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

Should you visit Lhasa or Chongqing?

Should I visit Lhasa or Chongqing? This is a common question asked by many travelers. By figuring out which city is more affordable, you'll understand where you can get more bang for your buck. So, let's dive into the data, which all comes from actual travelers.

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.

Chongqing

Chongqing, China is a large city in central China and one of only four cities in the country that are not part of a province. While Chongqing is famous for being an economically important city, brush away its industrial surface and you'll find a naturally beautiful city with plenty of hidden wonders. Although you'll find many expats in the city, English is rarely spoken, meaning knowing some basic Mandarin will come in handy.

Which city is cheaper, Chongqing or Lhasa?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Lhasa is $63, while the average daily cost in Chongqing is $77. 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. Below is a breakdown of travel costs for Lhasa and Chongqing in more detail.



Accommodation

An average hotel room with basic furnishings costs about $70 in Lhasa For the most convenient locations and nicer amenities you can expect to pay a bit more.

Accommodation prices vary by location and style, but travelers pay on average about $88 for a double occupancy room in Chongqing.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Lhasa $35
    Chongqing $44
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Lhasa $70
    Chongqing $88

Food

Lhasa food costs typically run travelers around $23 per day. Eating every meal in a nicer restaurant will drive the cost up, and grabbing fast food or casual meals will help you save money.

In Chongqing travelers spend around $22 a day on food. You can save money by choosing casual restaurants or food stalls, or you can spend plenty more by dining in nicer restaurants at every meal.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Lhasa $23
    Chongqing $22

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 Chongqing

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

  • Chongqing Liangjiang Night Cruise Including Authentic Hot Pot Dinner: $86
  • Chongqing City private night tour with Hot Pot dinner: $148
  • Chongqing Port Transfer Service with Half-Day Tour and Hot Pot Dinner: $193
  • From Port Transfer with Half Day Tour and Hot Pot Dinner: $197
  • 250 USD Per Group Private Chongqing Night Tour with Hot-pot Dinner: $213

Local Transportation

Public transportation tends to be much less expensive in Lhasa than paying for a taxi or private car service, as is expected. Typically, people spend $2.29 on transportation in Lhasa on average per day.

While taxis and private drivers typically cost much more than public transportation, people usually spend around $17 per day to get around in Chongqing.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Lhasa $2.29
    Chongqing $17

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 Chongqing

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Chongqing:

  • Three Gorges Cruises with Transfer in Chongqing and Yichang: $466
  • Private airport transfer to or from Chongqing International Airport max 5: $18
  • Private airport transfer to or from Chongqing International Airport max 5: $14
  • Private Transfer: Chongqing Jiangbei Airport (CKG) to Chaotianmen Cruise Pier: $43
  • Private Transfer: Chongqing Chaotianmen Cruise Pier to Airport (CKG): $43
  • Private Transfer from Chongqing hotel to Chongqing Train Station: $25
  • Private Transfer from Chongqing Railway Station to City Hotel: $40
  • Private Round-Trip Transfer: Chongqing Jiangbei International Airport(CKG): $44
  • Private One Way Transfer (English Service) between Airport & Hotel & Cruise Port: $57
  • Private Departure Transfer:Hotel to Chongqing Jiangbei International Airport CKG: $22
  • Private Departure Transfer: Hotel to Chongqing Jiangbei Airport (CKG): $22
  • Private Departure Transfer: Hotel to Chongqing Chaotianmen Cruise Pier: $39

Is it cheaper to fly into Lhasa or Chongqing?

Prices for flights to both Chongqing 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.





Entertainment

Sightseeing expenses in Lhasa, including the cost of admission tickets for day tours, museums, and attractions, usually cost an average of $15 per day, per person.

Activities, things to do, and other forms of entertainment usually cost around $12 per person, per day in Chongqing. This cost includes the price of admission tickets to attractions and museums as well as daily tours.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Lhasa $15
    Chongqing $12

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 Chongqing

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

  • 1 Day Private Tour of Chongqing Highlights Including lunch and Optional Photo in Sichuan Opera Costume: $114
  • 1 Day Private Tour of Most Beautiful Heishan Valley in Chongqing Including Lunch: $166
  • 1 Day Private Tour of Wulong Stone Bridges and Canyon in Chongqing Including Lunch: $195
  • 1-Day Chongqing City Private Tour with the Hot pot Lunch: $150
  • 1-Day Chongqing Dazu Rock Carvings Private Tour With the Lunch: $230
  • 1-Day Private Tour: Wulong Tiankeng Three Bridges and Fairy Mountain: $366
  • 199 USD Per Group Private Chongqing City Hiking Tour: $199
  • 2-Day Private Customized Harbin Tour from Chongqing by Air: $958
  • 2-Day Private Lijiang Highlights Tour from Chongqing by Plane: $798
  • 2-Day Private Tour from Chongqing with Hotel:Shaolin Temple and Longmen Grottoes: $798
  • 2-Days Chongqing City Highlights Sightseeing Private Tour: $398
  • 2-Days Private Tour of Chengdu City Highlights from Chongqing by Bullet Train: $428

Alcohol

Typically, people visiting Lhasa spend on average $6.17 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.

While the amount that someone spends on alcohol while visiting Chongqing may vary from person to person, on average a person spends $6.17 per day on alcoholic beverages.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Lhasa $6.17
    Chongqing $6.17


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

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Lhasa vs. Chongqing Travel Comparison

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