If you’re thinking about visiting Central Asia, then you may have read about the low cost of living in Uzbekistan.
Uzbekistan is frequently listed among the world’s most affordable countries to live in.
But what about the cost of visiting Uzbekistan as a tourist in 2024?
Well you’re in the right place as we live here and in this article we’ll breakdown the cost of travelling to Uzbekistan in 2024.
We’ll also give our estimates for daily spending for travelers of different budgets.
Is Uzbekistan Cheap to Travel to?
Uzbekistan is a very affordable country to visit as a tourist. Although prices here have increased with inflation over the past year, it’s still a very budget-friendly travel destination to visit.
Travelers on a low to medium budget can enjoy a wonderful time exploring Uzbekistan’s historical cities without breaking the bank.
Food and travel in Uzbekistan are particularly cheap.
Entry tickets to tourist attractions such as the Registan and Amir Temur Mausoleum (Gur-i Amir Сomplex) rarely cost more than $2-3.
A metro ticket costs next to nothing at 1,600 Som ($0.13) and a standard Yandex taxi ride across a city will cost 10,000 – 30,000 ($0.80-2.40) Som depending on distance and time of day.
When is Travel to Uzbekistan Expensive?
Despite the low travel costs for most things there are a few caveats.
For a start, unlike other Asian countries like Thailand and Malaysia, Uzbekistan doesn’t attract as many tourists. This lower demand means that competition between hotels is not as fierce
For a country with such low prices, hotels are not always the bargain you might hope for.
The high season for tourism in Uzbekistan is late spring and early fall (autumn) months. As the summers here can be unbearably hot, July sees a dip in tourism.
Which City is the Most Expensive in Uzbekistan?
As the capital city, Tashkent is the most expensive city in Uzbekistan. However despite being more expensive on average, the size of the city means that you’ll have more options to find cheaper deals.
- Budget hotels in Tashkent start from $7 for a shared dorm room. Read more about Cheap Hotels in Tashkent.
- Mid-range hotel rooms can be found from $30 but budget from $40 for far better quality.
- For the best 5 star hotels in Tashkent expect a budget of $180+ per day. Read more about 5 Star Hotels in Tashkent.
As for food, budget travelers will find the cheapest meals at restaurants catering to locals and selling Uzbek food. According to official statistics, an average plate of plov in Tashkent costs 30,000 Som.
For great budget meals try Uzbekistan national food restaurant Rayhon.
Mid-range meals will cost $7-15 depending on the type of cuisine with Asian dishes such as sushi being the most expensive.
For travelers on a higher budget, fine dining options will start from $50 per person for a 2 course meal plus a drink. Budget for more if ordering alcohol.
Uzbekistan on a Budget: How Much do You Need Per Day?
To help you plan your budget for Uzbekistan we’ve created 3 budgets for different types of travelers: backpacker, mid-range tourist, and luxury tourist.
The prices here represent a minimum of what you’ll need per day. We haven’t included things like souvenirs, guided tours or nights out so budget extra for those.
- Travel expenses can vary significantly based on individual preferences, so consider this as a rough guideline.
- The prices given here are averages, spread across the cost of a week trip.
Backpacker Daily Budget
Tashkent has the most options for budget accommodation with shared dorm rooms starting at $7 per night.
The smaller cities of Samarkand and Bukhara have limited budget options but you can still find hostels from $15.
Couchsurfing is an option for budget travelers, and while it’s possible to find a free place to stay, keep in mind that Uzbekistan’s registration requirements at each place of stay may complicate matters.
Stick to Uzbek restaurants that cater to locals such as the plov centers or Uzbek cafes in bazaars and you’ll keep the cost down to $2-3 per meal. Uzbek meals are very hearty so you won’t struggle on only 2 per day!
Uzbekistan’s cities are very walkable with the exception of Tashkent which is just too big to get around on foot.
Luckily the metro is so cheap you’d struggle to spend more than $1 per day!
If you’re planning to travel between cities the cheapest way to do this is by bus from 48,000 Som ($4).
