Let us look at some of the most common questions asked on my blog about making a trip to Ladakh by public transport and the budget of a Ladakh trip. I am starting this five-article series of Leh Ladakh FAQs to answer all your questions about planning a successful trip to Ladakh.
It will be easy for me to redirect you to the right question and its answer in these articles instead of repeating the same answers again and again in the comments section of various blog articles on this website.
I will also keep updating this Leh Ladakh FAQ series with new questions in case I have missed answering any and also keep my answers fresh with updated information about preparing for a trip to Ladakh.
Let's quickly dive into the details:
Public Transport in Ladakh
This section should answer all your questions about making a trip to Ladakh by public transport. Once, you go through these questions you will about public transport in Ladakh, buses that run and other modes of transport that exist to make a budget-friendly trip to Ladakh.
Q1. Is it possible to make a trip to Ladakh by public transport?
The short answer to the question is, of course, yes, you can easily make a trip to Ladakh by public transport. A lot will depend upon the itinerary and the number of days you have in hand. You will surely have to compromise on certain aspects like sightseeing on the way from one place to another. The plan you will follow for your trip to Ladakh must be flexible enough to change itself based on the availability of public transport.
Leh is very well connected by public transport buses with both Manali and Srinagar. And both Srinagar and Manali are very well connected to Delhi and Chandigarh. So, you can easily travel by transport buses (HRTC, JKSRTC) from Delhi to Jammu to Srinagar to Leh or Delhi to Manali to Leh.
Once you reach Leh, other tourist places within Ladakh like Nubra Valley, Pangong Tso, and Tso Moriri are connected by various buses or other public transport. However, the frequency of these public transport buses, especially from Leh to Pangong Tso or Leh to Tso Moriri, may not be that great. Nubra Valley, on the other hand, is very well connected to Leh by many buses within the week.
Apart from public buses that ply within Ladakh, you can also rely on local and tourist shared taxis or jeeps that run between many places within Ladakh. There are lots of flyers that people put at cafes, dine-ins, restaurants, travel agent desks/shops/whiteboards wanting to share the taxis for different trips within Ladakh.
Even travel agents organize such a shared taxis trip as well but charge a little higher, about Rs 200-300 more than it would ideally cost when you share with other tourists. So, in the worst case, you can always go back to them and book a seat for yourself.
If you plan your budget Leh Ladakh trip by public transport properly, you can make your 12-14 day Ladakh tour covering Srinagar Leh Highway, Manali Leh Highway, Nubra Valley, Pangong Tso, and Tso Moriri within a budget of Rs 14500 – 16000.
Q2. Is there any Jammu to Leh bus service?
There is no direct bus from Jammu to Leh. You will have to reach Srinagar first from Jammu, and then from Srinagar, you will get plenty of options to travel to Leh from Srinagar in a bus.
The bus from Jammu to Srinagar leaves at 7 AM from the JKSRTC counter, which is located just beside the TRC, Residency Road. This bus is a ten-seater non-AC minibus, which they call as super luxury coaches.
The bus from Srinagar also leaves at 7 AM for Jammu just beside the TRC. It is better to reach at 6.30 AM at the ticket counter and get the tickets. At Srinagar, sometimes advance booking one night before is not done. However, at Jammu mostly they accept advance booking of the ticket one night before.
The Jammu – Srinagar bus takes about 10-11 hrs to reach depending upon the traffic situation and any roadblocks on the way.
The super deluxe bus fare for Jammu to Srinagar bus service is Rs 445 per person, the deluxe bus service costs Rs 325 and standard JKSRTC bus from Jammu to Srinagar costs Rs 220.
If you are traveling by bus from Jammu to Srinagar and want to spend the previous night in Jammu, I will suggest that you stay at the hotels near Residency Road. The auto-rickshaws will take about Rs 70-80 to take you to the TRC or JKSRTC counter in the morning.
Q3. Is there any Srinagar to Leh bus service?
There are quite a few bus services available on Srinagar to Leh route. You have the option of traveling to Leh from Srinagar by JKSRTC buses as well as private bus tour operators who also run buses between Srinagar – Leh. The private bus tour operator buses are mostly in the form of tempo travelers or semi-deluxe mini-buses with cushion seats.
