A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers Bali vs. Shanghai for Food, Nightlife, Couples, and Backpackers

Should you visit Bali or Shanghai?

Which is cheaper to visit? Which is more expensive for vacation?

Which city is more affordable and which is best for your travel style? If you're trying to figure out where to go next, comparing the travel costs between Bali and Shanghai can help you decide which place is right for you.

Bali

Bali is a lush, frequented, and spiritual island. And you can't forget about the hiking, shopping, and nightlife.

Shanghai

Shanghai is a trendy, modern, and cosmopolitan port city. With plenty of activities and things to do, it's a huge city that draws plenty of visitors. The beauty of this spot is also one of the main reasons why visitors come. And you can't forget about the nightlife, food, and shopping.

Bali and Shanghai: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Good nightlife
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
Cons
  • Less walkable
Pros
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Very walkable
  • Big city activities
  • Impressive beauty
Cons
  • Less popular for nightlife


How is Bali different from Shanghai?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

Let's take a look at the differences and similarities between Shanghai and Bali. Then, you can decide for yourself which place is better for your next trip.

Is Bali or Shanghai Better for Food?

Bali
Shanghai

Both Bali and Shanghai offer a number of unique restaurants to choose from.

Bali has long been recognized as a culinary destination with great restaurants. The food is rich and diverse with a lot of spices and complex flavors. Turmeric is a common spice and many dishes use coconut milk. Popular local dishes include Nasi Ayam (a chicken dish), Satay (grilled chicken), and Babi Guling (a pork dish).

Known for it's food and restaurant scene, Shanghai is always at the top of any foodie's travel list. The city's cuisine has a long history with many distinct traditional dishes. The foods incorporate a lot of soy sauce and sugar and you'll find most dishes are rice based as opposed to using wheat products. Popular local dishes include the famous Shanghai soup dumplings, steamed crab, and braised pork. The city is also famous for its snacks, which can be purchased at one of the many snack houses or street stalls.


Is Bali or Shanghai Better for Nightlife?

Bali
Shanghai

With more options to choose from, you'll find a more vibrant nightlife in Bali.

Bali is a world class party destination. The island is known for its crazy raves and all night pool parties. There are multi-story dance clubs as well as upscale bars and beach clubs that host parties late into the night. The best nightlife areas are around Kuta, Seminyak, and Canggu.

With a handful of venues, visitors can find a fairly lively vibe in Shanghai. A night out can quickly become very expensive. Many of the venues are spread out so you'll likely spend at least some of the time in a taxi. The Bund is one of the most popular areas for nightlife, but this area also has the most expensive bars and clubs. They often offer impressive views of Pudong and the Huangpu River though.

Is Bali or Shanghai Better for Shopping?

Bali
Shanghai

Both Bali and Shanghai are good shopping destinations.

Bali is a popular shopping destination with plenty of stores. A big appeal of shopping on the island is the affordability. There are many local items that are fun to bring home including jewelry, handicrafts, furniture, and clothing.

Many people travel to Shanghai specifically to go shopping. The city has many large shopping malls with department stores, name brand fashion, and trendy shops. It is also known for its cheap electronics and tailor-made clothes.

Is Bali or Shanghai Better for Families?

Bali
Shanghai

You'll find kid-friendly activities in either Bali or Shanghai.

Bali is a very kid-friendly island. The island has countless activities that kids can enjoy. There are watersports, snorkeling, surfing lessons and beautiful beaches. You can also expose your kids to the spiritual side of the island with kid-friendly yoga classes. Animals lovers will enjoy getting to see the monkeys up close and for a unique culinary experience, you can take a family cooking class.

You'll find plenty of family-friendly things to do in Shanghai. Of course there's Disneyland, but kids will also enjoy soaking up the city's culture, trying fun new snacks, and exploring the many science and kid-friendly museums. There are also parks and outdoor spaces as well as skyscrapers and towers that offer incredible views of the city.

Is Bali or Shanghai Better for Couples?

Bali
Shanghai

Both Bali and Shanghai are good destinations to visit as a couple.

For those traveling as a couple, Bali has plenty to offer. This beautiful island offers stunning beaches, adventure sports, and world class snorkeling. There are beautiful resorts with spas as well as couples yoga classes impressive natural areas.

Shanghai has so much to offer for a romantic couple's vacation. With its east meets west personality, couples will be able to enjoy an amazing culinary experience, beautiful gardens, and luxury hotels and spas. There are many romantic areas around this bustling city, making it the perfect place for a romantic city getaway.


