Colombo is Sri Lanka’s capital and home to its largest international airport, but that doesn’t mean you should plan on spending any real time here. There are no checklist attractions and the city is short on charm as well so it’s better to spend most of your Sri Lanka time elsewhere. With that in mind, the prices listed here for food and drinks and transportation are valid for the whole country.
Sri Lanka is quite cheap overall and it’s good value even compared to neighboring countries, but it does lack a real budget traveler infrastructure. In other words, there are very few hostels and 1-star hotels anywhere in the country. The good news is that standards for 2-star places are good so those sharing a room can still get great deals.
Food can be incredibly inexpensive if you eat rice and curry like most locals, or even cheaper if you stick with the “short eats” (finger foods) that can be filling and delicious as well as safe. Beer and local spirits are well priced, though they are hard to find unless you put in some effort.