The Srinagar to Leh bus service is available at TRC near Dal Lake in Srinagar. The bus from Srinagar to Leh starts at 8 AM at present, halts at Kargil for one night and then reaches Leh the next day from Kargil by evening.
The super deluxe bus from Srinagar to Leh charges around Rs 1320 per person and semi-deluxe bus fare is Rs 925 per person from Srinagar to Leh. If you prefer to travel by a standard bus from Srinagar to Leh, the bus fare is Rs 470.
If you plan to split the journey between Srinagar to Leh at Kargil, you can also take a standard bus from Srinagar to Kargil and then take Kargil to Leh standard JKSRTC bus in the morning. The standard bus fare from Srinagar to Kargil is around Rs 250 and Rs 325 for a semi-deluxe bus. Similarly, the bus fare from Kargil to Leh is also around Rs 350.
The bus from Leh to Srinagar starts at 2 PM, runs non-stop at night and arrive at 7.30 AM in Srinagar. The bus fare of Leh to Srinagar deluxe bus is about Rs 1058 per person, the semi-deluxe bus between Leh – Srinagar charges Rs 670 per person and the standard JKSRTC buses charge around Rs 470 per person for Leh to Srinagar bus journey.
The private bus operators that run Leh to Srinagar bus services charges about Rs 1000-1500 per person based on the type of bus or tempo traveler you opt for among them.
These privately run tempo travelers and mini-buses start from Leh town every day around 5.30 PM – 6.00 PM, run non-stop overnight and reach Srinagar the next day in the morning around 7.30 AM – 8.00 AM. Mini-buses are the best option as you get an individual cushion seat and some level of comfort to sleep at night.
Those of you who are interested, there is no Volvo bus service from Srinagar to Leh. So, a super deluxe bus from JKSRTC is what you get as the best bus to travel from Srinagar to Leh.
Please note that the bus timing between Srinagar – Leh route is also dependent on the timings of Zojila pass in the early season. The roads are narrow at Zojila Pass in the months of April and May, so, army allows one-way traffic to ply between Kargil and Sonamarg.
Q4. Is there any Manali to Leh bus service?
On Manali Leh Highway, both HRTC and HPTDC run their bus services. While the HRTC offers the standard buses of the state transport department for the general public, the HPTDC offers a semi-deluxe minibus service especially for tourists traveling on Manali Leh Highway.
Being a tourist bus, the HPTDC bus will stop at all tourist spots and mountain passes that come on the way from Manali to Leh. This bus service is run by the HP Tourism department every year starting from 1st July to 15th September.
However, the ordinary HRTC bus will not stop for any sightseeing and will run from Manali to Leh. The HRTC buses do stop for mandatory food and daily routine stops though.
HPTDC Bus Service from Manali to Leh to Manali
The HPTDC bus covers the journey of Manali Leh Highway in two days with an overnight halt at Keylong in Hotel Chandrabhaga. The HPTDC bus leaves from Manali at 10.00 – 11.00 AM based on the published schedule of the season (available at the official HPTDC website) and reaches Keylong by the evening around 4.00 – 5.00 PM This timing will reduce by 4 hrs in 2021 as the buses will follow the route of the Atal Tunnel instead of Rohtang Pass. The bus then halts overnight at Keylong. The next morning, the bus leaves Keylong to Leh around 4.00 – 5.00 AM and reaches Leh by 7.00 PM.
The bus from Manali starts at the HRTC bus stand in Manali and drops the tourists at the JKSRTC bus stand in Leh.
Similarly, this HPTDC Leh to Manali bus service runs in the opposite direction. The bus will start from Leh at 5.00 AM in the morning and reach Keylong at 7.00 PM. It will take an overnight halt at Keylong. Then the bus leaves at 7.00 AM from Keylong and reaches Manali around 1.30 PM until 2020. But from 2021, the bus from Keylong to Manali will just reach in 2 hrs because of the reduced distance of travel via the Atal Tunnel instead of Rohtang Pass.
The bus from Leh starts at J&K Bank / Tourist Information Centre, Fort Road in Leh, and drops the tourists at the HRTC bus stand in Manali.
HPTDC publishes the Manali to Leh bus schedule on its official website every year in May before the season begins. Hence, I recommend that you always check this schedule of bus service from Manali to Leh before planning your trip dates.
