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10 Things to know before heading to Nepal

8th February 2023

10 Things to know before heading to Nepal

Nepal, also known as the Federal Democratic Republic, is located in South Asia. The official language of Nepal is Nepali, and the country is multi-ethnic, multi-lingual, multi-religious, and multi-cultural. The word "Nepal" first appears in writing during the Indian subcontinent's Vedic period, when Hinduism, the country's main religion, was formed in Nepal. Nepal has a roughly trapezoidal shape, is 147,516 km2 in area, and is roughly 800 km (500 mi) long and 200 km (120 mi) wide (56,956 sq mi). Between latitudes 26° and 31°N and longitudes 80° and 89°E, it is located. 

The mountainous terrain of Nepal is some of the world's most challenging and rocky. Mountains are present on almost 75% of the nation's surface. Four main physical belts that each run east to west across Nepal from south to north can be identified. The first of these is the Tarai, a low, flat, fertile area close to the Indian border; the second is the forested Churia foothills and the Inner Tarai zone; the third is the mid-mountain area between the Mahbhrat Range and the Great Himalayas; and the fourth is the Great Himalaya Range, which rises to a height of more than 29,000 feet (some 8,850 meters).

Nepal is full of adventure, so here we are going to share a few things that you should know before heading to Nepal. 

1. Visa and passports 
When you arrive in Nepal, a visa on arrival option is available. The majority of visitors land at Kathmandu International Airport, which is Nepal's biggest airport. If you plan to obtain a visa upon arrival, bring a passport photo with you. Otherwise, you'll have to take your picture at the airport, which takes a lot of time. A Nepal visa for one entrance costs $25, $40, or $100 USD. Your Nepal trip's length, which can be 15/30/90 days, will affect the cost. You must pay in cash while picking up your Nepal visa at the airport, although all significant paper currencies are accepted. All Nepali visas have the advantage of being multiple entry by default, allowing you to go to China or India and return before your visa expires.

you can also get a visa upon arrival if you are traveling by bus from China or India. There are counters at all significant border crossings where you can obtain a visa as you cross the country. If we want to spend some more time in Nepal, then you can extend your visa. You must first fill out the form for a visa extension. Second, print it out and take it to the immigration office together with a copy of your passport, a passport-sized photo, and your actual passport. You can carry out this in Pokhara or Kathmandu. Third, successfully complete the brief interview, and pay the extension charge. If you have not done your extension and staying in nepal then you have to pay $7 for an additional day.

2. Money scamming taxi drivers   
When taking a taxi to get around Nepal, make sure to always request that the driver charge you per the meter and to do so at the beginning of the ride. It is common practice for taxi drivers in Nepal to overcharge tourists by two or three times the going fare. As a result, drive carefully and only on meters. Having said that, if you travel after 10 PM, the taxis may occasionally charge you twice what the meter indicates. In Nepal, even local commuters are used to paying this. If the driver of the cab insists on charging you more, you can file a complaint with the traffic police. Up to 30 cab drivers are arrested each day by the traffic police for overcharging customers. However, Kathmandu's taxi drivers don't seem to be affected by or deterred by law enforcement.

3. Always carry cash with you 
You must always carry cash with you; you cannot always rely on using a credit or debit card. In rural towns and villages, few businesses accept credit cards, and there may not be an ATM nearby. To avoid running into any issues or inconveniences, you must ensure that you always have the local currency on you. There is a cash limit on ATMs; you can only withdraw NRs 10,000 to NRs 30,000 according to bank policy. 

4. Exchange currency 
No other region of the world exchanges or accepts Nepali money. Only when you land in Nepal can you swap your USD or INR, so be careful to exchange it back before you depart. In addition to being unacceptable and costing you money, it is also illegal, and you run the risk of facing legal repercussions. Therefore, avoid taking local cash with you outside of the country to be on the safe side.

All transactions are made using the passenger's declared amount and the currencies that the government has approved, depending on the day's exchange rate. Please keep your encashment receipts, which you must present for exchange, so that you can exchange any excess rupees before you depart from Nepal. A maximum of 10,000 rupees in Indian cash can also be exchanged.

There are numerous locations in Kathmandu, the country's capital, where you may exchange your foreign currency. These include the Tribhuvan International Airport, hotels, and authorized forex brokers. Nearly all major and minor currencies are accepted in these locations. Everest Bank, Standard Chartered Bank Nepal, Himalayan Bank, Nepal SBI Bank, and numerous other well-known banks are located in the city. The majority of banks are open from Sunday through Thursday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.; from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. on Fridays, and closed on Saturdays.

