Norway is a beautiful and diverse destination that everyone should visit at least once in their lifetime, with vibrant cities, breathtaking natural scenery, and spectacular fjords.
However, much like the rest of the Scandinavia region, Norway also has a reputation for being one of the most expensive countries on the planet.
But is the country really as expensive as it’s made out to be? And how much does a trip to Norway actually cost?
One week in Norway is likely to cost you anywhere between €500 and €1,800 per person, depending on the level of luxury you opt for. This includes accommodation (based on two people sharing), transport, food, and attractions – but not flights.
Therefore, while Norway isn’t the most budget-friendly destination in the world, it also doesn’t have to be the most expensive trip you’ve ever been on either.
Accommodation in Norway isn’t as cheap as many other European destinations and will probably take up a good portion of your budget for the trip.
That being said, accommodation prices in Norway vary greatly depending on;
- The city or destination
- Whether you’re staying in a hotel or hostel
- The star rating of the accommodation
- The time of year
Bigger cities like Oslo have the widest variety of accommodation options. An average hotel room in Oslo costs around €120 per night. However, you’ll find many places that are cheaper and more expensive too.
A bed in a hostel dorm in Oslo will cost you €50 on average, with prices as low as €19 during the off-season.
Meanwhile, for a more luxurious stay in the country’s capital, a 5* hotel can set you back as much as €350-450 per night (based on two sharing).
More remote locations such as the magical Norwegian fjords have fewer accommodation options to choose from, with a range of high-end boutique hotels rather than mainstream brands.
Meanwhile, 3 – 4* hotels near the most famous fjords cost €150-250 per night on average. With some smaller B&Bs and campsites offering accommodation in the fjords for under €100 a night.
Hotel Room: €266 – €3,150 (for two people sharing) per week.
How To Save Money On Hotels In Norway
If you’re travelling on a budget, there are several ways you can save money on accommodation in Norway.
Book in Advance
Booking in advance is one of the best ways to save money on hotels.
Being a fairly expensive destination, Norway’s most affordable accommodation tends to book up quickly. The further in advance, you book, the greater range of options you’ll find available.
It’s also key to spend time comparing these options to find the real bargains and hidden gems.
Book A Vacation Package
Booking a vacation package can be an effective way of saving money on your trip.
Check sites such as Expedia for the best value packages. These require you to book flights and accommodation in one booking. You can often add on airport transfers and attraction tickets too.
That being said, booking this way isn’t always cheaper. Make sure to compare the package against booking each component separately to ensure you’re getting the best deal possible.
Stay In A Hostel
A final way to save money on accommodation in Norway is to stay in hostels.
While Norway doesn’t have the same quantity of hostels as many other destinations, the few hostels you will find can’t be beaten on quality. Hostels in Norway are clean, modern, spacious, and have a fantastic range of facilities.
Most hostels are found in the bigger cities of Oslo, Bergen, and Tromso. A dorm room bed in one of these destinations costs around €50 per night.
Private hostel rooms jump up to €100 (based on two sharing), so could be a good budget option for couples.
Some other benefits of staying in a hostel rather than a hotel include;
- Cheaper accommodation in top locations
- Chance to meet like-minded travellers
- You can save money by cooking meals in the hostel kitchen
In the mountains, fjords, and more rural areas of Norway, you’re more likely to find budget bed and breakfasts rather than hostels.
These B&Bs offer basic rooms with shared bathrooms and facilities for around €80-100 a night. Most also include breakfast, saving you money on food.
There are two key types of domestic transport you need to consider when budgeting for your trip to Norway – travelling between destinations and travelling within the cities
The amount you’ll spend on domestic travel in Norway will greatly depend on whether you plan to stay in one city or want to explore a few different regions during your trip.
In simple terms – the more you move around the country, the more you’ll spend on transport.
Travelling Between Destinations In Norway
There are five main options for travelling between the different cities and regions of Norway;
- Internal Flight
Travelling in Norway by Train
Trains are the best way to travel around Norway in our opinion. The national railway network Vy is efficient and reliable, with clean and modern trains connecting most major cities.
Trains are also one of the most affordable ways to travel within Norway. For example, the 7-hour train between Oslo and Bergen costs as little as €35 per person if you book in advance.
Travelling in Norway by Coach/Bus
Express coaches cover many of the same inter-city routes as trains, but take significantly longer, are less comfortable, and cost similar prices.