The total one-way fare of the HPTDC bus service is Rs 2900, which includes dormitory accommodation, dinner, and breakfast at HPTDC Hotel Chandrabhaga. Hence, the total cost of traveling from Manali to Leh by bus and back to Manali from Leh using HPTDC semi-deluxe bus service is Rs 5800 per person including night stay & meals at Keylong. This price is bound to change in 2021 after the opening of the Atal Tunnel route.
The bookings of the HPTDC semi-deluxe bus from Manali to Leh to Manali can be done online using the HPTDC official website.
HRTC Bus Service from Manali to Leh
Two HRTC buses run from Manali to Leh. The newly launched daily direct bus service from Manali to Leh takes 17 Hrs to reach Leh from Manali directly. This direct bus from Manali to Leh is available daily from the HRTC bus stand in Manali.
This daily HRTC direct bus leaves from Manali at 4.00 AM in the morning and it used to reach Leh around 8.30 – 9.00 PM. But now from 2021, the bus journey will take about 4 hours less when traveling from the Atal Tunnel instead of Rohtang Pass.
The one-way fare of this direct bus service from Manali to Leh is Rs 833.
The other option to travel from Manali to Leh by bus is to take the HRTC bus from Manali to Keylong first, stay overnight at Keylong and then next morning take the daily bus from Keylong to Leh.
The daily bus from Manali to Keylong leaves at 8.00 AM and starting 2021 will reach Keylong by 10.30 AM. And the daily HRTC bus from Keylong leaves at 5.00 AM and reaches Leh by late evening.
The bus fare from Manali to Keylong is Rs 174 (which is bound to reduce in 2021) while the bus fare from Keylong to Leh is around Rs 550.
The bookings of HRTC buses from Manali to Leh or Manali to Keylong can be made online using the HRTC official website. However, the bookings for Keylong to Leh bus service by HRTC cannot be made online. One must buy the tickets at the Keylong HRTC bus stand.
Hence, using the regular HRTC bus service for Manali – Leh – Manali trip, the return bus fare will be around Rs 1600-1700. If you decide to make a two day trip from Manali to Leh by sleeping overnight at Keylong, then you have to account for a couple of meals and hotel stay at Keylong.
Q5. Is there any Delhi to Leh bus service?
There is a direct Delhi to Leh bus service by HRTC that runs from ISBT Kashmere Gate, New Delhi, at 2.30 PM every day. This bus from Delhi to Leh covers a total distance of 1050 km in about 35-36 Hrs. However starting 2021, as the Atal Tunnel route connecting Manali and Keylong is open, the distance will reduce by 46 km between Manali – Keylong and the time taken to reach Keylong from Manali by 4 hrs. So, this bus from Delhi to Leh will take about 31-32 hrs to complete the trip via Atal Tunnel. This direct bus stops overnight at Keylong and covers this Delhi to Leh journey in 2 days from Delhi.
The bus starts from Delhi at 2.30 PM and reaches Chandigarh Sec 43 bus stand at 8.30 PM. From Chandigarh, the bus starts for Kullu and reaches Kullu in the morning around 5.30 AM. Finally, it used to go over Manali – Rohtang Pass road from Kullu but starting 2021 it will reach Keylong around 11 AM for the overnight stay via the Atal Tunnel route. The next morning, the bus leaves Keylong at 5 AM and reaches Leh by sunset.
In the opposite direction, the HRTC bus starts from Leh at 5 AM and reaches Keylong by sunset for an overnight stay. The next morning, it starts from Keylong at 6.30 AM to reach Delhi by 11.30 PM in the night via the Atal tunnel route.
There might be a change in the bus once at Keylong and the bus driver changes twice, one at Sundernagar and another one at Keylong.
The total bus fare for Delhi to Leh direct bus service is Rs 1656 (reduced from Rs 1727 in 2021). Hence, a return journey in this direct HRTC bus service from Delhi to Leh and Leh to Delhi will cost you Rs 3312.
You can book the tickets for this direct bus from Delhi to Leh at the HRTC ticket counter at Delhi, Kashmere Gate ISBT terminal. Strangely enough, the bus tickets for Leh to Delhi bus service cannot be booked online yet in the new HRTC bus ticket booking website. These tickets you can only purchase from the ticket counter at Delhi or Leh bus stand.
