A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers Hanoi vs. Shanghai for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Hanoi or Shanghai?

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

Trying to figure out where to travel next? This travel comparison between Hanoi and Shanghai can help. It includes a travel cost comparison in addition to other factors. For many travelers, the cost of a destination is a primary consideration when choosing where to go.

Where Should I go: Hanoi or Shanghai?

Hanoi

Hanoi is the chaotic capital of Vietnam, and it serves as a great introduction to the country for many travelers. It's the second largest city in the country after Saigon and is an interesting combination of East meets West. There's traditional Vietnamese culture with subtle influences brought by the French. The city continues to grow and change rapidly and it's easy to get lost amidst the chaos.

Shanghai

Shanghai is the largest and most modern city in China. With a population of over 23 million, it is the economic and financial hub of the country. It also continues to be one of the fastest growing cities in China with regular changes to the city's layout and skyline. It is not uncommon for buildings to be torn down, rebuilt and then torn down and rebuilt again. The city also has skyscrapers that rank among the tallest in the world. It has an ever changing downtown and street scape. In Shanghai, the general mantra remains "out with the old, in with the new".

Which city is cheaper, Shanghai or Hanoi?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Hanoi is $40, while the average daily cost in Shanghai is $93. 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 Hanoi and Shanghai in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Hanoi $21
    Shanghai $66
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Hanoi $42
    Shanghai $132
Compare Hotels in Hanoi and Shanghai

Looking for a hotel in Hanoi 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 Hanoi


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.


Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Hanoi $5.75
    Shanghai $3.15
Typical Local Transportation prices in Hanoi

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


  • Taxi to Bus Station
    $1.27
  • Shuttle Bus From Airport (for Two)
    $3.37
  • Local Bus Ride (for Two)
    $0.42
  • Short Taxi Ride
    $1.43
  • Short Motorbike Ride (10 Minutes)
    $0.84

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Hanoi

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Hanoi:

  • Hanoi City Center to Noi Bai Airport - Private Transfer: $7.90
  • Hanoi city center to Noi Bai airport - Private transfer: $7.90
  • Noi Bai Airport transfer to Hanoi Center and more: $8.00
  • Hanoi Airport Transfer to the city center: $10
  • Private Transfer: From Ha Noi city to Ha Noi Airport, Noi Bai (HAN): $11
  • Transfer between Hanoi and Sapa: $12
  • Hanoi Airport Departure Transfer: $12
  • Private Airport Transfer: from Hanoi to Noi Bai International Airport (HAN): $12
  • Hanoi airport transfer: $13
  • Hanoi Airport and Hanoi City Private Transfer: $13
  • Private Transfer: From Ha Noi Airport, Noi Bai (HAN) to Hotels in Ha Noi City: $13
  • Private Transfer Between Hanoi Airport (han) And Hanoi City Center: $14

Typical Local Transportation prices in Shanghai

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


  • Taxi Ride
    $3.65
  • Two Subway Tickets
    $0.84

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Shanghai

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Shanghai:

  • 1 Day-Pass for Disneyland Shanghai and Transfer service Mini Group package: $146
  • 1-way Private Transfer From Shanghai Pudong Airport to Hangzhou: $123
  • 1-way Private Transfer From Shanghai Pudong Airport to Suzhou New District-SND: $117
  • 1-way Transfer Between Shanghai Hongqiao Airport and Kunshan Per Vehicle Price: $74
  • 1-way Transfer Between Shanghai Pudong Airport and Jiaxing: $153
  • 1-way Transfer Between Shanghai Pudong Airport and Kunshan Per Vehicle Price: $95
  • 1-way Transfer Between Shanghai Pudong Airport and Yiwu Per Vehicle Price: $388
  • 1-way Transfer Between Shanghai and Nanxun Water Town Per Vehicle Price: $164
  • 1-way Transfer Between Shanghai and Wuzhen Water Town Per Vehicle Price: $159
  • 1-way Transfer Between Shanghai and Zhouzhuang Water Town Per Vehicle Price: $93
  • 1-way Transfer between Shanghai Pudong Airport and Changshu Per Vehicle Price: $135
  • 1way Transfer from Shanghai Pudong Airport to Suzhou Downtown: $48

Is it cheaper to fly into Hanoi or Shanghai?

