Overland China Tour with your own vehicle2024-01-06T10:22:27+01:00

China and Tibet with your own vehicle

News for all travellers
who want to travel overland: China is open again!

There a also great news regarding the Qolma Pass for Overlander tours Tadjikistan-China! This border crossing is now open since May 2018. The distance to Kashgar is approx. 300 kilometres. The Qolma Pass, which connects the Pamir Highway with the Karakorum Highway, was open between May and November since 2008, except on weekends and holidays (official holidays and also unofficial ones like the Qurban Festival (arab. “Eid al-Adha”) in Usbekistan und Tadjikistan) and NOT for foreigners with a foreign registered vehicle. This changed now and the Qolma Pass for China Overland tours Tadjikistan-China is open for every Overland traveller. Overland Tours between Tadjikistan and China are offering a lot more opportunities now!

Before sending an inquiry, we suggest that you first read our FAQ section below!

For enquiries – What we need to know to be able to answer:

  • Nationality/Age
  • Travel period (day (if known), Month & Year)
  • Transit period in days (1- 90 days)
  • Entering China/departure from China (for example: from Kyrgyzstan to Laos)
  • Number of Vehicles & Vehicle Types

is one of the world’s most fascinating countries – not only because of its extremely turbulent history, but, of course, also because of its unique nature. And what could be a better way to make a journey of discovery in China and Tibet than by doing a China overland tour in your own vehicle? Regardless of whether you choose a 4×4 or a motorbike, camper or truck, a China overland tour is the best way to get a unique insight into the country, its very friendly inhabitants and its breath-taking landscapes. We, the Tibetmoto team, will take on the whole job of organising the trip for you: together, we will map the route of your dream journey through China overland, and the neighbouring Tibet as well. With our assistance, you will get a temporary Chinese driver´s license, license plate and insurance for your vehicle as well as all the necessary permits. And, of course, we will provide your tour guide, without which it is not possible to do a China overland tour. Roaming through China, driving your own vehicle?

With Tibetmoto, your dream trip will become reality!

Contact us for your own overland tour!

Hendrik Heyne, founder of Tibetmoto, with overlander travellers in China from around the world

Included Services for all China Overland Tours:

  • Chinese driving license (provisional)
  • Customs entry and exit clearance
  • 3rd party vehicle insurance
  • All China entry permits, itinerary permits, military permits, PSB permits, tourism bureau permits
  • Tibet Permit (Tibet Alien Traveller Permit) for China Overland Tours through Tibet
  • All necessary official translations
  • English speaking Tibetmoto guide
  • Expenses for guide traveling to / from borders
  • Meals and accommodation for guide
  • Advice concerning roads and itineraries
  • Tibetmoto service: Customer support while on the road from Monday to Sunday, 8am to 9pm China time
  • Customs deposit bond (depending on border)
  • Chinese number plate (provisional)

In addition to our included services above, we offer on request:

  • an optional supply vehicle in case the guide can not sit in your vehicle
  • China Overlander travel packages for film and TV productions in China: CARFTE Permits/import of TV and film equipment
  • Order Service: Great support during your adventure in China: We can order vehicle spare parts, tires, expedition equipment, motorcycle clothing/helmets and much more!

“Chinese Driver’s License – Issued at the Entry Border”

Here is how it works!

As an “overlander” or self-driver through China, you will need to keep some things in mind:

  • You will need an official guide who will be legally responsible for you.
  • Your vehicle will need a temporary Chinese license plate and insurance, and you will need a Chinese driver’s license.
  • You will need certain permissions for your Tibet and China overland tours that can only be applied for by our experienced agency.

However, with Tibetmoto you do not have to worry about anything like that because we will take care of everything involving the bureaucracy for you. Licenses, permissions, everything you need to make a carefree journey through China and Tibet-we will take care of it all for you and provide a qualified guide to accompany you.

Visa requirements for China
If you want to travel through China in your own vehicle, you will need to get a visa in advance. A visa-on-arrival will not be issued at the Chinese borders. You can only apply for a visa, at the earliest, 3 months before the start of the trip. It is best to make the application directly from your home country, since it is not possible to apply for Chinese visas from some countries.