Well, this Delhi – Leh HRTC bus runs over the ultra-scenic Manali – Leh. But, unlike the HPTDC bus, the HRTC Delhi – Manali – Leh bus does not stop over at the tourist’s locations. The bus covers the journey of Manali – Leh highway passing over five high altitude passes viz. Baralacha La, Rohtang Pass (not anymore starting 2021), Nakee La, Lachulung La, Taglang La.
The bus also stops over at various dhabas on the route to have tea/snacks. This stop allows you as a tourist to enjoy the beauty of Manali – Leh Highway and take pictures on the way as well at these stops.
Q6. Is there any Leh to Nubra Valley bus service?
Three buses travel from Leh to Diskit, Nubra Valley every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday of the week. Hence, you can only plan your trip from Leh to Nubra Valley by bus on these days of the week. The Leh to Nubra Valley bus leaves at 6.00 AM on these days of the week from Leh bus stand.
The bus from Diskit, Nubra Valley to Leh leaves on Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday of every week. It is the same bus that comes from Leh to Diskit on the previous days, and hence, it leaves the next day. The timing of the bus from Diskit to Leh is 7.00 AM on these days of the week from the Diskit bus stand.
You can travel to Hunder from Diskit easily by many local shared jeeps or hitchhiking. Hunder is just about 8 km from the Diskit village and is famous for its silver sand dunes.
Otherwise, there is a bus that starts from Leh to Skuroo at 6 AM every Tuesday and Thursday. Skuroo is a bit ahead of Thoise (army airstrip) in Nubra Valley, and Hunder will fall on the way as you cross Diskit – Hunder – Thoise – Skuru on this bus. You can get down at Hunder.
Finally, there is also a bus to Turtuk in Nubra Valley every Saturday and leaves at 6 AM from Leh bus stand. This bus also returns from Turtuk village back to Leh the next day, which is Sunday. Tyakshi just ahead of Turtuk village is the last village before LOC which you can visit on this side of Nubra Valley.
There is also a bus that runs between Leh and Panamik, which leaves every Tuesday of the week from Leh bus stand. You can get down at Sumur if you are interested in visiting Sumur else go all the way up to Panamik.
This bus running between Leh and Panamik also goes over to Khimee and Taksha villages ahead of Panamik towards Warshi village. As a domestic tourist, you are allowed to travel only up to Warshi village in Nubra Valley on the Panamik side.
Finally, one bus runs from Leh to Charsa village, ahead of Sumur every Saturday. This bus leaves Leh bus stand at 6 AM.
This means that about 8-9 buses are available in a week to travel from Leh to Nubra Valley by bus to different places in Nubra Valley like Diskit, Hunder, Turtuk, Sumur, and Panamik. So, plan your trip to Nubra Valley on these dates in case you are interested in traveling by bus from Leh to Nubra Valley.
Even within Nubra Valley, Diskit village is well connected to Turtuk and Panamik, the two different ends of Nubra Valley a tourist can visit. There is a daily bus that runs from Diskit to Turtuk at 2.30 PM, and then the same bus returns to Diskit from Turtuk at 6.00 AM. The daily bus from Panamik to Diskit runs every day at 7.30 AM.
You can notice that Nubra Valley is fairly connected to Leh by public transport. Hence, you should not have any issues while planning a trip to Nubra Valley from Leh by bus or public transport.
The fare for Leh to Nubra Valley Bus Service:
It is always better to buy the ticket for the bus from Leh to Nubra Valley in the prior evening itself from Leh bus stand. This booking helps to ensure you are boarded the next morning on the bus.
- The one-way bus fare for Leh to Diskit bus service is about Rs 118 per person while the return ticket of Leh to Diskit bus costs about Rs 197.
- The one-way bus fare for Leh to Skuroo bus service is about Rs 148 per person while the return ticket of Leh to Skuroo bus costs about Rs 256.
- The one-way bus fare for Leh to Turtuk bus service is about Rs 214 per person while the return ticket of Leh to Turtuk bus costs about Rs 316.
- The one-way bus fare for Leh to Charsa bus service is about Rs 164 per person while the return ticket of Leh to Panamik bus costs about Rs 280.
- The one-way bus fare for Leh to Panamik bus service is about Rs 170 per person while the return ticket of Leh to Panamik bus costs about Rs 287.
