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What I should know before Tibet travel?

Time: 2012-03-07 15:00:19

1. Exchanging money in Tibet

The best place to change foreign currency and travelers checks is the Bank of China. Some hotels may provide exchange service but this is uncertain. If you are travelling to remote areas of Tibet, try to take your cash in small denominations. RMB100 and RMB50 bills are sometimes difficult to change. Coins are not acceptable even for donations.

Credit Cards- they are not recommended as a method of payment in Tibet. They are only accepted in 5-star hotels or big department stores in Lhasa.

Banks- Bank of China, China Construction Bank and China Agriculture Bank have branches in Lhasa.

2. Local transportation

Taxis are easy to find in Barkhor Street area. The taxi fare is by negotiation with the driver. It is a wise way to take a map to show the driver as they are unable to communicate in English. Remember that it is impossible to travel outside Lhasa except when accompanied by a tour guide in an authorized vehicle.

3. Oxygen

The average altitude is about 4000 meters. China Highlights provides 1 oxygen bag for each guest for free of charge. Additional bags can be purchased from the guide for RMB100 each. A bag lasts for about 1 hour if used continually.

4. Shopping

The local specialty are Tibetan Tangka, Tibetan silver ornaments, yak wool, Dzi beads, Aweto, milk products, Tibetan liquor and Lhasa sweet tea as well as various handicrafts and Tibetan medicines. The famous shopping places are Barkhor Street and shops around Jokhang Temple Square. Please be aware that Barkhor Street has many fake products. Don’t forget to bargain.

5. Food

Varying cuisines are available in Lhasa. Indian, Nepalese and Western food can all be found as well as Tibetan, Sichuan cuisine, Northwestern Chinese wheaten food and Northeastern Chinese cuisine are most typical.

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