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How Much Does It Cost to Trek to Annapurna Base Camp?

  • Author: Puskar Rai
  • Posted on: Wed Feb 16, 2022
Annapurna Base Camp

Annapurna Base Camp Trek is undoubtedly one of the best treks in Nepal. And arguably, because of its average trekking duration, it is cheaper than the most popular Everest Base Camp Trek. Prices for the Annapurna Base Camp trek (ABC) can range from US$  700 to US$  2500, depending upon the route, service, and trek operator, to name a few.

You can customize the itinerary, give it a personal touch, add a luxury option like Heli ride to Pokhara from Base Camp, and the price will go up. That means the cost of the Annapurna Base Camp trek totally depends on the preference of travelers.

So what are the factors that contribute to the cost of the Annapurna Base Camp trek? Do you want to find the cost of the Annapurna Base Camp trek? Wondering if it is feasible to hire a guide or not? Worry not; we'll discuss everything related to Annapurna Base Camp trek cost and give a detailed breakdown of the total cost of the ABC trek.

But before we jump into the cost breakdown, how about we shed light on two types of operators for the Annapurna Base Camp trek?


Annapurna Base Camp Trek Cost With Local Operator

Who are local travel operators? To describe briefly, local travel operators are government-licensed locally owned travel operators in Nepal. They have a local team with their main office in Nepal, especially Kathmandu. The price for the Annapurna base camp trek offered by the local operator can range anywhere between US$ 700 and US$ 1800.

Please be informed the price are subject to change. If you want to add a few more days, the price adds up. Similarly, it will cost you more if you choose a helicopter ride to return to Kathmandu.

Did you know there are more than 1000 local operators scattered around Kathmandu, thriving to help Nepal tourism Industry? But unfortunately, very few are trustworthy. No doubt every local operator in Nepal offers the Annapurna Base Camp trek. But the question is, which local operator to trust and go with?

Looking from a financial perspective, we suggest not to fall for the low price tag. We repeat, don't fall. Don't just take our word for it; check the reviews on the popular websites for yourself. You will find a lot of nasty experiences on popular travel platforms. Those unlucky trekkers probably were duped into the low price and had to face the predicament.

We know that you know what to look for when choosing a local tour operator for your trek to the Himalayas. In this digital era, you can find everything. You can always compare and contrast the features and services they offer. We will leave that part to you; check everything before choosing a local operator.

The best thing about us as a local operator is that we have local guides (Not bragging) who have more than 10 years of experience (some have 20 years). Our guides have trekked to Annapurna Base Camp more than 100 times. That means they know everything about the trek and what it takes to make the best trek for every single traveler like you.

With an experienced guide, you are in safe hands. You don't have to worry about anything at all. But just imagine going with a trekking guide who hasn't been exposed to unprecedented conditions in the Himalayas; who don't know how to access such a situation. You got it, right? 

The bottom line is that make sure your travel guide and the trek operator are trustworthy.

What would it be if you asked us that one perk of trekking with a local agency that makes anyone opt for a trek organized by a local operator? Well, it's that you help the local community and economy.

Annapurna Base Camp Trek cost with International Operator

You can do the Annapurna Base Camp trek with an international operator as well. In fact, many international tour operators around the world offer a standard Annapurna Base Camp trek itinerary. But the price may be a bit higher than that of a local operator.

At a quick glance, the price offered by an international operator could be budget-friendly. But upon further investigation or detailing, you will find that the trek does not include a few services, like no meal on tour. That means you will have to manage food yourself. In a way, it is good, because you'll have the liberty to eat anywhere and anything you like. But on the contrary, it could be a problem for someone.

We are not sure of all of the international tour operators, but the majority of them hire a third-party firm or another local tour operator in Nepal to organize the trek for you. In that part, they will profit from you, which means that the price will be more costly than the price offered by the local operator.

So when you add up all the price, it turns out to be more expensive than you have reckoned.

Annapurna Base Camp trek with an international operator can cost you anywhere from US$ 900 to US$ 2500. Like we said earlier, it depends on many things like the route you choose, the itinerary, and the travel operator. Every international tour operator offers their own price tag depending upon their service and inclusions. 

What is important is you check and ensure everything is clear when it comes to cost and service.

Sometimes you might be expecting a service that would cost you otherwise, but the operator might exclude it. They have their own policies and all, and you need to ensure your preference or service while you inquire.

Before we jump into the cost breakdown, let us clear one thing about the price of the trek. As you go through Annapurna Base Camp Trek itineraries in Google and compare the prices offered by international and local operators, to the point of surprise, you will find that some local operators charge more than international operators.

One of the reasons for this is that international tour operators do not include meals while the majority of local operators serve meals on a full board basis, including airport arrival and departure services, private transportation, and several other services for a hassle-free trip.