Prices for flights to both Shanghai and Hanoi 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
    Hanoi $11
    Shanghai $17
Typical Food prices in Hanoi

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for food and meal costs in Hanoi:


  • High End Dinner (for Two)
    $12
  • Casual Lunch (for Two)
    $4.64
  • Bowl of Pho
    $0.84
  • Italian Dinner (for Food)
    $6.54

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Hanoi

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

  • Hanoi Old Quarter Walking Street Food Tour - Small Group: $5.00
  • (Private) Hanoi Street Food Tour By Volunteer Guide: $5.13
  • Hanoi Street Food Tours with Volunteer Guide ($5 / Group): $5.13
  • (Small Group) Hanoi Street Food Tours with Volunteer Guide: $5.13
  • Dinner with a Local Family in Hanoi: $13
  • Street Food Tour + Old City sightseeing Ticket: $15
  • 3-Hours Hanoi Street Food Tour with Guide and Meal: $16
  • Lunchtime Street Food Tour of Hanoi: $21
  • Hanoi Walking Street Food Tour: $21
  • Small Group: Ha Noi Walking Street Food Tour With Professional Tour Guide: $22
  • Guided Street Food Tour: $24
  • Bun's family food tour: $25

Typical Food prices in Shanghai

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


  • Dumpling Breakfast
    $1.40
  • Desserts in Jinmao Building Observatory
    $20
  • Ajisen Lunch for Two
    $7.29
  • Cantelope
    $1.68
  • Dumplings and Soup
    $2.10
  • Duck Dinner
    $4.21
  • Pastries
    $2.95
  • Barbeque Dinner
    $8.98

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.
    Hanoi $7.19
    Shanghai $6.85
Typical Entertainment prices in Hanoi

Here are a few typical costs in Hanoi for activities, ticket prices, and tours that come from previous visitors:


  • Puppet Theater
    $1.69
  • The Hanoi Hilton Entrance
    $1.69
  • National History Museum
    $1.69
  • Puppet Theater Ticket
    $2.95

Tours and Activities in Hanoi

Here are a few actual costs in Hanoi for available activities, ticket prices, and tours:

  • Skip the Line: Thang Long Water Puppet Tickets: $4.78
  • Skip the Line: Thang Long Water Puppet Tickets: $4.79
  • Skip the Line:Water Puppet Show Ticket - Plus Free Tour for Hanoi (Optional): $4.93
  • Hanoi Old Quarter Private Walking Tour with Student Guide: $5.00
  • Private Walking Tour of Hanoi City: $5.00
  • (Evening) HANOI CUSTOMIZED Walking Tour: $5.00
  • Private Guided Tour of Hanoi: $5.13
  • Hanoi City Tour By Volunteer Guide: $5.13
  • (Half Day) Hanoi Old Quarter Walking Tour: $5.13
  • Hanoi Old Quater Walking Tour: $5.13
  • Skip the Line: Thang Long Water Puppet Show Ticket - with Hotel Ticket Delivery: $5.13
  • Skip the Line: Lotus Water Puppet Entrance with Hanoi Hotel Ticket Delivery: $5.50

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
    $28
  • Zoo for Two
    $14

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
    Hanoi $6.50
    Shanghai $5.97

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 Hanoi and Shanghai, we can see that Shanghai is more expensive. And not only is Hanoi much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Hanoi would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Hanoi 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 Hanoi.


When is the best time to visit Hanoi or Shanghai?

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

Should I visit Hanoi or Shanghai in the Summer?

The summer attracts plenty of travelers to both Hanoi and Shanghai. The warm tropical climate attracts visitors to Hanoi throughout the year. Also, many travelers come to Shanghai for the city activities and the family-friendly experiences.

Hanoi is around the same temperature as Shanghai in the summer. The temperature in Hanoi is usually 29°C (84°F) in July, and Shanghai stays around 28°C (83°F).