Enjoy your own adventure

China Overland is for many a dream and the highlight of an Overland trip with their own vehicle. Driving your own car, motorcycle, mobile home or truck to Mount Everest Base Camp in Tibet and enjoying the view of the highest mountain in the world is unquestionably a magnificent experience.

Read More

Or a trip along the Silk Road through the Gobi Desert to the metropolis of Beijing where the Forbidden City and Great Wall are waiting to be discovered. Tibetmoto Tours organizes family friendly China overland adventure tours with your own vehicle for individual travelers or groups. We attach great importance to personal advice and the development of excellent and proven travel routes. In addition, we also bring together individualists who do not want to travel through China alone, but rather in a group, and offer China Overland group tours on fixed dates. Or you can join one of our motorcycle adventures from Munich along the Silk Road to Lhasa and go on tour with us. Whatever option you choose, a China Overland trip is spectacular, exciting and full of great experiences. In case you are looking out for a China overland motorcycle tour you can check out these fabulous tours namely, South of the Clouds Motorcycle Tour through Yunnan and the Tibetan Himalayas, the Silk Road Motorcycle Tour and the East Tibet motorcycle tour from Shargri-la to Lhasa where you can enjoy the spectacular views of the highest mountains while riding between two of the most well known rivers Mekong and Yangtse.

On the road in China with Tibetmoto – overland travelers from all over the world

China and Tibet Overland Adventure in your own vehicle – what route will you choose?

Many vacationers shy away from even considering a China overland tour because the many bureaucratic hurdles and the language barrier seem too difficult. With us, you will have a strong partner at your side working out of its own offices with German management on the spot in China, who know the language, the laws and the customs, and who is always available as your contact person.

We have a broad selection of China overland tours ready for you in our repertoire, for instance:

  • Through Kyrgyzstan to China, and onward to Pakistan (from 5 days)
  • The following borders are, in general, available for entry/exit:
  • From Kyrgyzstan to China overland, and onward to Tibet and Nepal (15-20 days)
  • Through Mongolia and China to Laos (27-29 days)
  • From Kyrgyzstan through Tibet and home from Laos (from 26 days)
  • From Kazakhstan through China, Tibet and Nepal (20 days)

The following borders are, in general, available for entry/exit:
Laos and Myanmar – Vietnam – Kirgistan – Kazakhstan – Mongolia – Pakistan – Nepal – Tadjikistan

Do you have your own idea about what you would like in your China overland tour?
No problem. Get in touch with us and we will work together with you to create your dream route. Please bear in mind, however, that planning your trip will take some time due to the bureaucratic hurdles – the sooner you book your China overland tour with us, the smoother the planning will be!

China Overland Group Tour


Embark on an unforgettable journey to discover the fascinating highlights of Tibet. Experience the vastness of the Tibetan high plateau and marvel at the sacred Mount Kailash. The journey continues to the base camp of Mount Everest and on to Lhasa before venturing into the eastern foothills of the Himalayas. Explore the old towns of Lijiang and Dali and enjoy the captivating subtropical landscapes on your way through Yunnan province to the Laotian border. As private China overland tours can be too expensive for some, we have created this affordable China overland group tour from Kyrgyzstan to Laos for this very reason.

More Information

Vehicle Logistics China

Vehicle Logistics China – What is it?

A journey through China with your own vehicle – is there a better way to explore the “Middle Kingdom”? While doing so, there are many questions, especially about the situation of Vehicle Logistics China. How will the vehicle be transported? What permits do you need and are you even allowed to drive on your own in China? With us at your side, Vehicle Logistics for China becomes easy-peasy.

We do not only arrange the vehicles’ transport by car transporter, by sea or by train, we also take care of all permits for your China overland journey. Because one of our main tasks is also the tourism logistics.

Read More

This is how the Vehicle Logistics for China works

If you want to transport your vehicle from or to China, it’s important to have an experienced and reliable vehicle logistics partner in China.Therefore, Tibetmoto cooperates with the leading companies in vehicle logistics and is able to cover all areas from packing to securing and transporting (all from one source). Furthermore we cooperate as an official partner with BMW Motorrad China.

