Permits to Cross Rohtang Pass Now Limited to 800 Per Day

by Vargis.Khan

This year has not been good at all for anyone planning a trip to either Ladakh or Spiti via Manali. First the opening of the roads was delayed and then there was unrest in Srinagar. ILP was reintroduced in Ladakh with revised charges in May; then there was a dispute between Len and Manali rental unions; and if that wasn’t enough, a new restriction has now been implemented for permits to cross Rohtang Pass; limiting the number to only 800 per day.

Why this was done? Well the reason is to stop people from misusing the Rohtang Tourist permits. To give a brief background, two kind of permits are issued for Rohtang Pass. One is the tourist permit which is applicable for anyone wanting to visit Rohtang from Manali and return the same day. There was a daily limit for this kind of permit; limiting the number of daily vehicles to 1200 per day; broken down in to 800 petrol vehicles and 400 Diesel run engines.

The second one is called Travel Permit. This one applied to anyone wanting to cross over Rohtang towards Lahaul & Spiti valley or heading towards Ladakh. There was no daily limit for this kind of permit and these were issued on daily basis, as many as required. This decision was taken by NGT a few years ago in order to control the number of vehicles traveling the Rohtang La and to keep pollution level in check.

Now the number of vehicles traveling to Rohtang for tourism purpose was way higher than the number of vehicles crossing over. Last year, on a daily basis about 600-700 vehicles crossed Rohtang towards Lahaul or Spiti valley. The number of vehicles visiting Rohtang Pass however was well over 1200 per day.

This resulted in a complete chaos and proved to be a hard blow for local taxis operators. Tourist permits were issued on first come first served basis and a lot of people had to wait sometimes more than a day in order to get a permit. What this eventually led to was misuse of Travel permits. Anyone was not able to get a tourist permit will just get a travel permit; posing as wanting to cross Rohtang. After getting the permit, they will just travel to Rohtang Pass and return back to Manali. Number of vehicles traveling towards the pass thus remained the same as before and they very purpose of the permit was defeated.

So to avoid this misuse, this year onward, the number of travel of permits too will be limited. Now on a daily basis, 1200 tourist permits and 800 travel permits will be issued. Both will be on first come first served basis and if you missed your chance; you will have to wait in Manali an entire day or maybe two before you could get a permit. A friend of mine was in Manali this Monday and had to wait two days. He finally managed to get a permit on Tuesday afternoon and crossed Rohtang over on Wednesday. He was on a motorcycle so this 800 number includes both cars and motorcycles as well as private and commercial vehicles as well.

The complete chaos in Manali post which Section 144 was implemented was due to this only. Several of the local taxi operators were found misusing the travel permits post which their vehicles were barred from traveling towards Rohtang altogether. This is what the taxi union was on a strike against.

For other details on the permits, read Rohtang Pass Permit Status 2017

Conclusion

I am not sure who does this impact more, the local tourism industry or travelers like you and I. For now. if you are planning a trip to either Ladakh or Spiti in near future; my honest advice would be to avoid traveling via Manali. Take the Srinagar route to reach Leh; Shimla route to reach Spiti and return via Manali. If you have any further questions, please feel free to ask in the comments section below or at our Community Forum and I will be glad to answer.

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24 comments

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Anirudh Sharma May 2, 2018 - 7:51 am

sir i just want to ask a question that how can we book a taxi to rohtang pass from manali >>?? what will be the cost ?? and canwe b=ook it in advance if yes than from where and how ??? please tell…as i am planning my trip on 18 may to 20 may

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Vargis.Khan May 2, 2018 - 2:10 pm

Hi Anirudh – Just reach Manali Mall road and ask around. There is no set cost, you will have to negotiate your best. These guys in peak tourist season even charge upto Rs. 10,000 for going to Rohtang.

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Preetha June 24, 2017 - 10:38 am

Hi Vargis, I came across your article on the internal bus timings from.Leh to tso moriri , pangong etc. Is there an updated time table or is it as per your article dated 2014

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Vargis.Khan June 25, 2017 - 11:59 pm

Information is updated Preetha. I updated it with information from this year.