Is Bali or Shanghai Better for Backpackers and Budget Travelers?

Bali
Shanghai

Both Bali and Shanghai are popular destinations for backpackers.

Backpackers and budget travelers come from all over the world to visit Bali. Backpackers flock to this beautiful island for its stunning setting and affordable accommodation. There are many nice places where backpackers can hang out and get to know other travelers. If you want to get off the beaten path, it's best to head into the countryside and away from the main tourist hubs.

Plenty of budget travelers and backpackers visit Shanghai. The city is expensive, but there are hostels and cheap eateries that make it accessible even for the budget conscious. Business travelers and local workers give the city a more professional vibe during the day, but if you find the right place to stay you'll quickly be able to meet likeminded travelers.

Is Bali or Shanghai Better for Public Transit?

Bali
Shanghai

Both Bali and Shanghai offer public transit options.

Bali has a few public transit options. There are minibuses and tourist shuttle buses around the island. You can also hire a taxi or rent a car, scooter, or bicycle.

Many visitors use the public transit system in Shanghai. There is a metro system as well as buses and taxis which are relatively affordable.

Is Bali or Shanghai a more walkable city?

Bali
Shanghai

Shanghai is considered more walkable than Bali.

Shanghai is a very walkable port city. It's possible to explore the major tourist areas on foot but it can be very hot and humid during the summer months.

Bali is generally not a very walkable island. There are some walkable towns and cities on the island, but many areas can be challenging to navigate on foot.

Should I spend more time in Shanghai or Bali?

How long in Bali or Shanghai?

In either Bali or Shanghai, you'll find plenty of activities to fill your time. Most visitors tend to spend more time in Bali than Shanghai because of the overall number of sights and activities.

The ideal length of time for a trip to Bali is 5-7 days, and the ideal length of time for a trip to Shanghai is 2-5 days.


  • How many days in Bali or Shanghai? Ideal Length of Stay
    Bali 5-7 
    Shanghai 2-5

One day in Bali or Shanghai?

The island of Bali offers food and scuba diving and snorkeling. Many visitors also spend a good bit of time hiking. With so much to do, one day is probably not enough time to see everything. It will give you the chance to have new experiences.

Shanghai is a big city destination where you can fill many days. Take your pick from the many activities offered here. With so much to do, one day is probably not enough time to see everything.


A weekend in Bali or Shanghai?

Bali is a popular place that is full of things to see and experience. People enjoy relaxing at one of the resorts. But since there are so many activities, you'll likely want to spend more than a weekend exploring. Take your pick from the many activities offered here.

Shanghai is a fun place to experience. If you have a weekend, this is a great place to go. A weekend is often enough time to do most activities. The entire region has so many activities, and you'll want time to do everything.

Five days in Bali or Shanghai?

Bali is a popular choice for travelers. Five days here is typical. While some people choose to spend more or less time in Bali, five days is sufficent for most. The entire region has so many activities, and you'll want time to do everything.

Shanghai is a cosmopolitan big city where you can fill many days. This port city offers something for everyone. Plenty of people spend five days in the area when traveling. Five days is often enough time to do most activities.

A week in Bali or Shanghai?

Bali is a great place to explore. It is common to spend one week here. Hiking can easily take up a good amount of your time here, too. One week is a great amount of time to relax and see the many things that Bali has to offer. This island offers something for everyone.

The cosmopolitan port city of Shanghai offers nightlife and food. The length of your trip often depends on your style of travel. One week is usually plenty of time to spend here with extra days to spare. With this much time, visitors often visit nearby destinations or take day trips.

Which city is cheaper, Shanghai or Bali?

These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.

The average daily cost (per person) in Bali is $62, while the average daily cost in Shanghai is $98. These costs include accommodation (assuming double occupancy, so the traveler is sharing the room), food, transportation, and entertainment. While every person is different, these costs are an average of past travelers in each city. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Bali and Shanghai in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Bali $35
    Shanghai $69
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Bali $70
    Shanghai $138
Compare Hotels in Bali and Shanghai

Looking for a hotel in Bali or Shanghai? Prices vary by location, date, season, and the level of luxury. See below for options and compare which is best for your budget and travel style.

Hotels in Bali


Hotels in Shanghai


Kayak helps you find the best prices for hotels, flights, and rental cars for destinations around the world. Compare prices for multiple destinations when planning your next trip.


