How much Shimla travel costs for couples! A guide for budget travellers

Calculating the cost to your vacation in Shimla in advance may be a good idea to keep things organized and well on track. While the Shimla travel costs for couples can vary, this post will talk about the budget trip seekers.

Shimla Trip Cost Dependency

When we compare things side-by-side, it turns out that Shimla travel cost for couples also depends on factors like whether it is a peak season or an off-peak one.

So, while hotels and local transport are cheaper in July-August (off-season), it becomes expensive in May and December.

Transport Cost Analysis

A one way trip to Shimla by bus from Delhi ISBT should cost you around INR 900
One way trip to Shimla by bus from Delhi ISBT should cost you around INR 900

There are two major points of entry into Shimla, from New Delhi, and from Chandigarh. If you start your travel from New Delhi, Chandigarh falls in your way as well.

New Delhi is a popular starting point for travelers across India. The tourists, further, can take here a taxi, bus or train to Shimla.

You can book your seats in comfortable buses to Shimla in advance to reduce the hassles although tickets can also be purchased on board.

Cost of Bus Travel to Shimla from New Delhi

You can take a bus from Inter State Bus Terminal at Kashmere Gate in Delhi which is very near to Old Delhi railway station.

The cost is per individual in Indian rupees. The HPTDC buses start from Himachal Bhawan near Janpath in Connaught Place.

In my personal view, HRTC buses, are comfortable and best but there is a heavy rush for it so needs an advance booking.

(Updated : 13:08:2019)

Bus Operator Type Cost (INR) Website Address
HIMACHAL ROAD TRANSPORT CORPORATION HIMGAURAV (TATA-AC) 724 http://www.hrtc.gov.in/hrtctickets/
PRIVATE BUS OPERATORS VOLVO AC SEMI SLEEPER 1338  http://www.redbus.in
PRIVATE BUS OPERATORS VOLVO AC SEMI SLEEPER 1400  https://www.travelyaari.com/
HARYANA TRANSPORT DEPARTMENT VOLVO AC SEMI SLEEPER 850 http://hartrans.gov.in/online/
HIMACHAL PRADESH TOURISM DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION VOLVO AC 950 http://www.booking.hptdc.in/

Going by the above fare table you can assume that the bus travel cost to Shimla from Delhi for 2 people roughly comes around – INR 1800. (*Governtment Luxury Buses)

Also adding the return journey cost it becomes – INR 3600

Cost of Train Travel to Shimla from Delhi

Himalayan Queen Toy Train Interiors
Himalayan Queen is a famous toy train between Kalka to Shimla

Shimla is well approached by trains from Delhi but you need to wait for the connecting train at Kalka Station in Chandigarh. This is because there are narrow gauge tracks and toy trains run on these routes.

Delhi to Kalka

Train Type Origin Combined Fare (INR) Dep. Time Arrival at kalka Wait Time at Kalka Connecting Train from Kalka
HIMALYAN QUEEN (14095) Mail Express DELHI S ROHILLA 435 + 255 05:35 AM 11:10 AM 1 hour Himalayan Queen (52455)
KALKA SHTBDI(12011) Rajdhani New Delhi 635 + 255 07:40 AM 11:45 AM 35 minutes Himalayan Queen (52455)

Going by the above table the train fare for 2 persons till Kalka comes around INR 1800 (*upper bound). Himalayan Queen reaches Shimla in the evening so you can take a panoramic view of the city lights,

To reach Shimla at day time you need to board another popular toy train from Kalka called – Shivalik Deluxe special, but, it departs to Shimla from Kalka at 05:30 AM. Hence, a night stay near Kalka Station may be required to catch that train.

Again if you add the cost of the return journey from the source it should be INR 3600

Porter Charges at the Shimla station

Maqsood is a popular face at the Shimla railway station.He has been working at the station as a porter for nearly three decades now.
A porter at Shimla railway station

There will however be plenty of porters more than willing to carry your luggage at the station but do remember to fix a price beforehand and bargain hard.

