If you’re planning a trip to Jordan and wonder: is Jordan expensive? Then the answer is: Yes. Traveling Jordan on a budget is not easy and the country is much more expensive than other places in the region. But how expensive is Jordan then really? And what can you expect to pay on a trip to the Kingdom of Jordan? I gathered all the data from personal experience and can give you the answers!
Is Jordan Expensive?
A Detailed Budget Breakdown for 10 Days in Jordan
My trip to Jordan and how much I’ve spent
I traveled as a solo female traveler to Jordan and I’m used to the price levels in Europe. I paid for everything in full myself and was not sponsored or compensated for this trip, except for my final stay in Aqaba.
Although I traveled to Jordan last year, I double-checked all prices for July 2019 so prices are accurate at the time of writing. In case you see huge differences, please update me.
At the moment of writing, 10 Jordanian Dinar is 14 US Dollar or €12,50 or GBP 11,25.
This post contains affiliate links, if you decide to buy something via one of my links, I’ll earn a small commission at no additional fee for you.
Prices in Jordan
In order to provide you with a clear idea about the prices in Jordan and to see how expensive Jordan really is, I walk you through the money I’ve spent on my 10-day trip to Jordan. After this, I provide you with my practical solutions to travel to Jordan on a budget.
Prices to fly to Jordan
I found a direct flight on Royal Jordanian Air to Amman, the capital of Jordan. In my opinion, it wasn’t cheap but it was a direct flight and something appealed to me about flying on a Royal airline.
I paid €539 for a direct flight from Amsterdam to Amman and from Aqaba to Amman and Amman to Amsterdam.
Low-cost Airlines to Jordan
It was only after I booked my flight, that I found that low-cost airline Ryanair also flies to Amman and Aqaba. I’ve only used Ryanair for European flights of a maximum of 2 hours and they are the worst. Small spaces and you pay for literally everything. Extra luggage fees, printing a boarding card, drinks, etc. I’m pretty used to them but if you’ve never flown with them before, it is quite a different experience.
However, they do offer rock-bottom prices from €29,99 for a single flight. Of course, you need to pay for luggage, but if you’re smart, can plan ahead and want to save some serious money on your flight to Jordan, then they would be the ultimate budget tip.
Dutch carrier, Transavia, also now flies direct from Amsterdam to Amman. A simple return ticket booked 3 months in advance will cost you roughly €180. That is seriously cheaper than my flight on Royal Jordanian! Check for prices and availability with Transavia here.
If Ryanair or Transavia isn’t an option for you, you can always compare prices for plane tickets to Jordan on this website.
Cheap holidays to Jordan
If you want to visit Jordan but don’t want the hassle of finding the cheapest flights and arranging your hotels and transport yourself, you could opt-in for a holiday package to Jordan. A vacation to Jordan always sounds like a good idea, so why not take advantage of the super saver packages that some holiday companies offer. Flights, hotels, and transfers all included in one price. For prices and comparison, check here.
Prices for hotels in Jordan
Now, let’s assume you’re reading this because you want to arrange your trip to Jordan yourself (and save some money!) and you want to travel around the country as I did.
As with all travel, the cost of accommodation usually adds up quickly and takes a huge chunk out of your travel budget.
I stayed in several different places in Jordan and found some nice hotels to stay in. I stayed in Amman, Petra village, Wadi Rum, and Aqaba. After searching online, I found affordable accommodations with a social vibe to meet other travelers in Amman and have some privacy and luxury for myself. I booked the following places and paid the following prices for hotels in Jordan:
Where I stayed in Jordan and how much did I pay?
(prices may vary depending on demand, click the link of the hotels to see if they have availability)
- 4 nights in Jordan Tower Hotel in Amman: 145 JD (so 36 JD per night)
This hostel has shared dorm rooms, but I opted for one of the few private rooms with ensuite bathroom. No luxury and pretty basic, but with a great breakfast, excellent location and especially: very low budget.
- 2 nights in Wadi Musa to visit Petra at Anbat Midtown Hotel II: 95 JD (47,25 JD per night). I upgraded myself to a better hotel downtown for more privacy and a good bed as I figured I’d be tired from exploring Petra all day. They offer shuttle service to Petra in the morning and have a top floor area to drink tea all day. They are located very centrally in Wadi Musa so I felt very safe walking around town at night.