It’s worth researching buses when booking far in advance to see if you can find any deals, but trains are likely to be the better option in Norway.
However, in more rural parts of the country, you may be reliant on local buses to get between smaller towns. Local buses cost around €2-3 per journey, so are an inexpensive way to travel.
Travelling in Norway by Internal Flights
If you are planning to travel to a few different regions of Norway in the space of a week, you might also want to consider taking internal flights.
Most Norwegian cities have their own domestic airport. And with the country being so spread out, internal flights are the quickest way to travel long distances.
Flights from Oslo to Bergen take under an hour and cost around €35-60.
A flight from Oslo in the south to Tromsø in the north of the country (one of the longest internal journeys) costs around €50-90 per person, depending on the time of year you travel.
Given the similar (if not cheaper) prices compared to trains/coaches and the extra time you’ll save, internal flights are a great option for those with only a week to explore.
Travelling in Norway by Car
Norway is undoubtedly an amazing destination to discover on a road trip. You’ll get to explore the country’s beautiful scenery at your own pace.
However, if you’re planning to hire a car to explore Norway, you’ll want to increase your budget a little… or a lot.
Hiring a car in Norway isn’t the cheapest option, with an economy car costing €67 a day on average. Prices increase to €100+ a day for larger vehicles or during peak periods.
You’ll also need to factor in the high fuel prices, toll roads, and parking fees.
Free parking in Norway’s cities is hard to come by and paid car parks can cost up €20-30 per 24 hours. So don’t forget to figure this into your road trip budget.
Travelling in Norway by Car Ferry
If you’re travelling around the coastline and the country’s famous fjords by car, you may also end up needing to take a car ferry at some point.
Shorter ferry crossings (approx. 30 minutes) will cost you around €15 per car with a driver, plus an additional €5 per extra person.
Longer journeys between coastal destinations can cost up to €100+ per vehicle.
Travelling Within Cities In Norway
Norwegian cities are mostly walkable and easy to navigate your way around. However, if you have mobility issues or it’s too cold to walk, public transport is efficient and simple to use too.
Each city has its own local transport network;
Most cities have a reliable bus, train, and tram routes, while Oslo also has a metro system known as the T-banen.
A single public transport ticket costs around NOK 36 (€3.50) in most places, with unlimited travel passes also available.
You’ll need to remember to factor in transport to and from the airport too. In Oslo, the airport train costs NOK 160 (€16) each way.
Domestic Transport: €32 – €500 per person per week.
How To Save Money On Domestic Transport In Norway
You can use several different cost-cutting methods to save on the cost of transport in Norway. These include;
When travelling long distances between cities, overnight trains and coaches often offer cheaper fares than the same daytime routes. The trains don’t include sleeper carriages though, so don’t forget your neck pillow.
If you’re travelling in Norway on a tight budget, taking an overnight train will not only save you money on transport, but it will save you the cost of a night’s accommodation too.
Buy A Travel Pass
Most transport networks in the cities offer unlimited travel passes to help you save money on local transport.
In Oslo, you can buy a 24-hour unlimited pass for NOK 117 (€11) or a 7-day pass for NOK 323 (€32).
With a single ticket costing NOK 36 (€3.50), these passes can save you a significant amount. But only if you plan on using public transport regularly during your stay.
If you purchase the Oslo Pass, you’ll also get free transport within zones 1 and 2.
Another easy way to save money on transport in Norway is simply to walk.
Norwegian cities are extremely walkable. In fact, many areas of Oslo are completely pedestrianised so are ideal for walking.
Exploring by foot is easy in other cities such as Bergen and Stavanger too, with most of the main attractions, hotels, and restaurants located just a short distance from each other.
Attractions and Entertainment
Now that transport and accommodation are sorted, it’s time to start figuring out what you’ll be getting up to during your trip.
Norway certainly isn’t short of amazing things to see and do.
The amount you’ll spend on attractions and activities in Norway will depend on the type of traveller you are and the cities/regions you plan on visiting.
Oslo has many great museums and attractions that are absolutely worth visiting. Some are completely free and others require paid entrance tickets.
