Ukok plateau, Mongolia
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Ukok plateau, Mongolia

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Mongolia Travel Guide

Key Facts
Area

1,564,116 sq km (603,909 sq miles).

Population

3,234,703 (2019).

Population density

2.06 per sq km.

Capital

Ulaanbaatar.

Government

Republic.

Head of state

President Ukhnaagiin Khürelsükh since 2021.

Head of government

Prime Minister Oyun-Erdene Luvsannamsrai since 2021.

Electricity

220 volts AC, 50Hz. European-style plugs with two round pins are standard.

Mongolia is far-flung and hardly well-trodden, but do not let that put you off. There is so much to see and do in this sizeable Central Asian country, from the stunning scenery and wildlife of mountains and deserts to the emerging luxury hotels and restaurants in the capital, Ulaanbaatar.

In the ancient land of Mongolia, history buffs and culture vultures will find plenty to keep them entertained. Outside of the main cities, many Mongolians continue to hold on to the traditional life of herdsmen. Residing in portable felt and canvas tents (known as 'ger'), the modern-day Mongolian nomads move from one place to another in search of shelter, water supply and food for themselves and their animals.

Mongolia's vast areas of wilderness, from the sprawling Gobi Desert to the snow-peaked mountains located in the Bayan-Ölgii Province, offer plenty of scope for adventurous outdoor enthusiasts. Fishing, jeep tours, horse and camel riding, mountain biking and birdwatching are but a few of the activities on offer. Intrepid visitors can also explore numerous temple ruins like Mañjuśrī Monastery on the slopes of Bogd Khan Mountain or Ongi Monastery in the Dundgovi Province.

While infrastructure remains relatively underdeveloped in vast swathes of rural Mongolia, elsewhere the country is racing headlong into the 21st century. The capital Ulaanbaatar is transforming at a pace that any returning visitors will find dizzying. In a relatively short space of time, the city has turned into an ultra-modern metropolis with international restaurants, five-star hotels, shopping malls and glass tower blocks – a sure sign of Mongolia's status as an up-and-coming Asian travel hotspot.

While there is plenty of nightlife and excitement in Ulaanbaatar, do not visit Mongolia without exploring the wild, largely unspoilt landscapes and traditional lifestyle of its inhabitants. Leaving the capital does not mean being stranded from civilisation. Internet is now available even in small villages and it is not uncommon to see nomads toting mobile phones. It is perhaps this contrast that makes Mongolia such a fascinating destination to visit today. Get planning your trip now before the tourist hordes inevitably catch on.

Travel Advice

The Mongolian authorities have lifted all restrictions on air travel in and out of Mongolia. Flights, primarily from MIAT, Korean Air and Turkish Airlines, are leaving Mongolia on a more regular basis. You should contact the airlines direct for details and to purchase tickets.

As further information becomes available it will be shared on these pages and on the British Embassy Ulaanbaatar Twitter and Facebook sites.

You will need to pay for your return travel to the UK. If departure options are available but you cannot afford the travel costs and have exhausted all other options for getting funds, you may be eligible to apply for an emergency loan from the government. This is a last resort option and you would need to repay the loan when you’re back in the UK.

For more information, please read Financial Assistance Abroad.

Returning to the UK

Travelling from and returning to the UK

Check what you must do to travel abroad and return to England, Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland.

If you plan to pass through another country to return to the UK, check the travel advice for the country you’re transiting. If you will pass through a red list country, book your hotel quarantine package before travelling to the UK.

You are responsible for organising your own COVID-19 test, in line with UK government testing requirements.

Help and support

If you need urgent consular assistance, you can contact the British Embassy on +976 1145 8133.

The Embassy cannot provide further information or advice about departure options over the phone. This page will be updated when departure options become available. To get the latest information, sign up for travel advice email alerts.

Coronavirus travel health

Check the latest information on risk from COVID-19 for Mongolia on the TravelHealthPro website

See the TravelHealthPro website for further advice on travel abroad and reducing spread of respiratory viruses during the COVID-19 pandemic.

International travel

The Mongolian authorities have lifted all restrictions on air travel in and out of Mongolia. Flights, primarily from MIAT, Korean Airand Turkish Airlines, are leaving Mongolia on a more regular basis. You should contact the airlines direct for details and to purchase tickets. See Return to the UK

Entry and borders

See Entry requirements to find out what you will need to do when you arrive in Mongolia.

