A Travel Price Comparison for China Lhasa vs. Chengdu for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Lhasa or Chengdu?

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

Should I visit Lhasa or Chengdu? 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: Lhasa or Chengdu?

Lhasa

Lhasa is the famed capital of Tibet, and is one of the most fascinating cities in the world to visit. It's name means "Land of the Gods" and the city dates back more than 1,300 years. It's elevation is 3,650 meters above sea level, making it one of the highest cities in the world. It sits on the northern slopes of the Himalayan Mountains by the Lhasa River and is the second largest city on the Tibetan Plateau after Xining.

Chengdu

Chengdu is in China's Sichuan Provence and is in what is known as the Red Basin. It is a particularly fertile region in China that is known for its agriculture. For this reason it is sometimes referred to as the "Land of Milk and Honey". The Funan River cuts through the city but has almost no boat traffic anymore. The city itself has a wonderful relaxed vibe compared to the rest of China and is filled with green parks and places to relax. It is considered one of the most livable cities in China.

Which city is cheaper, Chengdu or Lhasa?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Lhasa is $57, while the average daily cost in Chengdu is $41. 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 Lhasa and Chengdu in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Lhasa $32
    Chengdu $17
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Lhasa $64
    Chengdu $34
Compare Hotels in Lhasa and Chengdu

Looking for a hotel in Lhasa or Chengdu? 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 Lhasa


Hotels in Chengdu


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.
    Lhasa $2.08
    Chengdu $4.82

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Lhasa

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

  • Lhasa Kongga Airport Chauffeur Service, Lhasa Airport Transfer, Pickup: $260
  • Lhasa Private Arrival Transfer: Railway Station to Hotel: $89
  • Lhasa Private Departure Transfer: Hotel to Airport: $89
  • Lhasa Private Departure Transfer: Hotel to Railway Station: $89

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Chengdu

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Chengdu:

  • Skip The Line: Chengdu to Xi'an/Chongqing Bullet Train Ticket with Transfer: $52
  • Sichuan Face Changing Opera With Door to Door Private Transfer and Guide: $51
  • Round-Trip Private Transfer between Emei Shan and Chengdu City: $106
  • Round Trip Chengdu Shuangliu Airport (CTU) Transfer to Chengdu City Center: $34
  • Private airport transfer to or from Chengdu International Airport Max 5 persons: $19
  • Private airport transfer to or from Chengdu International Airport Max 5 person: $19
  • Private Transfer from Chengdu to Mount Emei and Stops at Leshan Giant Buddha: $150
  • Private Transfer from Chengdu to Jiuzhaigou Valley hotel: $350
  • Private Transfer from Chengdu hotel to Chengdu Train Station: $25
  • Private Transfer from Chengdu Railway Station to City Hotel: $30
  • Private Transfer from Chengdu City Hotels to Airport: $35
  • Private Transfer from Chengdu Airport to City Hotels: $35

Is it cheaper to fly into Lhasa or Chengdu?

Prices for flights to both Chengdu and Lhasa 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
    Lhasa $21
    Chengdu $18

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Lhasa

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

  • 4-Day Lhasa City Essential Group Tour including Hotel and Welcome Dinner: $592

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Chengdu

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

  • Food and Cooking experiences in Chengdu: $51
  • Half Day Tour Chengdu Courtyard Cooking Class and Local Spice Market: $56
  • Sichuan cooking class half day tour: $56
  • Half-Day Chinese Bun Cooking Class with Local Spice Market Visit: $56
  • Private Sichuan Cooking Class including Local Wet Market Visit: $59
  • Half-Day Small Group Sichuan Cuisine Museum Tour with Cooking Class: $64
  • Half Day Chengdu Tofu Making Class with Mapo Tofu Cooking: $70
  • Authentic Chengdu Local Food Tour: $73
  • Half-Day Private Sichuan Hot-Pot Cooking Class with Local Spice Market Visit: $78
  • Half-Day Sichuan Cooking Class Experience in Chengdu: $87
  • Half day Sichuan Cuisine Cooking Class Tour: $96
  • Private tour to Panda Base and Cooking class in Chengdu: $98

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Lhasa $14
    Chengdu $13

Tours and Activities in Lhasa

For Lhasa, here are a few prices for actual activities, tours, and tickets provided by various companies:

  • 4 Days Top Lhasa Group Tour: $53
  • Highlight Tibet Potala Palace Tour with Tibet Travel Expert Guide: $95
  • Day Tour: Tibet Ganden Monastery: $178
  • Day Tour: Tibet Drepung and Sera Monasteries: $180
  • Day Tour: Tibet Potala Palace and Jokhang Temple: $237
  • Tibet Entry Permit Plus Jokhang Temple & Barkhor Streets and Sera Monastery Tour: $263
  • Half- Day Potala Palace Tour from Lhasa: $278
  • 2-Day Lake Namtso Experience Small-Group Tour from Lhasa: $353
  • 2-Day Gyantse and Shigatse Tour from Lhasa: $359
  • Lhasa overview tour - 2 days: $360
  • The Best Bet 4 Days Lhasa Tour with Local Tibet Travel Expert: $421
  • 3-Night Essential Lhasa Tour: $474

Tours and Activities in Chengdu

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

  • 1 Day Chengdu Private Tour to Chengdu Panda Base & City Highlights Visiting: $163
  • 1 Day Leshan Giant Buddha and Tea Terrace in Lost Town Tour: $160
  • 1 Day Wolong Panda Nature Reserve Tour: $218
  • 1-Day Chengdu Ancient History and Culture City Tour: $175
  • 1-Day Chengdu Cultural Discovery:Jinsha,Shu Brocade Museum & Dufu Cottage Tour: $184
  • 1-Day Chengdu Cultural Tour: Ancient Poets and Temples: $184
  • 1-Day Chengdu Leshan Giant Buddha Private Tour With the Lunch and Boat tour: $236
  • 1-Day Chengdu Panda Base and Leshan Giant Buddha GROUP Tour: $140
  • 1-Day Chengdu Panda Base and Leshan Giant Buddha Private Tour with the Lunch: $240
  • 1-Day Chengdu Panda Research Base and Sanxingdui Archeological Museum Tour: $250
  • 1-Day Chengdu Private Tour: Dujiangyan Ancient River Irrigation and Temple Site: $208
  • 1-Day Chengdu tour with Panda Base, Renmin Park,Wenshu Temple and Hot Pot Lunch: $188

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Lhasa $5.61
    Chengdu $3.20

Sample the Local Flavors in Chengdu

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

  • Half Day Explore Chinese White Wine Distillery in Chengdu: $128


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

Budget Your Trip

Budget Your Trip has average travel costs for thousands of cities around the world, all provided by other travelers. You can also register to organize your spending by category and location with graphs, maps, charts, and tables.

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Lhasa vs. Chengdu Travel Comparison

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