A Travel Price Comparison for India Chennai vs. Jaisalmer for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Chennai or Jaisalmer?

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

Should I visit Chennai or Jaisalmer? This is a common question asked by many travelers. By figuring out which city has activities that align with your interests along with knowing which is more affordable, you'll understand where you can get more bang for your buck. So, let's dive into the details and the data, which all comes from actual travelers.

Where Should I go: Chennai or Jaisalmer?


Formerly known as Madras from its colonial history, Chennai today is one of India's largest cities and capital of the Indian state of Tamil Nadu. It is located on the Bay of Bengal in southeastern India with an extensive stretch of sandy beaches, plenty of dining and shopping, a number of historic temples, monuments, and churches, plus amusement parks and more.


Jaisalmer is located in western part of the Rajasthan state of India. The city is known as the "Golden City" for its Sonar Qila, or 'Golden Fort'. This fort is different than other forts in India in that it is a living fort, meaning that it contains many hotels, homes, and shops for locals and visitors. The city is very close to the Thar Desert, to which excursions can be made.

For some great organized tour ideas, see The Best Adventure Tours to India, The Best Sightseeing Tours in India, The Best Cultural Tours in India, and The Best Food and Culinary Tours in India.

Which place is cheaper, Jaisalmer or Chennai?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Chennai is $29, while the average daily cost in Jaisalmer is $37. 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 destination. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Chennai and Jaisalmer in more detail.

  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Chennai $15
    Jaisalmer $13
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Chennai $30
    Jaisalmer $26
Compare Hotels in Chennai and Jaisalmer

Looking for a hotel in Chennai or Jaisalmer? 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 Chennai

Hotels in Jaisalmer

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: Chennai Hotel Prices and Jaisalmer Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Chennai $2.61
    Jaisalmer $12

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Chennai

Also for Chennai, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:

  • Full Day Tour to Kanchipuram and UNESCO's Mahabalipuram with Private Transfer: $265
  • Private Arrival Transfer: Chennai Airport (MAA) to Pondicherry Hotels: $145
  • Private Arrival Transfer: Chennai International Airport to Hotel: $40
  • Private Transfer from Chennai City to Chennai (MAA) Airport: $37
  • Bangalore - private departure transfer from Hotel to Airport : $35
  • Chennai International Airport to Hotel-Private Arrival transfer: $25
  • Affordable Chennai Airport Transfer: $24
  • Chennai - Private Arrival Transfer - From Airport to Hotel: $20
  • Departure Transfer from Chennai Hotels to Chennai airport: $20
  • Departure transfer: Chennai hotels to Chennai International Airport: $19
  • Chennai - Private Departure Transfer from Hotel to Airport : $19
  • Chennai Airport to Hotel Transfer: $13

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Jaisalmer

Also for Jaisalmer, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:

  • Private Transfer From Jaisalmer To Agra: $181
  • Jaipur to Jaisalmer Transfer: $170
  • Private Transfers Jaisalmer To Bikaner Drop: $123
  • Private Transfers Jaisalmer To Jodhpur Drop: $123
  • Private transfer from Jaisalmer to Bikaner: $120
  • Private Transfer From Jaisalmer To Jaipur: $117
  • Private Transfer From Jaisalmer To Jaipur: $117
  • Private Transfer From Jaisalmer To Ahmedabad: $117
  • Private One Way Transfer From Jaisalmer To Pushkar: $94
  • Transfer From Jaisalmer To Udaipur Via Ranakpur Jain Temple: $90
  • Private Transfer From Jaisalmer To Pushkar: $85
  • Private Transfer From Jaisalmer To Bikaner: $65

Is it cheaper to fly into Chennai or Jaisalmer?