Returning to the UK

Travelling from and returning to the UK

Check what you must do to travel abroad and return to England, Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland.

If you plan to pass through another country to return to the UK, check the travel advice for the country you’re transiting.

Be prepared for your plans to change

No travel is risk-free during COVID. Countries may further restrict travel or bring in new rules at short notice, for example due to a new COVID-19 variant. Check with your travel company or airline for any transport changes which may delay your journey home.

Plan ahead and make sure you:

  • can access money
  • understand what your insurance will cover
  • can make arrangements to extend your stay and be away for longer than planned
  • carry additional prescription medicines

If you test positive for COVID-19 in Mongolia you are expected to self-isolate. You can contact the local medical authorities on +976 119 and +976 100 for to discuss your symptoms and receive further advice. You should follow any guidance given by the Mongolian authorities.

Local medical facilities may not always have English speakers so if you require help with translation you can view our list of translators; the Embassy is unable to provide a translation service.

Travel in Mongolia

Precautionary measures introduced by the Mongolian authorities include:

  • the closure of all borders between China and Mongolia
  • the public are advised to wear masks in public and indoor spaces and follow social distancing of 1.5m-2.0m
  • participants at large events should be fully vaccinated

Accommodation

You may be required to wear a mask in indoor public areas of your accommodation, and your temperature may be checked upon entry. Hotels need to carry out regular cleaning and sanitising measures as per government guidance.

Public places and services

The local authorities advise mask wearing in public and indoor spaces. Shops, bars and restaurants may have social distancing measures in place.

Health

The Mongolian Ministry of Health has advised foreign nationals exhibiting cold or flu-type symptoms to call either of the following Ulaanbaatar-based clinics for advice: SOS Medica (+976 9191 3122) or Intermed (+976 8010 5577).

If you’re returning to the UK from Mongolia, consult the latest advice from the Department of Health and Social Care on actions to take.

For contact details for English speaking doctors visit our list of healthcare providers.

Your emotional and mental wellbeing is important. Read guidance on how to look after your mental wellbeing and mental health

View Health for further details on healthcare in Mongolia.

See also the guidance on healthcare if you’re waiting to return to the UK.

COVID-19 vaccines if you live in Mongolia

We will update this page when the Government of Mongolia announces new information on the national vaccination programme. You can sign up to get email notifications when this page is updated.

The Mongolian national vaccination programme started in February 2021 using the AstraZeneca, Pfizer-BioNTech, Sinopharm and Sputnik V vaccines. British nationals with permanent residency status in Mongolia are eligible for vaccination, including booster doses. You should contact your local district health provider for further details and advice.

Find out more, including about vaccines that are authorised in the UK or approved by the World Health Organisation, on the COVID-19 vaccines if you live abroad.

If you’re a British national living in Mongolia, you should seek medical advice from your local healthcare provider. Information about COVID-19 vaccines used in the national programme where you live, including regulatory status, should be available from local authorities.

Finance

For information on financial support you can access whilst abroad, visit our financial assistance guidance.

Help and support

If you need urgent consular assistance, contact your nearest British embassy, high commission or consulate. All telephone numbers are available 24/7.

Further information

See the TravelHealthPro website for further advice on travel abroad and reducing spread of respiratory viruses during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Travel from Russia

If you have arrived in Mongolia from Russia and need assistance, you should call +976 (11) 458133 and select the option “consular services for British nationals.” You can also send an enquiry via the web contact form.

If you are a British national wishing to travel from Russia to Mongolia, you can currently only enter Mongolia via road (including public buses, taxis and private vehicles).

British Nationals require a visa to enter Mongolia, this can be obtained by applying online via https://www.evisa.mn/. Processing time is about 72 hours. It is not possible to get a visa on arrival at the border. If you bring a car into Mongolia you may have to pay a small fee; if you do not subsequently leave Mongolia with your car you may have to pay an import tax too (see Entering Mongolia by car).

Mongolia’s COVID-19 entry regulations apply, as set out in the Entry requirements section.

Crime

Petty crime is common, particularly in the capital, Ulaanbaatar. Watch out for pickpockets especially in markets or other crowded public places. Be wary of large groups of people, including children and teenagers, who sometimes harass pedestrians for money when entering and leaving vehicles, pubs and restaurants. Tourists’ mobile phones are targeted by thieves in the street and should be carried securely. All valuables, including passports, money etc should be kept in a safe place. Do not display signs of wealth – jewellery, watches etc.

