update travellers. Another advantage is you do not have to adhere to any instant purchase airfare regulations for these flights and we can hold air seats secured for approx 2 weeks prior to ticketing (if booking more than 6 weeks prior to travel). Getting to Bhutan.
How do we obtain our Bhutan visa?
Bhutan & Beyond will pre-arrange your Bhutan visa and this is included in your tour cost. All we require to begin the visa process is a scanned copy of your passport photo page. Passports must be valid 6 months longer than your journey and the visa is generally issued between 14-20 days prior to arrival. We will email the visa to you as soon as it is received.
What are the cancellation charges & do I need travel insurance?
Comprehensive travel insurance is mandatory to visit Bhutan and, in theory, a visa can be denied if you do not hold insurance. Travel insurance should be purchased no later than the day you pay your tour deposit for your protection. Failure to purchase adequate cancellation insurance by the time your deposit is paid could result in serious financial loss should you be forced to cancel your journey.
Cancellation & Amendment Conditions:
Please see our comprehensive ‘Terms & Conditions’ webpage for full details.
The Drukair/Bhutan Airlines air flight component are totally non-refundable after tickets are issued.
Your Bhutan land tour arrangements are subject to the cancellation fees below.
Deposit date until 35 days prior to arrival in Bhutan – B&B service fee of AU$190 per adult & AU$95 per child plus any upgrade hotel charges as per their Ts&Cs.
34 days or less prior to arrival in Bhutan – Sorry, No Refund Permitted
Amendments to travel dates & itinerary structure etc will incur amendment fees as follows:
- First 2 amendments to land tour arrangements FOC.
- Subsequent amendment requests @ AU$50 per event.
- Please note airline fees may be additional to the bove.
When do the festivals in Bhutan take place?
Festivals in Bhutan have reputations for being raucous, joyous affairs. The most popular for tourists are those held in Thimphu & Paro and those seeking a more intimate Bhutan experience should consider avoiding these major festivals as they mark the busiest time of the year for the tourism industry. Festivals in Bhutan.
What is the average road travel speed in Bhutan?
Most of your travel through Bhutan will be along the one main road that traverses the centre of the Kingdom and you’ll usually travel at speeds between 35-60 kph. The road has been upgraded over the last 5 years and, as at JAN 21, is in good shape between western & central Bhutan with just some further upgrading going in the more remote far eastern part of the country. Most journey times by road have been reduced and the road has less bends than before. All good news for tourist visitors! Bhutan road travel times:
Why is it so expensive to visit Bhutan?
Sure, Bhutan is more expensive than 3 star India or Nepal however let’s put this into perspective! Because the Bhutanese Government has imposed an ‘all inclusive’ nightly tariff structure, for all tourist visitors, Bhutan tours can ‘appear’ to be expensive. In our 17 years experience with Bhutan we regularly receive comments from returning visitors on how great the ‘value for money’ genuinely is. Considering every visitor has access to a private guide, driver, private vehicle and a land package including all meals, accommodation, sightseeing, entry fees, transfers, taxes, Govt Royalties & visa fees it is indeed excellent value for money. And….Bhutan is so safe and such a privilege to visit! Please contact us for a quote.
Is there internet available?
Most of the standard tourist class hotels provide WiFi….plus have a small business centre where you can use the hotel PCs. Generally speaking WiFi is free but use at the 3* properties is sometimes limited to the lobby area of the hotels. All of the luxury resorts & lodges offer a wireless internet facility however not necessarily in guest rooms.
Some more remote valleys, like Phobjikha, have intermittent power and internet supply so please factor in for some inconsistency as you travel.
Purchasing a local SIM card for your smart device will give you WiFi most of the way through the Kingdom, for those who need more connectivity. A local sim card, plus call credits, on the Bhutanese network are quite inexpensive.