Which city is cheaper, Seoul or Kuala Lumpur?
These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.
Which city should you visit? Read on to compare the activities as well as the prices of travel for Kuala Lumpur and Seoul. We'll break down costs for accommodation, food, transportation and more to help you learn more about these two destinations. Then, you can figure out if either of these two places are accessible based on your travel budget, schedule, and interests. So, let's dig into it.
Kuala Lumpur is a historic, modern, and welcoming 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.
Seoul is a high energy, colorful, and cultural city. It's an amazing and huge city with tons of activities and things to do. Other reasons to visit include live music, food, and shopping.
Let's take a look at the differences and similarities between Seoul and Kuala Lumpur. Then, you can decide for yourself which place is better for your next trip.
Spend time exploring the sights and museums in either Kuala Lumpur or Seoul.
Travelers visit Kuala Lumpur from around the world to see its many world-famous attractions. The most notable landmark in the city is the famed Petronas Twin Towers, but other popular sights include Merdeka Square, Kuala Lumpur Tower, and the National Museum.
Seoul offers many unique museums, sights, and landmarks that will make for a memorable trip. The museums and landmarks are diverse, with notable sights including N Seoul Tower, the Bukchon Hanok Traditional Village, and the National Museum of Korea.
Foodies will find both Kuala Lumpur and Seoul both to be unique destinations.
Eat your way through Kuala Lumpur, as it has many local or world renowned restaurants to choose from. The food is influenced by the populations that live here and you'll find a lot of Malay, Chinese and Indian flavors. Spicy curries and noodle dishes are very common. Street food is also a mainstay in this city and it's an experience to wander the market streets and sample dishes from the different vendors.
For foodies, Seoul is an obvious choice, as it is one of the food capitals of the world. Food is a cultural obsession here, and you'll find everything from world class street food to award winning restaurants. The dishes are so much more diverse than Korean barbecue and kimchi. Many dishes are very spicy, with popular local foods including gamjatang (pork and potato soup) and jeon (savory pancakes).
The nightlife scene is relatively similar in Kuala Lumpur and Seoul.
Kuala Lumpur has a large number of nightlife venues. Rooftop bars and lounges are popular hangout spots after the sun sets. For classy pubs and clubs head to the Golden Triangle district, but if drinking and partying isn't your thing, the city's night markets are not to be missed.
Seoul is a popular destination for visitors looking to party into the night. This is definitely a work hard/play hard city, with locals working long hours during the day and then partying hard late into the night. The nightlife scene is strong both during the week and on weekends. There are bars, clubs, and lounges that are frequented by locals and tourists alike.
Shoppers can find a variety of stores in both Kuala Lumpur and Seoul.
People travel from around the world to go shopping in Kuala Lumpur. The city is filled with shopping malls, and a big appeal of shopping in this city is the very affordable prices. Some of the most popular shopping malls are Suria KLCC at the base of the Petronas Towers as well as the malls in the Bukit Bintang/Jalan Imbi areas.
The abundance of shops in Seoul make it a world-class shopping destination. This bustling city offers traditional local items as well as Korean cosmetics and trendy fashion. Although shopping malls are spread throughout the city, some of the most popular shopping areas are found around Myeong-dong and Dongdaemun.
Both Kuala Lumpur and Seoul are family-friendly destinations.
Kuala Lumpur is a very family-friendly destination. This family-friendly city includes a surprising number of opportunities to experience wildlife. There's an aquarium, petting zoos, and places to see the wild monkeys. There are also large playgrounds including one by the Petronas Towers. Kids will also enjoy exploring the Botanical Gardens, Butterfly Park, and the Forest Eco Park.
Seoul is a very kid-friendly city. The city has a wide range of kid-friendly activities, ranging from the easy choices like amusement parks and children's museums, to the less obvious like kid-friendly cafes and markets. There are many entertainment options packed into a small space, so kids and adults alike will stay entertained.
Kuala Lumpur and Seoul both fun destinations for a couple.
Kuala Lumpur makes for a fun place to visit for a couple. This city has diverse restaurants and a number of luxury hotels at affordable prices. For couples who enjoy romance on a budget, this is a good city.
Couples visit Seoul frequently as it offers plenty of romantic activities. Couples enjoy the beautiful viewpoints, outdoor parks, and diverse restaurants. There are also many beautiful luxury hotels where couples can enjoy a romantic getaway.
Kuala Lumpur and Seoul are both good destinations for backpackers.
Kuala Lumpur is very popular with the backpacker crowd. This is a popular stop for backpackers on the Southeast Asia circuit. It's modern and comfortable but also affordable and diverse. The city has a number of affordable hostels, but it also has a more laid back and authentic vibe than you'll find in many other Southeast Asian cities. The city also isn't as touristy as some other cities, so the people are down to Earth and helpful without being jaded by all of the vacationers.