Vehicle logistics in China has various ways to transport your vehicle. The “classic version” is of course by sea in the FCL container (20 or 40 feet in length). Here you can choose between different ports throughout the country:

  • Vehicle logistics China South Coast: Shenzhen and Guangzhou
  • Chinese East Coast: Shanghai, Suzhou
  • Chinese Northeast Coast: Tianjin

An alternative to transport by ship is the relatively new option of transport by rail, which is a highlight of vehicle logistics in China. For example, your vehicle will be transported from Chengdu to Europe via the “New Silk Road”, which can be faster than shipping. In some cases even up to 60%faster. The New Silk Road, which is also called “One Belt, One Road” is a Chinese project aimed at consolidating and expanding the intercontinental infrastructure network between China, Asia, Europe and some African countries. It’s an important step in vehicle logistics for China.

We are also your partner for vehicle logistics in China for land transport. We organize everything for you, from the written application to the loading and transport. The cars’ transport on the car transporter, as well as the motorcycle logistics in China, e.g. packing them in safe motorbike boxes is no challenge for us.

Vehicle Logistics in China – One-Stop approvals

If you want to travel in China on a motorbike or with your own vehicle, it is necessary to take some bureaucratic obstacles. This is not impossible but without language skills, this hurdle can quickly become a major challenge. This is exactly where we start and take care of the vehicle logistics in China for you. You don’t need to worry about (almost) anything anymore.

But how does vehicle logistics in China work? Before you can travel with your own vehicle through China you require various permits and documents. For example, your vehicle must have temporary Chinese license plates and you need a Chinese driver’s license. We at Tibetmoto arrange all the bureaucracy and in the field of vehicle logistics in China we take care of:

  • Temporary vehicle imports including all customs authorizations and any deposits due at Chinese customs
  • The vehicle’s registration at the Chinese authorities including license plate and temporary Chinese driver’s license for you
  • Authorizations from the Ministry of Public Security
  • Cover a Chinese vehicle insurance
  • Etc.

Since our offerings are accompanied by an experienced guide who also works as a translator, you are assured that you won’t have any language problems. Also we complete the bureaucracy affairs in the field of tourism logistics in China quickly and easily, so that you can focus on the beautiful part of your China overland journey.

And if you are planning a very special event during your China Overland Tours our Event Support China has many offers and is happy to help you with it.

Read More details about our vehicle logistic services here.

Check out numerous Highlights for China Overland Tours

China overland tour starting from Kazakhstan

ROUTE 1: (to Laos or Myanmar)
Kazakhstan – China – Laos or Myanmar (24-28 days)
From the Kazakh steppe into the Taklamakan Desert and along the Silk Road to Turpan and Dunhuang and to the westernmost foothills of the Great Wall. Then it goes to the largest salt lake in the Himalayas (Qinghai Lake) and on through Tibetan landscapes to Chengdu. The subtropics near Yunnan inspire with Lijiang, the Tiger Leaping Gorge and Dali. Departure either Laos or Myanmar.

ROUTE 2 (to Laos or Myanmar)
Kazakhstan – China – Tibet – Laos or Myanmar (26-30 days with Tibet)
Instead of the Silk Road, we ride high up into the Himalayas and the Tibetan plateau. Highlights are Mount Kailash, Everest Base Camp, Lhasa, and Eastern Tibet.

ROUTE 3 (to Nepal)
Kazakhstan – China – Tibet – Nepal (20 days with Tibet)

From the steppe of Kazakhstan we ride first to Kashgar in Xinjiang along the Taklamakan deserts, then up to the Tibetan high plateau. Highlights are Mount Kailash, Everest Base Camp, next to the Pangong Salt Lake and the abandoned Kingdom of Guge near Zanda. Departure via Jilong/Gyirong to Nepal

ROUTE 4 (to Pakistan)
Kazakhstan – China – Tibet – Pakistan (30 days with Tibet)
All the highlights of the Silk Road like Turpan, Dunhuang and all the highlights of Tibet with Everest Base Camp, Lhasa, Guge Kingdom and Mount Kailash. The ultimate China overland travel experience.

China Overland Tour starting from Kyrgyzstan

ROUTE 5 (to Laos or Myanmar)
Kyrgyzstan – China – Tibet – Laos or Myanmar (27-30 days with Tibet)
Our most popular China overland tour. From the Kyrgyz highlands it goes to Kashgar and from there to the Himalayas on the roof of the world in Tibet. The kingdom of Guge and Tholing is just as important as Mount Kailash, Everest Base Camp and Lhasa. The subtropical Yunnan has the old towns of Lijiang, Dali, Shaxi to offer, as well as the Tiger Leaping Gorge.

