16 Cheapest Asia cities to fly into from the US

As more people from the United States and Canada come to realize the amazing travel bargains and opportunities all over Asia, more of us are going. One of the challenges is that it’s such a huge part of the world and there are so many very different options to select from. Especially if you are planning on visiting more than one country, it can be confusing where to start and where to end.

The good news is that most of the flights from the US and Canada are probably cheaper than you’d guess, at least as long as you know about typical international airfares. Even though part of Asia (India, specifically) is literally on the opposite side of the world from the US and Canada, fares are often cheaper than much shorter flights to Europe.

We decided to run tests to see which cities are the cheapest for round-trip flights starting in the United States, and the results are below.

How the test was run

To keep it simple and meaningful, we checked airfares leaving Los Angeles International Airport into 16 large and popular airports all over Asia. We checked fares for a week-long stay in July, in October, and in December, and then averaged the totals to determine the order of the list.

The fares listed below are the cheapest round-trip flights for the dates we tested. If a lower fare was possible on a long and complicated itinerary that wouldn’t be worth the savings, it was discarded. In other words, the fares below are all on flights that most value-conscious travelers would be happy to book.

Los Angeles is used as a hub, but the order should be nearly identical no matter the starting point

There are some nonstop flights from a few major airports in the US and Canada, but Los Angeles is the most popular hub for North American flights to Asia. As a result, flights starting in other cities will usually be at least a bit more expensive, but the order of the destinations below should be very similar or identical.

Depending on your starting point, you might get the best fare with a change in Vancouver, Seattle, or San Francisco.

The cheapest cities in Asia once you arrive

Needless to say, getting a cheap flight into Asia is nice, but prices once you land are extremely varied. Click on the link below for our list of how much you should expect to pay per day in all major tourist cities of Asia.

>>>31 Asian cities ranked by price for travelers

16 Cheapest Asia cities to fly into from North America

1 – Shanghai, China

  • Summer: US$591
  • Autumn: US$550
  • Winter: US$479
  • Average: US$540

Shanghai Pudong International Airport is the main international facility in this part of China, with many non-stop flights from major cities around the world. Most people fly into Shanghai to tour around China rather than tour around Asia, so it may not be an ideal hub for people exploring several countries.

>>>Shanghai prices and weather

2 – Beijing, China

  • Summer: US$561
  • Autumn: US$659
  • Winter: US$500
  • Average: US$573

Beijing Capital International Airport is the busiest airport in Asia and among the busiest in the world. It’s obviously an ideal hub for anyone touring China because Beijing is the most popular starting point.

>>>Beijing prices and weather

3 – Bangkok, Thailand

  • Summer: US$631
  • Autumn: US$591
  • Winter: US$558
  • Average: US$593

Suvarnabhumi Airport is the new and main airport serving Bangkok, with abundant non-stop flights from major cities all over the world. The city of Bangkok itself is an excellent hub for trips all over Asia, although most of the cheapest flights go through Don Mueang International Airport, which is one of the main hubs of Air Asia.

>>>Bangkok prices and weather

4 – Tokyo, Japan

  • Summer: US$683
  • Autumn: US$621
  • Winter: US$554
  • Average: US$619

Narita International Airport is the main international hub for Japan, even though it’s not even the busiest airport in Tokyo. Considering that Toyko is easily the closest major Asian city to North America, it’s a bit surprising that it’s so far down the affordability list. On the other hand, Tokyo remains as Asia’s most expensive city for tourists, still slightly ahead of Singapore.

>>>Tokyo prices and weather

5 – Seoul, South Korea

  • Summer: US$667
  • Autumn: US$686
  • Winter: US$544
  • Average: US$632

Incheon International Airport is the main international airport serving Seoul, and this is another that always gets rave reviews from passengers. Unfortunately, Seoul is quite remote among major Asian destinations, so it’s much better for a stopover coming or going rather than a base for a tour around Asia.

>>>Seoul prices and weather

6 – Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

  • Summer: US$784
  • Autumn: US$569
  • Winter: US$556
  • Average: US$636

Tan Son Nhat International Airport is Vietnam’s busiest airport and the main hub serving Ho Chi Minh City (commonly still known as Saigon). Especially since fares tend to be on the high side, it’s probably not a great choice for a hub to start a tour around Asia.

>>>Ho Chi Minh City prices and weather

7- Hong Kong

  • Summer: US$808
  • Autumn: US$591
  • Winter: US$550
  • Average: US$650

Hong Kong International Airport almost always has the best fares for those starting in the US or Canada, and it also makes an excellent starting point and/or hub for a trip deeper into Asia. The city is extremely modern in many places, yet quite exotic in many others, and most people you encounter will speak English. This is Cathay Pacific’s busy main hub, and one of the world’s highest rated airport facilities as well.

>>>Hong Kong prices and weather

8 – Hanoi, Vietnam

  • Summer: US$764
  • Autumn: US$545
  • Winter: US$649
  • Average: US$653

Noi Bai International Airport is the major international facility for Hanoi, which is in the far north of Vietnam. Even though it has a fairly central location, this is really best for starting tours of Vietnam heading south to Ho Chi Minh City, and not an ideal hub for much else. Hanoi itself is fascinating and amazingly cheap, by the way.

