How to Know if the Trekking Company You Choose is Legit or Not?
There are many independent guides or unregistered trekking profiles in Nepal. They may trick you with their fancy websites or the itineraries they create. International portals also allow a guide to create his or her itinerary and work independently. If you are trekking with them, always ask for their license. The Tourism Board issues a legitimate license to qualified mountain guides.
Here’s a sample of the latest mountain trekking license.
Traveling with unlicensed profiles or companies may jeopardize your best interests and safety. Trekking at a high altitude sometimes invites dangers. In the worst scenario, it will be your fault if you use an unlicensed trekking agent.
Furthermore, you need a TIMS permit to go on any trek in Nepal. And, TAAN, the authorized agency for TIMS Cards, only issues those IDs in the name of trekking companies. So, either way, you have to look for a registered trekking company in Nepal.
Hence, I urge you to check if a company is legally registered as a trekking company under the laws of the Nepal government, licensed by the ministries, the Nepal Tourism Board, and a member of tourism associations such as TAAN.
Check Legal Documents on the Company’s Website
Popular trekking companies in Nepal showcase their legal documents on their websites. If you find their legal papers, consider whether the hiking company is licensed to operate. If you can’t find one, they will be listed in the legit directory of travel agencies such as “TAAN’s General Members“.
Here is a sample of some legal documents
So now you are looking for a firm to safeguard your trekking journey. Every firm will claim that they are the best in the business. So, how do you decide that the trekking or travel company you choose is legit in the industry?
Examine your social presence.
Social media like Facebook and Instagram are popular in Nepal. But, checking trekking companies in Nepal on other social profiles like VK, Xing, etc will be a bad idea. Pinterest is also quite popular in the travel industry in Nepal. So, you may visit the social profiles of companies to decide whether to trek with them or not.
The trekking websites in Nepal will have these social profiles on their webpage. So, visit their website and head towards these social profiles. Social media accounts might have a low number of followers, but you will have a general idea if they operate or not.
Searching for a trekking agency in Nepal and need help?
Tell us about your plans. We will help you design a comfortable Nepal trip that meets your needs.
Read Online Reviews of Trekking Websites in Nepal
Local businesses might have a few online reviews. But, you will have detailed reviews that will give you a general idea of how the travel business has treated past customers. Popular review websites for trekking agencies in Nepal are TripAdvisor and Google, and some also use Trustpilot. Don’t look into the number of reviews, as Nepalese are not so dedicated to collecting reviews. Look at the quality of the reviews there.
Check for a landline phone number and a business address.
Almost every hiking website in Nepal has a business address and invites someone to visit them. They do also have a landline phone number registered under their name. So, you can contact them. Otherwise, search for the company on Google if it has a verified address as mentioned on their websites. If you still doubt, visit them at their official address when you are in Nepal.
Note: Most of the offices are small and located within a few rooms. If you visit them, don’t expect it to be very fancy or a big structure with many employees. Clients usually don’t visit trekking offices in Nepal, so they are designed only to facilitate work and might be away from the main areas.
On their website, you can find information about the company as well as photos.
Every company will have an “About Us” section on its website. Thus, by exploring those sections, you will get to know who is behind the company (team members), how the company started, and what its conditions, policies, or missions are. If you’re still skeptical, look at the LinkedIn profiles of the company’s executives. Here’s my profile.
Look for decent content on the trekking company’s website.
The best or most popular trekking companies in Nepal have decent content on their websites. Don’t expect the website to be very UI-friendly or have the best designs. But, the contents are updated regularly. So, checking out content on their websites will let you know if the agency is good for you or not.
Check how Nepal’s hiking company accepts the payment.
The best trekking companies will ask you to pay by a card or transfer money to their bank accounts. This way, your fund will be secured. If an organization mentions that they only accept cash or cheque payments, then you might have to think twice.
Check our secured payment policy.
In the end,
With all the above methods, I am pretty sure you will be able to distinguish between a fake and a legitimate trekking company in Nepal. Furthermore, there’s nothing called the best. Every organization works towards making itself the so-called best. So, while planning a vacation in Nepal, choose a legitimate trekking company and have fun.
FAQ about the Best Trekking Company in Nepal
Which is the best trekking company in Nepal?
Several agencies sell Himalayan packages. So, first, know what you expect while looking for the best trekking company in Nepal. Your choices may include things like budget, trek grading, luxury, etc. Other options may enclose trekking difficulties and the language of the guides. Besides, you may also want to add volunteering activities while traveling. Then, depending upon your choices, we can say whether a trekking company is good for you or not.
If you are still confused, use the filters here to narrow down your choices.
Do you recommend any trekking websites in Nepal?
Yes, many trekking websites have products listed and information about trekking. You may want to visit the NTB (Nepal Tourism Board) website to find out about the real conditions of trekking in Nepal. Or else, for permits and all, TAAN is a credible source. Other than that, Heaven Himalaya will have blogs about trekking in Nepal. The blogs are regularly updated, so you can be sure that they keep up with the latest news.
Which to choose: a local trekking company in Kathmandu or an international company?
I would always recommend using a local trekking company rather than international ones. You can see many international companies taking over local businesses. These travel portals spend a lot of money on marketing their products and services. And local businesses are unable to do so.
Then, locals are compelled to increase the price. It’s because they have to pay a commission cut to the international portals. This directly affects you. So when looking for an agency, always go with locals. This way, you support their community and you will get value for your money too.
How many trekking agencies are there in Nepal?
There are more than 3000 registered trekking agencies in Nepal. Most of them are closed or have stopped giving services. A few of them closed because of COVID-19 and Omicron. So, on average, there are around 500 trekking agencies that are still in business and fighting back.
Have anything for us?