- The one-way bus fare for Panamik – Diskit bus service is about Rs 75
- The one-way bus fare for Turtuk – Diskit bus service is about Rs 80
You can easily get a homestay in Diskit or Hunder for about Rs 300 – 400 per person and the two meals will cost you about Rs 150 – 200. Similarly, the price range is valid for Panamik and Sumur villages too.
Hence, the two-day budget trip from Leh to Nubra Valley by public transport will cost you only about Rs 700 – 800 in total with transport, food and stay. A three day trip to Nubra Valley from Leh may cost you about Rs 1200 by public transport.
Q7. Is there any Leh to Pangong Tso bus service?
Two buses travel from Leh to Pangong Tso every Saturday and Sunday of the week. Hence, you can only plan your trip from Leh to Pangong Tso by bus on these days of the week. The Leh to Pangong Tso bus leaves at 6.30 AM on every Saturday and Sunday from Leh bus stand.
The bus from Pangong Tso to Leh leaves on Sunday and Monday of every week. It is the same bus that comes from Leh to Pangong Tso on the previous days, and hence, it leaves the next day. The timing of the bus from Pangong Tso to Leh is 6.30 AM on Sunday and Monday, which means the bus leaves from Spangmik Village, Pangong Tso at 6.30 AM.
This means that only two buses are available in a week to travel from Leh to Pangong Tso by bus. So, plan your trip to Pangong Tso lake on these dates only in case you are interested in traveling by bus from Leh to Pangong.
Please note that the Leh to Pangong Tso bus may not say Pangong Tso on it but it may have the name of the village as in Spangmik, Merak or Chusul.
Lukung village is the first village at Pangong Tso lake and then 16 KMs ahead comes Spangmik Village and then Merak, Chusul are further ahead of it. You will have to get down at Spangmik as most camps or stay options at Pangong Tso are available at Spangmik village.
The fare for Leh to Pangong Tso Bus Service:
It is always better to buy the ticket for the bus from Leh to Pangong Tso in the prior evening itself from Leh bus stand. This booking helps to ensure you are boarded the next morning on the bus.
- The one-way bus fare for Leh to Pangong Tso bus service is about Rs 256 per person
- The one-way bus fare for Pangong Tso to Leh bus service is the same as about Rs 256 per person
However, a round trip bus ticket of Leh to Pangong Tso trip by bus will cost you Rs 512 per person. You can easily get a homestay or dorm tent at Pangong Tso lake for about Rs 300 – 400 per person, and the two meals will cost you about Rs 125 – 150.
Hence, the two-day budget trip from Leh to Pangong Tso by public transport will cost you only about Rs 1000 – 1300 in total with transport, food, and stay.
Other options to Travel to Pangong Tso from Leh by Bus
Apart from these two weekly JKSRTC buses that run between Leh and Pangong Tso, other buses run from Leh bus stand to the nearby villages like Tangtse, Durbuk, Pobrang, Merak, Chusul, Tsaga, etc.
You can always refer to the complete Leh Ladakh bus schedule or bus timetable shared above in the previous questions to refer to these villages nearby Pangong Tso and the timings of the buses leaving from Leh.
If the direct buses to Pangong Tso from Leh are not matching your schedule, you can also travel to Pangong lake by these buses and either get off at the Pangong Tso lake or travel further to Pangong Tso from these villages by hitchhiking. Sometimes you may find locally shared jeeps traveling to Pangong Tso from these nearby villages.
Finally, if nothing works out for you in these nearby villages, then you also have an option to ask some villagers to drop you to Pangong Tso lake in his private car/vehicle and charge a fare for it. You will surely find someone at these villages who have a camper or pickup or truck that you can hire and get dropped near the shores of Pangong Tso lake.
Q8. Is there any Leh to Tso Moriri bus service?
Three buses travel from Leh to Tso Moriri every 10th, 20th, and 30th day of the month. Hence, you can only plan your trip from Leh to Tso Moriri by bus on these dates in the month. The Leh to Tso Moriri bus leaves at 6.30 AM on these dates from Leh bus stand.
The bus from Tso Moriri to Leh leaves on 11th, 21st, and 31st/1st day of every month. It is the same bus that comes from Leh to Tso Moriri on the previous days, and hence, it leaves the next day. The timing of the bus from Tso Moriri to Leh is 6.30 AM, which means the bus leaves from Korzok village at 6.30 AM.
