A gorilla permit is government issued special pass by Uganda Wildlife Authority to trek the mountain gorillas and without it no traveler can access these endangered species. Gorilla permit booking is required at least three months to the actual trekking date to ensure timely allocation and planning. At present, Rwanda sells the most expensive permits at $1500 each for all people including Rwanda nationals. Uganda has made it quite easier by charging according to one’s nationality. A single gorilla permit in Uganda costs $700 for foreign non-residents, $600 for foreign residents and 250,000shs for east Africa residents.Also, Congo is now open for gorilla trekking in Virunga national park at a cost of $450 hence the best place to see low land gorillas by budget travelers.
A gorilla permit allows a traveler to interact with mountain gorillas for an hour after which it expires. The low cost of gorilla permits in Uganda and the ease of access to Bwindi from Kigali make Uganda the first priority for most travelers coming to see mountain gorillas. The high demand for Uganda gorilla permits started in 2017 when Rwanda hiked her gorilla permits from $750 to $1500 with immediate effect. Uganda maintained her gorilla permit at $700 hence the best place especially for those traveling on a budget.
From December 1st 2020 upto 30th June 2021, Uganda wildlife authority has discounted on the gorilla trekking permits from $700 to $400 USD, with purpose of encouraging more tourist to visit Ugandan national parks.