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Ngari Gunsa Airport

Ngari Gunsa Airport - Facts, Flights, Transfer and Tips

Ngari Gunsa Airport

Airport Brief Facts

Ngari Gunsa Airport, or Ali Airport, is situated 45km from southwest Shiquanhe Town. It was operated in 1st July 2017 and became another important entrance to Tibet. It took about four years to finish Ngari Airport. This airport is one of the high plateau airports which are able to serve the takeoff and landing of the High-plateau-typed airplanes. At present, tourists can get to Ngari from Lhasa, Urumqi and Kashgar by flight.



Chinese Name: 阿里昆莎机场

Address: Gunsa Village, Shiquanhe Town, Ngari prefecture

Major Connected City: Lhasa, Urumqi, Kashgar


About Ngari Gunsar International Airport

Overview of Ngari Gunsa Airport

Served as a dual-use military and civil airport, Ngari Gunsa Airport is the fourth civil airport in Tibet after Lhasa Gonggar Airport, Qamdo Bangda Airport and Nyingchi Mainling Airport. With an elevation of 4,274 meters, Ngari Gunsa Airport is the fourth highest airport in the world. It has a 4,500 meters long runway and a 3,900-square-meter terminal. The construction of Ngari Gunsa Airport began in May 2007 and the operation began in 2010. Its annual throughput capacity is expected to reach 120,000 passengers by 2020.

Significance of Constructing Ngari Gunsa Airport

With the construction of Ngari Gunsa Airport, Mt. Kailash and Lake Manasarovar are accessed by air. Ngari owns numerous featured natural scenery and cultural sites, but nothing is more influential than Mount Kailash and Lake Manasarovar. Mount Kailash is regarded as home to Demchok and resident of God Siva while Lake Manasarovar is one of the tree sacred lakes and honored as the Mother of Sacred Lake. Apart from the Buddhist status, Mt. Kailash and Lake Manasarovar also shows stunning scenery.

After Ngari Airport was finished, the economy and tourism of Ngari developed fast. Ngari is remote area lying about 4,500 meters above the sea level in northwest Tibet and about 1,600km west from Lhasa. It was really hard to develop the lives of local people because of the special environment and inconvenient transportation. However, a lot of resource has been brought into Ngari as the Ngari Gunsa Airport started operation.

Domestic Flights to/off Ngari Gunsa Airport

Currently, Ngari Airport is only connected with Lhasa, Urumqi and Kashgar by nonstop or direct flights. If you want to travel to Ngari from mainland China, it is very convenient to take a flight to Lhasa from Beijing, Chengdu, Xian, Shanghai, Kunming etc. first and then you could transfer to Ngari.

Transfer to/off Ngari Gunsa Airport

Ngari Gunsa Airport is 200km (about 4.5 hours driving) away from Darchen – the starting point of pilgrimage around Mount Kailash. Since the transportation of Ngari is still under construction, there are no trains or shuttle bus at present. Renting a car is always the most popular means for Chinese independent travelers. For foreign friends, you have to travel with a local agency and use a local car.

Tibet Discovery also provides you convenient and comfortable airport pick-up and drop-off services which are usually included in our Tibet tour packages. If you take our group tours, you will enjoy our free airport pick-up and drop-off services.

Tibet Travel Permit and Flight Travel

A Tibet Travel Permit (Tibet Entry Permit) is the MUST-DOCUMENT to take a flight to Tibet. It is firstly needed to book flight at the airport. When you check in and check out the airports, the original Tibet Travel Permit also will be checked. Please remember to duplicate at least 3 copies of Tibet Travel Permit because the permits are required for many occasions. The permit can only be issued in Tibet by the Tibet Tourism Bureau, and also can be only applied by travel agency behalf of travelers. It needs about 15~20 days to obtain the permit.

How to Apply for Tibet Travel Permit

1. Contact us to work out and confirm an itinerary in Tibet;

2. Send us the scanned copies of your passport, and provide an available address in China(hotel or local agency) to receive your permit;

3. We apply for the Tibet Travel Permit from Tibet Tourism Bureau in Lhasa;

4. Once the permit is issued, we will send the original permit to you by post.

> Learn more detail about Tibet Travel Permit Application

Useful Notes on Tibet Flight Travel

1. How to book flight ticket?

The flight ticket can be booked at online websites, such as Booking.com, Expedia, Ctrip, Qunar, etc. You can also buy the ticket from the airports in China or flight resellers. You are also welcomed to let us book your flight. We are always keeping up with the latest flight news and usually can book the ticket at a cheaper price. During summer and autumn, it is usuall difficult to book the flights to Lhasa. While using our booking service, we will not only book the ticket, but also arrange a valuable tour package.

2. Apart from Chengdu, where can I flee?

Apart from Chengdu, you can fly to Beijing, Xian, Chongqing, Kunming, Shanghai, Shangri-la etc.

3. International flights from Tibet

So far, there is only one international air line connecting Lhasa: Lhasa - Kathmandu. During summer days, there are daily direct flights operated, sometimes two flights and sometimes just one flight. Only Air China and Sichuan Airlines are operating the Lhasa - Kathmandu flights. To take a flight from Lhasa to Kathmandu.

4. What else airport, apart Ngari Gunsar International Airport?

Tibet has five airports in total. Besides Ngari Gunsar Airport, you can also take a flight to Shigatse, Nyingchi, Ngari and Qamdo. But only certain cities in China operate flights to these smaller cities.

- Shigatse - there is daily flight flying between Chengdu and Shigatse each day. The airport name is Ngari Gunsa Airport, which is about 46km from Shigatse city.

- Nyingchi - Chengdu usually offers 4 morning flights to Nyingchi Milin Airport. While its neighboring city Chongqing also has 3 morning flights to Nyingchi each day. If you travel from Nyingchi to Lhasa, you are recommended to take a flight to Nyingchi firstly from Chengdu or Chongqing. It is also available to fly out Tibet directly from Nyingchi.

- Qamdo - Both Chongqing and Chengdu operate a daily flight to Qamdo in Tibet. But there are few travelers have chosen this line because Qamdo is not a popular tourist destination in Tibet.

- Ngari - Urumqi (capital of Xinjiang) offers a daily direct flight to Ngari with a stop at Kashgar on every Tuesday and Friday. Taking this flight, passengers need Military Permit and Border Pass as well as Tibet Travel Permit.

5. The regulation on the luggage allowance on the plane

Luggage Type First Class Business Class Economy Class Allowed Baggage Size
Allowed Carry-on Baggage 5kg * 2 pieces 5kg 5kg 55cm/20cm/40cm(L/B/H)
Allowed Checked-in Baggage 40kg 30kg 20kg 100cm/60cm/40cm(L/B/H)

6. Will my kids get a discounted flight ticket?

Kids aging 2 to 12 years old (including 12) will get a discount of 50% of the full price of the flight fare. If an adult take a flight to Lhasa from Chengdu with a child aging at 10 and the full price for the economy class is 1850 CNY, the ticket fare for the child is 940 CNY. The child also doesn’t have to pay for Airport Construction Fee while the adult has to. Infant under 2 years old only has to pay 10% of the full price, but the separate seat is not provided.

7. How do I collect (receive) the flight ticket?

Since most flight tickets are booked online, so firstly you will receive an e-ticket. You will change a paper ticket when you checking in your flight at a counter in the airport.