Government of Nepal with a connection to the Ministry of Culture Tourism and Civil Aviation has issued an important announcement concerning the reopening of the tourism activities in Nepal. According to the news, the government announced to resume the domestic and international flights from 1st September 2020. As per the latest news, flights will be resumed in three phases starting from less affected COVID-19 destinations. MOCTCA will co-ordinate with the ministry of health and the population for the safety of the passengers.
Ministry of Tourism plans to resume tourism activities following the health and safety protocol. All the tourism service providers will be following the operational guideline with health protocol for the tourism sector given by the Nepal Tourism Board (NTB) and Ministry of Culture, Tourism, and Civil Aviation (MOCTCA). Tribhuvan International Airport and Civil Aviation Association of Nepal has prepared standard operating procedures to resume all the domestic and international flights. However, all the travelers will have to bring their PCR report to enter the country.
Department of Tourism is all set to issue the climbing permits for this Autumn season. The department has already started preparing necessary guidelines for the trekkers and climbers.
We are all set to operate this autumn. The safety and security of our clients are always our first priority especially during the time of the pandemic. Also from our side, we are willing to follow all the safety guidelines to eliminate the risk of getting our clients and staff affected.
Safety protocols for trekking and climbing after COVID -19
Ø Airport safety
The government of Nepal with coordination with the Tribhuvan International Airport will take care of all the safety protocols inside the airport premises.
Once you exit the airport, one of our staff will be there to pick you up. He shall be wearing a mask (Compulsory) and greet you maintaining the social distance and then escort you to your respective hotel. We would recommend you to be wearing a mask all the time and sanitize your hands frequently.
Ø Hotel Safety
The hotel will be following all the safety protocols with disinfecting the premises as well as maintaining health hygiene. While in the public areas at the hotel, we would recommend you wear a mask all the time.
Ø While in Kathmandu
Whilst you are in Kathmandu, you might be going for sightseeing tours, shopping, or even to the restaurants. During this time we recommend you wear a face mask all the time and carry a hand sanitizer along. The transportation provided by us as well as the guides will be wearing the face mask as well. Also, it is not advised to eat at the local restaurants rather opt for the one that has been following health hygiene.
Ø Trek Transfers
For the trek transfers using domestic flights or via land transportation, we shall be following similar guidelines as all the staff will be wearing a mask all the time and will be maintaining social distance. As per the clients, we recommend continued use of hand sanitizers and face masks.
Ø While the trek
While on the trek there will be comparatively less number of people alongside. At the places where there are no outsiders, it is okay not to use the masks. However, if there are other trekkers around, wearing a mask is definitely recommended.
Ø Accommodation and meals on the trek
Accommodations during the trek are based on the local lodges and tents for the climbing portions. The tea houses are safe when the distance protocol is followed. The meals that are prepared at the tea houses are hygienic based on our experiences as we never have any complaints in the past.
We shall be happy to provide the option of taking the meals at the tea houses and sleeping at the personal tents that the porters will carry along. However, there will be a minimum surcharge applicable. We will be taking similar precautions as in the hotels and restaurants in Kathmandu.
Ø Helicopter evacuation
We are able to arrange quick and convenient transfers back to Kathmandu, by helicopter, in the event of any health issue. This has always been the case on our trips and that will continue to be a key part of our customer service.
Ø Additional information
Each trekking group will have access to supplementary oxygen in the case of any medical emergency. However, our priority will always be quick evacuation back to Kathmandu.
Single travelers will not be required to share a hotel room, or a room in a tea-house, or a tent. Only members of an existing social group will share rooms.
We will maintain an adequate supply of face masks, hand sanitizer, soap, and paper towels for the use of all clients and for our staff during the trek. We also recognize that clients will probably want to bring their own personal supplies. However, our stock will be available as necessary.