How much does the Everest Base Camp trek cost?
That’s the little nugget of information that everyone’s interested in. The honest answer? It varies from person to person. Not the answer you were looking for, I know. This post is going to break down the costs of the trek to clear up any confusion. Planning on going? Here’s what to expect.
First of all, guided or independent?
If you’re going for a guided, all-expenses-paid trek, I’d expect to pay at least $1000 USD. A Nepali company will be cheaper than a Western company. I’ve seen Western companies charging up to $6000 USD, which is ridiculous!
You can also get guided trips where your accommodation and food isn’t paid for. I’ve seen these go for about $800 USD.
If you’re planning on trekking independently, there are a lot of little costs that add up. Here’s the budget breakdown.
Everest Base Camp Trek Cost: Breakdown
There are a couple ways to get into the Everest Region. Here are the most popular ways. Prices vary according to the season and weather.
PLANE | Round trip flight to Lukla: roughly USD $330
HELICOPTER | One-way helicopter to Lukla: USD $150-500*
JEEP | Jeep to Jiri/Phalplu/Salleri (one way): 13,000-20,000 rupees for the whole jeep. Because you’ll be trekking up, you must also add in about 4 days’ budget.
BUS | Bus to Jiri/Phalplu/Salleri (one way): roughly 1,500 rupees. Again, you’ll have to add about 4 days trekking budget.
As of 2018, a TIMS card is not needed to trek. Instead, you will need a “trekking ticket.”
Trekking permit (ticket): 2000 rupees per person
Sagarmatha National Park entrance ticket: 1695 for SAARC nationals | 3390 for all others.
Porter Fee: 25 rupees per porter.
On the EBC trek, you’ll be staying in teahouses. Teahouses are very inexpensive, but you must eat your dinner and breakfast at the teahouse you stay at or they will charge you more. They make their money from their restaurants.
Teahouses are anywhere from 200-500 rupees a night.
If you want to upgrade to a room with an attached bath, the teahouse will cost anywhere from 500 rupees to $25 USD.
In Namche Bazar, you can teahouses as well as hotels. The hotels will cost anywhere from USD $7-30.
You are trekking for about 12 days. If you are planning to trek on a budget, I would bring at least 4000 rupees just to cover accommodation, unless you are planning on staying in rooms with an attached bath or hotels, in which case, I’d bring more.
Food & Drink:
Food prices increase with altitude, which makes sense because everything must be carried up the mountain!
Dal bhat will cost you anywhere from 400 rupees (lower down) to 700 rupees (higher up).
Soups will cost 300-500 rupees.
Potatoes, noodles, veg-fried pastas, and rice dishes will be in the 400-600 range.
Pizzas will be about 700-900 rupees.
Veg momos are anywhere from 400-500 rupees.
Food adds up quickly; I would bring at least 2000 rupees a day for food, plus money for drinks and snacks.
Teas are about 100 per cup, but if you are travelling with others, I recommend getting a small pot of tea. The pots have about 5 or 6 cups in them, and they cost about 500 rupees. We went through a lot of tea.
If you want a beer, I’d expect to pay about 600 rupees for one can.
Snacks get expensive the higher you go up! A Snickers bar goes from about 150 rupees at Namche Bazar to as much as 350 rupees higher up!
Flying to and from Lukla, as well as food and drink, were the factors that added most to my Everest Base Camp Trek cost.
How much money should you bring on the mountain with you?
If you’re going on this trek, I would budget about $30 USD (roughly 3300 rupees) per day for food, accommodation, and drinks. You also need roughly 5500 rupees for permits. I would then add a bit more to have a cushion.
3300 rupees X 12 days = 39,600 rupees.
39,600 rupees + 5500 rupees = 45,100 rupees
Since this is just a ballpark estimate, you might be under or over this amount. If you are going through your trek and spending more than you anticipated, most teahouses on the main EBC route take credit card, though they add on a higher percent charge (we saw up to 12%!).
Because the prices in the mountains vary depending on your comfort level, how much and what you eat, and the season, it’s difficult to give you an exact cost. Hopefully, this breakdown helps! If you have any other questions, please leave a comment or shoot me an email!
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