>>>Hanoi prices and weather

9 – Manila, Philippines

  • Summer: US$812
  • Autumn: US$519
  • Winter: US$633
  • Average: US$655

Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Manila is obviously an ideal hub for trips to the Philippines, including the wonderful resort island of Boracay. But it’s probably not a great choice for people who are going to be touring around Asia by air. The city of Manila itself is known as a bit of a disappointment compared to most of the others on this list.

>>>Manila prices and weather

10 – Singapore

  • Summer: US$743
  • Autumn: US$590
  • Winter: US$666
  • Average: US$666

Singapore Changi Airport deserves its reputation as the favorite airport of nearly every traveler who passes through, so it’s a shame that longhaul flights from North America tend to be pricey. The city itself is wonderful, if crowded and a bit expensive. Better still, there are many low-cost carriers flying into Singapore, so it’s an ideal hub to explore other cities on this list.

>>>Singapore prices and weather

11 – Taipei, Taiwan

  • Summer: US$1005
  • Autumn: US$645
  • Winter: US$537
  • Average: US$729

Taoyuan International Airport is the main international airport serving Taiwan, and it’s served by nearly every larger airline in Asia and many from North America and Europe. Taiwan itself is sometimes a forgotten destination, so the cheap flights should be enough to encourage more people to visit and use it as an incoming hub for Asia.

>>>Taipei prices and weather

12 – Bali, Indonesia

  • Summer: US$916
  • Autumn: US$666
  • Winter: US$694
  • Average: US$759

Ngurah Rai International Airport in Bali’s capital city of Denpasar, and it has really good connections from within Asia, but very few longhaul flights from anywhere else. Bali also has a surprising number of cheap flights from other cities on this list, so it’s quite easy to do a cheap stop on the island as part of a larger trip.

>>>Bali prices and weather

13 – Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

  • Summer: US$926
  • Autumn: US$702
  • Winter: US$664
  • Average: US$764

Kuala Lumpur International Airport has a lot in common with the Singapore Airport (above), except that the airport itself isn’t special enough to inspire songs and poems. Still, Kuala Lumpur is an underrated city and it makes a perfect hub for those wanting to also head almost anywhere else on this list.

>>>Kuala Lumpur prices and weather

14 – Mumbai, India

  • Summer: US$984
  • Autumn: US$828
  • Winter: US$918
  • Average: US$910

Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport is on the other side of the earth from North America, so it’s not surprising that it’s one of the more expensive places to fly directly into. And being on an edge of the touristy part of Asia, it’s not an ideal hub for anything except trips within India itself.

>>>Mumbai prices and weather

15 – New Delhi, India

  • Summer: US$1154
  • Autumn: US$798
  • Winter: US$933
  • Average: US$959

Indira Gandhi International Airport is a new and pleasantly modern facility, so it makes for a perfect starting point for those about to tour around India. It’s also a base for quite a few low-cost airlines, although not all of them have the kind of solid reputation you’d like.

>>>New Delhi prices and weather

16 – Colombo, Sri Lanka

  • Summer: US$1024
  • Autumn: US$989
  • Winter: US$941
  • Average: US$985

Bandaranaike International Airport is the primary airport for Sri Lanka, and it feels like a trip back in time compared to pretty much every other facility on this list. Sri Lanka itself is an excellent and upcoming destination, so it’s unfortunate that longhaul flights in are as expensive as they are.

>>>Colombo prices and weather

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

All Comments

  1. Jenny says:

    I agree with Roger Wade.
    I’m already here in Siem Reap, having spent time in Thailand. Cambodian people rock! The hotels hire the best young people to give you energy and sensitivity in their welcoming spirit and overall hospitality.! Just GET OVER HERE! Take your time seeing Angkor Wat with a three day pass.
    Use a translate app on your device and a money changer app as well. Or just use US dollars!
    I’m a senior lady pushing 70… If I can do it, anybody can.
    You may write to me and I shall respond. GOOD LUCK P.S. Everybody is fearful until they get a bit of momentum.

  2. BETTY SELDERS says:

    I, too, am flying solo about that time and in SE Asia. I would welcome meeting up and sharing common interests. I am not sure how to make contact?

  3. Viktoriya says:

    I am a female in my 40’s and looking to travel alone. I am interested in South America, Asia or Africa. I will be traveling during the last week of December. What countries/places are safe for solo females? Not looking for beach destinations but rather cultural explorations.

    1. Roger Wade says:


      Most of Asia has a reputation for being safe for solo females, although India has had a few problems so I wouldn’t go there. The last week of December is very popular in southeast Asia because so many people have time off in the colder climates. If you have about a week I’d recommend Bangkok and then a side trip to Siem Reap to see Angkor Wat. You can take a bus between them or fly and you’ll have plenty of company either way. Bangkok really is a fascinating city and it’s got plenty of temples and other cultural attractions to go along with the shopping centers that attract so many other people. Bangkok is also a very large and fairly crowded city, so it gets a bit frustrating after a few days, and that makes a trip to Siem Reap all the nicer. First off, Angkor Wat is one of the most amazing cultural sights in the world, and the town of Siem Reap is a lovely little place on its own. It sounds like this will be your first trip to Asia, and those two places are really the best introduction, especially that time of year. Let me know if you have any other questions. -Roger

  4. Brandy says:

    Thanks for the list! I’ve been finding recently that what you say is true – flights to Asia are often cheaper than flights to Europe, even though I live on the East Coast. With cheaper costs on the ground once you get there, a trip to Asia is pretty much a no brainer. Granted, it takes longer to get there, but since most of the flights are during the day, I don’t find the jet lag to be too bad in comparison to Europe.