Where to travel next?

Get help from our travel specialists for holiday ideas that matches your interests.

Annapurna Base Camp Trek Cost Breakdown

It is important that you have a general idea of the Annapurna Base Camp trek cost and the factors that determine the cost of the trek. From international flight to the cost of guide and porter, we will briefly discuss every factor that leads to the cost analysis of Annapurna Base Camp trek cost.

International flight to/from Nepal

The international flight cost to Kathmandu depends upon where you are traveling from. You can find a cheap flight to Kathmandu on Expedia.

To give you an idea about the international flight cost, we have looked for the (lowest) price for 3 different countries:

Flying From

Flying to

Depart/Return

Price (Both Way)

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Kathmandu

March 2022

US$ 1,542

Los Angeles, United States

Kathmandu

March 2022

US$ 906

London, United Kingdom

Kathmandu

March 2022

US$ 714

The flight cost during peak season-September to November and March to May-are the most expensive. To cut down the expense, try traveling during the off-season and book in advance. You must be aware that there are no direct flights from major countries like Australia, the USA, and England.

If you're traveling from the United States to Kathmandu, you can definitely find the cheapest flight for as low as US$ 660. There are multiple flights to Kathmandu from the USA for around US$ 700. The good news is that due to Covid-19 and the ongoing situation, many airlines have adopted new cancellation policies.

Writer’s Note: The price mentioned here are the prices at the time of writing this article and the price might vary depending on time and the country.

Cost of Travel Insurance

Whether you are trekking or climbing peaks in Nepal, we recommend buying travel insurance. If you don't have travel insurance while trekking in Nepal, it can cost you your health and bank account. While trekking in Nepal, the obvious and common afflictions like hypothermia, skin infections, sprained ankles, just to name a few.

Did you know above 2,500m, your body is prone to altitude sickness? Annapurna Base Camp trek takes you to the soaring height of 4,130m. That means there's a high chance that you can suffer from altitude sickness.

And if your body develops this fatal medical condition in the mountains, then there's a strong chance that you'll need a helicopter rescue that can cost you at least US$ 5000.

Due to altitude and unprecedented weather conditions in the Himalayas, anything can happen, and for this very reason, you need to be ready and safeguard your travel. You can do that by buying travel insurance that covers altitude up to 6000m. Please note the cost of travel insurance is not included in the trek cost.

Nepal Visa Costs

Every traveler, except Indian nationals, needs a visa. You can get the visa on arrival at the Tribhuvan International airport in Kathmandu. To obtain your visa-on-arrival, fill in "Arrival Card" and "Online Tourist Visa" forms using Kiosk machines. We recommend you get 30 days visa for the Annapurna Base Camp trek.

On Arrival Visa Fee at Entry Points

  • 15 Days Nepal Tourist Visa – 30 US$
  • 30 Days Nepal Tourist Visa – 50 US$
  • 90 Days Nepal Tourist Visa – 125 US$

Costs for accommodations and Meals in Kathmandu and Pokhara

The trek officially starts from Pokhara. However, you'll stay a day or so in Kathmandu. So, part of the ABC trek cost is the cost of accommodation and meals in Kathmandu. While in Kathmandu, airport transfers, accommodation and food expenses, and sightseeing costs all add up.

It's all up to you whether to stay in an expensive hotel or look for a budget hotel. There is a good range of hotels in Kathmandu that can fit your budget. And if you are someone who loves luxury hotels, you can go for glamorous 5-star hotels.

To give you an idea, you can choose between a US$ 10 economy hotels and luxury hotels that can cost you up to US$ 500 for a night. In Kathmandu, you can choose from the most expensive hotels to mid-range and budget hotels.

Just like in Kathmandu, you can find everything from 5-star hotels to basic hotels. A budget hotel in Pokhara can charge you as low as US$ 10 per night, while a luxury hotel can cost you up to US$ 500 or more. There are hostels in Pokhara that will charge even less. So when it comes to accommodations and meals in Kathmandu and Pokhara, you have a lot of options to adjust your budget.

Accommodations for a low price can be of a basic standard. And if you invest a few extra dollars, you can grab great deals.

Regarding meals, there is a wide range of food options in Kathmandu and Pokhara since both are the most popular tourist hubs in Nepal. Both cities serve local as well as international cuisines, from dal bhat to burritos and bocadillos. 

As you have guessed, the food expense totally depends on you; you can order the popular dal bhat that can cost you around US$ 3.5, or you may munch a Spanish bocadillos that can cost you more.

Suggestion: We would definitely suggest trying local dal bhat and delicious momo.

Costs for accommodations and Meals during the trek

After spending a few days in Kathmandu and Pokhara, you'll head to the mountains, where teahouses and lodges are the only options for accommodation. The facilities up there are rudimentary. Don't expect more than a wooden bed, a wooden table, a pillow, blanket and squat or western toilets, generally outside the sleeping room.