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vignesh June 23, 2017 - 6:37 am

Hi,
I am traveling through zoom car. when i tried getting the pass online. it asked for the vehicle registration number. but zoom car number will be available only before 30 min of car pickup. is there any solution for this.

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Vargis.Khan June 23, 2017 - 4:39 pm

You will have to get the permit after you reach Manali Vignesh Bhai, No other way around this.

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dr sudha n m June 23, 2017 - 6:27 am

How is the road from manali to Kaza? I heard some roads are flooded.

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Vargis.Khan June 23, 2017 - 4:40 pm

It is terrible right now. Numerous water crossing in between.

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devC June 22, 2017 - 11:42 am

Dear Vargis,
There is no such order is my opinion. What’s the source? News is something different, that of additional vehicles which are of non-commercial nature.

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Vargis.Khan June 22, 2017 - 1:19 pm

Hello Dev – A friend of mine was in Manali last week; traveling towards Ladakh on a motorcycle. He couldn’t get a permit to cross because the 800 quota for the day was done for, had to wait until next day before he was given a permit. What news did you hear?

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devc June 24, 2017 - 11:51 am

There is no such news that rohtang travel permits will be restricted to 800 per day. Recently the system has gone from offline to online that’s why chaos occurred at a particular day. For rohtang tourism permits quotas have been revised and additional self owned cars are being allowed 100 being the number.
I think you mixed up between the two news. also there is a NGT order regarding strict compliance of people misusing travel permits for rohtang tourism purpose.Some camera’s are required to be installed for this at checkpost’s.

Request you to please verify your story again as it may give wrong info to potential travelers you being a trusted source.

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Vargis.Khan June 25, 2017 - 11:56 pm

Thank you for pointing this out Dev Bhai. I will verify it again.

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Puran Choudhary June 22, 2017 - 6:36 am

Hi Vargis, i would travel from tomorrow, and will reach manali on 24th, i first priority will be HRCT and HPTDC bus, hope there is no permit require for that. And what is latest traffic news for going to Baralacha. I’m trying to cross rohtang as assign as possible. Thanks

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Vargis.Khan June 22, 2017 - 1:17 pm

Hello Puran Bhai, No permit required if you are traveling in a bus. Traffic towards Baralacha La is open as well

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Puran choudhary June 24, 2017 - 11:04 am

Hello vargis im sitting at mall road manali right now, i reached today morning 8:30 via HPTDC, first thing first i booked tickets for keylong for 4am HRTC bus, which is really good ideas so far, because i just heard solang valley is jammed pack, rohtang pass is full 6-7 hours for waiting in traffic.
I tried pay extra money for solang valley but local driver refused to go because of traffic. You can imagine now. I will update you later on.

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Vargis.Khan June 25, 2017 - 11:58 pm

Thank you Puran Bhai. While you are in Manali, would you mind verifying the authenticity of this news as well? That vehicles crossing Rohtang have been limited as well?

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Puran Choudhary June 28, 2017 - 10:00 am

Hello vargis bhai, thanks again for your valuable tips, i have reached Delhi back today afternoon, it was really awesome trip, if you cross Rohtang Pass, at Rohtang Pass, snow is dirty, so I crossed to keeling, small but beautiful place, as per schedule, i went to Baralacha La Pass, and that was the TIME OF MY LIFE, beautiful place, very low people, little bit problem because of low oxygen, but if you take 2 days course of DIAMOX before going there you are all good to go. Don’t spend so much time there, don’t run, don’t go after drinking and smoking, some people were smoking there just to showoff, an doha was really harmful for them, I saw live that moment when he was totally helpless, thank God he was ok. Best time to go from Manali to Rohtang is as early possible, i saw many people who went there late, and count reach on top. Thanks to HRTC bus who was really bearable if you keep raise all luxury like ac, food n all. Kokshar was the mid point to have breakfast. I would say one more thing, don’t go while there are 3-4days holidays, Manali mall road was azadpur sabzi mandi, there was huge rush and all big and famous restaurants and hotels was asking huge amount of money from people. I stay in local guest house but nice one. Thanks BRO who really make our trip smooth and comfortable by making roads so neat and clean for travelling, work is going on more roads. After 2 years of so manali to keeling tunnel will be good option for visitors if work is done on fix timing. Thats from me thanks to you again, i learned one more thing, if you have patience and cool mind you can make your trip amazing. Good to have friend like you Vargis bhai. I’m planing next trip very soon and i would require help that time. Thanks bro

