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Essential Tourist Information

 

Visa

Foreign nationals who would like to enter Mongolia by land or air are required to get visa. Visas are available from the Mongolian embassies and consulate offices around the world.  Mongolian visas are comparatively easy and friendly to obtain like any other Asian destinations.

Depending on purpose of the visit, there are many classes of visas are issued for the visitors. Visa type J stands for tourist visa for foreign nationals who is to visit as a tourist to Mongolia. It is a 30-day tourist visa and can be easily obtained at any Mongolian embassy, consulate, consulate-general or honorary consul. For all types of visa application, following documents are needed:

  • Passports - valid for six months from your date of arrival
  • Completed visa application form
  • One passport size photo
  • Invitation letter/ arrangements with a Mongolian tour operator

Designation, validity, duration of stay and number of entries of visa depend on a visa class. Based on an intended use of a visa, there are “entry”, “exit-entry”, and “transit” visas. Generally, everyone traveling less than 90 days is considered as a temporary visitor whereas those staying more than 90 days are considered as foreign residents.

Entry visa – This visa is issued for temporary visitors, residents for official and private purposes.  Exit- entry visa – This visa is for residents, officials, and private purposes those leaving Mongolia temporary with the intention to return.

Transit visa -  These visas last 72 hours from the date of entry. This period will only allow you to get off the Trans-Mongolian train for a very short time before catching another train to Russia or China.

Validity term of visa, the length of time that permitted to travel to Mongolia from the visa issuance date ranges between 90 days to one year. Visa may be issued with single, double and multiple entries based on applicant’s choice or purpose of the visit. Duration of stay for entry visa with either single or double entries is up to 90 days, for entry visa with multiple entries for temporary visitors is 30 days and transit visa with single or double entries is 10 days. For instance, entry visa for temporary visitors is valid for 90 days with 30 days duration of stay.
A foreigner who stay more than 30 days in Mongolia must register with General Authority of Citizenship and Migration of Mongolia in Ulaanbaatar within 7 business days of arriving in Mongolia.

Nationals of following countries are exempted from visa to enter Mongolia (As of February, 2017)
No Country Passport types Duration of stay Date of entry into force
1 Belarus All passports Up to 90 days 2013.09.04
2 Brazil All passports Up to 90 days 2015.09.21
3 Brunei Diplomatic/Official Up to 14 days 2013.08.01
4 Bulgaria Diplomatic/Official Up to 90 days 2011.01.18
5 Cambodia Diplomatic/Official Up to 30 days 2012.09.27
6 Colombia Diplomatic/Official Up to 30 days 2013.09.23
7 Canada All passports Up to 30 days 2014.01.01
8 Chile Diplomatic/Official Up to 90 days 2003.09.25
9 China Diplomatic/Official Up to 30 days 1989.03.30
10 Cuba All passports Up to 30 days 2001.10.08
11 Cyprus Diplomatic/Official Up to 90 days 2012.04.04
12 Czech Diplomatic/Official Up to 90 days 2011.07.29
13 DPRK Diplomatic/Official Up to 90 days 1986.11.14
14 Estonia Diplomatic Up to 90 days 2014.04.28
15 France Diplomatic Up to 90 days 2013.10.26
16 Germany All passports Up to 30 days 2013.09.01
17 Hong Kong All passports Up to 14 days 1998.06.18
18 Hungary Diplomatic/Official Up to 30 days 2016.05.18
19 India Diplomatic/Official Up to 90 days 2005.12.23
20 Indonesia Diplomatic/Official Up to 30 days 2011.11.15
21 Israel All passports Up to 30 days 1996.03.12
22 Italy Diplomatic Up to 90 days 2014.07.14
23 Japan All passports Up to 30 days 2010.04.01
24 Kazakhstan All passports Up to 90 days 1994.12.02
25 Kuwait Diplomatic/Special Up to 90 days 2013.04.16
26 Kyrgyz All passports Up to 90 days 1999.12.04
27 Laos All passports Up to 30 days 1978.06.08
28 Latvia Diplomatic/Official Up to 90 days 2014.06.12
29 Macau All passports Up to 90 days 2004.07.03
30 Malaysia All passports Up to 30 days 1994.06.06
31 Mexico Diplomatic/Official Up to 90 days 2001.11.09
32 Myanmar Diplomatic/Official Up to 30 days 2013.12.17
33 Peru Diplomatic/Official Up to 90 days 2014.03.13
34 Philippines All passports Up to 21 days 1994.05.13
35 Poland Diplomatic/Official Up to 90 days 2011.10.26
36 South Korea Diplomatic/Official Up to 90 days 1991.10.23
37 Romania Diplomatic/Official Up to 30 days 1974.10.14
38 Russia All passports Up to 30 days 2014.11.14
39 Serbia All passports Up to 90 days 2013.11.08
40 Singapore All passports Up to 14 days 1990.03.09
41 Slovak Diplomatic/Official Up to 90 days 1992.06.26
42 Thailand All passports Up to 30 days 2008.01.08
43 Turkey All passports Up to 30 days 2013.10.10
44 Turkmenistan Diplomatic/Official Up to 30 days 2015.06.03
45 Ukraine All passports(invitation) Up to 90 days -
46 UK Diplomatic Up to 30 days 2009.06.29
47 USA All passports Up to 90 days 2001.07.06
48 Vietnam Diplomatic/Official Up to 90 days 2000.01.07
49 Nepal Diplomatic/Official Up to 90 days 2017.01.18
50 UNLP (UN passport holders) Diplomatic/Official/Special Up to 30 days 2007

