By Azure Lee
Sri Lanka, often referred to as the "Pearl of the Indian Ocean," is a tropical paradise that has been capturing the hearts of travelers for centuries. From pristine beaches and lush rainforests to ancient temples and vibrant cities, this island nation has a lot to offer.
Sri Lanka undoubtedly boasts some of the most amazing natural scenery, delectable cuisine, and kind residents. Whether you're a luxury visitor looking for great value or a backpacker on a tight budget, it's a great spot to visit.
In this article, we will explore everything you need to know about the Sri Lanka trip cost, from airfare and accommodation to food, activities, and hidden expenses you might not have considered.
Everything you need to know about the Sri Lanka trip cost
All About Cost Of Sri Lanka Trip - Important Facts And Figures
It may surprise you that many tourists who travel to Sri Lanka say that Sri Lanka is one of the cheapest countries they have ever visited.
Continue reading for more information about the cost of a Sri Lanka trip and clever budget-saving tips to make the most of your money in Sri Lanka.
The cost of accommodation in Sri Lanka
In our opinion, homestays or Airbnb, with the occasional hostel, are the best lodging choices in Sri Lanka. You'll experience Sri Lanka's legendary hospitality, especially in more intimate, family-run lodgings. You may experience a home away from home while helping a local family for around $15 to $20 per night. Also, you still have a tidy, private room of your own.
If you’re on a tight budget housesitting is a great option for free accommodation. This is where you’ll take care of somebody’s house while they’re away and usually look after their pets, too. It's particularly advantageous for extended travelers or retirees who can accommodate a flexible schedule and destination selection. If you do have that freedom, it’s a wonderful way to cut down your travel expenses, soak up some home comforts, and live like a local for a while.
It's not difficult to locate a luxurious hotel that is still within your means if you feel like splashing out a little more. You may book opulent hotels or private villas for between $50 and $100 per night.
It's not difficult to locate a luxurious hotel in Sri Lanka
The cost of transportation in Sri Lanka
Transportation around Sri Lanka is both convenient and budget-friendly. Moreover, due to its relatively small size, traveling from one location to another is quite efficient and doesn't require domestic flights, which have limited availability and don't align with the country's logistics. Exploring Sri Lanka by ground transportation is highly recommended, as it allows you to truly appreciate the country's beauty and diverse landscapes.
Here are the most prevalent modes of transportation in Sri Lanka:
These auto rickshaws are a widely used and cost-effective means of navigating the various towns and cities across Sri Lanka, essentially serving as a taxi replacement.
If you plan to hire a tuk-tuk driver for a day of sightseeing, a reasonable price would be approximately $15-$20 (3000 – 4000 LKR). For a typical one-way ride, you should expect to pay around $0.18 (35 LKR) per kilometer.
You can also download PickMe, Sri Lanka's equivalent of Uber, and use your phone to order a taxi or tuk-tuk. In this manner, the app has already computed the price. In larger urban areas like Colombo or Kandy, you can use PickMe, but in smaller rural communities, you’ll have to hail them from the roads.
Visit: Renting a Tuk Tuk in Sri Lanka
Train travel in Sri Lanka offers a unique experience, especially on the renowned Kandy to Ella route. The allure of this iconic train ride lies more in the journey itself than in merely getting from one place to another. However, Sri Lanka's railway network spans the entire country, so you'll likely find yourself on a train more than once during your travels.
In Sri Lanka, there are three classes of trains. First class offers numbered, cushioned seats and air conditioning. Although there is no air conditioning in second class and the chairs are padded, the windows are typically always open. It sounds horrible, but the third class actually has benches and can fit three people instead of two.
Below is the pricing for the approximately 7-hour travel from Kandy to Ella (or Ella to Kandy) to give you a sense of the costs:
- First Class: $8.59 (1500 LKR)
- Second Class: $1.77 (310 LKR)
- Third Class: $1.00 (175 LKR)
As you can see, taking the train is not particularly expensive. Choose your ticket and class ultimately based on your comfort level and budget.