Seoul is popular with backpackers and budget travelers. The city isn't the most popular among backpackers, but those who visit will enjoy exploring a fascinating culture and delicious cuisine. Because it's a large city, you'll find a diversity of accommodation options including some budget-friendly hostels and hotels.
Both Kuala Lumpur and Seoul are popular destinations for students.
Kuala Lumpur is a very popular place to visit for students. It's affordability, diversity, and dynamic atmosphere make this a great city for international students.
Seoul is a very popular city for students and younger travelers. Many international students head to Seoul National University, which has an excellent academic reputation. The city is also fun and energetic, so everyone will be entertained.
Visitors will find public transit in both Kuala Lumpur and Seoul.
With a huge network, the transit system in Kuala Lumpur can get you around easily. The system is relatively easy to navigate with most signs in English. There are buses, a monorail, light rail transit and commuter trains.
Visitors in Seoul can get around quickly with the extensive public transit system. The modern and clean transportation system includes both a subway and buses.
Kuala Lumpur and Seoul are similar when it comes to walkability.
Kuala Lumpur is very walkable. Traffic can be congested, but there are many wide sidewalks and pedestrian areas around town. The River of Life waterfront area offers nice paths that connect many tourist areas.
Seoul is a very walkable city. Many neighborhoods are fun to explore on foot but do take note that parts of the city are very hilly and the weather can be bitter cold during the winter months.
Both Kuala Lumpur and Seoul have a number of activities to choose from. With generally more activities and things to do, visitors tend to spend more time in Seoul than Kuala Lumpur.
The ideal length of time for a trip to Kuala Lumpur is 1-5 days, and the ideal length of time for a trip to Seoul is 3-7 days.
Each neighborhood in Kuala Lumpur has its own distinct appeal, so there are pleny of areas to explore. This city offers a variety of activities to choose from. Because of this, one day is usually enough time for a trip here.
In Seoul, many people enjoy the shopping and museums that this colorful city offers. The length of your ideal trip is an individual decision. With so much to do, one day is probably not enough time to see everything.
It's hard to know how much time to spend in Kuala Lumpur. For many, it makes a great getaway for a weekend. This would be the perfect place to spend a weekend, as it has just the right amount of activities. The length of your ideal trip is an individual decision.
Seoul is a fun place to experience. It will give you the chance to have new experiences. But since there are so many activities, you'll likely want to spend more than a weekend exploring.
Kuala Lumpur is a fun place to experience. Each neighborhood in Kuala Lumpur has its own distinct appeal, so there are pleny of areas to explore. This would be the perfect place to spend five days, as it has just the right amount of activities.
In Seoul, many people enjoy the nightlife and live music that this high energy big city offers. Take your pick from the many activities offered here. Plenty of people spend five days in the area when traveling. So, five days is just the right amount of time to spend here.
You'll find food and shopping around the colorful big city of Kuala Lumpur. Take your pick from the many activities offered here. One week is plenty of time to see everything, even with extra days to spare.
Seoul is a popular place to visit. Many people spend one week here. If you enjoy all that's offered here, then one week is just the right amount of time to spend here. The entire region has so many activities, and you'll want time to do everything.
These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.
The average daily cost (per person) in Kuala Lumpur is $49, while the average daily cost in Seoul is $89. 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 Kuala Lumpur and Seoul in more detail.
Looking for a hotel in Kuala Lumpur or Seoul? 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.
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.
Some typical examples of transportation costs in Kuala Lumpur are as follows:
Also for Kuala Lumpur, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:
Below are a few samples from actual travelers for transportation costs in Seoul:
Some specific examples of transportation prices in Seoul:
Prices for flights to both Seoul and Kuala Lumpur 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.
For Kuala Lumpur, here are some examples of average food and meal prices for travelers:
For Kuala Lumpur, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:
Some typical examples of dining costs in Seoul are as follows:
Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in Seoul.
Below are a few sample prices from actual travelers for Kuala Lumpur's activities, tours, and tickets:
For Kuala Lumpur, here are a few prices for actual activities, tours, and tickets provided by various companies:
Some typical examples of activities, tours, and entrance ticket prices in Seoul are as follows:
Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for Seoul are as follows:
Some typical examples of the costs for nightlife and alcohol in Kuala Lumpur are as follows:
Also in Seoul, these are the prices for nightlife and alcohol related activities from various tour providers:
When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Kuala Lumpur and Seoul, we can see that Seoul is more expensive. And not only is Kuala Lumpur much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Kuala Lumpur would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Kuala Lumpur 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 Seoul would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Seoul than you might in Kuala Lumpur.
Seoul has a temperate climate with four distinct seasons, but Kuala Lumpur experiences a tropical climate with fairly warm weather most of the year.
The summer brings many poeple to Kuala Lumpur as well as Seoul. Plenty of visitors come to Kuala Lumpur because of the warm tropical climate that lasts throughout the year. Additionally, many visitors come to Seoul in the summer for the city activities, the music scene, and the family-friendly experiences.