Below is a rough guide to the most popular attractions in Oslo;
Vigeland Sculpture Park Free
Akershus Fortress & Castle The fortress is free, the castle interior costs NOK 70 (€7)
Norsk Folkemuseum Summer NOK 180 (€17.50), Winter NOK 140 (€14)
Holmenkollen Ski Museum NOK 160 (€15.50)
Oslo Opera House Exterior is free, tour of interior NOK 120 (€12)
The Royal Palace Grounds are free, guided tour (summer only) NOK 175 (€17)
Outside of the main cities, you can expect to pay more for excursions and day trips.
In Bergen, you’ll probably want to head on a tour of the region’s famous fjords. A full-day fjords cruise from Begen can cost between €200-400 per person.
Alternatively, if you’re travelling on a budget, there are also shorter 2-3 hour fjord boat trips for €50-100 per person.
If you’re visiting Tromsø in the north, a Northern Lights tour is one of the most popular things to do.
A Northern Lights tour costs around €100-150 per person. And for an extra €50, you can add husky sledging, a reindeer ride, or snowmobiling to your trip too.
Attractions: €100 – €1,000 per person per week.
How To Save Money on Attractions and Entertainment in Norway
Experiencing the best of Norway may seem expensive, but there are some things you can do to cut your attraction budget;
Get An Attraction Pass
If you want to visit multiple attractions in one city, it may be worth buying an attraction pass.
The Oslo Pass gives you free entry to many of the city’s top museums and attractions. It also gets you free public transport and discounts on sightseeing, restaurants, shopping, etc.
You can purchase different passes depending on how long you’re in the city;
- 24-hour pass – NOK 445 (€43.50)
- 48-hour pass – NOK 655 (€64)
- 72-hour pass – NOK 820 (€80)
These passes can save you a lot of money compared to buying attraction and transport tickets separately.
However, before you commit, check that the attractions you want to visit are included.
Go On A Free Walking Tour
In most major Norwegian cities you’ll find free walking tours.
Although these tours are free, it’s always nice to leave a tip for your guide. The tip can be whatever amount your budget allows for.
Visit Free Attractions
Many attractions in Norway are also completely free to visit, such as the famous Vigeland Sculpture Park and Akershus Fortress.
Adding more of these free attractions to your itinerary can help keep your budget down.
Look For Discounts
When buying attraction tickets or city passes, keep an eye out for deals and discounts.
Most attractions and tours in Norway offer discounted family tickets and cheaper prices for youths, students, and seniors.
Norwegian cuisine may not be the most famous in the world. But there are still plenty of delicious local dishes and delicacies to try.
Unsurprisingly, many dishes in Norway are centred around locally caught seafood. Although, you’ll find some options for meat eaters and vegetarians too.
The price of food in Norway depends on whether you opt for street food or luxury restaurants.
Popular street foods such as polse (hot dogs), potato lefse (flatbread), fiskeboller (fish balls), pickled herring, and Norwegian waffles cost between €5-12, so are the cheapest option for eating out in Norway.
A basic meal in a cafe or restaurant, such as a burger and chips or pasta, will cost you around €15-20.
And if you’re looking to treat yourself to dinner in a nice restaurant, a 3-course meal for two people can easily reach €100-150.
Food: €150 – €1,000 per person per week.
How To Save Money on Food in Norway
Food can really eat into your Norway travel budget. Fortunately, there are some things you can do to keep meal costs down;
Eat At Your Hostel or B&B
A big advantage of staying in a hostel, or any accommodation with a kitchen, is that you can save money on food by making your own meals.
Whether it’s a quick breakfast each morning or a simple dinner at the end of a long day, cooking at least one meal a day at your accommodation can drastically reduce your daily food budget.
If you’re staying at a hotel or B&B, you may also have breakfast included in the room price however, if it only costs €2-3 extra per night to add on breakfast, this will still likely be cheaper than eating breakfast out every day.
Enjoy A Picnic
Norway’s many beautiful parks and stunning natural surroundings are perfect for enjoying a homemade picnic.
Save money on lunch by packing some food from the supermarket and finding a spot to sit and soak up the country’s unbeatable scenery for a while.
Skip The Alcohol
We know you’re on vacation, but alcoholic drinks are one of the most expensive things you can consume in Norway.
A pint of beer costs around €10, a cocktail is between €15-20, and the cheapest bottle of wine at most restaurants is usually €50+. By skipping (or limiting) the amount of alcohol you drink you’ll save a lot of money during your trip.