Trekkers' Information Management System (TIMS)
The provision of Trekkers' Information Management System (TIMS) came into effect on January 1, 2008. Since then, the Trekking Agencies Association of Nepal (TAAN) and Nepal Tourism Board (NTB) started recording trekkers’ details and began issuing TIMS Card to trekkers. NTB and TAAN signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on March 18, 2010 to implement the TIMS system in a new format from April 1, 2010. NTB and TAAN have introduced separate TIMS Cards for FITs and organized groups. FITs need to have Green TIMS cards by paying Nepali currency equivalent to US $20 per person, while those travelling in groups need to have Blue TIMS cards by paying Nepali currency equivalent to US $10 per person. Trekkers taking the service of trekking agencies can pay fee for TIMS card in US dollars.
Why is TIMS Necessary?
The following considerations have been taken into account in the process of issuing TIMS:
All important details regarding trekkers and trekking routes shall be maintained in a computerized Database Management System, which can be useful for the trekkers’ safety and security. In order to help carry out search and rescue operations for trekkers in case of natural calamities and other accidents by means of Authentic Information Service. To maintain a record system that includes personal details of trekkers, trekking area, trekking routes, handling agencies, duration, etc. The data generated from the system will be useful to all concerned stakeholders such as tourism organizations, Government agencies, diplomatic missions, tour operators, research institute, etc.
Unauthorized trekking operations will be controlled, thus, resulting in better management of trekking services, which will not only benefit trekkers and field staff, but also trekking companies and Government agencies. Occasional untoward incidents will also be better prevented. Plus, TIMS will upgrade the service standard and will contribute to better management of sustainable mountain tourism development in Nepal.
TIMS will not be required for:
Expedition members permitted to climb the mountains.
Visitors in the controlled areas with permits by the Department of Immigration.
Foreign guests invited by the Government of Nepal.
Authorities from the various diplomatic missions present in the country, who hold official letter/s and
travel at their own risk.
Visitors on certain missions recommended by the concerned Governmental Department(s); Foreign Nationals possessing a residential visa.
Revenue collected from distribution of TIMS cards is shared into three equal parts for following purposes:
1. Nepal Tourism Board (NTB) will use the first part for printing TIMS cards, holograms, managing issuing counters and use the remaining amount for tourism marketing, publicity and promotion.
2. The second part is utilized in the welfare of trekking workers like buying medical and accident insurance policy for them and conducting rescue operations in case of accidents. The amount is also used to launch various programs as a part of corporate social responsibility (CSR) and meet administrative expenses.
3. The third part is utilized to develop infrastructures, promote, conserve, and maintain trekking trails. A substantial amount is also utilized to explore, develop and promote new destinations besides organizing training and workshops for sustainable and responsible tourism development.