Petty crime tends to increase during festive months – New Year, Tsagaan Sar (December – February) and Naadam (July). Always be alert and always take precautions, especially during these months and when using Public Transport.
The majority of crime committed against foreign nationals in Mongolia is non-violent, although violent incidents including robberies and sexual assault do occasionally occur.. There have been reports of foreigners being robbed and assaulted in Ulaanbaatar, especially when walking alone at night, or using unlicensed taxis. Take additional care if away from the city centre area.

The authorities request all crimes be reported. This allows them to investigate and record crime in Mongolia. The Police will only require you report the crime, you are free to depart once the crime is reported.

Report any crime to the nearest district police station. In an emergency call the police on 102 or +976 102 from an international mobile phone. There should be someone available on this number who can speak to you in English.

Local travel

Travelling across the Mongolian countryside can be difficult and potentially dangerous if you are not familiar with the terrain. Mongolia does not have an extensive road network. You may need to follow tracks in the dust, mud or sand and there will not necessarily be other traffic to follow if these give out.

People travelling in Mongolia should be aware of local road conditions, weather forecasts and have researched the areas they will travel through. The knowledge of a local guide or driver can be an advantage.

Global Positioning Systems do not always function reliably and there are large areas of the country without mobile phone coverage. It is recommended that you take back-up communications like a satellite phone, plenty of water and provisions. Make a contingency plan and make sure someone knows your route and expected times of arrival and departure.

If you are travelling to the more remote parts of the country and are not part of an organised group, we advise you use local guides and/or notify National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) of your plans. NEMA has an English website on which you can email them. You are also advised to have the phone numbers for local NEMA and the Police offices in the provinces you visit.

Mongolia is a large country with varying weather conditions, you should always follow the weather forecasts when travelling. The country experiences extremes of weather, from +35C in summer to -40C in winter. Even in summer, evenings can be cold because of the altitude. Weather conditions can change without warning. There are very long distances between settlements. Take appropriate provisions, including warm clothing, blankets, food and water if you’re travelling outside urban areas. You should carry a First Aid kit and supply of prescription medicines when travelling outside Ulaanbaatar. See health

Road travel

Driving in Mongolia can be difficult and dangerous. Wear seat belts and where possible avoid driving at night. If possible, use an experienced, professional driver, familiar with the driving conditions and geography of the countryside. Global Positioning Systems do not always function reliably and there are large areas of the country without mobile phone coverage.

Only 10% of the country’s road are tarmacked and there is minimal signposting. Driving standards have not kept pace with the dramatic growth in the number of vehicles and are highly variable. Vehicle maintenance can be poor, even for rental vehicles.
Driving in Ulaanbaatar is hazardous as roads are heavily congested. There are a high number of accidents.

Outside Ulaanbaatar you should always be conscious of animals on the road when driving. You should plan your journey carefully taking into account your route, weather forecast and fuel stops.

If you intend to drive in Mongolia you need an International Driving Permit. You should also try to familiarise yourself with local laws.

Communications

Most UK phone networks work in cities, but the network can be weak in rural areas.
Wifi is available in many hotels, restaurants and bars, especially in Ulaanbaatar but less so across the rest of the country. You can buy local SIM cards and mobile phones at a reasonable price.

Air travel

Evidence suggests that domestic services (including helicopter services) in Mongolia do not always comply with international safety standards. The FCDO cannot offer advice on the safety of individual airlines. However, the International Air Transport Association publishes a list of registered airlines that have been audited and found to meet a number of operational safety standards and recommended practices. This list is not exhaustive and the absence of an airline from this list does not necessarily mean that it is unsafe.

In 2017 the International Civil Aviation Organisation carried out an audit, evaluating Mongolia’s safety oversight capabilities.

A list of incidents and accidents can be found on the website of the Aviation Safety Network.

Flights can be subject to disruption due to weather conditions and maintenance issues. Bear this in mind when making your travel plans.

Rail travel

Trans-Mongolian express trains (Beijing-Moscow via Ulaanbaatar) are known to be used for smuggling. Search your compartment and secure the cabin door before departure. Do not pack something in your luggage or transport any items for someone else.

Political situation

There have been occasional instances of civil and political unrest resulting in demonstrations and in some cases violence. You should avoid large gatherings and demonstrations.

