How much did our Everest Base Camp Trek Cost?

How much does it cost to go to Everest Base Camp? Sure, trekking to the highest mountain in the world doesn’t come cheap, but if you hike independently and without a porter like we did, it doesn’t have to break the bank either. From $2 per night accommodation to £100 hiking shoes, here’s our two-week Everest Base Camp trek cost breakdown.

Us feeling much better on the way down from Everest Base Camp

Pre-trek Everest Base Camp costs

Documents

Before you even begin your trek, you need to research your itinerary, prepare your packing list and understand the challenges you’re about to face. You’ll also need to pay out for pre-trip costs such as insurance and licences to trek safely in Nepal, here’s how much they cost us.

Document Cost per person Total cost
Travel Insurance (World Nomads – Including trekking up to 6,000 metres) £87.13 £174.26
Trekkers’ Information Management Systems Card £15 £30
Sagarmatha National Park Entry Permit £25.50 £51
Total £127.63 £255.26

Clothing and gear

Gear was another huge pre-trip expense for us, since we’d been living in Thailand and had nothing suitable for unpredictable mountain weather like rain, snow and sub-zero temperatures. We invested in a sturdy pair of trekking shoes and used our old but comfy Osprey packs, which we carried ourselves. When we arrived in Kathmandu we picked up the rest of our gear as cheaply as possible from Shona’s Alpine store in Thamel. We were able to save some money buying second-hand gear from friends and chose to rent, rather than buy, down jackets and sleeping bags from Shona’s.

Us with our backpacks starting the Everest Base Camp Trek in Nepal

Item Cost per item Cost per person Total
Merrell hiking shoes x 2 £100 £100 £200
Buffs x 2 £1.50 £1.50 £3
Socks x 6 £1.50 £4.50 £9
Trekking Trousers x 2 £11.25 £11.25 £22.50
Raincoats x 2 £18.75 £18.75 £37.50
Down jackets x 2 (rented) £0.37 per day £6 £12
-15 Sleeping bag x 1 (rented) £0.75 per day £12 £12
-10 Sleeping bag x 1 (rented) £0.60 per day £9.60 £9.60
Sleeping bag liners x 2 £5.25 £5.25 £10.50
Base layers (top) x 2 £4.87 £4.87 £9.75
Base layers (bottom) x 2 £5.63 £5.63 £11.25
Rain covers x 2 £2.44 £2.44 £4.87
Liner gloves x 2 £1.12 £1.12 £2.25
SIM card with 1GB data x 1 £4.50 £2.25 £4.50
Second-hand gear including hats, gloves, water bottles, trousers and a fleece. £15 £7.50 £15
Total £192.66 £192.66 £385.32

Transport

It’s possible to take a bus from Kathmandu to Sagarmatha National Park to start the trek but like many people, we opted to fly straight to Lukla. The flight takes just half an hour but costs a flat fee of £114 per person each way, which was a big outlay for us. If you do fly, be prepared for your plane to be delayed or cancelled due to bad weather and allow extra time for this. Tickets are refundable and very flexible, we changed the dates of our return flight three times without paying any fees.

Tara Air Plane grounded by weather on the way to Lukla, Nepal

Flight Cost per person Total
Kathmandu to Lukla £114 £228
Lukla to Kathmandu £114 £228
Total £228 £456

Mount Everest base camp trek cost – food

Not much grows high up on the trail and since all supplies literally have to be carried up to the villages by porters or yaks, food is pricier than you might expect. Trekking all day also means you’ll have a huge appetite, so don’t skimp on food costs. We took some cereal bars, chocolate and nuts with us because we knew these would be expensive on the trail. In the end, we still indulged in the occasional Snickers bar that cost up to £2 each (250 NPR) and a tube of Pringles, which we paid £3.40 (450 NPR) for in Namche Bazaar.

Fried potato, veg and cheese on the Everest Base Camp Trek

Food in the tea houses is generally basic with very little veg and fruit on offer, so we lived off eggs, potato, bread and cake. We did find several great bakeries, one was attached to the Snow Lion Lodge in Dingboche, where it cost £3.40 (450 NPR) for a slice of blueberry cheesecake or apple pie. There are also two branches of the German bakery Herman Helmer’s, one in Phakding and the other in Namche Bazaar, where we gorged on cheese pizza (£4.50/600 NPR) and cakes while charging our gadgets and using the wifi for free.

Blueberry cheesecake at the French Bakery, Dingboche, Nepal

You need to stay well hydrated to avoid altitude sickness, but tap water isn’t safe to drink without purification tablets. Every tea house sells small to large pots of tea (hence the name), as well as plain boiled water which you can add your own tea bags to. A small flask of boiled water costs around £1.12 (150 NPR), and a large is £2.25 (300 NPR). We avoided buying mineral water because of the high costs and environmental impact, but did find UV filtered water for £0.45 (60 NPR) per litre in Namche Bazaar.

Expense Total Per person Per day
Food £459.76 £229.88 £32.84

Everest trek cost – accommodation

The good news is that tea houses on the Everest Base Camp trek are incredibly cheap, costing as little as £1 per night. Rooms are typically cold and basic, with two single beds and if you’re lucky, a few hooks on the wall and a bedside table. Bedding is normally included but it’s not the cleanest or warmest, which is why a sleeping bag and liner are essential. Be prepared for thin walls with noisy neighbours, draughty windows and in some cases, outdoor toilets. You’ll likely spend most of your time in the dining room, which is often the only heated area of the lodge.

