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

Should you visit Lhasa or Shenzhen?

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

Should I visit Lhasa or Shenzhen? 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 Shenzhen?


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.


Located in the Guangdong Province of southeastern China, Shenzhen is a metropolis that connects Hong Kong to China's mainland. It is one of China's most populous cities, inhabited by vast array of people from other Chinese regions.  It is perhaps best known for it shopping, collection of amusement parks, green parks, museums and galleries, and a few historic sites. It is on UNESCO's Creative Cities list.

Which place is cheaper, Shenzhen or Lhasa?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Lhasa is $71, while the average daily cost in Shenzhen is $124. 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 destination. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Lhasa and Shenzhen in more detail.

  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Lhasa $39
    Shenzhen $90
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Lhasa $78
    Shenzhen $180
Compare Hotels in Lhasa and Shenzhen

Looking for a hotel in Lhasa or Shenzhen? 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 Shenzhen

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 $2.58
    Shenzhen $15

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Lhasa

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

  • [Airport Transfer] Lhasa Kunga Airport ⇔ Lhasa City Transfer ☆ High reputation for service! <Charter charter>: $89
  • Lhasa Kongga Airport Chauffeur Service, Lhasa Airport Transfer, Pickup: $170
  • Lhasa Kongga Airport Chauffeur Service, Lhasa Airport Transfer, Pickup: $260

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Shenzhen

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

  • [Airport Transfer] Shenzhen Airport 送 迎 Shenzhen City Transfer High reputation for service! : $32
  • Try find your better than us ! Airport transfer in Hong Kong HTL-APT (HKG): $83
  • Try find your better than us ! Airport transfer in Hong Kong APT-HTL (HKG): $83
  • Transfers anywhere in Hong Kong: $140
  • Transfer Hong Kong to Hong Kong Airport by Luxury Van or Sedan: $111
  • Transfer Hong Kong Airport to Hong Kong by Luxury Van or Sedan: $111
  • Shenzhen to Shenzhen Airport (SZX) - Departure Private Transfer: $48
  • Shenzhen Private Transfer from Shenzhen central to Shenzhen Bao'an Airport (SZX): $80
  • Shenzhen Private Transfer from Shenzhen Bao'an Airport (SZX) to central Shenzhen: $80
  • Shenzhen Int Airport (SZX) to Shenzhen - Arrival Private Transfer: $48
  • Shenzhen Bao'an Airport Private Arrival Transfer to City Center: $49
  • Shenzhen Airport (SZX): Private Transfer to/from Shenzhen: $48

Is it cheaper to fly into Lhasa or Shenzhen?

Prices for flights to both Shenzhen 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 Meals for one day
    Lhasa $26
    Shenzhen $20

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Shenzhen

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

  • Vegetarian Food Tour: $77
  • Hong Kong Island Food Tour with Secret Menu: $87
  • Wet market tour & cooking class with local mum: $90
  • Hong Kong Guided Dinner + Laser Show Lounge Entry (2023) | 200+ booked : $100
  • Small-Group Hong Kong Island Food Tour: $107
  • Hong Kong Food Tour: Sham Shui Po District: $108
  • Hong Kong Food Tour: Central and Sheung Wan Districts: $108
  • Secret Food Tour With the Locals in Tin Hau Hong Kong w/ Private Tour Option: $108
  • Traditional Chinese Pun Chio cooking class in Hong Kong for private groups: $112
  • Small Group Local Market Walking Tour and Chinese Cooking Class in Hong Kong: $131
  • Private Food Tour With the Locals in Hong Kong: $143
  • Hong Kong Private Walking Food Tour With Secret Food Tours: $148

  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Lhasa $17
    Shenzhen $17

Tours and Activities in Lhasa

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

  • 4 Days Lhasa City Essence Tour: $745
  • 4 Days Lhasa City Tibet Tour included Permit issued: $760
  • Private Full-Day Tour w/ Lunch: $800
  • Nepal Tibet Tour 8 Days: $2,734

Tours and Activities in Shenzhen

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

  • Custom private tour of Hong Kong Island - Half day: $220
  • SEAT-IN-COACH Macau Tour with simple buffet lunch from Hong Kong: $169
  • Shenzhen Self-Guided Flexible Tour with Private Car and Driver : $86
  • (Private class) Hong Kong gourmet baking experience class: Hong Kong-style egg tart + custard mooncake: $88
  • **HK Resident Offer**sky100 Admission Ticket Offer [F-HC_HK]: $14
  • 100% Private & Personalised Tour of Hong Kong With A Local Insider: $64
  • 2.5-Hour Shenzhen City-Village Walking Tour: Back In The 90's & TikTok Influence: $51
  • 4-Hour Private Hong Kong Layover Tour: $263
  • 4-Hour Small Group Kowloon Sightseeing Tour: $103
  • 5-Hour Private Customized Walking Tour in Hong Kong: $265
  • 60 Minutes Virtual Reality Experience in Hong Kong: $37
  • A Magical Evening in Hong Kong: Private City Tour: $104

  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Lhasa $6.95
    Shenzhen $19

Sample the Local Flavors in Shenzhen

Here are a few nightlife and alcohol tours and activities from local tour providers in Shenzhen:

  • Lan Kwai Fong (LKF) Pub Crawl: $13

When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Lhasa and Shenzhen, we can see that Shenzhen 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 Shenzhen would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Shenzhen than you might in Lhasa.

If you're trying to decide if either of these two destinations are within your price range, also see Is Lhasa Expensive? and Is Shenzhen Expensive?.

Which is Bigger, Lhasa or Shenzhen?

Shenzhen has a larger population, and is about 8 times larger than the population of Lhasa. When comparing the sizes of Lhasa and Shenzhen, keep in mind that a larger population does not always imply the destination has more attractions or better activities. So, always research the type of place that you want to visit along with the activities and attractions that interest you.

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