Which city is cheaper, Tokyo 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 Tokyo. 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 modern, welcoming, and friendly city. Visitors will also find so much to do here because it's a large city with many sights and attractions. With stunning beauty, it attracts visitors from all around. It's also popular because of the museums, nightlife, and food.
Tokyo is a vibrant, iconic, and eclectic city. It's an amazing and huge city with tons of activities and things to do. This is also a very beautiful destination which attracts plenty of visitors. Other reasons to visit include live music, food, and shopping.
Let's take a look at the differences and similarities between Tokyo 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 Tokyo.
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.
The museums, monuments, and landmarks in Tokyo are among the most recognizable in the world. This iconic city is filled with recognizable landmarks and world class museums including the Meiji Shrine, the Sensō-ji Temple, and the Tokyo Skytree.
Foodies will find both Kuala Lumpur and Tokyo 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, Tokyo is an obvious choice, as it is one of the food capitals of the world. With an astonishing number of Michelin star restaurants, this is one of the most interesting and impressive food destinations in the world. Not all restaurants are high end though. You'll find plenty of cheap eateries that offer their own rewarding culinary experience. Must try local dishes include okonomiyaki, ramen, and of course, sushi.
The nightlife scene is relatively similar in Kuala Lumpur and Tokyo.
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.
The nightlife in Tokyo is well established with world renowned clubs and venues. The professional urgency that you feel during the day morphs into a vibrant, laid back city at night. The neon lights turn on and locals head out to destress. There are karaoke bars, casual pubs, high energy nightclubs, and more. Popular areas for nightlife include Roppongi, Shibuya and Shinjuku.
Shoppers can find a variety of stores in both Kuala Lumpur and Tokyo.
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 Tokyo make it a world-class shopping destination. The city is known for its electronics, anime products, and trendy fashion brands. Many neighborhoods are also shopping districts with malls or markets throughout. Prices can be steep, but products are generally high quality. For some of the city's best shopping, head to Shinjuku, Shibuya, or Ginza.
Both Kuala Lumpur and Tokyo 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.
As it has a large number of activities for kids, Tokyo is a very family-friendly destination. This is an incredibly kid-friendly city. There's Disneyland, but there are also many other entertainment centers, amusement areas, a zoo, aquarium, and more. Kids will also enjoy experiencing the city's fascinating culture. They can visit temples, museums, and the Tokyo Tower. Another fun local experience is to go to a baseball game.
Kuala Lumpur and Tokyo 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 Tokyo frequently as it offers plenty of romantic activities. This high tech city offers luxury hotels and spas, award winning restaurants, and unique date night opportunities like karaoke or sushi making classes. The city has many parks and gardens as well as malls, dynamic neighborhoods, and interesting museums.
Kuala Lumpur and Tokyo 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.
Tokyo is popular with backpackers and budget travelers. Known for it's high prices, it can be a bit difficult to visit this city on a budget. There are dorm rooms available but they still come with a high price tag. Food is a bit easier as the eateries are diverse with many options on the cheaper side.
Both Kuala Lumpur and Tokyo 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.
Many students frequent Tokyo. The city attracts many international students and there are a number of prestigious universities to choose from. Perhaps the biggest challenge is navigating the language difference, but that is all part of the experience when studying abroad.
Visitors will find public transit in both Kuala Lumpur and Tokyo.
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 Tokyo can get around quickly with the extensive public transit system. Trains, subways, and buses make up the complex transportation system and, while it may seem overwhelming at first, the system is actually very clean, efficient, and reliable.
Kuala Lumpur and Tokyo 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.
Getting around Tokyo on foot is easy. Many neighborhoods are very easy to explore on foot, so it's fun to just wander without a plan, seeing where you end up.
Both Kuala Lumpur and Tokyo have a number of activities to choose from. With generally more activities and things to do, visitors tend to spend more time in Tokyo 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 Tokyo 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 Tokyo, many people enjoy the shopping and museums that this cutting edge 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.
Tokyo 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 Tokyo, many people enjoy the nightlife and live music that this eclectic 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 diverse 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.
Tokyo 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 $51, while the average daily cost in Tokyo is $153. 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 Tokyo in more detail.
Looking for a hotel in Kuala Lumpur or Tokyo? 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:
Here are some examples of typical transportation prices from actual travelers in Tokyo:
Also for Tokyo, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:
Prices for flights to both Tokyo 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:
Here are some examples of typical meal expenses from previous travelers to Tokyo:
For Tokyo, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:
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:
Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Tokyo.
Some typical examples of the costs for nightlife and alcohol in Kuala Lumpur are as follows:
Below are a few samples from actual travelers for alcohol and nightlife costs in Tokyo:
When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Kuala Lumpur and Tokyo, we can see that Tokyo 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 Tokyo would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Tokyo than you might in Kuala Lumpur.
Tokyo 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 attracts plenty of travelers to both Kuala Lumpur and Tokyo. Kuala Lumpur attracts visitors year-round for its warm weather and tropical climate. Also, many travelers come to Tokyo for the city activities, the music scene, and the family-friendly experiences.