Although there is no recent history of terrorism in Mongolia, attacks cannot be ruled out. You should be aware of the global risk of indiscriminate terrorist attacks. These could be in public areas including those frequented by expatriates and foreign travellers.

UK Counter Terrorism Policing has information and advice on staying safe abroad and what to do in the event of a terrorist attack. Find out more about the global threat from terrorism.

There’s a heightened threat of terrorist attack globally against UK interests and British nationals, from groups or individuals motivated by the conflict in Iraq and Syria. You should be vigilant at this time.

Possession and use of any type of drugs including cannabis is illegal. If found guilty you could face a very long prison sentence in an institution with very basic facilities.

Never photograph the police, police escorts, or military. This is considered a criminal offence.

Though many Mongolians are familiar with foreign visitors, you should be aware of local customs, especially if visiting remote areas or calling on a Mongolian family (e.g. stepping on a door threshold can cause offence).

Some Mongolian men do not like seeing Mongolian women in relationships with foreign men. Be discreet to avoid causing offence.

Although not illegal, homosexuality is not generally accepted socially. See our information and advice page for the LGBT community before you travel.

Show appropriate respect in Buddhist monasteries. Ask permission before taking photographs, and do not touch any sacred images or objects.

If you’re a resident in Mongolia you should carry your registration card at all times. If you’re visiting Mongolia, and do not have a registration card, you must carry your passport at all times – a photocopy isn’t sufficient.

Failure to carry your registration card or passport may lead to a fine. Keep a copy of the bio data page and the page with your Mongolian border immigration stamp separately in a safe place.

It’s illegal to buy, sell, kill or capture any protected wild animal or trade its parts without a license. Mongolia is a signatory to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES). If you’re caught purchasing or trafficking illegal goods you’ll be prosecuted and could receive a prison sentence and fine.

In purchasing antiques make sure the supplier presents a certificate of authenticity for the item. You will need the document for exporting the item. Mongolian Customs produces an import, export guide on prohibited items.

If you become involved in a commercial dispute or a criminal investigation, you may be prevented from leaving Mongolia until the issue is resolved through a travel ban. If you’re subject to a travel ban, you should inform the British Embassy.

If you bring a car into Mongolia you may have to pay a small fee. If you do not leave with your car, you may also have to pay an import tax either on departure or at a later date when you’ve returned to the UK.

This page has information on travelling to Mongolia. Check what you must do to return to the UK.

This page reflects the UK government’s understanding of current rules for people travelling on a full ‘British Citizen’ passport from the UK, for the most common types of travel.

The authorities in Mongolia set and enforce entry rules.

All travellers

You will need a visa to enter or travel through Mongolia as a visitor. You should contact the nearest Mongolian Embassy for the most up-to-date advice on entry requirements and visas. Arriving passengers should follow instructions given by the authorities on arrival. Arrival requirements into Mongolia are subject to change. Borders between China and Mongolia are closed except for freight traffic.

COVID-19 related restrictions for entry to Mongolia have been lifted for all UK travellers. Negative COVID-19 PCR tests before and after arrival are no longer required.

If you’re fully vaccinated

If you’re fully vaccinated, you can enter Mongolia without needing to test or quarantine. All passengers are required to fill out medical declaration forms upon arrival at border checkpoints.

Proof of vaccination status

You do not need to present proof that you have been fully vaccinated to enter Mongolia. However, you can use the UK COVID Pass to demonstrate your vaccination record if asked. Passengers are required to fill out medical declaration forms upon arrival at border checkpoints.

If you’re not fully vaccinated

If you’re not fully vaccinated, you can still enter Mongolia and will have to fill out medical declaration forms upon arrival at border checkpoints. Travellers who wish to be vaccinated in Mongolia are permitted to do so.

Children and young people

Children aged 17 and under follow the same rules as adults and do not need to show proof of vaccination to enter Mongolia.

If you’re transiting through Mongolia

Transiting is when you pass through one country on the way to your final destination.

Transiting through Mongolia is permitted for travellers irrespective of their vaccination status.

If you are transiting through Mongolia on your way to another country and staying in the airport (airside) or are transiting through Mongolia on your way to another country and will be passing through immigration (sometimes known as a layover), for example to stay in a hotel for a flight the next day, you should check with your travel operator and the authorities at your final destination what the entry requirements might be.