- 1 night in Wadi Rum desert camp: tour and overnight stay: 80JD
I didn’t book this ahead and just chose a camp randomly. From what I saw, it was pretty standard compared with the other camps, a tent for myself with 4 beds, in the desert and excellently cooked food for dinner and breakfast.
- 3 nights at Mövenpick Luxury Resort and Spa in Talaba Aqaba. This was a sponsored stay as they invited me to stay with them. I accepted as I wanted some luxury and laziness at the end of my trip to Jordan. Expect to pay 200€ per room. If that is a bit steep, there are several more affordable options out there that offer nice private rooms, a pool, direct access to the best diving sites in Jordan and shuttle services. Expect to pay 200€ for 3 nights in more ‘basic’ accommodation. Find your best options here.
Jordan budget tours and where to find them?
Now that we discussed flights into the country and a place to stay in Jordan, let’s talk about the things to do in Jordan and what they will cost!
The Jordan Pass
The Jordan Pass is a tourist card, issued by the Jordan government and it a visa and entrance ticket in one.
Check if you need a visa to enter Jordan here. The price of your Jordan visa is 40 JD that needs to be paid on arrival if you don’t have the Jordan Pass ($56, €55 or GBP45).
A Jordan Pass can be bought for 70 JD, 75 JD or 80 JD.
Included in the Jordan Pass:
- your visa fee (rules apply, so read up),
- an entrance ticket to Petra for 1, 2 or 3 days
- the entrance to over 40 Jordan sites and museums
Is the Jordan Pass worth it?
Almost all travelers need a visa to enter Jordan. If you wish to visit the secret pink city of Petra, you need to pay the 55JD entrance for one day. It is 60JD for 2 days, 65JD for 3 days.
(55 JD is $77, €69 or GBP 62 but you can stay all day! It’s only a few bucks for that extra day).
So if you travel to Jordan for more than 3 days, need a visit and want to visit Petra, then you’ll pay 95 JD without the Jordan Pass.
Does that answer your question?
Yes, the Jordan Pass is worth it and it will save you money. Not only can you skip the long immigration line at the airport, but you also have your Petra entrance ticket in hand and can enter nearly all the tourist sites in Jordan for free.
The only thing is, buying a Jordan Pass is a bit of a hassle. The website is often not responding, and the payment can only be done with certain credit cards. If things fail, try again, because the Jordan Pass saves you time and money.
Price for tours in Jordan
In Amman, I didn’t do any tours but I explored on my own. I walked around and took a taxi when needed. The entrance fee to the Amman Amphitheatre, Museums, and Citadel of Amman was included in my Jordan Pass.
Day Trip from Amman to Jerash and north Jordan: 25 JD
This was a great tour. We visited the ruins of Jerash early in the morning, climbed the castle of Ajloun and drove along the border to Umm Qais Roman Ruins of Gadara. It was a long day and we learned a lot from our driver. It wasn’t a guided tour but more a shared taxi ride with a local. We visited the different sites on our own and met up at the car to go to the next stop. Entrance fees, lunch, and tips were not included.
If you do wish to book a full day trip, including a certified guide, book here. Alternatively, Jerash can be easily visited with local transport for a few JD. It will be difficult to also include Ajloun and Umm Qais Ruins in one day.
Day Trip from Amman to Bethany Beyond the Jordan, Dead Sea and Mount Nebo: 35 JD
I booked this tour via my hotel and was excited because I liked the day trip to Jerash so much the day before. The driver was the same, our group was different. And the sites we visited were obviously different too.
Bethany beyond the Jordan is the baptism site of Jesus and you can visit it for a whopping 12JD entrance fee. I was not aware of that but as I was there, I signed up. You can buy your Jordan Pass with the entrance to Bethany included for a discounted fee.
Budget tour to the Dead Sea
After this, we continued to one of the hotels at the Dead Sea, where you need to pay another 15 JD to get access to the pools and the beach for the day. We stayed for an hour or so. There are other hotels around, but they all charge roughly 20 JD to use their facilities.
After this, we visited Mt. Nebo and this I did like. The views were spectacular from the top. You need to pay 2JD to access the Mozes Church and the best views of the Dead Sea and Jordan and Israel.
It was a packed day, so when we arrived in Madaba, we had lunch at a small diner opposite the Madaba church. For 1 JD you can see the mosaics at the Madaba Church.
Do the fun part of the tour, Mt. Nebo and Madaba. Book your tour here.