However, in the lower part of the trail, the amenities are surprisingly good. You may end up in a tea house that offers a hot shower, flush toilet and Wi-Fi. As you ascend higher, the facilities become more basic, and you may have to pay more for basic service.

Teahouses are very comfortable, and for the low price, they are unquestionably good enough. There's a communal dining room heated by a yak dung burner, where trekkers huddle around the fire to eat and socialize.

Nowadays, a tea house in the Annapurna region offers a wide range of food menus and beverages, including but not limited to cheese, pizza, spring rolls, pancake, noodle soups, and momo. An average cost for accommodations and meals during the trek would be around US$ 20-US$ 30 per day.

It is obvious that the price for a room and dal bhat varies from place to place. The price for dal bhat at the lower section of the trail may be around US$ 4, while it could cost you US$ 6 further afar. Remember, you can save a few pennies by choosing a vegetarian dish.

Cost of guides and porters

A guide and porter for the Annapurna Base Camp trek can cost you from US$ 30 to US$ 40 dollar per day and US$ 20 to US$ 30 per day, respectively. Hiring a guide and porter for ABC trek is reasonably favorable for you.

A guide will take care of you and guide you throughout the trek. A guide who has a good knowledge of trekking route and local culture will not only enrich your trekking experience but also handle advanced booking and logistics.

Hiring a guide means you will be supporting the local economy and contributing to the livelihood of the guide who is dependent on the job.

Similarly, a porter will carry your extra bags and gears, which can weigh up to 30 kg, leaving you with your light backpack. And this makes it a lot easier for you to trek, especially at higher altitudes. By hiring a porter, you support the local economy and help the porter sustain his life.

Trekking Permit cost (ACAP and TIMS)

You'll need two permits for the Annapurna Base Camp trek:

  • Annapurna Conservation Area Project (ACAP) permit
  • TIMS (Tourist Information Management System) Card

The ACAP permit costs Rs.3000 per person (25 USD equivalent) and Rs. 1000 (9 USD equivalent) for a TIMS card if you are trekking with a guide. If you're an independent trekker, also called free individual trekker (FIT), you will have to pay Rs.2000 (17 USD equivalent) for a TIMS card.

You'll need to present the following documents to obtain these permits

  • A copy of your passport
  • 2 passport-sized photos
  • Itinerary/route
  • Dates of your trek
  • Travel Insurance paper
  • Entry and Exit points
  • Emergency contact information

Note: If you organize a trek through a trekking agency, they will arrange these permits for you.

Transportation cost from/to Kathmandu

Traveling to Pokhara from Kathmandu and vice-versa is easy. The cities are only about 200km apart and the journey to Pokhara from Kathmandu by bus takes 6-7 hours. If you book a domestic flight to Pokhara, you'll be in Pokhara in just 30 minutes.

So basically, for the travel, you have two options; either by air or road. And depending upon your preference and time, you can choose from these two.

By Air

The quickest way to reach Pokhara from Kathmandu is by domestic flight. If you're time-constrained, flying is the only option, and for a good reason. The flight is scenic, offering splendid views of Kathmandu city, dramatic landscape, and occasional mountain views.

Expect to pay around US$ 120 for a one-way flight to Pokhara. You can book a flight online via domestic airlines like Buddha Airlines. If you organize the trek via a travel agency, they will do this job for you. The only downside of flying is that it is costly.

By Road

You can hop on a private vehicle, a tourist bus, or a public bus to travel to Pokhara from Kathmandu. While a private vehicle seems more convenient and comfortable, it is not good to travel in a public vehicle. We don't suggest you travel by public bus, albeit it is the cheapest option among all others.

It is recommended only when you have a low budget. A public bus can charge you around US$ 5 for a one-way ticket. Many buses or microbus leave every day from Gongabu Bus Park. 

Similarly, tourist buses are available in the Thamel area, and for a one-way ticket, you'll have to pay US$ 7 approximately.

Expect to pay around US$ 250 for a private jeep that can accommodate 7-8 people. You can divide the cost among other travelers. The best part of traveling in a private jeep is that you can ask the driver to stop anywhere you like for short breaks. And the jeep or private vehicle is quite faster in comparison to the local bus.

Where to travel next?

Get help from our travel specialists for holiday ideas that matches your interests.

Trekking gears and equipment

It is absolutely imperative that you have all the essential set of trekking gear and equipment for Annapurna Base Camp Trek. We are sure you have at least a pair of trekking shoes, a trekking pole, a nice trekking bag, a water bottle, and a warm set of clothes. If not, you can buy in Kathmandu or rent for as low as US$ 1 per day.

