China Raises Price of Climbing Permits, Will Nepal Follow?

The cost of climbing Everest is about to go up substantially, as least from the Chinese side of the mountain. It seems the Chinese Tibetan Mountaineering Association has announced new fees for the country’s 8000-meter peaks, with the new prices going into effect in the spring of 2020. That means anyone heading to the Himalaya next spring could be facing a more expensive trip than anticipated.

According to the Adventure Mountain website, China has released the pricing information for its 8000-meter climbing permits for 2020-2022, with costs rising significantly. For the 2019 season that has just passed, the price of climbing Everest from the North Side in Tibet was $9950, but moving forward that same permit will now set climbers back $15,800 instead. That’s a 58% increase in a single go. The world’s highest mountain isn’t the only one to see its prices go up however, as Cho Oyu permits will rise from $7400 to $9300, while Shishpangma will now cost $9300 and $9400 for the North and South Face respectively. Those two routes were previously priced $7150 and $7650.

Anyone who has already booked their Tibetan 8000-meter peak climb for 2020 or beyond will likely be getting a notice from their expedition leader of the change in pricing if they haven’t done so already. An expedition to these mountains has been an expensive proposition for a long time now, but these are fairly significant leaps. On Everest, the price is going up nearly $6000, which is not a small amount for climbers who are already dishing out more than $50k to climb the peak. Whether or not this will result in less traffic on the mountain remains to be seen, but it is definitely reason to give some alpinist pause before committing to a climb.

The big question is whether or not Nepal will follow suit and raise its prices as well. The South Side of the mountain in Nepal sees far more traffic than the North Side in Tibet, and with these changes in price the number of climbers choosing that route may continue to increase. Of course, this is Nepal we’re talking about here and it is likely that government officials will see this as an opportunity to make more money. I won’t be surprised one bit if a price hike follows soon. After all, not doing so would just be leaving money on the table.

What are your thoughts? Will this impact the number of people heading to Everest in the future?

2 thoughts on “China Raises Price of Climbing Permits, Will Nepal Follow?”

  1. Has the increase of permit prices to summit Mount Everest always been going up this high, or is it just this year that it is going up so much?

    • Permit prices go up every so often, but this is the biggest jump we’ve ever seen. Nepal still hasn’t raised their permit cost, but still could before the spring.

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