You will need a porter because most of the hotels are over the sealed area on Mall Road where no cars or taxis are allowed to come to the hotel without a special permit.

I put the porters’ tariff to be INR 200 at maximum. In a round-trip, it should cost you at most INR 400.

Comparing Some Budget Hotels Tariff’s Near Mall Road

HOTEL TARIFF (INR) Restaurant Travel Desk
Hotel Dalziel 3500 Yes Yes
Hotel Sansar 3400 No Yes
Hotel Gulmarg 3874 No Yes
Hotel Surya 3785 Yes Yes

The hotel’s per night stay tariff in a double bedroom with basic facilities near mall road ranges from INR 3400 to INR 3785.

Considering the upper limit we can calculate the tariff for 2 nights and 3 days like this

2 Nights+3 days = 2 X 3785 = INR 7570

I have compiled a list of some of the premium budget hotels above, which are located near Mall Road.

Since taxis or cars are not allowed in mall road, you can contact the hotels in advance, to arrange a pick up from the station or bus stand. This is because the hotels need to obtain a special permit for the mall road.

Approximate budget expected to be spent on Food & Drink

Food and drink in Shimla are expected to be a little more expensive than non-hilly places like Delhi. There are popular spots in the hill town like Indian coffee House and Barista enjoy beverages like coffee and tea.

A small eatery called Tara Bhojnalaya near AG office on mall road serves some nice food especially to mention – the hot and sour soup.

Some hotels, where you stay, have in-house restaurants and trust me, it is a great respite when you get back back to your hotel room in the evening after a tiring sightseeing day.

Food Cost Estimation

Let us consider a situation in Shimla where we are spending on food which includes tea, cold drinks, ice creams (yes!) at random for 2 people and lunch and dinner as well.

This is the most likely to be your calculation for a day on food.

Food + drink = INR 1000 (per day)

So for 3 days it comes around INR 3000

Cost on Local Sight Seeing in Shimla

Taking a view of the mountains in Kufri.

Average expenditure on covering local attractions including Kufri, Mashobra, and Naldehra for a small car should be around INR 1800-INR 2000 per day.

You can also break your journey into two parts covering some on the first day and others on the next day.

I believe it should take you 2 days to cover most of the attractions in and around Shimla. So I forth put my final figures for the travel to be around INR 2000.

Cost on Adventure & Recreations

Horse Ride at Naldehra is most likely to cost you between INR 350 to INR 500

At places like Naldehra and Kufri, you will need mediums of transport like a horse ride or ATV to view high altitude places like Lovers Point and Golf Club.

Kufri has an added attraction with the opening of an amusement park. Inside this park, you can enjoy adventure sports like rides, pools and the world’s highest go-kart track.

The expected expenditure on adventure and recreations should be around INR 2500

Calculating the cost of Shopping in Shimla

Shopping in Shimla can be done from the famous local markets – Lakkar Bazar, Lower Bazaar and stretch of markets along the mall road including the State Emporium.

You can buy things like wooden crafts, winter wear, tribal jewelry, artifacts, apple pickles, and souvenirs.

So, I assume, that a modest shopping budget may be kept around INR 3000-5000.

The Total approximate cost for a Shimla tour for couples

Details Expenditure
Travel Cost (Onward and Return) INR 3600
Cost of Stay (2 Nights+3days) INR 7570
Cost on Food (3 days 2 People) INR 3000
Cost on Sight Seeing INR 2000
Cost on Adventure & Recreations INR 2500
Total Cost = INR 18670

So, folks, this is my final figure i.e.INR 18670 for couples. I hope it helps you in planning your budget travel to Shimla.

About HIMANSHU 10 Articles
I am a traveller, adventure seeker and blogger who has extensively travelled across India. I share here the useful tips, stories and my experiences that may come handy to you as well!