Not long ago Azerbaijan was on track to become the next Dubai. Until oil prices plummeted in 2014, transforming the nation from notoriously expensive to surprisingly affordable. Keep reading to discover how much it costs to take a holiday to Azerbaijan in 2018.
Compared to other destinations, relatively few flights go to Azerbaijan. Most nationalities need to apply for an eVisa ($20 per person) too. Both combined might make the initial costs of visiting slightly higher. Others reach Azerbaijan by bus from Georgia in the north or Iran to the south for a few dollars. The border between Azerbaijan and Armenia is closed.
Tourists on a short holiday to Azerbaijan usually spend their time in Baku. The capital city deserves at least a few days for sightseeing and to visit the nearby Ateshgah Fire Temple, the burning mountain Yanar Dag and Gobustan National Park. Depending on preferences, Baku is a haven for all types of travel experiences and budgets.
Expect to spend anything from $10 a night for a bed in a hostel dorm, up to several hundred at the resorts or boutique hotels. Most tend to be clustered in the city centre near Icheri Sheher, Baku’s historical Inner City.
Eating out shouldn’t cost more than $20 per person each day. Head to the local restaurants to eat traditional food and pay less than $10 for a hearty meal with a beer or drink. The restaurants along Nizami Street and near Fountain Square tend to be higher. Budget travellers can buy food from the supermarket and self-cater for less than $5 per day.
Getting around in Baku is incredibly cheap. Both the metro and bus are just AZN0.20 ($0.12) for a one-way journey. Getting from Heydar Aliyev International Airport to Baku City Centre (28 May Metro Station) costs approximately AZN1.50 ($0.90).
Admission to most attractions in Baku such as the museums, Maiden Tower and Palace of the Shirvanshahs often costs AZN10 ($5.90). Day trips using public transport to Ateshgah and Yanar Dag will come to less than $10 in total. Private tours are more expensive at around $70 for a trip from Baku to Gobustan.
Shoestring travellers could easily survive on less than $30 per day in Baku, excluding the cost of flights and visa. Those looking for a mid-range experience might spend between $60 and $100 daily including tours.
More extended holidays to Azerbaijan often involve visiting other parts of the country including Quba, Sheki and Ganja. Depending on the itinerary and how much time spent in each, the total daily cost will on par with the price for a short trip.
Baku has a range of accommodation choices. Other destinations are more limited and can sometimes be tricky to find. Small villages often have guesthouses ranging between $20 and $40 per night. The total cost, however, might include meals.
Food and drink in other parts of Azerbaijan are less than in Baku. A meal and drink in Ganja, the second city, might be 30% lower than the capital. Buying fresh fruit and vegetables will be much cheaper too. Tourists can expect to spend between $10 to $20 each day on food and drinks (including a beer or two in the evening).
Relying on public transport such as the marshrutkas (minibuses) and trains is affordable. Getting from one destination to the next rarely exceeds $8. Shorter distances might only come to $2.
The Caucasus Mountains offer stunning views and landscapes. Culture lovers should be aware that fewer museums exist outside of Baku. Hiring a driver or having your own set of wheels might be necessary to get the most out of a holiday in Azerbaijan.
Tourists who plan to spend at least one week in Azerbaijan should be able to travel comfortably on $30 to $50 each day, including transport. Luxury may be more limited outside of Baku.
Anyone who plans to spend two weeks in Azerbaijan can see the daily costs increase or decrease by up to 30%. Having the opportunity to have more time in smaller towns and villages will cut costs. But those looking for fast travel in Azerbaijan might have daily expenses double or even triple depending on if they hire a driver to see the attractions. The total price for two weeks in Azerbaijan would cost the average tourist anywhere between $600 and $1500 including the cost of flights and visas.
The eVisa is valid for 30 days so why not make the most of it? Anyone who decides to spend a month in Azerbaijan can expect to pay anywhere from less than $1,000 up to $2,000. The longer the trip, the lower the average daily hosts.
Frugal travellers and backpackers often find a holiday to Azerbaijan affordable. Compared to other parts of Europe, the total cost will be almost half. But daily expenses can skyrocket when factoring in hiring a private driver to visit the hard-to-reach attractions.