Tour from Amman by King’s Highway to Wadi Musa: 35 JD
This was a shared ‘tour’ from the hotel in Amman. We got in the car with a driver that would bring us (3 people) from Amman to Wadi Musa (Petra) and stop along the King’s Highway at several sites, viewing points and lunch. We did not get guided information, but the driver spoke quite good English so we learned about his family, his life and some background information. It wasn’t a traditional guided tour but worked perfectly for me. Entrance fees, lunch and gratitude not included.
I highly recommend this tour if you need to travel from Amman to Petra and want to see something along this route.
Tour guide in Petra: 50 JD
My worst experience in Jordan. I went to the official guide booth in Petra and figured a guide on my first day would help me understand the background of Petra and learn a lot. It was supposed to last for 3 hours and cover the main sites in Petra. However, after 1 hour of awkward silences, me asking questions that he would answer ‘later’ and almost running through Petra, arms flapping: this is there, go check it out later, we said goodbye. At the time I was ok with this, but looking back it made me mad he didn’t do his job properly. I talked with other travelers and bloggers, and they absolutely loved their guide, so I guess I was just unlucky that we didn’t ‘click’. It can happen of course.
Petra by Night: 17 JD
I timed my visit to Petra, so I could see Petra by Night, as it only runs on Monday’s, Wednesday’s and Thursday’s. It costs 17 Jordanian Dinar and you need to book (and pay) at the visitor center. Although I booked a ticket, the tour was canceled because of the rain that night which was a prelude of the intense flooding of 2018.
Tour of Wadi Rum desert and overnight camp: 80 JD
This tour I arranged on the spot. I didn’t find the guide too knowledgeable and he questioned me more about how I thought he could improve his business than to learn me stuff about the desert. But we did tour around Wadi Rum all day. We visited several sites, stops, watering holes, and amazing scenery.
In the evening, he dropped me off at a camp of his cousin to stay for the night. They cooked up a storm of amazing and delicious foods and I slept like a baby in their desert camp. My experience in the camp was really good, but with the day tour not so good, so I can’t recommend anyone.
However, if you do anything at all in Jordan, then it must be a Wadi Rum desert tour, so even though the tour wasn’t great, the scenery and silence and beauty of nature makes up for it 10 fold.
Transport costs in Jordan
In the 10 days in Jordan, a took a few taxis, I did some tours to meet other solo travelers and took 1 local bus. All in all, I found transport in Jordan quite affordable but not very comfortable. The bus between Wadi Musa from Petra to Wadi Rum was cramped and went very early in the morning. If you’re with more people, you can share the cost of a taxi, car rental or tour.
- Taxi from Amman Airport to Amman downtown: 27 JD. I arranged it via my hotel in Amman but you can also book a taxi in advance here.
- Taxi in Amman: roughly 3 to 5JD but it takes some negotiating.
- Group taxi for a whole day tour of North Jordan including Jerash: 25 JD (see above)
- A shared, whole day tour the Dead Sea and Mount Nebo: 35 JD (see above)
- Shared tour of the King’s Highway from Amman to Petra: 35JD (see above)
- Taxi from Petra to Wadi Musa: 5 JD on average. Sometimes a local will pick you up in town and drive you to Petra from 2-3 JD but with a few extra “thank you” Dinars, the average is 5 JD.
- Bus from Wadi Musa (Petra) to Wadi Rum: 8 JD. If you have a bigger bag, you need to pay an extra 2 JD.
- Taxi from Wadi Rum to Aqaba: 25 JD.
- Taxi from Aqaba to Aqaba Airport: quoted 35 USD but in the end, a free shuttle service was provided by the hotel.
Free shuttle services
Many hotels offer all kinds of taxi services. Almost all hotels in Amman ask for a set rate for the taxi fare from Amman airport to their hotel.
But, the hotel in Talabay Aqaba, offered a free shuttle service from their hotel to the hotel in downtown Aqaba. And a free shuttle service to Aqaba Airport. As I was first quoted a whopping 35 USD for a taxi, on my 3rd inquiry, someone at the reception confirmed there was a shuttle bus.
My hotel in Wadi Musa also offered free shuttle buses in the morning from the hotel to Petra entrance. Unfortunately, they didn’t do the ride back into town, but nevertheless, I found it a nice service in the morning.
Budget car rental in Jordan
After my successful road trip in Lebanon, I looked back on my trip and wondered why I didn’t rent a car in Jordan? Ok, I have to admit, the traffic in Amman was crazy and I wouldn’t want to drive in the hectic traffic of the capital city, but outside of Amman, the roads are very straightforward, traffic is minimal and a rental car gives you ample freedom to drive to the Dead Sea, take the King’s Highway or hop in and out of smaller towns.
