To protect against any unforeseen accidents all the travelers are advised to have comprehensive travel insurance. The Royal Insurance Corporation of Bhutan has initiated a travel and medical plan solely for our visitors. For more information visit Royal Insurance Corporation of Bhutan website at www.ricb.com.bt.
Bhutanese currency is called Ngultrum (pronounced Nultrum). The current exchange rate is Nu.67.00 for one US Dollar. The exchange rate fluctuates from time to time. The Ngultrum is on par with Indian Rupee. Indian Rupee is accepted in Bhutan.
The banks that you can avail of while in Bhutan are the Bank of Bhutan Limited, the Bhutan National Bank, the Druk PNB and Tashi Bank. Traveler's cheque can be easily withdrawn and exchanged for local currency.
Telephone & Internet
Most of the hotels, resorts, guest houses, lodges are equipped with international direct dial telephones and fax machines. Cell phones are commonly used now. The visitors can buy local SIM Cards/Data Cards for use during their stay in the country. Most hotels & resorts have Internet & Wi-Fi facilities. Most towns have Internet Cafes.
All major towns are well connected with electricity that runs on 220/240. It is recommended that you bring flat-to-round pin converters for your electronics if necessary; however, most hotels offer multi plug sockets. Bhutan is a carbon neutral destination. Our energy is clean and green generated by hydro power.
What to Bring
Bhutan's changeable climate requires you to bring an assortment of clothes, including rain gear. A layered wardrobe makes the most sense. Good walking shoes, hiking boots are essential even if you are not hiking for days. A hat or cap and good pair of sunglasses are essential. Warm clothes are recommended for the evening. Bring the medicines you will need. We have also found the addition of a day pack or shoulder bag and a telescoping walking stick to be very handy. Walking sticks made from tree twigs are available for sale at every hiking point.
You are free to capture images of the landscape, the panoramic views of the mountain ranges, rural life, flora and fauna, distinctive Bhutanese architecture and the exterior of Dzongs and Chortens in particular. However you should check with your guide before taking pictures or filming inside Dzongs, temples, monasteries and religious institutions as in some area photograph/filming is not permitted.
The countries exquisite shopping postage stamps, beautiful handicrafts, hand woven fabrics, carved mask, woven baskets wooden bowls known as Dapas, handmade papers, thangka paintings, are the most popular items purchased by foreign visitors. Please remember that buying and selling of antiques is strictly forbidden in Bhutan.
The Bhutanese Authorities strictly monitor the export of any religious antiques or antiques of any kind from the Kingdom (100 years or older). Visitors are advised to be cautious in purchasing old and used items. Customs Authorities will not allow items to be taken out of the country if they have not been 'officially certified' as non-antique. Personal Videos, Cameras, Computers, Portable Telephone Devices or any other electronic devices should be registered with the Customs Authorities on arrival at Paro and will be checked on departure. You will be issued a "Custom Form" to be filled out, with declarations, and returned to authorities before leaving the Kingdom. Import of plants, seeds, soils; live animals are subject to quarantine regulations. These items must be declared on arrival.
Bhutanese speak a variety of languages with Dzongkha being the national language and one of the most widely spoken. English is also spoken by the majority of Bhutanese making communication very easy. It is encouraged to speak with the local Bhutanese, especially in the urban areas and towns as it will enhance your knowledge on Bhutan.
We expect visitors to dress Long pants and long sleeved tops especially if you are planning to visit monasteries, Dzongs and other religious institutions. As a mark of respect, be kind enough to remove your hats, caps etc. as you enter religious and administrative premises, institutions and in any other place that you come across with the national flag being raised.
Bhutan standard time is 6 hours ahead of GMT. There is only one time zone throughout the country, the time in Bhutan is 30 minutes earlier than India, 15 minutes earlier than Nepal and 1 hour later than Thailand.
Before embarking on a trip to Bhutan, please seek advice from your doctor with regard to vaccinations and appropriate medication you should have prior to your travels. Medical treatment in Bhutan is free just in case you met with minor accident but incase of major one you are advised to have complete medical insurance.
The main roads are well maintained. The main two lane highway runs from west to east connecting all the major district towns. The mountainous terrain and winding roads restrict the average speed of vehicles and unexpected changes might occur in itineraries. Every effort will be made to stay as close original travel itineraries as possible. Tourists are provided with Passenger Car, Prado, Land Cruiser, Santa Fe, Tucson, Mini Bus etc depending on the number of visitors in the group.