ROUTE 6 (to Laos)

Kyrgyzstan – China – Tibet – Laos (30 days with 3 days hike at Mt. Kailash)

Like 5, only with a spectacular 3-day hike around Mount Kailash, which is sacred to Tibetans. With the 5,700 meter high Drölma La Pass.

ROUTE 7 (to Nepal)
Kyrgyzstan – China – Tibet – Nepal (15-20 days with Tibet)
First it goes along to Kashgar in Xinjiang, then up to the Tibetan plateau. Highlights are Mount Kailash with Lake Manasarovar, Everest Base Camp and the abandoned Kingdom of Guge near Zanda. Departure via Jilong / Gyirong to Nepal.

ROUTE 8 (to Pakistan)
Kyrgyzstan – China – Pakistan (4-6 days)
Kyrgyzstan or Tajikistan – China – Pakistan: For those in a hurry! As soon as possible through China. On the way you can experience Kashgar, the Karakoram Highway and Karakul Lake as well as the Khunjerab Pass.

ROUTE 9 (to Mongolia)
Kyrgyzstan – China – Tibet – Mongolia (38 days with Xi’an)
From the Tibetan high plateau to Lhasa, no highlight of Tibet is left out. Via the largest lake in the Himalayas (Qinghai Lake) it goes along the Silk Road to Xian. Departure via Erenhot.

China Overland Tour starting from Mongolia

ROUTE 10 & 11 (to Laos or Myanmar)
Mongolia – China – with or without Tibet – Laos or Myanmar (22-25 days)
From the Mongolian steppe through the Chinese Gobi desert to Beijing and central China. Overland tour along the silk roads to Xian, Tibet and the province of Yunnan with departure from Laos.

ROUTE 12 (to Laos or Myanmar)
Mongolia – China – Laos or Myanmar (27-29 days with Xi’an)
Like 10 and 11, extended option.

ROUTE 13 (to Nepal)
Mongolia – China – Tibet – Nepal (20 days with Tibet)
Via Beijing (optional) to Xian and Xining to the Qinghai Salt Lake and over the endless Qinghai Plateau to Tibet. With numerous highlights of Tibet such as Lhasa, Yamdrok Lake, Everest base camp. Departure via Jilong / Rasua Ghadi to Nepal.

ROUTE 14 (to Pakistan)
Mongolia – China – Pakistan (15 days)

ROUTE 15 (to Pakistan)
Mongolia – China – Tibet – Pakistan (27-30 days with Tibet)

Contact us for your own overland tour!

Why should you book your China Overland Tour with Tibetmoto?

That is easy: we take care of everything for you that needs to be done so that you can enjoy your China overland tour to the fullest. And that starts with planning the trip! You can choose one of our popular, tested and proven Tibet and China overland tours, or we can plan a completely personalised route together with you. The sooner you get started with the planning process, the more relaxed your preparation time will be. Normally, the Chinese authorities will need about 30 days for processing. We prefer to be on the safe side, and allow 40 days processing time for your trip in your own vehicle. After you have booked your trip with us, we will guide you, step by step, through the necessary procedures. You will receive a form from us by email which you must fill out completely. It is best to scan the necessary documents such as vehicle documents, passport, etc, and upload them to a cloud service which we provide.

Then, when you arrive in your own vehicle at the Chinese border crossing, our guide will be waiting for you. He will already have all the necessary papers with him (except, of course, the originals, which you will have with you), and will help you take care of getting your temporary Chinese driver’s license and vehicle license plate from the appropriate Chinese authorities. When all the formalities have been taken care of, the fun part of your China overland tour will begin! Through our guides, we are literally at your side at all times and can help you at any time with language difficulties or other problems. Out Tibetmoto team has a firm grip on the Chinese bureaucracy – and you will be able to concentrate completely on the fantastic beauty that your overland trip will offer you!

An adventure that you will, guaranteed, never forget!

Overland tour Mongolia – China – SEA

Hi everyone, we booked the China part of our world trip with Tibetmoto.
At Erenhot border we were greeted by out guide who helped us with the border formalities and accompanied us to the border of Tibet at Goldmud.