Onward travel

For onward travel from Mongolia to third countries, please check the UK’s Travel Advice for those countries.

Please note that it can be difficult to get visas for China and Russia in Mongolia. If you’re planning to travel to China or Russia from Mongolia, seek advice from Chinese and Russian Embassies in London for the latest visa requirements before you travel to Mongolia. Foreigners who are not residents of Mongolia have not always been able to get Chinese visas from the Chinese embassy in Ulaanbaatar. If you plan to travel to Mongolia and then onward to China, you should get your Chinese visa before the start of your trip.

HGV drivers

HGV drivers from the UK entering Mongolia do not have to show a negative COVID-19 test, proof of vaccination or proof of recovery and do not have to quarantine.

Check your passport and travel documents before you travel

Passport validity

If you are visiting Mongolia, your passport should be valid for six months from the date you arrive.

If you are a resident in Mongolia, your passport must be valid for at least six months from the date you arrive.

Check with your travel provider to make sure your passport and other travel documents meet their requirements.

Visas

You will need a visa to enter or travel through Mongolia as a visitor. A Mongolian visit visa is usually valid for a stay of up to 30 days within six months from the date of issue. You can extend your visa up to 30 days once within six months. Full details can be found at Immigration of Mongolia.

If you arrive in Mongolia with the wrong visa, the Mongolian Immigration Agency may ask you to pay for the correct visa or deny you entry.

The Mongolian Border Agency will collect biometric data (scanned fingerprints) on your arrival.

Online visa

From November 2021, British citizens can apply for the following 3 types of visas online

  • Visa for Tourist (K2) valid for 30 days
  • Visa for participants in sports, cultural, film/content and art events (K4) valid for 30 days
  • Visa for transit (K6) valid for 10 days

You no longer need to visit your nearest Mongolian Embassy if applying for visas under the above categories. E-visas will normally be issued within 72 hours of application. Applicants should carry a digital or printed version of the visa to present to airlines and the Mongolian Authorities on arrival.

Companies and individuals who are inviting British citizens to Mongolia from the UK can request entry permissions online for visa on arrival. This is for single or multiple entry visas for tourism (J) and business visit (B) categories only.

The inviting companies need to login to the immigration website and upload the invitation letter, application etc as per instruction. If all the required documents are provided, the immigration authority will inform the inviting organisation or individual via email or text message. Once permission is granted, the foreign citizen can get a Mongolian visa on arrival. You should make sure you have the confirmation before travelling to Mongolia.

You should remember that at the entry point, the immigration authority might interview you and they can refuse your entry to Mongolia. It is important for the inviting individual or company to provide full and true information about the person.

Other visas

If you are unsure of the type of visa required, or require another type of visa, contact the nearest Mongolian Embassy.

Travelling with children

Adults accompanying children other than their own should have a notarised letter from the legal guardians of the child confirming the arrangement. For further information contact the Embassy of Mongolia in London.

Registration

If you intend to remain in Mongolia for more than 30 days or if you do not have an entry/exit visa, you must register your stay with the Mongolian Immigration Agency in Ulaanbaatar within a week of arriving. Once registered you will be issued with a residence permit. The permit will include your date of birth, passport number, address, photograph and fingerprints. You should carry it with you at all times when you’re in Mongolia.

UK Emergency Travel Documents

You can only use a UK Emergency Travel Document (ETD) to enter Mongolia if you’re a permanent resident or for airside transit. ETDs can be used to exit Mongolia. If your ETD has been issued in Mongolia and you are a permanent resident in Mongolia, you’ll need an exit visa from the Immigration Authority. If you do not have a residence permit you won’t need an exit permit to exit Mongolia on an ETD.

Border crossings

There are normally 8 border points open to British passport holders. They are at Chinggis Khaan International Airport in Ulaanbaatar, the road/train crossing to China at Zamin Uud, the road crossing to China at Bulgan in the west, the road crossing to China at Bichigt in the south east, the road crossing to Russia at Tsagaannuur in the far west, the train crossing to Russia at Sukhbaatar and the road crossings to Russia at Altanbulag and Ereen-Tsav. You may not cross into China or Russia at any of the other border points as they are either seasonal or are open only to Mongolians, Chinese or Russians.

If you’re planning to bring a vehicle into Mongolia at any of the border crossings you should inform the tax authorities and border troops in advance.

