How much does a Trip to Laos cost ?
This is obviously one of our main concerns when we consider our future travel plans !
Few notions of prices in Laos
The preconceived notions about cheap Laos are false. Most of the people think it's possible to travel for 1 dollar per day and pay the meal 1 dollar as well. It was for sure the case 20 years ago but no more in 2017. Laos has evolved since 2000, and financially speaking is more expensive than Vietnam, Thailand and Cambodia but cheaper than Burma and Butan.
Laos is a landlocked country, isolated in the mountains and without any access to the sea. Laos is a "buyer country", 90% of the products sold in Laos come from neighboring countries. It is therefore necessary to add to the original price the transport costs and the margin of the dealer.
Here are three examples :
The cost of a common meat, chicken
Laotian chickens are quite thin, so most restaurants in Lao towns choose to import this meat from Thailand. Originally, the chicken costs around only 5 USD, but once it's imported from Thailand its value increases to 8 or 10 USD.
During a night at a local homestay, we logically think it would be cheaper. But that's not the case, it costs around 12 to 15 USD. Local people raise the chickens themselves to feed their family and the animals are not numerous (there is no big economy allowing a lower price). Moreover, they live far from the cities, the food there is more rare therefore more expensive.
The cost of a motorbike and gears
Riders often ask the same question : why are motorbike tours cheaper in Vietnam or Thailand ?
The first reason is this countries have their own cost of life. Moreover, in Vietnam motorcycles have been imported 10 years ago and now their price of resale is about 2 600 USD to 3 700 USD. To ensure good quality motorbiking tours, all our motorcycles are new from a factory in Bangkok. In Vietnam, most of the time you can't have gears or they are old and in a bad shape. Ours are changed every 2 years.
Our motorbikes are Honda 250CRF-L made in Thailand. Their original price is about 4800 USD but 2 days of transportation to the Laos border , then crossing it, add to that importation taxes, and the price raises to 6 700 USD. It's the same for spare part and gears. A rider with our boots, knee pads, jacket, gloves and helmet is actually wearing 650 USD of gears, so this equipment cost has also to be considered.
The cost of transportation, the minivan
90% of the minivans in Laos are made in Thailand. Their original price is about 25 000 USD. The crossing of the border, the import taxes, the margin of the Lao dealer make that final price increases to 42 000 USD. The same process applies to spare parts in case of repair. This price increase therefore affects the cost of the minivan per day.hysical offices in Laos), we will not make a paragraph about Laotian taxes but the Luang Prabang office obviously taxes us on each of your tours. For information, a little less than what Australia or Europe could do, but far more than what Vietnam or other neighboring countries charge for the same travel service.
Our Value Price & Quality
In general, we consider that reducing the budget of a trip at any cost leads to the exploitation of our local employees and to the loss of control of the quality of our circuits. We are committed to provide you the best quality of service, while respecting our partners.
Would you like more information ? Are you ready to organize your travel in Laos ?
The price of a trip to Laos with a Travel Agency
The price of a tour varies according to several factors :
- The number of participants : Fixed costs are shared between the different members of the group. So each of them will pay half as much if they are a group of 6 rather than 2.
Adventure tours : fixed costs include guide and driver services, food and accommodations, minivan, gasoline, and taxes.
Motorbiking tours : fixed costs include guide services, his motorcyle, gasoline, his meals and accommodation, and taxes.
Here is one simple example : there are 8 seats in a minivan. With 8 participants, each will pay for it their own seat, while for 2 people they will have to cover the costs of the full minivan. The same thinking matches with the cost of boats, etc.
- Services included : We mainly do tailor-made and offer several formulas. The price of a tour varies up to 20% according to the included services or not. (first and last night in Luang Prabang, Vientiane or Pakse, airport transfers,...)
- The choice of the accommodation quality : It makes also greatly vary the price of your trip (homestaying, the local guesthouse, the comfortable hotel with swimming pool or the luxury hotel). One night in Luang Prabang in a simple hotel costs about 25 to 55 USD, better range with swimming pool 55 to 100 USD, a charming hotel 350 to 450 USD and it goes up to 1 000 USD per night for some establishments.
Price for a Motorbike tour :
To sum up, let's say that a one-week tour costs an average of 1 400 to 1 900 per person, all included.
Price for an Adventure tour :
We can say that a tour costs an average of 110 to 230 USD per day per person. From 800 to 1 600 USD per week depending on the options and the number of participants.
For example, for a group of 4 participants, it would be about 120 to 140 USD per day per person.
These prices are all taxes included
As a legal travel agency in Luang Prabang (unlike a variety of nonlegal websites that do not necessarily have physical offices in Laos), we will not make a paragraph about Laotian taxes but the Luang Prabang office obviously taxes us on each of your tours. For information, a little less than what Australia or Europe could do, but far more than what Vietnam or other neighboring countries charge for the same travel service.