How to Get to Tibet from Singapore?
For those planning a trip to Tibet from Singapore, there are only really two main routes you can take: traveling through mainland China to get to the plateau or by traveling to Nepal and then on to Lhasa from Kathmandu. However, while this may seem to be a complicated way to get there, it is easy and convenient for Singaporean visitors to get to Tibet. And the visa-free ability of Singaporean citizens to enter China for a limited period make the trip even easier than you might expect. All you really need to do is decide which way to travel and give us a call to book your trip in Tibet.
Getting to Tibet from Singapore in Different Ways
There are two main routes to Lhasa from Singapore. You can travel first to one of many cities in China, and then travel by flight or train to Lhasa from there. The most popular routes for those taking their flights via China are through Chengdu, Beijing, and Shanghai. Alternatively, you can head for the Himalayan country of Nepal, where you can fly from Kathmandu to Lhasa or travel overland across the border at Gyirong Port to reach the Tibetan capital.
Singapore to Tibet via Chengdu
Traveling to Tibet via Chengdu in China is not hard for Singaporean tourists, as there are at least five daily direct flights to the Chengdu Shuangliu International Airport from Singapore’s Changi Airport. Flights usually take around 4 hours 30 minutes to reach Chengdu, and can cost from as little as just US$280 per person for a one-way economy flight.
Traveling to Tibet form Singapore
Once in Chengdu, you have the option of taking the flight or the train to Lhasa. Flights are the faster option, but are much less scenic and normally a lot more costly. However, with 14 daily direct flights from Chengdu to the Lhasa Gonggar International Airport, getting a flight is very easy, except in the peak months of summer. The flight to Lhasa from Chengdu takes around 2 hours 15 minutes, and costs from around US$155 per person for a one-way ticket.
Trains to Tibet leave every other day, and are a popular choice for traveling to the Tibetan capital. The trains from Chengdu to Lhasa run for around 3,070 kilometers, traveling through Lanzhou and Xining to reach the plateau. The trains depart in the evening and arrive in Lhasa in the early afternoon of the third day of travel, taking around 36ours to reach the Tibetan capital. The best option for tourists from Singapore is to opt for the sleeper cabins, with the Soft Sleeper being the more expensive and the Hard Sleeper being the cheaper of the two options.
Singapore to Tibet via Beijing or Shanghai
If you are planning to enter China via either Beijing or Shanghai, then you have a wide range of options for getting to Tibet. More than a dozen flights run direct to both Beijing and Shanghai from Singapore daily. Flights to Beijing take around 6 hours and can cost from around 300 US dollars per person, while flights to Shanghai cost from around 168 US dollars and take around 5 hours.
Both Beijing and Shanghai have flights to Lhasa daily, though the flights from Shanghai only run through Xi’an or as indirect flights. There is only one “direct” flight per day to Lhasa from Shanghai, which takes around 7 hours 55 minutes and stops for an hour in Xi’an en route. Flights from Shanghai generally cost from around US$426 per person for a one-way economy flight. From Beijing, flights run twice a day to Lhasa, and take around 4 hours 30 minutes, running direct to the Tibetan capital. Flights from Beijing to Lhasa normally cost from around US$430 per person for one-way economy tickets.
The Beijing-Lhasa train
The alternative to flying to Lhasa is to take the train, and both Shanghai and Beijing are gateway cities for the famous Tibet Trains. Shanghai is the second-longest route to Lhasa by train, covering a distance of 4,373 kilometers in around 46-47 hours. Trains depart daily from Shanghai in the evening, and arrive in Lhasa just before lunch on the third day of travel. Both soft and hard sleeper berths are available for the trains from Shanghai, and cost between 118 and 188 US dollars per person.
The trains from Beijing depart daily for the plateau capital, covering a distance of around 3,757 kilometers and taking up to 41-42 hours to traverse China. Crossing six provinces, the trains depart from Beijing in the early evening, and arrive in Lhasa in the middle of the afternoon on the third day of travel.
Singapore to Tibet via Kathmandu, Nepal
While there are direct flights from Singapore to Kathmandu, you can get a good offer on connecting flights, most of which stop in New Delhi on the way to Nepal. Overall, there are around 37 daily flights that can connect to Kathmandu’s Tribhuvan International Airport, costing from as little as US$ 285 per person for a one-way economy flight. Flights range from around 7 hours 10 minutes to as much as 14 hours, with a layover in Delhi en route to Nepal.
Kathmandu to Tibet overland
There is currently only one daily direct flight to Kathmandu from Singapore, which takes around 4 hours 50 minutes to reach the Himalayan country. Fares for a direct flight generally start at around US$391 for a one-way economy flight, and can reach as high as up to US$730 per person.
From Kathmandu, you have two options for getting to Lhasa in Tibet. Flights run daily from Kathmandu to Lhasa, and are the only international flights permitted to land in Tibet. Flights take around 90 minutes to cross the Himalayas to Lhasa and the average flight costs around 245 US dollars per person.
Alternatively, you can travel to Lhasa overland, crossing the Sino-Nepal border at Rasuwa Gadhi and Gyirong Port to get into Tibet. The route runs from Kathmandu to Gyirong Port, the border crossing point just inside China. From there, your tour guide will meet you, and you will travel to Lhasa via Mount Everest and Shigatse.
Tibet Travel Permit Application for Singaporean Tourists
Nationals of Singapore have a visa-free allowance for travel into China, and can stay for up to 15 days without the need for a visa application. This unilateral visa waiver means that citizens of Singapore only need to obtain a Tibet Travel Permit to enter Tibet.
While a visa is not required for entry via mainland China, Singaporean citizens are still required to be on a pre-arranged tour, and are not permitted to travel independently. We will make the application for the permit application on your behalf, using a scanned copy of your passport, and processing normally takes around 15 days. Once received, the permit will be sent to you for your trip to Tibet. For train travel, you can use a scanned copy of the permit, but for flights, you will need to original copy. If you are flying, we will send the permit to your hotel in China, before you travel.
Even though a standard visa is not required for entry to mainland China for Singaporean travelers, when entering from Nepal, you will still need to have the Chinese Group Visa. All international tourists, regardless of nationality, are required to have this for entry to Tibet. We will obtain the visa using your original passport when you arrive in Kathmandu, and processing normally takes around three working days. We will also have the Tibet Travel Permit and other permits ready for your trip across the border to Lhasa.
Book Our Budget Tibet Group Tours When You Come from Singapore
The cost of traveling to Tibet from Singapore depends on where you are entering Tibet from, how long you are staying, and the time of year you are traveling. If you are working on a budget, then there are ways in which you can reduce the overall cost of the trip. The main way to do this is to book yourself onto one of our excellent Small Group Tours. On the Small Group Tours, you will travel with other like-minded travelers in one group. The tour leaves on a set date, and reduces the cost of such things as the driver, guide, and private vehicle you need for the tour by sharing the cost with the other members of the party.
Traveling to Tibet from Singapore is relatively easy, and can be done on a budget by making a few cost-cutting changes to the trip. With the close location of Singapore to China, and the visa-free allowance for travel into China, a trip to the Roof of the World from Singapore is a great opportunity to explore the unique culture and people of Tibet on the world’s greatest adventure.