Read more

From there we crossed the endless plateau landscape. At some point we spotted wild horses and stayed with nomads for a couple of nights. In Lhasa, we took a break for a few days after endless driving and continued to Yunnan province where our trip ended at the border to Lao.
The trip was very well planned by Tibetmoto and we apprecited the many recommendations for overnight stops, routing and sights (both before and during the tour). The service was professional yet personal and you can feel that the team members are passionate travellers themselves.
Last but not least: the tour price was very competative. And unlike other travel agencies we contacted we received always proper and detailed answers in comprehensive English language. That made planning much easier.
Thanks guys!

Torugart pass to Shanghai

On a bright Sunday morning in April 2017, my 1983 Land Rover “Edna” and I started on a trip that would take us from the Netherlands to China, crossing over 5,300 meters high mountain passes.

Read more

End July 2017 we arrived at the Torugart pass, the border between Kyrgyzstan and China. From here we drove over 9000 Km to Shanghai, thereby travelling through XinJiang province and along the Himalayas through Tibet. The China part of the ‘expedition’ was arranged with strong support from Tibetmoto, which is run by Hendrik Heyne and his team.

In short, thanks to Tibetmoto, particularly when it came to handling red-tape in China, this trip has become an unforgettable lifetime experience. Travel through China using your own vehicle without a guide is not possible. (Apparently being accompanied by a guide was already compulsory during the time of the old Silk routes!) This holds particularly true for the more ‘sensitive provinces’. Having said that, the guides that we were provided with (Thubten and Tashe) are probably the best one can get for such a journey: Very knowledgeable, supportive and in plain English just great fun to have on board. On a trip such as this, things are bound to not always go exactly as planned (…). However, also when it came to difficult questions e.g. with regard to the arrangement of visa’s and permits, Tibetmoto proved to be an indispensable partner.
I would highly recommend their organization to anyone planning an overland trip to China.

Questions & Answers

Is the border between Nepal and China for overland travel open again?2020-11-05T00:29:31+01:00

The new border crossing near Gyirong (Girong) replaced the old border at Zhangmu/Kodari after the 2015 earthquake, but was closed again due to construction until spring 2018. The new exit border is also called Jilongzhen, Jilong or Kilong and will permanently replace the old border crossing at Zhangmu/Kodari. In 2018 we were the very first company applying successfully exit papers for a large overland group from Germany.

I have special film gear with me and will be doing professional film work…2020-11-05T00:29:00+01:00

…working for a TV production company or directly for the ARD or BBC, and want to shoot a documentary/movie/series/reality show in China or Tibet, and wish to enter the country overland with my own vehicle. Is this possible?

In addition to the normal transit papers you must also have film permits, such as permits issued by CARFTE. In such a case, we work with partners who can help with getting the necessary permits. Close cooperation between Tibetmoto, the film production company and our partner is necessary, as well as a preparatory period of three to four months for planning and implementation.

I have special communication equipment with me. Will this be a problem when entering China?2020-11-05T00:28:33+01:00

Bringing in special communication gear such as radio equipment or satellite phones have never been a problem before. However, it depends on the individual case and the specific border. Therefore, we can’t answer this question categorically. Please notify us beforehand and we will inquire with customs and police at the entry border.

I want to travel in China more than 30 days, but I can only apply for a 30 days tourist visa. What shall I do?2020-11-05T00:28:08+01:00

It is the very best if you can obtain a visa with the correct time window for your journey through China. Please inform yourself about Chinese tourist visa validities in your country before you apply for your Chinese visa. Many visa agencies offer comprehensive visa services for a small fee and can arrange a visa with a longer validity. In some cases you can get an extension for your visa for another 30 days after you arrive in China. In some places, it will only take 24 hours. It is important to choose the right place to apply so it doesn’t take too long and we can help you finding out.

90 days China transit time is not enough. What can I do?2020-11-05T00:27:42+01:00

The only option is to leave the country on day 90 and re-enter afterwards. A prolongation of the transit time is not possible without leaving the country.

Do all motor vehicles have to be declared?2020-11-05T00:27:24+01:00

All vehicles imported temporarily into China must be declared, even if they are not driven during the journey or are broken down and can not be operated. This may be the case if a small motor vehicle is transported by a 4×4 truck or on a trailer. There are no exceptions to this rule.