All the trekking gear and equipment, from trekking poles to down jackets, can be bought and hired in the Thamel area. The streets are lined with colorful shops selling everything for trekking and climbing expedition.

You need not necessarily buy expensive gear. Anything you don't already own, you can buy them in Kathmandu or Pokhara.

So the question is, how much would it cost for you to buy all the essential gear and equipment for ABC trek? Well, that depends. But if we have to give you a figure, it would be around US$ 300 to US$ 500. You can buy decent gear and equipment for the trek for this amount.

Charging, Drinks, Sim card, Donation, Hot shower

Finally, the miscellaneous expenses for the trek will be discussed. So, getting along, we hope you have a clear idea of the cost of many factors as explained above. Did you know you will have to pay for Wi-Fi (in the higher section part of the trail)? Wi-Fi services are readily available almost everywhere, but some tea houses may charge you some amount.

It is estimated that they charge a nominal fee (US$ 5) for Wi-Fi per day or on an hourly basis, which is reasonable. Please don't expect high-speed and stable signals. On the way to Annapurna Base Camp, the internet and Wi-Fi are not a problem in Ghandruk and Ghorepani.

You will not be wearing a different outfit every day. This means a hot shower is a treat for your body. But you will have to pay US$ 5 to US$ 10 for it.

You can freely charge your electronic gadgets, but again, don't get surprised if you see a sign that says "US$ 5 for charging mobile."

As for the sim card, you can buy NCell or Nepal Telecom sim cards in Kathmandu or Pokhara. You'll need a passport size photo and passport for identification. For your adventure to Annapurna Base Camp, we recommend buying Nepal Telecom sim card as it has better coverage.

The price for a Nepal Telecom sim card in Nepal is US$ .80 (NRS 100) that comes with US$  0.45 (NRs 50) credit. Similarly, the Ncell sim card costs around US$ 1 and comes with NRS 30 (US$  0.25) balance.

Gratitude for guides and porters

Feel free to tip your guide and porter if their good service delighted you and enriched your trekking experience. 

How much should you tip your guide and porter? Although there is no fixed rate and it is not mandatory, the general rule is to tip Approx.10% of the total cost for the guide and porter.

However, it is your personal decision; you can pay less/more if you are utterly satisfied with his work. Tips are generally offered at the end of the trek.

Conclusion 

Annapurna Base Camp trek is one of the finest treks in Nepal. If you are a mountain lover and avid traveler, you should definitely embark on this journey to Annapurna Base Camp.

The price of Annapurna Base Camp trek offered by local operator would cost anywhere from US$ 700 to US$ 1800 and the price by international operator would cost from US$ 900 to US$ 2500, depending upon trek route, service provider and trek operator.

We offer tailor-made and customized service; that means you can give your personal touch and craft an itinerary that best fits your preference. It is possible to create a whole new itinerary and choose the accommodation and even guides. It is possible to stay a few more days in Pokhara as well. 

Don't know where to start? Let us sweeten the deal for you: You let us know your budget, and we will match the perfect itinerary for you. All you have to do is contact us. Our travel experts are available 24/7, just for you.

Other Useful Links

How to get to Annapurna Base Camp
Annapurna Base Camp Trek - A Complete Guide
How Difficult is the Annapurna Base Camp Trek?
Best time to trek Annapurna Base Camp
Annapurna Base Camp Trek Packing List



  • Author: Puskar Rai
  • Posted on: Wednesday Feb 16, 2022

Recent Comments

QH
Quinn Howard | Wed May 11, 2022
Just like he said, feel free to tip your hardworking guide and porter. Better to include the tip in your ABC cost. You'll feel good about it
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CR
Chester Read | Tue May 10, 2022
Please ensure that your travel insurance includes emergency evacuation. This will save you your life.
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MB
Max Barbet | Mon Mar 21, 2022
It's great details on the cost of the trek. Would be great if I could get the price quote you offer! I have my email, you can inbox me anytime.
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DF
Dane Farley | Sun Mar 6, 2022
Good tips on sim card, and keynotes on Charging, Drinks, Sim card, Donation, Hot shower
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LK
Lennox Kaur | Sun Mar 6, 2022
I didn't flew to Pokhara from KTM, instead hop on a private jeep and it was the best decision. So anyone confused regarding flight or road, hit the road!
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LC
Leo Campbell | Thu Mar 3, 2022

Great blog, but I already did the trek, and it's like nothing much has changed. I can tell from my experience that this blog offers precise info for the trek

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Puskar

About Author - Puskar Rai

Writer, Secretly Philanthropist and Wanderer-these three words elucidate Puskar Rai. A bad programmer turned writer, Puskar loves traveling and reading books of his interest. Puskar Rai is a blogger and writer at Third Rock Adventures. His sheer passion for writing and obsession with traveling got him into the tourism industry.

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