Shanghai receives a lot of rain in the summer. Hanoi gets a good bit of rain this time of year. In July, Hanoi usually receives more rain than Shanghai. At this time of the year, Hanoi gets 210 mm (8.3 in) of rain, while Shanghai receives 128 mm (5 in) of rain.


  • Summer Average Temperatures July
    Hanoi 29°C (84°F) 
    Shanghai 28°C (83°F)

Should I visit Hanoi or Shanghai in the Autumn?

The autumn brings many poeple to Hanoi as well as Shanghai. Plenty of visitors come to Hanoi because of the warm tropical climate that lasts throughout the year. Also, many visitors come to Shanghai in the autumn for the city's sights and attractions, the shopping scene, and the natural beauty of the area.

In the autumn, Hanoi is a little warmer than Shanghai. Typically, the autumn temperatures in Hanoi in October are around 25°C (77°F), and Shanghai is about 19°C (65°F).

Hanoi receives a lot of rain in the autumn. Hanoi usually gets more rain in October than Shanghai. Hanoi gets 100 mm (3.9 in) of rain, while Shanghai receives 61 mm (2.4 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Hanoi 25°C (77°F) 
    Shanghai 19°C (65°F)

Should I visit Hanoi or Shanghai in the Winter?

Both Shanghai and Hanoi are popular destinations to visit in the winter with plenty of activities. Hanoi attracts visitors year-round for its warm weather and tropical climate. Also, most visitors come to Shanghai for the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine during these months.

Shanghai can be very cold during winter. In January, Hanoi is generally much warmer than Shanghai. Temperatures in Hanoi average around 17°C (63°F), and Shanghai stays around 4°C (39°F).

In January, Hanoi usually receives less rain than Shanghai. At this time of the year, Hanoi gets 10 mm (0.4 in) of rain, while Shanghai receives 39 mm (1.5 in) of rain.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Hanoi 17°C (63°F) 
    Shanghai 4°C (39°F)

Should I visit Hanoi or Shanghai in the Spring?

Both Shanghai and Hanoi during the spring are popular places to visit. The warm tropical climate attracts visitors to Hanoi throughout the year. Furthermore, the spring months attract visitors to Shanghai because of the activities around the city and the natural beauty.

Hanoi is much warmer than Shanghai in the spring. The temperature in Hanoi is usually 24°C (75°F) in April, and Shanghai stays around 15°C (58°F).

Shanghai gets a good bit of rain this time of year. It rains a lot this time of the year in Hanoi. Hanoi usually gets around the same amount of rain in April as Shanghai. Hanoi gets 100 mm (3.9 in) of rain, while Shanghai receives 102 mm (4 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Hanoi 24°C (75°F) 
    Shanghai 15°C (58°F)

Typical Weather for Shanghai and Hanoi

Hanoi Shanghai
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 17°C (63°F) 10 mm (0.4 in) 4°C (39°F) 39 mm (1.5 in)
Feb 17°C (63°F) 30 mm (1.2 in) 5°C (41°F) 59 mm (2.3 in)
Mar 21°C (70°F) 50 mm (2 in) 9°C (48°F) 82 mm (3.2 in)
Apr 24°C (75°F) 100 mm (3.9 in) 15°C (58°F) 102 mm (4 in)
May 28°C (82°F) 150 mm (5.9 in) 20°C (67°F) 113 mm (4.5 in)
Jun 29°C (84°F) 190 mm (7.5 in) 24°C (75°F) 152 mm (6 in)
Jul 29°C (84°F) 210 mm (8.3 in) 28°C (83°F) 128 mm (5 in)
Aug 29°C (84°F) 200 mm (7.9 in) 28°C (82°F) 133 mm (5.2 in)
Sep 28°C (82°F) 160 mm (6.3 in) 24°C (75°F) 156 mm (6.1 in)
Oct 25°C (77°F) 100 mm (3.9 in) 19°C (65°F) 61 mm (2.4 in)
Nov 22°C (72°F) 60 mm (2.4 in) 13°C (55°F) 52 mm (2 in)
Dec 18°C (64°F) 30 mm (1.2 in) 7°C (44°F) 35 mm (1.4 in)


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Hanoi vs. Shanghai Travel Comparison

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