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Vargis.Khan June 28, 2017 - 3:08 pm

Hello Puran Bhai – I am so glad that your trip turned out to be awesome. I would love to see some pictures if you don’t mind sharing. Did you take the HRTC Manali to Keylong bus?

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Puran Choudhary June 29, 2017 - 6:58 am

Very god morning Vargis bhai, yes i took around 1000 pictures, including mobile phones and my DSLR. I would be so happy to share my experience, please let me know where i can put pictures. Yes as per your advice I took HRTC bus, at 4am morning n i had to wait for 1:30 hours at Rohtang Pass, but after that beauty comes, just crossing rohtang pass, it was 8-10 km normal road, but after that it was like flying an aeroplane. It was really good idea to cross Rohtang Pass, thanks to you bro. We stayed at Keylong. Kyserkersk Lodge, had dinner at same place, price was good. We hired innova for 6500/- for Baralacha La Pass. All my family members are happy to see that heaven called BaraLacha La Pass. Here is my Itinerary – 23th June – Delhi to manly from HPTDC bus, good driver, good bus, at right time. We reached Manali in the mooring on 24th – around 8:30am – first thing first I went straight to HRTC bus booking counter and booked tickets for 8 person. Than booked a guest house in our budget – get fresh and took rest and visited 1-2 places like van vihar and monastery. At other places it was huge rush. In the morning on 25th june we woke up at 2:30 and picked up bus for Keylong, reached keylong. Stopped at Kokshar for breakfast, reached keylong. at 12pm. After reaching there, immediately booked a guest hotel and cab. Reached Baralacha at 5:30pm, took lots of snaps came back around 9 at hotel. Had rest, took bus on 26th june, it was huge jam on rohtang pass, thanks to HRTC bus and specially you who made our journey easy and hassle free. Came back at Manali at same day in the afternoon, had rest at hotel, ladies did shopping twice and walked towards Hadimpa Temple, wait for some time there, came back at hotel in the eve, again walked out at Mall Road at Manali, it was like huge huge people out there because of 3-4 days holidays. On 27TH June, wake up like in delhi around 9 get fresh, walked towards van-vicar again, and shopping than in the eve took bus towards Delhi. Only issue was Chirag travels who dropped us at single border, from there we had to take cab to reach home. That is my experience so far.

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Vargis.Khan June 29, 2017 - 4:31 pm

Great feedback Puran Bhai and I am so glad that you and your family enjoyed the trip. Can you share the details of taxi driver in Keylong? I will add it to the blog to help others. You waited at Rohtang for 1.30 hours even after leaving Manali at 4 AM? Why the delay?

If you wouldn’t mind, can you please share a small write up and a few pictures at the link below?

http://roadragas.com/index.php?forums/travelogues.4/

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Puran Choudhary June 30, 2017 - 6:59 am

Hello Vargis bhai, rohtang pass enter supposed to open at 6am, we waited for that, and another problem was a truck that was coming from up and no space for that to cross. Slowly slowly we crossed pass that why it took time. Secondly i tried to post pictures on gin blog, but I can’t see any picture upload option, I can mail you. Shamsher – that driver’s name n his number is – 8894533740, he is from Keylong, he has innova. Thanks Bro – keep helping

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Vargis.Khan June 30, 2017 - 3:52 pm

Thanks Puran Bhai. One you are at the forum, you will need to click on “Post New Thread” button towards the right side of the page. It will give you an option to create a new post where you can share some travel tips and pictures.

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Sameer June 22, 2017 - 4:35 am

Can I get the permit online? We are supposed to cross Rohtang on 26th June

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Vargis.Khan June 22, 2017 - 1:16 pm

Permits are available online. Please read the article at the link below.

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