A Travel Price Comparison for Thailand Pai vs. Kanchanaburi for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Pai or Kanchanaburi?

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

Which city should you visit? Read on to compare the activities as well as the prices of travel for Pai and Kanchanaburi. 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.


As the lush green mountains adorn the blue horizon amidst its creamy clouds, Pai, in northern Thailand, works as one of the many hubs for some of the world's most exciting cultural adventures and natural wonders. Within this small town just north of the Mae Hong Son Province, near the Myanmar border, Pai lays on the Pai River and holds a population of no more than 2,500. Despite its geographical insignificance, this town attracts a wide array of tourists. From breathtaking waterfalls to relaxing hot springs, you will find yourself astonished at how much this little city holds within its borders.


If the hustle and bustle of the big city of Bangkok is just getting to you, there's an easy escape. Kanchanaburi, Thailand is a city located at the meeting of Kwai Noi and Kwai Yai, and is ideal for backpackers looking to reflect and relax. With easily accessible waterfalls and national parks, you'll wonder why anyone ever leaves.

Which city is cheaper, Kanchanaburi or Pai?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Pai is $54, while the average daily cost in Kanchanaburi is $35. 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 Pai and Kanchanaburi in more detail.

  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Pai $12
    Kanchanaburi $16
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Pai $24
    Kanchanaburi $32

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Pai $31
    Kanchanaburi $10

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Kanchanaburi

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

  • Private Transfer from Kanchanaburi to Suvarnabhumi (BKK) Airport: $187
  • Private Transfer from Kanchanaburi to Don Mueang (DMK) Airport: $195
  • Private Airport Transfer : Bangkok to/from Kanchanaburi: $64
  • Bangkok Airports: Transfer Pattaya, Hua Hin, and More: $47
  • Arrival Bangkok Airport Private Transfer : Hotel in Kanchanaburi: $143

Is it cheaper to fly into Pai or Kanchanaburi?

Prices for flights to both Kanchanaburi and Pai 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
    Pai $18
    Kanchanaburi $10

Typical Food prices in Kanchanaburi

For Kanchanaburi, here are some examples of average food and meal prices for travelers:

  • Casual Lunch

  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Pai $34
    Kanchanaburi $7.69

Tours and Activities in Pai

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

  • Private Like-a-Local Tour of Rome: $65
  • Private Rome City Tour with Expert Local Guide: $130

Typical Entertainment prices in Kanchanaburi

Below are a few sample prices from actual travelers for Kanchanaburi's activities, tours, and tickets:

  • Entry Park TreeHouse

Tours and Activities in Kanchanaburi

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

  • Bangkok: Kanchanaburi, River Kwai & Death Railway Tour: $55
  • Day tours Kanchanaburi: $164
  • Erawan Waterfalls - Death Railway Tour: From Kanchanaburi: $71
  • From Bangkok: Kanchanaburi Tour with Floating Market Visit: $182
  • From 4x4 Off Road Adventure, Bamboo Rafting and Hot Springs: $273
  • Kanchanaburi River Kwai & Hellfire Pass Private Tour: $167
  • Kanchanaburi and Death Railway Private Tour from Bangkok: $161
  • Elephant Sanctuary & Erawan Waterfall Tour: $110
  • Private : Kanchanaburi Highlight Day Tour: $119
  • Private Tour: Kanchanaburi Local Thai Life and City Discovery: $171
  • Private Tour: Trekking Kanchanaburi Forest to Tham Than Lod: $133
  • Thailand's Tour: Kanchanaburi, River Kwai, Markets, Lopburi, Ayutthaya - 3 Days: $498

  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Pai $11
    Kanchanaburi $6.78

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

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Pai vs. Kanchanaburi Travel Comparison

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