A Travel Price Comparison for China Xiamen vs. Shanghai for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Xiamen or Shanghai?

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

Trying to figure out where to travel next? This travel comparison between Xiamen and Shanghai can help. It includes a travel cost comparison in addition to other factors. For many travelers, the cost of a destination is a primary consideration when choosing where to go.

Xiamen

Xiamen is a coastal city in the Fujian Province of China and has been a major port city and gateway to China for centuries. This vibrant and modern city was named the most livable city in the world in 2002 and one of the first cities to be named a Special Economic Zone. Xiamen is best known for being home to Gulangyu Island, a beautiful island full of historic colonial buildings and lovely walking paths.

Shanghai

Shanghai is the largest and most modern city in China. With a population of over 23 million, it is the economic and financial hub of the country. It also continues to be one of the fastest growing cities in China with regular changes to the city's layout and skyline. It is not uncommon for buildings to be torn down, rebuilt and then torn down and rebuilt again. The city also has skyscrapers that rank among the tallest in the world. It has an ever changing downtown and street scape. In Shanghai, the general mantra remains "out with the old, in with the new".

Which city is cheaper, Shanghai or Xiamen?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Xiamen is $55, while the average daily cost in Shanghai is $99. 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 Xiamen and Shanghai in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Xiamen $26
    Shanghai $70
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Xiamen $52
    Shanghai $140

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Xiamen $5.18
    Shanghai $3.35

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Xiamen

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

  • Private Airport Transfer: Xiamen to Xiamen Gaoqi International Airport (XMN): $14
  • Private Departure Transfer:City Hotel to Xiamen Gaoqi International Airport(XMN): $14
  • Private airport transfer to or from Xiamen International Airport max 5: $15
  • Private Departure Transfer to North Railway Station from Downtown Xiamen: $15
  • Private airport transfer to or from Xiamen Gaoqi International Airport Max 5: $15
  • Gulangyu Ferry Ticket between Xiamen and Sanqiutian Pier with private transfer: $18
  • Xiamen Private Departure Transfer: City Hotel to Railway Station: $19
  • Private Departure Transfer to Xiamen Airport from Xiamen City: $19
  • Private Xiamen Gaoqi Airport Departure Transfer from City Areas: $19
  • Xiamen North Railway Station Private Transfer from City Area: $19
  • Private Transfer from Xiamen North Railway Station to City Area: $19
  • Xiamen Railway Station Private Transfer to Gaoqi Airport: $19

Typical Local Transportation prices in Shanghai

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for transportation costs in Shanghai:


  • Taxi Ride
    $3.88
  • Two Subway Tickets
    $0.90

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Shanghai

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Shanghai:

  • Zhujiajiao Water Town and Shanghai City Self-Guide 10-Hour Private Transfer Tour: $129
  • Zhujiajiao Water Town Self-Guided Tour with Private Transfer from Shanghai: $64
  • Zhouzhuang and Tongli Water Town Private Transfer Service from Shanghai: $93
  • Xitang Water Town Self-Guided Tour from Shanghai with Private Transfer: $88
  • Wuzhen and Xitang Water Town Private Transfer from Shanghai: $132
  • Wusongkou International Cruise Terminal-Pudong Airport One Way Private Transfer: $34
  • Wusongkou International Cruise Terminal-Downtown Hotel Private One Way Transfer: $32
  • Wusongkou Cruise Terminal to Hongqiao Airport Chauffeur Service, Port Transfer: $87
  • Wusongkou Cruise Terminal Share Transfer Service, Baoshan Port Pick up Service: $29
  • Transfer in private minivan from Shanghai City to Hongqiao Airport: $57
  • Transfer in Private Vehicle from Shanghai City to Hongqiao Airport: $33
  • Transfer in Private Minivan from Shanghai City to Shanghai Pudong Airport (PVG): $57

Is it cheaper to fly into Xiamen or Shanghai?