The dining room at Khumbu Lodge, Namche Bazaar

In some tea houses, you can pay more for en-suite bathrooms, but mostly toilets are shared and have varying levels of cleanliness. Conditions get worse further up the trail, where we encountered filthy squat toilets and no running water. Be aware that although tea house rooms are cheap, you’re expected to eat both breakfast and dinner at your chosen lodge (or pay a 1,000 NPR fee), so take a look at the menu before you decide where to stay.

Expense Total Per person Per day
Accommodation £41.30 £20.65 £2.95

Miscellaneous costs

It’s possible to rack up a big bill in little extras and luxuries while you trek. We paid for two hot showers each, as well as some emergency phone charging and souvenir hats, playing cards and postcards. We also had to buy some toiletries, which cost substantially more in the higher villages. This included toilet roll, soap, tissues and sun cream. We also invested in trekking poles in Namche Bazaar, which made the onward trek so much easier, and picked up an emergency supply of Diamox, anti-altitude sickness medicine.

Us wearing Everest Base Camp souvenir hats

Expense Total Per person
Suncream £12 £6
Playing cards £1.50 £0.75
Toilet roll £1.12 £0.56
Trekking poles (two pairs) £13.50 £6.75
Diamox £8.64 £4.32
Soap and shampoo £6.36 £3.18
Laundry x 2 £6 £3
Hot showers and towels £6.76 £3.38
charging £1.50 £0.75
Tissues £1.50 £0.75
Sherpa museum £3.74 £1.87
Ncell Credit £1.80 £0.90
Postcard £0.30 £0.15
Hats £6 £3
Total £70.72 £35.36

Total Everest Base Camp price

Our Everest Base Camp cost total came to nearly £1,700 for two people. That sounds like a lot considering we normally live on less than that for an entire month, but it was totally worth it for the incredible experience we had. Trekking independently was a lot cheaper than joining a tour group, which can cost double the price and we also saved £15 to £20 per day by not hiring a porter and carrying our own packs. If you wanted to reduce the costs further and trek for longer, you could bypass the expensive flights to Lukla and take the long bus journey instead. Here’s a look at our final breakdown of costs.

Us at Everest Base Camp, Nepal

Expense Total Per person Per day
Gear £385.32 £192.66 £27.52
Documents £255.26 £127.63 £18.23
Transport £456 £228 £32.57
Food £459.76 £229.88 £32.84
Accommodation £41.30 £20.65 £2.95
Miscellaneous £70.72 £35.36 £5.05
Total £1,668.36 £834.18 £119.16

We spent two weeks trekking to Everest Base Camp. From tea house accommodation to food and hiking gear, here's our Everest Base Camp trek cost breakdown.

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Have you trekked to Everest Base Camp? What do you think of our trekking costs? If you have any questions, let us know in the comments below.

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10 thoughts on “How much did our Everest Base Camp Trek Cost?

  1. Nice one guys! I had initially wanted to trek EBC for my birthday many moons ago but Seb persuaded me not to and go to Annapurna Trek instead (also amazing so no regrets), mainly because of that flight to Lukla…we’d read too many stories online about how dangerous it can be and let it out us off 🙁

    Bet this was amazing? How did you cope with the altitude above 5,000m?
    Stefan recently posted..Gay Bogota: our guide to the best bars, clubs and hotelsMy Profile

    • Hi Stefan, yes, the flight can be really scary so you’re happy that the pilots are so cautious actually. The altitude above 5,000m was the worst part for me, we didn’t stick around at that height for long. It was an amazing trek though; we went to Pokhara afterwards to recover and the mountains there looked lovely, I bet the Annapurna was awesome too 🙂

    • Thanks Rhonda, things are going well back in Blighty thanks, just trying to get used to the nippy British weather again!

  2. Wow..impressive! You have done well, considering how unique this experience was, priceless in my opinion. Is there anything you think you should have done differently? Spend more time acclimatising? Is it easy to find your way without a guide? Brian and I are considering doing this trekking in April/May next year, it will be a dream trip for us, thank you for all the information and inspiration you have provided 😄
    Gilda Baxter recently posted..Fifty Shades of Downsizing – It’s NOT A One Size Fits All ApproachMy Profile

    • Thanks Gilda, you’re right, it was priceless. It’s really easy to find your way without a guide, it’s basically one road and everyone is walking the same way, we did have a paper map with us though. I think the longer you can spend acclimatising along the way, the better, the only drawback is that means coping with the cold and poor tea house conditions for longer. Also, some people take Diamox medication for the entire trek to manage their altitude symptoms so that’s worth considering. I think you guys would love it though and I’d highly recommend it. You don’t need a porter if you’re determined but equally there’s no shame in hiring one 🙂

  3. Very inspiring.

    Trekking to an Everest Base Camp is one of my life-time desires.

    I thought the trekking cost was very reasonable as equipment, and good warm clothing is so important. I’ve heard how awful the tea houses can be, but without much choice, it really is, what it is.

    Was the plane a small one, as I have bad experiences with flying in tiny planes? Think Egypt in the late 90’s, A plane with about 20 people, and turbulence so bad that most people were sick. And I gripped the hand of my German boyfriend at the time so hard, that he bled!
    Victoria @The British Berliner recently posted..Best of Berlin – 4 years and counting!My Profile

    • So true Victoria, you do have to just take the tea houses as they come and put up with it, in the end it’s definitely worthwhile. Yes, the plane was tiny, a 16-seater and we could see the pilots up front. I can totally relate to your Egypt experience, that was what our flight was like on the way out. Thankfully, the way back was pretty smooth.

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