In the summer, Kuala Lumpur is around the same temperature as Seoul. Typically, the summer temperatures in Kuala Lumpur in July are around 28°C (82°F), and Seoul is about 26°C (78°F).
People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Kuala Lumpur this time of the year. In the summer, Kuala Lumpur often gets more sunshine than Seoul. Kuala Lumpur gets 200 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Seoul receives 121 hours of full sun.
It's quite rainy in Seoul. Kuala Lumpur receives a lot of rain in the summer. Kuala Lumpur usually gets less rain in July than Seoul. Kuala Lumpur gets 150 mm (5.9 in) of rain, while Seoul receives 369 mm (14.5 in) of rain this time of the year.
Both Seoul and Kuala Lumpur are popular destinations to visit in the autumn with plenty of activities. Kuala Lumpur attracts visitors year-round for its warm weather and tropical climate. Also, most visitors come to Seoul for the city's sights and attractions, the shopping scene, and the music scene during these months.
In October, Kuala Lumpur is generally much warmer than Seoul. Temperatures in Kuala Lumpur average around 27°C (81°F), and Seoul stays around 15°C (59°F).
It's quite sunny in Seoul. Kuala Lumpur usually receives less sunshine than Seoul during autumn. Kuala Lumpur gets 169 hours of sunny skies, while Seoul receives 204 hours of full sun in the autumn.
It's quite rainy in Kuala Lumpur. In October, Kuala Lumpur usually receives more rain than Seoul. Kuala Lumpur gets 280 mm (11 in) of rain, while Seoul receives 49 mm (1.9 in) of rain each month for the autumn.
Both Seoul and Kuala Lumpur during the winter are popular places to visit. The warm tropical climate attracts visitors to Kuala Lumpur throughout the year. Also, the winter months attract visitors to Seoul because of the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine.
The weather in Seoul can be very cold. Kuala Lumpur is much warmer than Seoul in the winter. The temperature in Kuala Lumpur is usually 27°C (81°F) in January, and Seoul stays around -3°C (27°F).
In the winter, Kuala Lumpur often gets more sunshine than Seoul. Kuala Lumpur gets 185 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Seoul receives 163 hours of full sun.
It rains a lot this time of the year in Kuala Lumpur. Kuala Lumpur usually gets more rain in January than Seoul. Kuala Lumpur gets 239 mm (9.4 in) of rain, while Seoul receives 23 mm (0.9 in) of rain this time of the year.
The spring attracts plenty of travelers to both Kuala Lumpur and Seoul. Plenty of visitors come to Kuala Lumpur because of the warm tropical climate that lasts throughout the year. Also, the activities around the city are the main draw to Seoul this time of year.
In the spring, Kuala Lumpur is much warmer than Seoul. Typically, the spring temperatures in Kuala Lumpur in April are around 28°C (82°F), and Seoul is about 13°C (55°F).
People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Seoul this time of the year. Kuala Lumpur usually receives around the same amount of sunshine as Seoul during spring. Kuala Lumpur gets 199 hours of sunny skies, while Seoul receives 205 hours of full sun in the spring.
Kuala Lumpur gets a good bit of rain this time of year. In April, Kuala Lumpur usually receives more rain than Seoul. Kuala Lumpur gets 240 mm (9.4 in) of rain, while Seoul receives 94 mm (3.7 in) of rain each month for the spring.
|Temp (°C)||Rain (mm)||Temp (°C)||Rain (mm)|
|Jan||27°C (81°F)||239 mm (9.4 in)||-3°C (27°F)||23 mm (0.9 in)|
|Feb||28°C (82°F)||200 mm (7.9 in)||-0°C (32°F)||25 mm (1 in)|
|Mar||28°C (82°F)||260 mm (10.2 in)||6°C (42°F)||47 mm (1.9 in)|
|Apr||28°C (82°F)||240 mm (9.4 in)||13°C (55°F)||94 mm (3.7 in)|
|May||28°C (82°F)||190 mm (7.5 in)||18°C (65°F)||92 mm (3.6 in)|
|Jun||28°C (82°F)||160 mm (6.3 in)||23°C (73°F)||134 mm (5.3 in)|
|Jul||28°C (82°F)||150 mm (5.9 in)||26°C (78°F)||369 mm (14.5 in)|
|Aug||28°C (82°F)||160 mm (6.3 in)||26°C (80°F)||294 mm (11.6 in)|
|Sep||27°C (81°F)||200 mm (7.9 in)||22°C (71°F)||169 mm (6.7 in)|
|Oct||27°C (81°F)||280 mm (11 in)||15°C (59°F)||49 mm (1.9 in)|
|Nov||27°C (81°F)||290 mm (11.4 in)||8°C (46°F)||53 mm (2.1 in)|
|Dec||27°C (81°F)||250 mm (9.8 in)||0°C (33°F)||22 mm (0.9 in)|
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