Prices for flights to both Shanghai and Xiamen 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
    Xiamen $23
    Shanghai $19

Typical Food prices in Shanghai

Some typical examples of dining costs in Shanghai are as follows:


  • Dumpling Breakfast
    $1.49
  • Desserts in Jinmao Building Observatory
    $22
  • Ajisen Lunch for Two
    $7.76
  • Cantelope
    $1.79
  • Dumplings and Soup
    $2.24
  • Duck Dinner
    $4.48
  • Pastries
    $3.13
  • Barbeque Dinner
    $9.55

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Shanghai

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

  • Online Chinese Cooking Class: $22
  • Old Shanghai Breakfast Food Tour: $52
  • 3-Hour Shanghai Summer Night Local Dinner and Shopping Private Tour: $65
  • Private Chinese Cooking Class in Shanghai with Vegetarian Option: $69
  • Private Authentic Chinese Cooking Class in Shanghai with a Lovely Local: $70
  • 3-Hour Shanghai City Walking Tour with Dinner: $74
  • Shanghai yummy food tour: $75
  • A Bite of Shanghai Small-Group Food Tour: $80
  • Shanghai Hairy Crab Dinner: $85
  • Shanghai Evening Food Tour/Shanghai tour gastronomico nocturno: $85
  • Night Market & Street Food Tour in Shanghai: $95
  • 3-Hour Flexible Private Shanghai Night Tour with Local Dinner Option: $100

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Xiamen $13
    Shanghai $7.28

Tours and Activities in Xiamen

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

  • Skip the Line: Xiamen Minnan Magic Cultural Show Ticket: $27
  • Ticket to Xiamen Shimao Straits Tower Sightseeing Hall 55F Ticket: $27
  • Xiamen Ancient Courtyard and the Show “Legend of Southern Fujian”Ticket: $39
  • Private Day Tour to Xiamen Ancient Courtyard and Watch an Extraordinary Show: $64
  • Xiamen Private English Tour Guide and Interpreter Service: $78
  • 4-Hour Xiamen Private Local Food Market Experience: $91
  • Xiamen Half-Day Tour to Experience Tuina Massage and A Scenic Night Cruise: $92
  • Private Xiamen Half Day Tour to Gulangyu Island and the Hi Heaven Villa: $97
  • Xiamen Private Half Day Tour of Gulangyu Island and Shuzhuang Garden: $97
  • A Night Tour to Xiamen Gulang Island: $100
  • Xiamen Half-Day Private Tour include Gulang Yu Island and Garden: $101
  • Xiamen Private Highlight Tour-Gulangyu Island, Shuzhuang Garden And Piano Museum: $103

Typical Entertainment prices in Shanghai

Some typical examples of activities, tours, and entrance ticket prices in Shanghai are as follows:


  • 30 Minute River Cruise for Two
    $30
  • Zoo for Two
    $15

Tours and Activities in Shanghai

Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for Shanghai are as follows:

  • 1 Day Bus Tour in Amazing Shanghai Highlights: $113
  • 1 Day Hangzhou Private Tour: $312
  • 1 Day Shanghai Airport Layover Private Tour for City Highlights: $202
  • 1 Day Shanghai Highlight Small Group Tour: $124
  • 1 Day of Shanghai Premiere Experience: $730
  • 1 day Nanjing tour from Shanghai by train: $400
  • 1 day Shanghai City Mini Group tour: $92
  • 1-Day Authentic Shanghai Tour by Walking & Metro: $193
  • 1-Day Private Shanghai City Tour to See Its Past, Present and Future: $204
  • 1-Day Private Shanghai to Wuzhen Tour to Admire the Classical Water Town: $271
  • 1-Day Private Tour to Hangzhou by car from Shanghai: $305
  • 1-Day Private Tour to Shanghai Museum,Yu Garden, the Bund and Nanjing Road: $178

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Xiamen $14
    Shanghai $6.35

Sample the Local Flavors in Shanghai

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

  • Shanghai Luxury Bar Crawl in 5-star Hotel or Boutique Hotel: $255
  • 3 Hour Local Craft Beer Crawl with Brewery Tour: $350


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

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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Xiamen vs. Shanghai Travel Comparison

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