If you’re travelling by train across the China/Mongolia border expect a delay of a few hours as the railways use different gauges.

You may encounter problems when entering Mongolia by train from Russia, particularly with Russian border or customs officials who scrutinise documentation (in particular customs declarations) very carefully. If you’re crossing overland to or from Russia, pay scrupulous attention when completing all the necessary paperwork.

Entering Mongolia by car

If you’re entering Mongolia by car you should familiarise yourself with Mongolian Customs law.

If you’re entering Mongolia in a private vehicle you should complete the customs declaration form and make sure you have all valid vehicle documents, including driving licence, ownership records and insurance. You can complete the customs declaration forms on entry at the border, as well as at the Ulaanbaatar City Customs Office situated next to the train station in Ulaanbaatar.

If you enter Mongolia in a private vehicle you must leave in the same vehicle, or otherwise pay customs tax. The amount of tax depends on the size of the engine and the value of your vehicle. You can find more details on Mongolian Customs’ webpage.

If your vehicle breaks down in Mongolia, you won’t be able to leave it there without paying customs tax. If your vehicle breaks down and cannot be fixed you must either pay for it to be transported out of Mongolia, or sell it on to a local mechanic, but you’ll still need to pay customs tax. You mustn’t under any circumstance leave your vehicle unattended or abandon it.

If you’re leaving your vehicle in Mongolia you must leave it in a secure place, either with a mechanic or at an official Customs warehouse, for which you will need to submit a completed customs declaration form and pay a monthly fee for storage. If you leave your vehicle with a mechanic in Mongolia because it cannot be fixed, you must provide proof (photos and a letter from a mechanic and a police report) of this to the Customs Office. If you choose to sell your vehicle, you’ll need to show proof of sale.

Customs tax is payable in local currency (MNT) only and must be paid directly to the Customs Office. If you wish to leave your vehicle and then return to collect it at a later date you should still pay the tax up front, which can then be reimbursed to you when you return to take your vehicle out of Mongolia. If you aren’t able to return in person, ask a third party to make the initial tax payment, and then collect the refund on your behalf.

Returning to the UK

Check what you must do to return to the UK.

Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Check the latest information on risk from COVID-19 for Mongolia on the TravelHealthPro website.

See the healthcare information in the Coronavirus section for information on what to do if you think you have coronavirus while in Mongolia.

At least 8 weeks before your trip, check the latest country-specific health advice from the National Travel Health Network and Centre (NaTHNaC) on the TravelHealthPro website. Each country-specific page has information on vaccine recommendations, any current health risks or outbreaks, and factsheets with information on staying healthy abroad. Guidance is also available from NHS (Scotland) on the FitForTravel website.

General information on travel vaccinations and a travel health checklist is available on the NHS website. You may then wish to contact your health adviser or pharmacy for advice on other preventive measures and managing any pre-existing medical conditions while you’re abroad.

The legal status and regulation of some medicines prescribed or bought in the UK can be different in other countries. You’re only allowed to bring medicines for personal use into Mongolia. These include medicines for urgent aid for up to 7 days or for the treatment of diabetes, cancer, mental illness or HIV/AIDS for which you have a doctor’s prescription. If you’re arriving by plane, you should carry all medicines in your checked baggage. Guidance is available from NaTHNaC on best practice when travelling with medicines. For further information on the legal status of a specific medicine, you’ll need to contact the embassy, high commission or consulate
of the country or territory you’re travelling to.

While travel can be enjoyable, it can sometimes be challenging. There are clear links between mental and physical health, so looking after yourself during travel and when abroad is important. Information on travelling with mental health conditions is available in our guidance page. Further information is also available from the National Travel Health Network and Centre (NaTHNaC).

Air pollution

The high levels of air pollution in Ulaanbaatar, especially in winter, may aggravate bronchial, sinus or asthma conditions. Children, the elderly and those with pre-existing medical conditions may be especially affected. You can check the pollution index levels for many cities on the AQICN website.

Health risks

There have been isolated incidents of bubonic plague in some rural areas of Mongolia, caught by consuming marmot meat. The meat is a delicacy in some rural areas although it is illegal to hunt for marmot in Mongolia. When travelling in rural areas, you should avoid marmot meat and follow the latest advice from the local authorities.

If you think you have been exposed to Bubonic Plague whilst travelling in Mongolia, you should immediately report to the nearest hospital and call the National Infectious Disease Centre on +976 100. You should contact the British Embassy if you or your group is quarantined due to an incident involving Bubonic Plague.