This means that only three buses are available in a month to travel from Leh to Tso Moriri by bus. So, plan your trip to Tso Moriri lake on these dates only in case you are interested to travel by bus from Leh to Tso Moriri.
Please note that the Leh to Tso Moriri bus may not say Tso Moriri lake on it, but it may have the name of the village as in Korzok. Village Korzok is located nearest to the Tso Moriri lake; only a 15 minute walk away from it offering a panoramic view of this beautiful water body in India.
Bus Fare for Leh to Tso Moriri Bus Service:
It is always better to buy the ticket for the bus from Leh to Tso Moriri in the prior evening itself from Leh bus stand. This booking helps to ensure you are boarded the next morning on the bus.
- The one-way bus fare for Leh to Tso Moriri bus service is Rs 370 per person
- The one-way bus fare for Tso Moriri to Leh bus service is the same as Rs 370 per person
So, a round trip bus ticket of Leh to Tso Moriri trip by bus will cost you Rs 740 per person. You can get a homestay or dorm tent at Tso Moriri lake for about Rs 400 – 500 per person, and the two meals will cost you about Rs 150 – 200 at these homestays.
Hence, the two-day budget trip from Leh to Tso Moriri by public transport will cost you only about Rs 1300 – 1400 in total with transport, food and stay.
Other options to Travel to Tso Moriri from Leh by Bus
Apart from these three monthly JKSRTC buses that run between Leh and Tso Moriri, other local buses run from Leh bus stand to the nearby villages like Chumathang, Hanle, Mahe, Koyul, etc.
You can always refer to the complete Leh Ladakh bus schedule or bus timetable shared above in the previous questions to refer to these villages nearby Tso Moriri and the timings of the buses leaving from Leh.
If the direct buses to Tso Moriri from Leh are not matching your schedule, you can also travel to Tso Moriri by these buses that will help you reach nearby Tso Moriri. Then from that village or Mahe bridge, you can travel further to Tso Moriri by hitchhiking. Sometimes you may find locally shared jeeps traveling to Korzok or Tso Moriri from these nearby villages or Mahe bridge.
Finally, if nothing works out for you in these nearby villages, then you also have an option to ask some villagers to drop you to Tso Moriri lake in his private car/vehicle and charge a fare for it. You will surely find someone at these villages who have a camper or pickup or truck that you can hire and get dropped near the shores of Tso Moriri lake.
Q9. Is there any Leh to Hanle bus service?
Bus from Leh to Hanle leaves at 6.30 AM every Saturday and returns the next day from Hanle to Leh. The charges are about Rs 492. There is also a bus that travels to Koyul, you can get down near Rhongo or Loma bend and then travel to Hanle by hitchhiking.
Budget & Cost of Ladakh Trip
This section should answer all your questions about the budget or cost of your Leh Ladakh trip. It also talks about how you can make a budget trip to Ladakh possible.
Q10. What is the budget or cost of Leh Ladakh trip?
The budget of a Leh Ladakh trip ideally depends upon the number of days you have planned your trip. Apart from it, to be very frank, the budget for any trip including Leh Ladakh depends a lot upon the person to person and the taste + comfort of stay he/she prefers.
In a Leh Ladakh trip, you may stay either at dhabha tents for as low as Rs 125 or posh hotels ranging from Rs 3000 – Rs 15000. Similarly, you can eat food at local dhabhas or tea shacks otherwise you can also opt to eat food at costly restaurants in Leh town.
If I consider our most common itinerary of the Leh Ladakh trip for 12-14 days, we can categorize the budget expenses into two categories.
A. Food, stay and other miscellaneous expenses
If you are going with the budget hotel or guest house having decent comfort, eating decent quality food and including only mandatory miscellaneous charges then you may need to shell out Rs 10000 – 12500 per person for your Leh Ladakh itinerary of 14 days.
B. Mode of transportation expenses
This depends upon what mode of transport you may opt for making a trip to Leh Ladakh. I will highlight a few common options of transport or commute used by tourists on the Ladakh trip. Hence, taking food, accommodation & miscellaneous expenses into account:
- traveling to Ladakh by self-drive mode of transport, you are looking at about ((Rs 9500 – 11000) + (Rs 10000 – 12500) = (Rs 19500 – 23500)) as the total cost for the entire Leh Ladakh trip.
