The cost for the bus from the Luzern train station to Kriens, then the cable car/gondola to Pilatus is CHF 39.60 per person roundtrip (that's the 1/2 fare price shown by default in the SBB website, so double it). Going to mountaintops isn't cheap, worth it but not cheap.
On some of your previous questions relative to flying into Zurich one day early:
1. Since you have to be in Basel the following afternoon, you could simply take a train from the Zurich airport to Basel, about 1h 30m depending on which train you take. I've never been to Basel, so have no opinions on it. It may offer intriguing sightseeing opportunities aligned with your interests, or it may not.
2. You could simply stay in Zurich the first night, and tour the Old Town section, in easy walking distance from the train station. Although you are in the city, the Old Town section seems like an island of calm, and the walks along the river are pleasant. I've found Zurich in general, while an active city, does not overwhelm visitors with the crowded, frantic Big City pace found elsewhere. We spent our first afternoon in Zurich taking an afternoon boat ride to Rapperswil (~2 hours) then catching a train back to Zurich (~48 minutes). The boat ride was enjoyable in the sunshine, but wouldn't be very special in worse weather. We did the Old Town tour the morning before we left for Luzern. Plenty of options to spend an afternoon or morning in Zurich. Zurich is roughly one hour from Basel by train.
3. You could take a train from the airport to Luzern (~1h 10m), and spend the rest of the day touring Old Town Luzern. It is equally as interesting as the Old Town section of Zurich but different, and is located next to another river. Luzern is smaller than Zurich, and quite walkable. It is a relaxed city too. We enjoyed several boat rides on Lake Luzern, and found it much more scenic and interesting than Lake Zurich. I'm not sure what the boat schedules are at the end of March, but in late fall the boats run regularly and often (there are multiple boats running on the lake at the same time, with frequent stops at small towns along the way). We enjoyed short boat rides in both good and bad weather; Lake Luzern is much more scenic than Lake Zurich. Luzern is also fairly close to Basel, between 1 hour and 1h 27m away depending on which train you take.
The Old Town sections of both Zurich and Luzern as about as "quaint" as any part of a city could be, and basically begin within a block or two of the main train stations, making it very convenient to visit either. I'm not a fan of cities myself, but thoroughly enjoyed each one. Your pace automatically slows down as you begin to really look at the details of the various buildings while meandering through the narrow cobblestone streets and small plazas, finding little hidden parks, tuning out the shops selling tourist souvenirs and focusing on local culture instead.