Read more: Sri Lanka train journey
Train travel in Sri Lanka offers a unique experience
The cost of food In Sri Lanka
Sri Lankan local cuisine is not only affordable but also highly flavorful and delicious. If you stick to local street cuisine and shops, you may easily go a day eating for only about $7 (1400 LKR), as breakfast is usually included with accommodations. Spending $30 (5852 LKR) or less daily on food at Western cafes and restaurants is possible.
The cost of activities and entrance fees in Sri Lanka
There is a lot to see and do in Sri Lanka. A particular favorite and one of the more well-liked excursions was visiting Sigiriya Rock. However, because you get a magnificent perspective of Sigiriya Rock from the top of Pidurangala Rock, we would advise hiking there rather than climbing the rock itself. Needless to say, the price is ten times lower.
Below is a breakdown of some of Sri Lanka's well-known attractions and their respective prices:
- Sigiriya Rock / Pidurangala Rock: $30 / $3
- Surfing Instruction: $7 to $23 per hour
- Scuba Diving: $55 for two dives
- Cooking Class in Kandy: $25
- Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic in Kandy: $7.69
- Free Little Adam's Peak and Nine Arch Bridge in Ella
- Elephant Safari in Udawalawe National Park: $75
There is a lot to see and do in Sri Lanka
How Much Does It Cost For Family, Couples Or Single When Traveling To Sri Lanka?
There are several factors that might affect the cost of a vacation, including the duration of the trip, the kind of lodging, the level of luxury, the activities scheduled, and the number of travelers. Here's the lowdown on what a trip to this tropical paradise is likely to cost:
- Airfare: The price of a flight to Sri Lanka can change depending on the city of departure and the season. A round-trip ticket for one individual from the United States to the country should cost between $500 and $1500.
- Accommodation: For as little as $20 a night, you can discover cheap motels or hostels if you're trying to save some money. Mid-range hotels will set you back $50 to $100 per night for a more pleasant stay.
- Food and drink: A mid-range meal will run you between $8 to $15 per person, while a cheap meal will cost you about $3 to $5 per person at a nearby eatery.
Depending on your travel tastes and style, the overall cost of visiting Sri Lanka might range from a few hundred to several thousand dollars per person. A journey to this stunning island nation can cost anywhere from $1000 to $5000 for a family, couple, or lone visitor. Start making plans for your journey now, and get ready to create lifelong memories!
How To Save Money On Sri Lanka Cost Of Travel
As previously said, visiting Sri Lanka on a tight budget is undoubtedly feasible. In light of this, careful preparation, searching for deals, and flexibility with your itinerary are essential if you want to maximize your trip to Sri Lanka cost.
Here are some practical tips about how to save on your Sri Lanka cost of travel:
Avoid high season
Start by learning when it is most affordable to travel to Sri Lanka because rates for hotels and airlines change throughout the year.
Sri Lanka can be the ideal destination for low-cost travelers during the shoulder and off-seasons. People don't typically go in great numbers to the nation between May and October. If you can be flexible about the weather during certain months, you'll be able to visit the country for less money.
Save money on flights
Tuesday, Wednesday, and Saturday are often the least expensive days to fly. It is worthwhile checking the booking websites and comparing prices on other days of the week because airlines frequently offer cheaper fares on these days. By planning ahead, you can save money on your flight. Booking two to eight months in advance is recommended for foreign travel.
While arriving in the middle of the night isn't ideal, it's worth it if it means you'll save hundreds of dollars.
In short, Sri Lanka is one of the destinations visited by many tourists over the past decade. One of the reasons the country is so popular is that the Sri Lanka trip cost is affordable for both luxury travelers and backpackers. If you plan to visit Sri Lanka or any destination in Sri Lanka, remember to apply for a Sri Lanka e-Visa before you arrive. This is a mandatory requirement for most travelers. Contact Sri Lanka Immigration Services now to make your travel dreams a reality. Or click here to start your Sri Lanka visa application today and embark on an unforgettable journey in the Pearl of the Indian Ocean!