- traveling to Ladakh by self-drive rented bike mode of transport, you are looking at about ((Rs 24500 – 30000) + (Rs 10000 – 12500) = (Rs 34500 – 42500)) as the total cost for the entire trip.
- traveling by privately hired taxi in Leh and reaching Leh in public/shared transport, you are looking at about ((Rs 12000 – 13000) + (Rs 10000 – 12500) = (Rs 22000 – 25500)) as the total cost for the entire trip including 1 day added to travel between Tso Moriri – Leh.
- traveling shared taxis (or public transport or along with travel partners) in Leh and reaching Leh in public/shared transport, you are looking at about ((Rs 13000 – 14000) + (Rs 10000 – 12500) = (Rs 23000 – 26500)) as the total cost for the entire trip.
Q11. Can I make a budget trip to Ladakh?
It depends on what you call a budget trip. A road trip to Ladakh needs a good number of days in hand, a minimum of about 10-11 days from Delhi. Hence, the importance of the amount of money spent or going to spend per day basis becomes important to reduce the overall cost of the Ladakh trip. I will suggest you some tips below which can help you make a budget trip to Leh Ladakh.
- Travel in the shoulder months of April/May and September/October. You will be able to find on the spot hotel bookings, fewer tourists and good discounts everywhere
- Traveling in a group of 4-5 people does help in reducing the overall cost of accommodation on triple sharing, and of course, the taxi cost.
- Have a balance when choosing hotels or stay options and similarly have a balance in where you eat, dhabha to a high-end restaurant
These tips will help reduce the budget of your Ladakh trip to a good extent. You can read this topic in detail at 5 Tips for a Budget Trip to Ladakh.
Q12. Can I reduce the taxi cost in Leh Ladakh?
Unfortunately, private taxis will be costly and there isn’t much room for reducing the cost of a taxi in Leh beyond Ladakh taxi union rate list. Some local drivers do offer about 12-15% discounts but you will have to get in touch with local drivers for it.
Q13. Can I find travel partners for my Ladakh trip & where?
If you are going on a trip to Ladakh as a solo or as a couple, you should note that private taxis are very costly in Leh Ladakh. However, you will be able to find the shared taxi without much fuss at all in Leh.
There are lots of flyers which tourists put at cafes, dine-ins, restaurants, travel agent desks/shops/whiteboards wanting to share the taxis for different trips within Ladakh.
Even travel agents organize such a shared taxis trip as well but charge a little higher about Rs 200-300 more than it would ideally cost. So, in the worst case, you can always go back to them and book a seat for yourself.
A tourist shared taxi seat for trips to Nubra Valley and Pangong Tso costs around Rs 1800 while to that of Tso Moriri cost around Rs 2200.
Gelling up with people in Ladakh is more or less easy because many people travel solo and look forward to meeting new people and share cultural thoughts and values over the trip. Nowhere else in the world you will find more smiling and helpful people as Ladakhis are 🙂
For online travel partners, it will be much better than you check the DoW Travel Calendar from the link in the Main Menu of the website. There have been about 1000+ entries of the people planning their trips in the last couple of seasons, which helped them have better visibility for finding out travel partners. You can filter entries based on the preferences you have and increase the chances of visibility.
Hence, kindly explore DoW Travel Calendar and also post your entry too. This calendar will help you find other fellow travelers looking for a company and increase the probability of finding your post by others too. You can also post a DoW Travel Calendar entry by using the Main Menu and clicking on Submit New Event option in it.
Other Articles in the Series
- Leh Ladakh FAQs – Planning, Sightseeing & Routes
- Leh Ladakh FAQs – Preparing for Ladakh Trip
- Leh Ladakh FAQs – Eat, Stay, Permits, Phone Services & Others
- Leh Ladakh FAQs – Taxis, Self-Drives & Bike Rentals
This concludes this mammoth Questions and Answers series on planning a trip to Leh Ladakh. I hope this article answers your questions with public transport in Leh Ladakh and the budget for a Ladakh trip.
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Dear DHEERAJ SHARMA, Thanks for your informative post. Can you help me with my inquiry? I need to know whether Public transport like BUS or Tempo Traveler/Taxi service run between Srinagar to Leh during the first quarter of April?
Srinagar to Leh usually opens in April end or May early, so buses will not be plying during early April.