Medical treatment

You should always have medical insurance arranged before travelling to Mongolia. Medical bills, especially when a medical evacuation is needed, can be substantial. Make sure you have adequate travel health insurance and accessible funds to cover the cost of any medical treatment abroad and repatriation.

Foreign nationals requiring medical treatment in Mongolia, are required to pay 80% of the total cost when receiving treatment. The remaining balance paid after treatment.

We advise you wear a helmet when riding animals.

If you need emergency medical assistance during your trip, dial +976 103 and ask for an ambulance. You should contact your insurance/medical assistance company as soon as possible to inform them of what has happened.

The standard of healthcare is variable in Mongolia. In Ulaanbaatar the quality and access can differ, and some private clinics operating in the city. Once outside Ulaanbaatar, the level of care will vary with limited options available to receive treatment.

Due to the size of the county those injured in remote parts of the country may have long travel times before reaching the nearest medical facility.

The cost of treatment is fixed, and most procedure are costed so you should be able to confirm cost before treatment. Medical supplies are mainly from China and Russia, so you may not recognise the medicine you are being offered.

You should always carry a first aid kit, have supplies of over-the-counter medicines you may require for your trip.

You should always bring any regular prescription drugs you may need with you, and spare, just in case.

If a patient’s injury is life threatening the doctors will treat that patient without individual/family permission.

The Mongolian currency is the Tögrög, abbreviated to MNT. You can use credit cards in most hotels, shops and restaurants in and around Ulaanbaatar. ATMs are widely available.

ATMs are also becoming more common in other towns, and some international debit cards can be used to withdraw Mongolian Tögrögs. Travellers’ checks are no longer accepted. You can transfer money to Mongolia using commercial means like Western Union or Money Gram. If you’re travelling through the countryside you will need cash available to cover daily costs.

If you’re abroad and you need emergency help from the UK government, contact the nearest British embassy, consulate or high commission. If you need urgent help because something has happened to a friend or relative abroad, contact the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) in London on 020 7008 5000 (24 hours).

Foreign travel checklist

Read our foreign travel checklist to help you plan for your trip abroad and stay safe while you’re there.

Travel safety

The FCDO travel advice helps you make your own decisions about foreign travel. Your safety is our main concern, but we can not provide tailored advice for individual trips. If you’re concerned about whether or not it’s safe for you to travel, you should read the travel advice for the country or territory you’re travelling to, together with information from other sources you’ve identified, before making your own decision on whether to travel. Only you can decide whether it’s safe for you to travel.

When we judge the level of risk to British nationals in a particular place has become unacceptably high, we’ll state on the travel advice page for that country or territory that we advise against all or all but essential travel. Read more about how the FCDO assesses and categorises risk in foreign travel advice.

Our crisis overseas page suggests additional things you can do before and during foreign travel to help you stay safe.

Refunds and cancellations

If you wish to cancel or change a holiday that you’ve booked, you should contact your travel company. The question of refunds and cancellations is a matter for you and your travel company. Travel companies make their own decisions about whether or not to offer customers a refund. Many of them use our travel advice to help them reach these decisions, but we do not instruct travel companies on when they can or can not offer a refund to their customers.

For more information about your rights if you wish to cancel a holiday, visit the Citizen’s Advice Bureau website. For help resolving problems with a flight booking, visit the website of the Civil Aviation Authority. For questions about travel insurance, contact your insurance provider and if you’re not happy with their response, you can complain to the Financial Ombudsman Service.

Registering your travel details with us

We’re no longer asking people to register with us before travel. Our foreign travel checklist and crisis overseas page suggest things you can do before and during foreign travel to plan your trip and stay safe.

Previous versions of FCDO travel advice

If you’re looking for a previous version of the FCDO travel advice, visit the National Archives website. Versions prior to 2 September 2020 will be archived as FCO travel advice. If you can not find the page you’re looking for there, send the Travel Advice Team a request.

Further help

If you’re a British national and you have a question about travelling abroad that isn’t covered in our foreign travel advice or elsewhere on GOV.UK, you can submit an enquiry.We are not able to provide tailored advice for specific trips.

Visa and passport information is updated regularly and is correct at the time of publishing. You should verify critical travel information independently with the relevant embassy before you travel.