In July, Kuala Lumpur is generally around the same temperature as Tokyo. Temperatures in Kuala Lumpur average around 28°C (82°F), and Tokyo stays around 26°C (78°F).
In Kuala Lumpur, it's very sunny this time of the year. Kuala Lumpur usually receives more sunshine than Tokyo during summer. Kuala Lumpur gets 200 hours of sunny skies, while Tokyo receives 137 hours of full sun in the summer.
Tokyo receives a lot of rain in the summer. Kuala Lumpur gets a good bit of rain this time of year. In July, Kuala Lumpur usually receives more rain than Tokyo. Kuala Lumpur gets 150 mm (5.9 in) of rain, while Tokyo receives 127 mm (5 in) of rain each month for the summer.
The autumn brings many poeple to Kuala Lumpur as well as Tokyo. The warm tropical climate attracts visitors to Kuala Lumpur throughout the year. Also, many visitors come to Tokyo in the autumn for the city's sights and attractions, the shopping scene, the music scene, and the natural beauty of the area.
Kuala Lumpur is much warmer than Tokyo in the autumn. The temperature in Kuala Lumpur is usually 27°C (81°F) in October, and Tokyo stays around 18°C (64°F).
In the autumn, Kuala Lumpur often gets more sunshine than Tokyo. Kuala Lumpur gets 169 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Tokyo receives 129 hours of full sun.
It's quite rainy in Tokyo. Kuala Lumpur receives a lot of rain in the autumn. Kuala Lumpur usually gets more rain in October than Tokyo. Kuala Lumpur gets 280 mm (11 in) of rain, while Tokyo receives 165 mm (6.5 in) of rain this time of the year.
Both Tokyo and Kuala Lumpur are popular destinations to visit in the winter with plenty of activities. Plenty of visitors come to Kuala Lumpur because of the warm tropical climate that lasts throughout the year. Also, most visitors come to Tokyo for the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine during these months.
In the winter, Kuala Lumpur is much warmer than Tokyo. Typically, the winter temperatures in Kuala Lumpur in January are around 27°C (81°F), and Tokyo is about 5°C (42°F).
Kuala Lumpur usually receives around the same amount of sunshine as Tokyo during winter. Kuala Lumpur gets 185 hours of sunny skies, while Tokyo receives 175 hours of full sun in the winter.
It's quite rainy in Kuala Lumpur. In January, Kuala Lumpur usually receives more rain than Tokyo. Kuala Lumpur gets 239 mm (9.4 in) of rain, while Tokyo receives 45 mm (1.8 in) of rain each month for the winter.
Both Tokyo and Kuala Lumpur during the spring are popular places to visit. Kuala Lumpur attracts visitors year-round for its warm weather and tropical climate. Furthermore, the spring months attract visitors to Tokyo because of the activities around the city and the natural beauty.
In April, Kuala Lumpur is generally much warmer than Tokyo. Temperatures in Kuala Lumpur average around 28°C (82°F), and Tokyo stays around 14°C (58°F).
In the spring, Kuala Lumpur often gets more sunshine than Tokyo. Kuala Lumpur gets 199 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Tokyo receives 161 hours of full sun.
Tokyo gets a good bit of rain this time of year. It rains a lot this time of the year in Kuala Lumpur. Kuala Lumpur usually gets more rain in April than Tokyo. Kuala Lumpur gets 240 mm (9.4 in) of rain, while Tokyo receives 125 mm (4.9 in) of rain this time of the year.
|Temp (°C)||Rain (mm)||Temp (°C)||Rain (mm)|
|Jan||27°C (81°F)||239 mm (9.4 in)||5°C (42°F)||45 mm (1.8 in)|
|Feb||28°C (82°F)||200 mm (7.9 in)||6°C (42°F)||60 mm (2.4 in)|
|Mar||28°C (82°F)||260 mm (10.2 in)||9°C (47°F)||100 mm (3.9 in)|
|Apr||28°C (82°F)||240 mm (9.4 in)||14°C (58°F)||125 mm (4.9 in)|
|May||28°C (82°F)||190 mm (7.5 in)||19°C (66°F)||138 mm (5.4 in)|
|Jun||28°C (82°F)||160 mm (6.3 in)||22°C (71°F)||186 mm (7.3 in)|
|Jul||28°C (82°F)||150 mm (5.9 in)||26°C (78°F)||127 mm (5 in)|
|Aug||28°C (82°F)||160 mm (6.3 in)||27°C (81°F)||148 mm (5.8 in)|
|Sep||27°C (81°F)||200 mm (7.9 in)||23°C (74°F)||180 mm (7.1 in)|
|Oct||27°C (81°F)||280 mm (11 in)||18°C (64°F)||165 mm (6.5 in)|
|Nov||27°C (81°F)||290 mm (11.4 in)||13°C (55°F)||90 mm (3.5 in)|
|Dec||27°C (81°F)||250 mm (9.8 in)||8°C (46°F)||46 mm (1.8 in)|
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