Our Analysis
We've analyzed the average and typical hotel prices based on guest reviews, star ratings, and hotel amenities here: Bali Hotel Prices and Shanghai Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Bali $7.78
    Shanghai $3.31
Typical Local Transportation prices in Bali

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for transportation costs in Bali:


  • Motorbike Rental
    $3.34

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Bali

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Bali:

  • Nusa Dua: Ngurah Rai International Airport (DPS) Transfer: $12
  • Private Transfer between Airport (DPS) and Seminyak: $12
  • Denpasar : Private Transfer to/from Ngurah Rai Intl. Airport: $14
  • Ngurah Rai Bali Airport Private Transfer: $15
  • Airport Transfers: $16
  • Private One-Way Transfer Between Legian & DPS Airport: $17
  • Airport Transfer Service from Area Ubud / Tanah Lot / Pecatu: $23
  • Return Private Transfer for Night Safari: $41
  • Airport Transfer Service from Area Ubud / Tanah Lot / Pecatu (8 seater): $41
  • Airport Transfer Service from Area Ubud / Tanah Lot / Pecatu (13 Seater): $52
  • Departure Private Transfer Nusa Dua or Seminyak to Bali Airport DPS by Minivan: $52
  • Airport transfer and tour service: $56

Typical Local Transportation prices in Shanghai

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for transportation costs in Shanghai:


  • Taxi Ride
    $3.83
  • Two Subway Tickets
    $0.88

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Shanghai

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Shanghai:

  • Private Departure Transfer: Hotel to Shanghai Hongqiao Railway Station: $20
  • Private Departure Transfer: Hotel to Shanghai Hongqiao Airport (SHA): $20
  • Private Transfer: Hotel to Shanghai Stadium (Football Match, League of Legends): $20
  • Hongqiao Airport(SHA)-Hotel Downtown One way Private Transfer: $21
  • Private Transfer to Shanghai Railway Station from City Hotels or Outskirts: $21
  • Panda Transfer: Private Shanghai Airport/Hotel Transfer: $22
  • Private Transfer to Huangpu River Cruise Terminal: $22
  • Private Transfer to ERA Acrobats Show at Shanghai Circus World: $22
  • Private Transfer between Qibao Ancient Water Town and Shanghai City Area: $24
  • Private Transfer from Shanghai Maglev Train Station to City Area: $24
  • Private Transfer between Shanghai Pudong New Int’l Expo Centre and City Area: $24
  • Shanghai Maglev Train Station Private Transfer from City Area: $24

Is it cheaper to fly into Bali or Shanghai?

Prices for flights to both Shanghai and Bali change regularly based on dates and travel demand. We suggest you find the best prices for your next trip on Kayak, because you can compare the cost of flights across multiple airlines for your prefered dates.





Food
  • Food Meals for one day
    Bali $17
    Shanghai $18
Typical Food prices in Bali

Some typical examples of dining costs in Bali are as follows:


  • Coffee
    $1.34
  • Lunch for Two
    $15
  • Bali Cafe for Two
    $29
  • Lunch for Two
    $8.68
  • Lunch for 2
    $9.62
  • Dinner for 2
    $11

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Bali

Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in Bali.

  • Eat while chef is cooking in front of you: $24
  • Sidemen: Firewood Cooking Class & Organic Farm Tour: $28
  • From Ubud: Balinese Cooking Class at an Organic Farm: $30
  • Withlocals your Way: 100% Personalised Bali Private Food Tour: $39
  • Bali Cooking Class: $39
  • Ubud: Romantic Barbecue Dinner by the Pool: $57
  • Private Full or Half-Day Authentic Food Tour: $58
  • Romantic Dinner by Oceana Restaurant & Bar: $74
  • Ubud: Romantic Dinner among the Rice Fields: $110
  • Ubud: Romantic Dinner on a Forest Tree Deck: $214

Typical Food prices in Shanghai

Some typical examples of dining costs in Shanghai are as follows:


  • Dumpling Breakfast
    $1.47
  • Desserts in Jinmao Building Observatory
    $22
  • Ajisen Lunch for Two
    $7.67
  • Cantelope
    $1.77
  • Dumplings and Soup
    $2.21
  • Duck Dinner
    $4.42
  • Pastries
    $3.10
  • Barbeque Dinner
    $9.43

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Shanghai

Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in Shanghai.