Costs for food and drinks in Jordan
You can dine like a king or eat small street food and fairly basic meals in Jordan. As with all destination, it really depends on what kind of experience you’re looking for. As I can only share my own experiences, here is what I spent on average on food and drinks in Jordan:
- Bottle of water in hotel and markets: 0,5 JD to 1 JD
- Drinks at small cafés, like a bottle of Sprite or fresh juice: 2 JD to 2,5 JD
- Best Falafel in Amman: 2,5 JD for Falafel and Coke
- Small dinner: stew and fresh juice: 10 JD
- Lunch in café, consisting of a steak sandwich and fresh juice: 6JD
- Lunch in a restaurant, 2 courses and drinks: 14 JD
- Dinner in a restaurant, kibbeh, mansaf, fresh juice, and soft drinks: 20 JD
- Bottle of coke and can of crisps in Petra: 5,50 JD
- Shawarma to go: 2,50 JD
- Dinner in restaurant, camel kebab with drinks: 22 JD
- Western-style lunches with drinks at the hotel: 20 JD
As you can see, I fancy sit down dinners at local restaurants, ordering the local specialty and I had shawarma to go (which were equally yummy). Although I spend very little on food and drinks in Jordan, the above amounts are only an indication of what your money can buy.
I didn’t take any beer or another form of alcohol consumption. Parlty because I didn’t need it and because it was usually around 5 to 7 JD, depending on the restaurant or hotel bar.
Of course, you can always opt for a food tour or cooking with locals experience by booking this tour.
Tipping in Jordan
To tip or not to tip, that is the question. Although Jordan is not a cheap country to travel in, the people working in Jordan, especially in the service industry earn very low wages. Some are locals, some are immigrants from neighboring countries (like Palestine and Syria) and in hotels, you’ll mostly see people from other parts of Asia, like the Philippines.
I’m from the Netherlands, and tipping is not common in my country. If you’re from the USA and always tip 20%, feel free to continue this habit when you visit Jordan. If tipping is not ingrained in your DNA (like with me) then the following will not get you in trouble and still make someone happy.
How much to tip in Jordan?
Small amounts like drinks, coffee, shawarma to go: feel free to round that 2.50 JD to 3 JD. In fancier places with AC, a paper bill and someone to bring your order to the table, then 1-2 JD will suffice.
If you’ve booked a taxi driver, for example for airport transfers, and you established a set rate, just tip a few JD for gratitude service.
A service charge may be added to your bill but this doesn’t mean it goes directly to the person serving you.
If you hire a driver for a whole day, he provided you with excellent service, local knowledge and introduced you for tea to their mother/brother/sister/uncle/3rd cousin, etc, then feel free to tip 20 or even 30 % for the service, depending on the overall price of the tour.
If you stay in fancier hotels, with bellboys, table service and swan-origami-towel-art skilled maids, then a few JD each time would suffice. I always prioritize the maids on my first night in and hope they will remember me.
Do I need to tip in Jordan?
But remember, although tipping in Jordan is very much appreciated by the workers providing you with a service, Jordanians are very welcoming and friendly as a whole. They will not treat you bad if you don’t tip or tip very little. Each tip is appreciated and you have to evaluate if you’ll be tipping in Jordan and how much, depending on your personal finances.
How to get money in Jordan?
Now that you all know how much I spent in Jordan and what I spend it on, let’s discuss how I got those Jordanian Dinars in the first place. In other words: how to get money in Jordan and what is the best way to pay in Jordan?
I had quite some problems getting Jordanian Dinars in Jordan. I took my 2 bank cards and 2 credit cards (Amex and Mastercard), I had some Euro’s on me and I had 200$ with me.
Credit Cards in Jordan
I could only buy the Jordan Pass via a friend’s Visa card, as both my credit cards had problems with authentication. As a back-up, I took some Euros and US Dollars with me, but in the end, they were my lifeline.
I tried to pay with a credit card at the hotels in Jordan, as I booked my stays online via booking.com but most of them didn’t accept it. I guess, the smaller and more budget the guesthouse the less common a credit card is. I’m sure if you stay at the Four Seasons in Amman, they’ll happily take your card.