5. Water safety in nepal 
You should be aware that you should never drink tap water while visiting Nepal, even at respectable hotels. Also keep in mind that washing fruits and vegetables in polluted water can result in major stomach issues. Although you can always stick to bottled water, you should be aware that the cost of fresh drinking water increases with altitude if you plan to walk in some of Nepal's more isolated areas. Purchasing a water bottle with a filter is therefore crucial while traveling to Nepal.

Drink only water that has been boiled, treated with an iodine solution, or is in a bottle that has been manufactured commercially and is tightly sealed. As well as beer, wine, and fizzy brand-name sodas like Coca-Cola, coffee and tea are acceptable beverages. Visitors in Nepal have the option of drinking bottled water, using purification tablets, or heating water because the tap water and river water are dangerous to consume. At altitude, it takes longer to properly boil water than it does at sea level, so if you're boiling water, make sure to boil it for a longer period of time. For the majority of travelers, factory-sealed bottled water is the safest choice. However, depending on where the bottled water is from and how it was processed, some bottled water can be dangerous.

6. Tourist tax 
Each departing tourist must pay Rs. 1,130 to the Nepal Tourism Board as a service fee. The minimum cost of an airline ticket, excluding fare and fuel surcharges, will rise to Rs 8,000 with the addition of the new airport service tax. The entrance charge to most tourist attractions varies greatly depending on whether the visitor is a native or a foreigner. For locals, certain attractions charge an entrance fee of 10 rupees, while foreign visitors may pay up to 1,000 rupees. To be fair, the majority of the revenue collected from visitors goes toward restoring the tourist attractions that were damaged by the severe earthquakes of 2015.

However, the government of Nepal has strongly barred free individual trekkers from entering some trekking areas known as "restricted areas," which are heavily restricted. Only those who have obtained a permit from the Department of Immigration may go on a trek in these areas. So before starting any trek, you have to get a permit, which can be easily arranged by the travel agency you choose. 

7. Social etiquette 
Namaste, or "namaskar," is the traditional greeting in Nepal, which is made up of placing your palms together in a prayer-like position. Use the terms "dai" for men and "didi" for women when addressing somebody who is older than you. Furthermore, it's considered rude to touch someone with your feet or step over their extended legs.

Nepal offers a wonderful blend of regional and indigenous ethnic cultures. More than 80% of people are Hindu. Even though Buddhism only accounts for 10% of all religious practice, its effects are felt all over the country. After Christianity and other major religions, Islam is the third largest religion. The Bikram Samwat calendar used in Nepal is 56.7 years earlier than the Gregorian calendar. So, yes, the Nepali calendar is 2079 when it is 2023 in the west.

8. Squats toilet
Squat toilets are more common in local restaurants and public restrooms; hotels, restaurants, and tourist sites that attract western travelers will have western toilets. A "Turkish toilet" is another name for a squat toilet. A toilet bowel or pan is located at floor level in squat toilets. The toilet could have a water cistern or a pail of water to flush with. But mostly, only local restaurants use the squat toilet. However, if you visit a popular restaurant, you can readily access a western restroom.

9. Travel insurance 
Yes, all travelers to Nepal must have travel insurance that includes coverage for COVID-19 and medical repatriation as well as emergency medical care. There are difficulties in terms of the height you're traveling to and the risk that brings because of Nepal's peculiar features, the altitude, and the isolation of many of the places you will travel. Many outfitters demand that you get trekking insurance if you intend to tackle any of the well-known treks, including the Everest base camp trek, the Annapurna base camp trek, the Manaslu circuit trek, the Mustang trek, and so on. Especially if you are going to higher altitudes. 

In contrast, the only way out of most places if you become ill or are hurt is via helicopter ambulance. In addition to providing assistance around the clock, Travel Guard also covers any medical emergencies, including emergency airlifts. With insurance for Nepal, you may travel without worry because you will be totally covered in the event of any unfortunate occurrence.

10. Loyal travel agency 
If you are coming to Nepal, of course, you are going to do research on the country. During your research, you can find many travel agencies in Nepal. Before choosing any agency check their reviews, and certificates, check their packages, read their about us, and check their experience. However, our Nepal Horizon Treks and Expeditions are government authorizeed and have 10 years of experience in the trekking field. So you can trust us and send an inquiry if you have any questions related to the tour and packages.  



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