  • Online Chinese Cooking Class: $22
  • Old Shanghai Breakfast Food Tour: $52
  • 3-Hour Shanghai Summer Night Local Dinner and Shopping Private Tour: $65
  • Private Chinese Cooking Class in Shanghai with Vegetarian Option: $69
  • Private Authentic Chinese Cooking Class in Shanghai with a Lovely Local: $70
  • 3-Hour Shanghai City Walking Tour with Dinner: $74
  • Shanghai yummy food tour: $75
  • A Bite of Shanghai Small-Group Food Tour: $80
  • Shanghai Hairy Crab Dinner: $85
  • Shanghai Evening Food Tour/Shanghai tour gastronomico nocturno: $85
  • Night Market & Street Food Tour in Shanghai: $95
  • 3-Hour Flexible Private Shanghai Night Tour with Local Dinner Option: $100

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Bali $9.32
    Shanghai $7.20
Typical Entertainment prices in Bali

Some typical examples of activities, tours, and entrance ticket prices in Bali are as follows:


  • Spa for Two
    $58
  • Snorkelling Trip
    $13
  • Cooking School
    $30

Tours and Activities in Bali

Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for Bali are as follows:

  • Uluwatu Temple and Kecak Dance Sunset Small-Group Tour: $16
  • Ubud Traditional Tour Private Guided by Local - Free WiFi: $18
  • Bali Private Tour by Budhi: $19
  • Bali Private Guided Tour : Best point of Ubud & Uluwatu Sunset - Free WiFi: $20
  • Jatiluwih Rice Terraces 1-Hour Electric Bike Tour: $20
  • Tour and Transport Services: $21
  • From Nusa Dua : Private Guided Tour to Ubud - Free WiFi: $21
  • Ubud: 3-Hour Walking Tour with Lunch: $22
  • Discover Hidden Hills & Twin Waterfall Private Guided Tour - Free WiFi: $25
  • Tukad Cepung Waterfall - Tirta Gangga - Lempuyang Private Guided Tour Free WiFi: $25
  • Bali Bird Park 1-Day Admission Ticket: $25
  • Ayung River: All Inclusive Rafting Adventure: $26

Typical Entertainment prices in Shanghai

Some typical examples of activities, tours, and entrance ticket prices in Shanghai are as follows:


  • 30 Minute River Cruise for Two
    $29
  • Zoo for Two
    $15

Tours and Activities in Shanghai

Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for Shanghai are as follows:

  • half day tour of shanghai: $5.34
  • Shanghai Yu Garden Ticket Booking: $10
  • Shanghai Zhujiajiao Ancient Town Admission Ticket: $11
  • Shanghai Maglev Train Ticket and Metro Pass(Pick Up in Shanghai): $12
  • Day Tour of Zhujiajiao and Huangpu River with Night Cruise: $16
  • Shanghai Jinmao Tower Observation Desk Admission Ticket: $18
  • Buddhist Art Tour at LWH Gallery in Shanghai: $23
  • Shanghai Bus Tour Hop-on Hop-off Premium Ticket including City Top Attraction Admissions: $30
  • Like a Local Customized Guided Tour: $30
  • Shanghai Tower Observation Deck Admission Ticket: $31
  • Shanghai Downtown Hotel to Baoshan Cruise Port:Private with Meet & Greet service: $38
  • Shanghai Hotels to Wusongkou Cruise Port:Private with Meet & Great service: $38

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Bali $2.75
    Shanghai $6.28

Sample the Local Flavors in Shanghai

Also in Shanghai, these are the prices for nightlife and alcohol related activities from various tour providers:

  • Shanghai Luxury Bar Crawl in 5-star Hotel or Boutique Hotel: $255
  • 3 Hour Local Craft Beer Crawl with Brewery Tour: $350


When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Bali and Shanghai, we can see that Shanghai is more expensive. And not only is Bali much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Bali would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Bali and be able to afford a more luxurious travel style by staying in nicer hotels, eating at more expensive restaurants, taking tours, and experiencing more activities. The same level of travel in Shanghai would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Shanghai than you might in Bali.


When is the best time to visit Bali or Shanghai?

Shanghai has a temperate climate with four distinct seasons, but Bali experiences a tropical climate with fairly warm weather most of the year.

Should I visit Bali or Shanghai in the Summer?

Both Shanghai and Bali are popular destinations to visit in the summer with plenty of activities. The warm tropical climate attracts visitors to Bali throughout the year. Also, most visitors come to Shanghai for the city activities and the family-friendly experiences during these months.

Bali is around the same temperature as Shanghai in the summer. The temperature in Bali is usually 27°C (81°F) in July, and Shanghai stays around 28°C (83°F).

It's quite sunny in Shanghai. The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Bali. Bali usually receives more sunshine than Shanghai during summer. Bali gets 253 hours of sunny skies, while Shanghai receives 232 hours of full sun in the summer.