Telephone

Staying connected with your family, friends or loved ones while you are in Mongolia is very easy. There are four network providers in Mongolia with distinctive communication networks; GSM network is operated by Mobicom and Unitel and CDMA network is operated by Skytel and GMobile. When you are in Ulaanbaatar or major rural towns, it would be possible to purchase local Sim card with data. The local Sim cards are easy to purchase and reload and definitely very convenient. Texting is very cheap indeed, most Mongolians text using Latin characters. All incoming calls are not charged whereas only outgoing calls charged with reasonable prices. The network providers offer special bonus products as free talking and texting in competitive basis. As a result, many Mongolians carry multiple phones with different phone numbers. Mobicom is the first mobile operator in Mongolia which has the most coverage throughout the country. The headquarter is located in the Tedy Center in Ulaanbaatar with English speaking staff who will help you to purchase Sim cards, data or phone maintenance. When you purchase SIM card from all network providers, you will need a valid passport and cell phone.

The average price for the Sim card is MNT 10, 000 (4 USD) and is loaded with 5000 units/credit. If you lost or do not have a cell phone, you can purchase new phones from a variety of choices. Cell phones units for all networks can be purchased at the stores in villages, towns and cities around the country. Mobicom offers 1000, 2500, 5000, 10000, 20000, and 30000 units with extra bonuses. Units will be given as a card with a scratch-off back with a secret code, or they will be transferred to the phone by the shopkeeper. A unit costs for MNT70 per minute within network and MNT100 per minute to other networks. The country code for international call for Mongolia is 976. The city code of Ulaanbaatar is 11. For cell phones, the city code is not necessary. Satellite phone is available to rent or buy for the usage of remote places.

Internet

Internet access is at every corner of Ulaanbaatar city; many restaurants, pubs, coffee shops, almost all hotels and guesthouses offer free wireless internet, and some have computers. There are many Wi-Fi hotspots in popular places like Sukhbaatar square, the State Department Store and around the capital city. The internet is open and unrestricted. In the countryside, there are some challenges for internet connections since Mongolia is the most sparsely populated country with large territory. However, every provincial capital has an internet café at the central Telecom office and big popular restaurants at the center, even some tourist ger camps offer internet connections. Sum, smallest administrative unit also offers internet access with reasonable speed. You should expect to pay around MNT1000 per hour at the internet cafes.

If you are after regular internet service while you are travelling around the country, all network providers offer USB stick with wireless modem. These modems are designed to connect via SIM cards and costs up to MNT 200 000 and monthly fee of MNT 50 000. This is very handy in rural areas where internet is limited. Another internet service providers include Magicnet, and Citinet with reasonable rates, costing around MNT 20000 per month for a 1mbs connection.