Range fear. What should be the minimum vehicle range?2020-11-05T00:26:58+01:00

China is a country featuring vast distances. In the remote areas of Western China towns and villages are often far apart with very little infrastructure in between. Your vehicle should have an appropriate range of at least 350 to 400 kilometres. Especially in Tibet there are stretches where are no petrol stations in between settlements. See also the questions about petrol canisters.

Can I carry fuel canisters?2020-11-05T00:26:35+01:00

This depends on the province. Full fuel canisters are officially prohibited in the provinces Xinjiang and Tibet. When you enter China, your fuel canisters should be empty since customs has the right to confiscate them if they find them filled up with fuel. Please send us an email if spare fuel in canisters are absolutely necessary for the successful completion of your trip.

Can I bring a drone into China?2020-11-05T00:26:16+01:00

Although many drones are manufactured in China, it is not allowed to bring a drone into the country. If you do, the drone can be confiscated. Foreigners are generally not permitted to fly a drone in China.

Do you help me with applying for a Chinese visa?2020-11-05T00:25:58+01:00

After booking with us, but not longer than three month in advance prior to your China Overland entry date, we will provide you with an official hotel booking list as a reference for the application of the Chinese visa. You will also need other supporting documents. To better understand the process you will receive further information after booking.

It is generally possible to apply for a Chinese visa without an agent and by yourself. However, many people prefer to use an agent because they feel its more convenient. We also strongly recommend to use an agent since the application procedure is frequently changing. In the past it was possible to obtain a Letter of Invitation (LOI) for the Overland traveller, but unfortunately not anymore.

Do I need a Chinese visa in advance? Do you need a visa copy in advance?2020-11-05T00:25:28+01:00

When traveling to China, an advance visa is always necessary. A visa on arrival will not be issued at any Chinese land border.
You should apply for a Chinese visa in your home country and not in a third country on the way to China (which has become increasingly difficult in resent years, depending on the country of application). Once the Chinese tourist visa is issued, you have 90 days to enter China. For example you plan to enter China on September 15; in this case, the earliest application date for your China visa is June 15. Exeptions to this rule are made for business visa holders who can apply for their business visa six month prior to the planned entry. Please note that in some countries it is not possible to apply for a Chinese visa if you are not a resident of this country. For example, its not possible to apply for a Chinese visa at the Chinese embassy in Kyrgyzstan if you are not a resident of Kyrgyzstan or have lived there for at least six month and hold a residence permit. In 2019 it was very easy to apply for a Chinese visa in Tbilisi (Georgia) on the way to China, even for non-residents (however, this can change any time). We need your Chinese visa scan at least 35 days in advance (before you enter as a China Overland traveller with your own vehicle).

On which day should I enter China?2020-11-05T00:24:54+01:00

Generally, it is possible to enter on a working day (Mo-Fr), but not on weekends or public holidays. If you decide to enter on a Friday, you can only receive your necessary documents at the traffic administration such as provisional Chinese driving license and provisional number plate on the next working day (Monday, if Monday is not a holiday). As well, the vehicle check can only take place on that day. However, there are some exceptions. Some border can be crossed on a Friday and you can receive the necessary documents on the same day (not at borders in Xinjiang province).

Can I enter China with my own vehicle, leave the vehicle behind and leave the country?2020-11-05T00:24:24+01:00

This is not possible. Those who enter China with their own vehicle must leave the country again together with the same vehicle.
There are a few exceptions of this rule, for example if you ship your vehicle from China to another country and you fly out.

What happens if I do not arrive at the entry border in time?2020-11-05T00:24:02+01:00

Your guide will wait for you at the entry border and we will change the entry date on the permits and paperwork for you. Please understand that there are additional costs involved with this procedure and also the guide expects payment for additional days and for the waiting time. Generally speaking, punctuality is a prerequisite for a smooth journey.

What happens if I am delayed while on my Overland tour in China or Tibet?2020-11-05T00:23:39+01:00

There are many reasons why this could happen, for example you have become sick and need some time or your vehicle broke down and the repair shop has difficulties to fix it right away. In such cases -if you have to stay in China longer than planned- we need to calculate the additional guide costs and expenses for changing the permits (if necessary). Whatever happens, your local guide will offer you support and assist you in every possible way. And people say that our great China based office can also work miracles.

