This is Day 2 and my friend Vijay and I are still at the Kathmandu airport waiting for our flight to Lukla. After a lot of talking and research at the airport, we have learned that there are mainly three options (okay five) to go to Lukla.
Option 1: Take a domestic flight from Kathmandu to Lukla. The cost is approximately USD 180. This option is cheaper and best if you have too many days in hand as there are high chances that the flights get cancelled.
Option 2: Take a domestic flight from Kathmandu to Phaplu. And a helicopter from Phaplu to Lukla. The cost is approximately USD 180 and an additional cost of USD 150 per person. We had to pay for our guide as well.
Option 3: Take a helicopter from Kathmandu to Lukla. This is the most expensive option and it costs approximately USD 500 per person (and additional bank charges of 4%).
Note: All costs mentioned above are only for one way.
We were also told about Options 4 & 5 which is by road.
Option 4: Jeep ride from Kathmandu to Salleri. The road trip is about 9 hours. From Salleri to Phakding, the only way is to walk and the walk takes about 3 days. This is the longest travel option from Kathmandu to Lukla and it was definitely not feasible for us.
Option 5: Jeep ride from Kathmandu to Phaplu. And then take the heli from Phaplu to Lukla. Again this was not feasible for us.