Are you planning a journey to China? And do you wonder how much budget you’re going to need? Our average China travel costs per day might help you with that. Note that all amounts mentioned are based upon 2 persons and spent in September till December 2016.

We spent two and a half months in China and visited the following places (in chronological order): Beijing, Datong, Pingyao, Xi’an, Huashan, Shanghai, Wuyuan, Sanqingshan, Shangrao, Guilin, Yangshuo, Fenghuang, Wulingyuan (Avatar Mountains), Zhangjiajie City, Chongqing, Chengdu, Jiuzhaigou, Kunming and Dali.

Average China travel costs per day

€ 70,26 (CNY 518,43)

This includes accommodation, food and drinks, transportation, excursions and other stuff like laundry, shampoo and so on. The breakdown is as follows:

 Average cost per day in euro
Accommodation€ 18,61
Food And Drinks€ 18,32
Transportation€ 25,25
Excursions€ 6,50
Other Daily Stuff€ 1,58
Total daily costs in China (2 persons)€ 70,26
china travel costs
Hotel In Zhangjiajie City

China travel costs for accommodation

We spent € 18,61 per night for accommodation. This is based upon a private double room in a simple hostel. We found the hostels in China very good and great value for money. Almost all private rooms come with a private bathroom, free towels, and even free toiletries. Also, they have an electric kettle so you can drink your cup of coffee in the morning on your room. Most hostels are very clean and offer laundry service (for a fee). Furthermore some hostels have a menu with good and cheap Chinese and sometimes Western food. In most cities staff spoke English. When they didn’t, we used a translate app. We booked all our hostels via Booking.com.

China travel costs for food and drinks

We spent € 18,32 per day for food and drinks. Since we haven’t found any hostel in China with a shared kitchen we always ate outside. We guess it’s probably because eating out is so cheap, most travelers don’t cook for themselves. We love the noodles soups! They never taste similar, and it’s always good and really cheap. Dumplings is also a must try! One thing that is quite expensive in China is coffee. Even buying instant coffee is expensive (78 CNY = € 10 for 200 gram). A cup of coffee at a coffee house is around CNY 15 to CNY 24 (€ 2 to € 3,30). For Chinese standards that’s a lot. But it didn’t stop us from having a coffee every day. So despite the fact that we bought beers and coffees we still managed to spent only € 18,32 per day for food and drinks.

China travel costs for transportation

We booked our train ticket from Mongolia to Beijing via RealRussia and it was quite expensive. We chose to ride first class since it’s a long trip but it was not worth the money. The train from Ulaanbaatar to Beijing costs us (for 2 persons) € 665. Since we spend 73 days in China this already adds up the average cost per day with € 9,11.

During our two and a half months’ travel through China we booked several train tickets and bus tickets from one place to another. We also booked one flight from Chengdu to Kunming because the only alternative was a 20 hours train ride without a non-smoking policy. The average cost per day for all transportation within China was € 16,14 (the train from Mongolia to Beijing not included).

In total it’s an average of € 25,25 per day.

China travel costs for excursions

We spent € 6,50 on average per day for entrance fees and cable cars at National Parks or other sights. We visited the following sights that you have to pay for:

Name Of Place Or Activity:In Or Close To City:
Forbidden CityBeijing
Summer PalaceBeijing
Great Wall (Jinshanling to Simatai section)Beijing
Yungang grottoesDatong
Terracotta armyXi'an
Huashan North PeakHuashan
Rent bicyclesWuyuan
Sanqinshan National ParkSanqinshan
Rent a scooter (two days)Yangshuo
Zhangjiajie Forest Park (a.k.a. Avatar Mountains)Wulingyuan
Jiuzhaigou National ParkJiuzhaigou
Giant Panda Breeding Research CenterChengdu
Rent bicyclesDali

China travel costs for other daily stuff

We spent € 1,58 on average per day for other stuff like hair gel, laundry, using public toilets, souvenirs and so on.

Interested in how to prepare a budget? Check our post Preparing A Budget For Your Travels

Fixed costs

Besides our average cost per day mentioned above we also have fixed costs. Our fixed costs for China concerns only the Visa fees. We also have more generic fixed costs. For us this exists of Travel Insurance, Healthcare Insucance, Storage costs, Bank charges and Apple subscriptions.

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