Is the guide my watchdog during the journey?2020-11-05T00:23:07+01:00

We often receive curious enquiries regarding the mandatory guide. Many Overland travellers think the guide is a government liaison or in another way directly associated with the authorities.

This is not the case:

All of our guides have many years of experience and will assist you the best way possible during your China Overland Tour. In addition, our guides have the national guiding license which enables them to be your guide. They are private persons who make a living with guiding.  They are not hired nor payed by the authorities not will they they report your activities to the authorities. Your guide is hired by Tibetmoto and he/she receives the salaries for their work from us. Your guide also makes sure that you respect the agreement and the itinerary which is base for your China transit. He is also liable for you and can lose the national guiding license if you deviated from the agreed-on route or violate Chinese rules, regulations and laws.

What do I need to consider if I enter in a group of vehicles?2020-11-05T00:22:33+01:00

You have to consider that you enter with your vehicle China as part of a group. This means that on all official transit papers the group size with all vehicle specifications are mentioned. This means that we have to change the permit for you if one vehicle in your group will not enter China. For example, it is possible that a part of the group for various reason can not make it to the border in time to enter China. Please tell us in advance so we can make necessary changes and inform the authorities beforehand.

Can I enter China with my vehicle and ship it directly to the exit border?2020-11-05T00:22:09+01:00

There may be various reasons why you don’t like to drive your vehicle in China. Your time schedule or the desire to find a cost effective way to cross China may be the reason. In this case you can enter China with your own vehicle overland, and we arrange the logistics within China. Motorcycles can be crated and send by truck to the exit border, cars can be put on a car carrier trailer and send directly to the exit border or sea port where you receive them. However, all vehicles have to undergo customs procedures and need to be correctly temporarily imported and exported. We handle all paperwork and permits for you.

I want to ship my vehicle from/into China. Is this possible?2020-11-05T00:21:47+01:00

Yes, no problem. We work with specialised logistic agents and logistic providers who offer the best logistic solutions for shipping motorcycles and cars from China around the world since many years. Take a look at our dedicate vehicle logistic page here for details. Options include logistic services from mainland Chinese cities such as Beijing, Xian, Chengdu or Kunming within China (for example to the next sea port for ocean freight) or from a harbour at the Chinese east cost to ports around the world.
A new freight possibility is the so called “New Silk Route” from European cities via freight train to the Chinese city of Xian.
We can also receive your vehicle by air or ocean freight. Popular ports include Shanghai, Tianjin and Chongqing beside others.

How long do you need to arrange my Overland trip?2020-11-05T00:21:17+01:00

We need about 50 days to prepare your China Overland trip and apply for all permits. This is why we need all papers and information well in advance. In addition you should allow for some time for detailed consultation. We are there for you when it comes to first hand advice of routes, itineraries, sights and road conditions. We use our knowledge to plan your perfect trip according to your requirements. Most people start the booking process six month or longer in advance. So we all have planning security.

Do I have to arrange hotel bookings in advance?2020-11-05T00:20:40+01:00

No, there is no need to arrange hotel bookings in advance. You can either book directly in the town or village where you stay for the night or in advance with the help of your guide or using an online booking engine. If you want to book hotels in advance, we can offer you a comprehensive tour package including accommodation from a category of your choice: from budget to five stars, we know the best hotels for your Overland tour through China.

What are the payment arrangements?2020-11-05T00:20:15+01:00

We need an advanced payment of 20 percent once you are committed to book your China transit with us. After receiving the invoiced amount we send you a receipt from our bank and initiate your booking. Six weeks (42 days) prior to your arrival at the Chinese border we need to receive the remaining amount of 80 percent.

What are the formalities when entering China?2020-11-05T00:19:45+01:00

When entering China, you will meet your guide/border fixer at the pre-decided border/day. The fixer will help you with the formalities and communicate with the border officials. He will carry all necessary documents and permits in the original. Without those documents the border crossing is not possible.

