1. Do I need to use a tour operator to book my travel ?
It is a government regulation that you must use a license Bhutanese Tour Operator to book your travel to Bhutan or one of their international partners.
2. Do I need a visa to enter Bhutan?
No embassies abroad will issue Bhutan tourist Visa. All International tourists wishing to enter Bhutan require a visa which must be pre-arranged through a license Bhutanese Tour Operator or one of their international partners. Visa clearance must be obtained through your tour operator prior to travel. When you arrive at Paro airport or at the border in Phuentsholing (for those using the land option), you need to show this copy and then passport is stamped with visa for duration of your stay in Bhutan. Visa is pre-paid and so you do not need to pay for it. For Indian passport (or VIC) holders, Bangladeshi nationals and persons from the Maldives may obtain a visa on entry.
3.What is the weight limit for luggage on Druk Air?
The baggage allowance by Druk Air is 20 kg in economic class and 30 kg in business class. An extra 5 kg allowed for storing in the overhead baggage bin or under the passenger’s seat.
4.What is included in tour packages?
The tour package includes all meals, tea & snacks, government approved A & B category hotels on twin sharing basis, airport pick up and drop, ground transport in the comfortable private vehicle, experienced English speaking guides and local staff, all city tour with permits and entrance fees for museums and monuments, all government taxes, Bhutan Visa fee.
5.What will be the food?
Variety of meals are available in most of the hotels – the most popular being Indian, Chinese, and the more common continental food which you can choose as per your wish. Emadatse - spicy chilies mixed with a cheese sauce is the national diet of Bhutan. Bhutanese eat chilies as vegetables rather than spices. Red and white rice are served at all meals. Non vegetarian dishes - pork, beef, chicken, and fish are generally available in most parts of Bhutan. Vegetarian foods are also available. Better ask the hotel or restaurant to recommend what is fresh and in season.
6.Is it safe to drink tap water in Bhutan?
Tap water is not considered safe for drinking and also ice cubes should be avoided. Mineral water is easily available throughout the country (but make sure that seal is not broken). At the same time it is better to go with the trusted brand rather than picking the local brands.
7.Can I use my credit cards in Bhutan?
Credit cards are not accepted in Bhutan generally. But, there are some handicraft shop which accept credit cards while purchasing goods.
8.Is the country safe to travel ?
Absolutely, Bhutan is safe for traveler. There is little crime in Bhutan and it is safe for women, family with children and for solo travelers as well. However, women are advised to follow the same universal precautions when they are in crowded entertainment places at night, mainly when in discos or bars.
9.What are the accommodations like?
Hotels in Bhutan are approved and classified by the government as grade A, B and C. These government approved hotels are equivalent to 3-4 star hotels located throughout the globe. Western Bhutan (Thimpu, Paro,Wangdue and Punakha)has the best hotels but as you head to eastern and central regions, the quality decreases a little bit. All the hotels/lodges/guest houses in the western Bhutan have pretty good electrical heating systems. While the hotels in the central and eastern part of Bhutan has wood-stoves for heating.
10.What is the electricity supply in Bhutan and what plugs are used?
240 volts AC – Flat round 2-pin plugs are most common and a universal adapter is an important travel item. Power cuts are quite frequent in central and eastern Bhutan while western Bhutan has stable power supply.
11.Are there internet facilities for foreign travelers?
Bhutan's main and only Internet Service Provider (ISP) is Druknet, owned by Bhutan Telecom. It provides a dial-up service, at a reasonable cost. There are several internet cafes and communication centers in the Thimphu and other various part of the country. Tourists only need to find a place they are most comfortable with to use the facilities to keep in touch with home. E-mail and Internet services are also offered by hotels.
12.What is the time Zone in Bhutan ?
Bhutan has only one time zone throughout the country. It is six hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time (GMT), 30 minute ahead of India, 15 minute ahead of Nepal and one hour behind Thailand. Also, Bhutan is 14 hours ahead of Pacific Time. When it is Sunday 12:00 Noon in San Francisco, it is Monday 2:00 am in Bhutan.
13.Can we smoke in Bhutan ?
The sale of tobacco products is banned throughout the Himalayan Kingdom of Bhutan. However, smoking in Bhutan is not banned but acting without an import receipt issued by the Department of Revenue and Customs is banned. Therefore, if you wish to smoke in Bhutan you can carry cigarettes up to 200 pieces with you but a duty have to be paid for them and also can smoke only on private zone like room or residence. It is recommended to smoke only on claimed zone otherwise it will be considered as crime if you smoke on prohibited areas like public places and offices and may even have to go jail for 3months also.