What Things Cost in Central Asia

All in U.S. dollar equivalents, to facilitate comparisons. Central Asia will never be on a list of good value travel destinations.

Visas and Permits (for U.S. Citizens)

Transit visa, Turkmenistan – $31
Tourist visa, Uzbekistan – $131
Tourist visa, Tajikistan – $80
GBAO permit, Tajikistan – $50
Tourist visa, Kyrgyzstan – $100 ($150 on a rush basis)

Lodging for Two

Rundown Soviet hotel, at extortionate official foreigner rates, Turkmenistan – $40 (compared to local rate of a few dollars)
Upscale bed & breakfast, Uzbekistan – $50
Yurtstay, not including meals, Tajikistan – $8-16
Homestay, not including meals, Tajikistan – $10-12
Rundown Soviet hotel, Kyrgyzstan – $15-25
Home- or yurtstay, including breakfast, Kyrgyzstan – $20-25

Food

Basic meal in restaurant, Uzbekistan – $2
Huge bucket of apricots on the road, Tajikistan – $1
Basic meal in restaurant, Tajikistan – $1-2
Basic meal in restaurant, Kyrgyzstan – $1
Meal at home- or yurstay, Kyrgyzstan – $3-4
Liter of fermented mare’s milk (kymyz), Kyrgyzstan – $0.25
Liter of cow’s milk, Kyrgyzstan – $0.15
Bread, anywhere – $0.25-0.50

Transportation

Overnight sleeper train (pretty nice!), Turkmenistan – $4
One hour flight, Uzbekistan – $70
Five hour share taxi, per seat, Uzbekistan – $20
Four hour train, Uzbekistan – $5
Seven hour share taxi, per seat, Tajikistan – $35
Car hire, Tajikistan – $0.45-0.65 / km
Car hire, Kyrgyzstan – $0.30 / km
Fuel, anywhere – $1 per liter

Others

Ticket for going 120 km/h in a 60 km/h zone, Uzbekistan – $7
Bribe to police to avoid getting ticket for going 120 km/h in a 60 km/h zone, Uzbekistan – $3.50
Bribe to Kyrgyz border officials simply for crossing the border – 1.5 liters fuel, siphoned from our jeep
Yak, Tajikistan – $225
New Chinese minibus – $4000 in China, $6000 in Dushanbe

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