Afterwards, you will proceed to the next town to where the border checkpoint (administrative division) belongs  to. In most cases this is the biggest town close to the border. It is for example Jinhong/Xishuabgbanna if you arrive from Laos or Kashgar if you arrive from Kyrgyzstan/Tajikistan/Pakistan. On the following working day after your entry you need to visit the traffic administration with you vehicle and undergo customs procedures (this depends on the border). The traffic administration will check you vehicle and issue your provisional driving license and provisional number plate beside other documents. The waiting time is often quite long. Plan accordingly. Once all documents have been issued, you can start your Overland journey in China.

How do I submit my documents after booking?2020-11-05T00:18:19+01:00

Together with the initial invoice for the deposit payment we will invite all group members to a shared dropbox folder. Dropbox is a free cloud service and in the app you will find folders labelled with your name and sub-folders labelled with the documents which need to be uploaded (in addition to the form which you also need to fill out). Since dropbox is a cloud service, your group and the Tibetmoto team will have shared access to all documents at all times – which comes in handy also for you if there is need to access those files during your journey. We will also have the advantage that insufficient files can be easily re-uploaded, replaced and we all know what is online and what is missing. Note that dropbox is synchronised: Never delete any files – they will be deleted for everyone sharing the folder – also for us. If dropbox does not work for you, the group members can send me their files as a zip file with the free service wetransfer.com. But due to the size please not by email.

Do I have the same guide when traveling through multiple provinces?2020-11-05T00:17:51+01:00

This depends on the exact routing. Let’s say your China transit starts at the Kyrgyzstan/China border and you travel all the way to Laos via Tibet. In this case you would have a guide for the Chinese province of Xinjiang (normally an Uighur guide), a different guide for Tibet (a Tibetan) and another guide for the Chinese province of Yunnan (a Yunnanese guide; normally a member of Yunnan´s many minority groups). This way you always travel with somebody who can speak the local languages (not everywhere Mandarin Chinese is spoken), knows the local customs and traditions and the area very well. All of your guides are hand-picked by us and have a national guiding license.

Can I camp or stay overnight in my vehicle?2020-11-05T00:17:24+01:00

This depends on the province. While some provinces do not prohibit camping, others do.
For example, it is at present not allowed to camp in Xinjiang province and Tibet province in most places. In those provinces are regulations in place making it for foreign foreign visitors mandatory to be registered in hotels. While you can not camp in the wild, you are permitted to stay overnight in your vehicle on hotel parking lots in case the hotel can do the registration of the foreign traveller with the local police. Usually, they charge a small amount for this and also parking fee.

Chinese driving license: Is there an age limit for obtaining the provisional Chinese driving license?2020-11-05T00:16:58+01:00

Chinese national law allows China overland travellers to apply for a provisional Chinese driving license for motorbikes and trucks until the age of 60 and for regular cars until the age of 70. This law is also valid for Chinese citizens, not only for foreigners. This means that drivers above the age of 60 can not operate certain vehicle and drivers above the age of 70 are not permitted to operate any vehicle.

Normally, traffic administrations will not issue Chinese provisional driving licenses for drivers or riders above this age. However, exceptions are being made upon special requests. If those special requests for drivers above 60/70 are being granted depends on the traffic administration in charge of the border of entry. Please contact us for further details. Chances are high that we will find a way for you to get your Chinese driving license for your China overland tour.

Which documents do you need from me?2020-11-05T00:13:55+01:00

After booking we will send you a form to fill out. This takes you about 30 minutes. Furthermore, we require a handful of documents. Those documents include scans of your passport, driving license and vehicle information such as vehicle registration, vehicle photos and passport style photos of all participants. We only need scanned copies and no originals. After booking, we set up a cloud service (Dropbox) for you to upload all necessary documents.

Can I drive with my own vehicle through China without a guide?2020-11-05T00:13:01+01:00

Having a guide during your self-drive transit from the day of arrival to the day of departure from China is prescribed by law and also mentioned on the overland travel permits. Please understand that this is therefore currently not possible. As organisers, we are legally responsible for our China Overland travellers. The legal risk for us would be too great if you got lost without a guide and got away from the agreed-on route.

Find out more in our blog posts!

Tibetan Homestay in Yunnan near Deqen Nestled deep in the majestic gorges of the upper Mekong River lies a cozy village, some 20 kilometres [...]

Load More Posts
Go to Top