Well, Shanghai is definitely worth a day or two to check out. I don't think Shanghai is THAT expensive. Of course, they do have lots of 5* hotels & restaurants but NO, I don't think it's that expensive at all. If that's the case, the local people wouldn't be able to survive. I'm sure there're some hotels that are priced very reasonable for budget travellers. You can try hotels.com or agoda.com.
Have a nice trip!
I am Chinese,working in Hangzhou,near Shanghai(about one and a half hours).
Hotels are 30 us dollras and more.Cheap ones are only 20.Do not take a taxi from airport to downtown.U can take a LRT or bus.Cheap and fast.But u must move very fast.Diver will not wait anyone,must be started in time.Most of people do not stand in a line,not like yr country.
About food,Chinese food in Restaurants is 10 US dollars or more per one person.If u wonna eat exepensive food,that will be 50 USD,100 USD,and more.
Like KFC,McDonald's are cheap ,only 5 USD Or more.
Taxi is 7USD for the distance between general.If long,that will be more.
If u have any questions, Contact me
Have a good trip!
I will visit Sri Lanka in SEP 9 --SEP 15 ,2011.
Thank you all for your help. Much appreciated. Little bit worried about arriving with all my baggage but will manage.