Bhutan requires a visa from tourists of most countries and on the surface it looks straightforward. However, like most things about visiting Bhutan things aren’t quite a simple as they might seem. Some of the steps to getting the visa can be cumbersome but there is a trick to speeding up the process.

500 Error Fix

Many users who visit the Bhutan visa website and upload their passport information and photo have encountered this dreaded 500 error. Your first instinct is to refresh a million times and eventually try to start the process over again only to get another 500.

bhutan 500 error

Instead, you should email the site’s official IT department to let them know about the 500 error. Once you do, they will manually add your account in the system and you’ll be able to login without issues. These are the email addresses (found in the conformation email you get when you created a site account): [email protected] or [email protected]

Response times are about one to two business days. You’re almost to the finish line but there is another thing to be aware of so you don’t slow your application down.

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Bank Troubles


There is a cost to obtain a Bhutan tourist visa as well as a sustainable development fee you must pay. Another problem you might run into is the payment gets stuck at “pending” and never changes status. In these cases, email the accounts personnel ([email protected] or [email protected]) to make them aware. They’re likely going to tell you to simple re-try the payment (with the original still stuck on pending).

paro festival bhutan

Of course, double check with your credit card to make sure you haven’t been double-charged but once you have completed a successful payment, you should be ready to submit your online visa application. After 3-5 business days you will get a response but keep in mind they won’t email you like the system says it will. Because, of course.

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Despite the mild hassles though, traveling to Bhutan and seeing sites like the iconic Tiger’s Nest makes it all worthwhile.