I paid for my SIM card at the airport with my credit card, all other payments were cash only. On my first few days in Amman, I wasn’t able to use my bank card at one of the ATM’s in town. Finally, I found one that accepted my Mastercard credit card and could take out some money.
Paying in Jordanian Dinars in Jordan
I converted my Euros and Dollars to have at least some money. By the time I got to Petra, I was out of cash. I tried all 4 banks in town, with all of my 4 cards (2 debit cards and 2 credit cards) but none would take it. In the end, a man in the local tour office saw me in despair and charged my credit card so he could pay me out in Jordanian Dinar.
Until this day, I still don’t know why I was so unfortunate. My tip would be to have several payment options, cash, credit card, and bank card, and take any opportunity to take out as much money as you think you’d need for the whole stay. Preferred money to convert is US Dollars but Euros also have a good rate.
Jordan on a budget: backpacker tips
I think you get the point that Jordan is not that cheap when you travel the country on a budget and backpacker style. I traveled solo and wanted a little bit more luxury, but here are my tips for traveling Jordan on a tight budget.
- Buddy up. Solo travel allows for infinite ranges of freedom but is also more expensive. If you take a taxi, the rate is the same for 1 person or 2 people. If you’re with a group of 4, you can negotiate better prices for tours and trips.
- Sleep in a dorm room. Jordan has quite a good range of shared hostel-style accommodations to meet other solo travelers, hang out and have a cheap place to sleep. Find your hostel here.
- You can book a tour, rent a car or share a taxi, but you can also travel by local transport. It takes longer and you cannot do as much in one day, but you’ll meet a lot of locals and explore the country on a budget.
- Get a Jordan Pass. If you need a visa, want to visit Petra and have free entrance to almost all the other sites, museums and interesting places in Jordan, the Jordan Pass is your ticket.
- Eat local food. Small kebab shops, shawarma, and falafel are your best friends. For a few JDs, you can have a fulfilling meal for the day.
- For such a small country, the Lonely Planet Jordan Guidebook is quite extensive and full of tips for cheap eats and hostel reviews. Purchase your copy here.
- Buy your drinks at shops and supermarkets instead of cafés and kiosks near touristic sites. A 2L bottle of water costs 0,50 JD at the market in Wadi Masa but 2,5 JD at the shops next to Petra.
- Look for low budget airlines to fly to Jordan. There are now several options and it pays out to compare via this tool.
How expensive is Jordan really: the grand total
Now, let’s add things up and put everything in a spreadsheet. I listed above what I spend on different expenses and what I got for it, but let’s add things up and see how expensive Jordan really is:
- Flight from Amsterdam to Amman and Aqaba to Amman and Amsterdam: €539 (JOD 429, $605 or £486)
- 9 nights accommodation: 240 JD ($338 US, €302 or £272)
- 10 nights food and drinks: 136 JD ($192 US, €171 or £154)
- 10 days of tours and entrance fees, incl. Jordan Pass: 317 JD ($447, €398 or £360), this includes the 1-night stay in Wadi Rum.
- Other transport: 82 JD ($115 US, €103 or £93)
- Other, like tipping, SIM card, and souvenirs: 86 JD ($121 US, €108 or £97)
In total, I spent 1.290 JD ($1,819 US, €1.622 or £1.465) for 10 days in Jordan.
That is a lot of money if you take into account that I was really careful, choose cheaper accommodation, got 3 nights for free and ate cheap foods as much as I could. I couldn’t do a balloon ride over Wadi Rum, I didn’t do the expensive Dead Sea Spa treatment and took cheaper shared taxi tours instead of tours with a guide. I also didn’t do any diving courses at the Red Sea which add up to your spending.
Is Jordan expensive?
So, yes, I cannot conclude anything else than that Jordan is expensive. Of course, ⅓ of my trip’s total budget consisted of the flights and I took quite a few tours where I could have taken local transport.
However, Jordan is a small country and many people only visit for a week or 10 days, as I did. In such a short time, you want to see as much as possible, experience a variety of activities and enjoy yourself.
If I would have booked the way cheaper flight with Ryanair and stayed in shared dorm-rooms I think I could have easily reduced my costs by 40% and still have had the same experiences as I did now.
So to conclude, yes, Jordan is expensive for my travel style, but you can travel on a tight budget if you want to. If penny-pinching is your middle name and privacy and comfort are negligible to you than Jordan can be done on a backpacker budget.
Are you thinking of traveling to Jordan? What is your budget? Were you surprised by the price level of this small Middle Eastern country? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.
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