Prices for flights to both Jaisalmer and Chennai 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 Meals for one day
    Chennai $6.40
    Jaisalmer $13

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Chennai

For Chennai, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:

  • 2 Hour Street Food Tour in Sowcarpet Chennai : $37
  • Private In-Home Vegetarian Cooking Class and Meal in Chennai: $46
  • Private Vegetarian South Indian Cooking Class in Chennai : $48
  • South Indian Cooking Class in Chennai with a Passionate Baker: $48
  • South Indian Vegetarian Cooking Class Near the Chennai airport: $62
  • Traditional Tamil Brahmin Vegetarian Cooking Lesson with a Local in Her Home: $74
  • Private 3-Hour Cooking Lesson and Meal in Chennai: $100
  • Authentic South Indian Cooking Class and Vegetarian Meal with a Local in Chennai: $122
  • Food Trail In Sowcarpet With Transport And Dinner - Chennai: $216

Typical Food Prices in Jaisalmer

Here are some examples of typical meal expenses from previous travelers to Jaisalmer:

  • Dinner

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Jaisalmer

For Jaisalmer, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:

  • Jaisalmer Food Tour: Taste the Flavors of the Golden City!: $14
  • Jaisalmer Heritage & Cultural Walking & Street Food Tour: $23
  • Half Day SunSet Tour with Dinner: $26
  • Desert camel safari with dinner in osian hotel pick and drop: $30
  • Half Day Camel Safari Sunset with Dinner Tour (Non Touristic): $30
  • Peaceful Non -Touristic Sunset Camel Safari With Dinner : $35
  • Pleasant Sunset Safari With Dinner On Dunes (From 2:00 PM to Approx. 10:00 PM): $35
  • Sunset Safari With Dinner: $37
  • Experience Camel Safari With Folk Dance & Dinner: $37
  • 8 Hours Private Tour in Thar Desert with Dinner: $42
  • Half Day Desert Safari with Camel ride & dinner: $42
  • Sun Set Safari with Dinner: $45

  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Chennai $2.77
    Jaisalmer $12

Tours and Activities in Chennai

Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Chennai.

  • Agra Taj Tour from Chennai: $220
  • Auroville and Pondicherry Tour from Chennai: $44
  • Bazaar Walking tour in George Town: $35
  • Best Of Chennai- Classic Tour on Royal Enfield Motorcycle: $160
  • Bicycle tour in Mahabalipuram with transport from Chennai,lunch & guide: $99
  • Birds & Beyond: Chennai to Pulicat Bird Sanctuary Day Tour: $135
  • British Architecture Walk in Chennai by Wonder tours: $49
  • Chennai Cultural Walking Tour: $27
  • Chennai Delights: Exploring the Best of the City Tour: $198
  • Chennai Food Tasting Trails (2 Hour Guided Tour Experience): $26
  • Chennai Full Day Guided Tour in a Private Car: $120
  • Chennai Full Day Sightseeing in a Private Car: $69

Typical Entertainment Prices in Jaisalmer

For Jaisalmer, here are some examples of average entertainment and activity prices from previous travelers:

  • Sam Sand Dunes for Two

Tours and Activities in Jaisalmer

Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Jaisalmer.

  • Private Full-Day Tour of Jaisalmer with Guide: $33
  • 1 Night Desert Experience Sleeping Under Star Near Jodhpur: $56
  • 1 night 2 day thar desert experience & village lifestyle: $38
  • 2 Days-1 Night Camel Tour: $104
  • 2 Nights 3 Days Jaisalmer Tour & Non-Touristic Camel Safari: $96
  • 2-Night Desert Experience with Luxury Camp from Jaisalmer: $213
  • 3 Days Jaisalmer Private Tour: $180
  • 3 Days Jaisalmer Tour From Jodhpur: $270
  • 3 days Jaisalmer Private Tour with Desert Safari, Sightseeing and Accommodation: $202
  • 4 - Days Jaisalmer Sightseeing Tour: $168
  • 4 - Days Jaisalmer Sightseeing Tour: $150
  • 4-Day Jaisalmer Sightseeing Tour: $270

  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Chennai $3.08
    Jaisalmer $9.23

When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Chennai and Jaisalmer, we can see that Jaisalmer is more expensive. And not only is Chennai much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Chennai would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Chennai 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 Jaisalmer would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Jaisalmer than you might in Chennai.

If you're trying to decide if either of these two destinations are within your price range, also see Is Chennai Expensive? and Is Jaisalmer Expensive?.

Which is Bigger, Chennai or Jaisalmer?

Chennai has a larger population, and is about 60 times larger than the population of Jaisalmer. When comparing the sizes of Chennai and Jaisalmer, keep in mind that a larger population does not always imply the destination has more attractions or better activities. So, always research the type of place that you want to visit along with the activities and attractions that interest you.

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