It rains a lot this time of the year in Shanghai. In July, Bali usually receives less rain than Shanghai. Bali gets 40 mm (1.6 in) of rain, while Shanghai receives 128 mm (5 in) of rain each month for the summer. The dry season in Bali is April to September.


  • Summer Average Temperatures July
    Bali 27°C (81°F) 
    Shanghai 28°C (83°F)

Should I visit Bali or Shanghai in the Autumn?

Both Shanghai and Bali during the autumn are popular places to visit. Plenty of visitors come to Bali because of the warm tropical climate that lasts throughout the year. Furthermore, the autumn months attract visitors to Shanghai because of the city's sights and attractions, the shopping scene, and the natural beauty of the area.

In the autumn, Bali is a little warmer than Shanghai. Typically, the autumn temperatures in Bali in October are around 27°C (81°F), and Shanghai is about 19°C (65°F).

It's quite sunny in Bali. In the autumn, Bali often gets more sunshine than Shanghai. Bali gets 266 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Shanghai receives 162 hours of full sun.

Bali usually gets around the same amount of rain in October as Shanghai. Bali gets 60 mm (2.4 in) of rain, while Shanghai receives 61 mm (2.4 in) of rain this time of the year. October to March is the rainy season in Bali.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Bali 27°C (81°F) 
    Shanghai 19°C (65°F)

Should I visit Bali or Shanghai in the Winter?

The winter attracts plenty of travelers to both Bali and Shanghai. Bali attracts visitors year-round for its warm weather and tropical climate. Furthermore, the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine are the main draw to Shanghai this time of year.

It's quite cold in Shanghai in the winter. In January, Bali is generally much warmer than Shanghai. Temperatures in Bali average around 26°C (79°F), and Shanghai stays around 4°C (39°F).

Bali usually receives more sunshine than Shanghai during winter. Bali gets 170 hours of sunny skies, while Shanghai receives 135 hours of full sun in the winter.

In January, Bali usually receives more rain than Shanghai. Bali gets 90 mm (3.5 in) of rain, while Shanghai receives 39 mm (1.5 in) of rain each month for the winter. Also, October to March is the rainy season in Bali.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Bali 26°C (79°F) 
    Shanghai 4°C (39°F)

Should I visit Bali or Shanghai in the Spring?

The spring brings many poeple to Bali as well as Shanghai. The warm tropical climate attracts visitors to Bali throughout the year. Additionally, many travelers come to Shanghai for the activities around the city and the natural beauty.

Bali is much warmer than Shanghai in the spring. The temperature in Bali is usually 27°C (81°F) in April, and Shanghai stays around 15°C (58°F).

People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Bali this time of the year. In the spring, Bali often gets more sunshine than Shanghai. Bali gets 226 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Shanghai receives 153 hours of full sun.

It's quite rainy in Shanghai. Bali usually gets less rain in April than Shanghai. Bali gets 70 mm (2.8 in) of rain, while Shanghai receives 102 mm (4 in) of rain this time of the year. Also, April to September in Bali is the dry season.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Bali 27°C (81°F) 
    Shanghai 15°C (58°F)

Typical Weather for Shanghai and Bali

Bali Shanghai
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 26°C (79°F) 90 mm (3.5 in) 4°C (39°F) 39 mm (1.5 in)
Feb 26°C (79°F) 90 mm (3.5 in) 5°C (41°F) 59 mm (2.3 in)
Mar 27°C (81°F) 90 mm (3.5 in) 9°C (48°F) 82 mm (3.2 in)
Apr 27°C (81°F) 70 mm (2.8 in) 15°C (58°F) 102 mm (4 in)
May 28°C (82°F) 70 mm (2.8 in) 20°C (67°F) 113 mm (4.5 in)
Jun 27°C (81°F) 50 mm (2 in) 24°C (75°F) 152 mm (6 in)
Jul 27°C (81°F) 40 mm (1.6 in) 28°C (83°F) 128 mm (5 in)
Aug 27°C (81°F) 40 mm (1.6 in) 28°C (82°F) 133 mm (5.2 in)
Sep 27°C (81°F) 50 mm (2 in) 24°C (75°F) 156 mm (6.1 in)
Oct 27°C (81°F) 60 mm (2.4 in) 19°C (65°F) 61 mm (2.4 in)
Nov 27°C (81°F) 70 mm (2.8 in) 13°C (55°F) 52 mm (2 in)
Dec 27°C (81°F) 90 mm (3.5 in) 7°C (44°F) 35 mm (1.4 in)


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Bali vs. Shanghai Travel Comparison

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