Entry to some of the country’s most iconic attractions such as the Registan are incredibly cheap so don’t be stingy and miss out on this!
Mid-Range Daily Budget
Hotels are where you’re likely to spend the most as mid-range hotels can be hit and miss. At this price range you’ll find something clean and comfortable but not amazing.
There are definitely cheaper hotels available but the quality drops considerably under $40 per night.
For the moment at least, Uzbekistan is lacking in good quality mid-price hotels. Book early to avoid disappointment.
Assuming you’ll have a half decent breakfast at your hotel, you’ll only need to budget for 2 meals per day.
For $10 per meal you can eat very well but for $20 per meal you can eat almost any type of cuisine at most restaurants. Uzbekistan is cheap for food, especially if it’s food sourced locally.
For an average of around $10 per day then over the course of a week you can easily afford to take 2 or 3 daily private taxis (Yandex or My Taxi) around town and have money leftover to book a couple of trains between cities.
Walking around the historical cities of Samarkand and Bukhara is still recommended and will keep your overall costs incredibly low.
At this price range you can easily afford to enter every tourist attraction you stumble across.
Alternatively, you might want to book one of the free/cheaper guided tour options.
Luxury Traveler Daily Budget
Most 5 star hotels in Uzbekistan start from around $180 per night but Samarkand’s Silk Road by Minyoun can be booked for $120 if booked in advanced.
For these top prices you can expect the best service plus top facilities such as heated swimming pools and saunas. A high quality buffet style breakfast should also be included.
If not opting for 5 star hotels you can still find a number of highly-rated cheaper options for around $100 per night.
Read our post on the best luxury hotels in Tashkent for more info.
At this price range you can enjoy a cheaper authentic Uzbek style lunch and splash out on fine dining in the evening at some of the best restaurants.
Japanese and Pan Asian food tends to be the most expensive cuisine in Uzbekistan, especially if ordering seafood (it’s a long way to the sea!).
If including alcohol, budget for quite a bit extra. Beer and vodka is very cheap here but wine and cocktails will cost at least $5-10 per glass depending on the restaurant.
Transport: $20+ (more if hiring a private car)
A first class train ticket from Tashkent to Samarkand will cost you only 205,000 Som ($17) if booked in advance.
At this price range you can take advantage of Uzbekistan’s low prices and do any activity you like!
Take whole day private guided tours or even go one step further and do unusual activities such as camping in a desert yurt, touring Tashkent’s mountains, or even viewing the mountainous valleys of Tashkent by hot air balloon.
Uzbekistan Daily Budget Breakdown
|Budget (All in US dollars $)
As you can see, Uzbekistan can be done on a minimal budget of $13 per day but might not lead to the best travel experience.
Mid-range travelers might want to budget around $100 a day but for this amount expect a decent hotel, some fantastic food, taxis around the city and entrance to all tourist attractions.
This kind of trip can definitely be done on less if saving money on hotels and eating Uzbek food.
For $300 a day, luxury tourists can live like a king in a 5 star hotel with some excellent dining options and with all kinds of tourist activities.
Uzbekistan Budget Travel Tips
Book your hotels in advance!
Uzbekistan doesn’t have a huge number of affordable hotels and the quality of some hotels here can be below par.
Make sure to book your hotel in advance to avoid disappointment as many of the best hotels with reasonable prices sell out in advance.
Prepare to Haggle
When buying souvenirs in tourist areas the prices are often vastly inflated.
If you’ve never had to bargain before then you might feel uncomfortable asking to reduce the price. Don’t worry, as it’s expected that you’ll ask for some discount.
To have a good idea of the true price befriend a local and ask how much it should actually cost.
Go in looking only half-interested and don’t be afraid to walk away if you’re not happy with the price.
Eat Like Locals
Uzbekistan doesn’t have much ‘street food’ but there are plenty of cheap options for eating out. The best deals will never be found in the tourist areas so walk into a local neighborhood and find a busy Uzbek restaurant.
They’re unlikely to speak any English but it’s nothing Google translate and some miming can’t fix!
Read more tips about traveling to Uzbekistan if you’re planning a trip in 2024.