Monday, January 21, 2019

Everest | Helicopter Charter Flights

When helicopters started flying in Nepal, they were used mostly for search and rescue operations. However, in the last decade, the number of helicopter companies have increased and it is not unusual while trekking in the Everest region to find helicopters flying up and down between Gorak Shep to Pheriche/ Namche/Lukla/Kathmandu ferrying passengers on a charter flight.

Though many purists including myself  will balk at the idea of using a helicopter at the end of the Everest trek, this has become quite a common occurrence of late. The  main advantages for the trekkers are:

An Everest Base Camp trek can become 9-10 days Kathmandu to Kathmandu instead of the usual 14 days as the return journey  from Gorak Shep is significantly reduced by using the helicopter.

The long descent from 5150 metres at Gorak Shep to Lukla 2800 metres is avoided and saves your knees!


Though the cost of chartering a helicopter is not fixed and there is considerable leeway for bargaining and getting a good price, the average costs for a charter is given below. Sometimes prices can be below this as well depending if the helicopter has come up to drop passengers and is going back empty.

Gorak Shep to Lukla  - $1500  (3 persons)
Pheriche to Lukla - $1300 ( 4 persons)
Namche to Lukla  $600 (3 persons)
Namche to Kathmandu $3200 (5 persons)
Lukla to Kathmandu  $2800 ( 5 Persons)


Fishtail Air
Summit Air (Helicopters Division) www.summitair,
Simrik Air (Helicopters Division)
Air Dynasty
Mountain Heli
Altitude Air
Shree Air
Kailsh Heli
Manang Air

Easy Flight Travel headed by Raju Pulami and based in Namche also provides helicopter services at reasonable rates. Do contact

South Col Expeditions treks in the Everest region every year. For more information on our treks do visit

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