A Travel Price Comparison for Australia Adelaide vs. Airlie Beach for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Adelaide or Airlie Beach?

Which is cheaper to visit? Which is more expensive for vacation?

Trying to figure out where to travel next? This travel comparison between Adelaide and Airlie Beach can help. It includes a travel cost comparison in addition to other factors. For many travelers, the cost of a destination is a primary consideration when choosing where to go.

Where Should I go: Adelaide or Airlie Beach?

Adelaide

Adelaide is the often overlooked capital city of the State of South Australia. It's also the fifth largest city in the country. Despite being skipped by most travelers, Adelaide is an interesting city to explore and has a decent amount to offer open minded travelers. It has some fascinating architecture, unique shopping, and wonderful cafes and restaurants. Part of the appeal of Adelaide is its location in the midst of Australia's wine regions, including McLaren Vale, Barossa Valley, and Clare Valley. Any of these destinations could be visited as a day trip from Adelaide.

Airlie Beach

Airlie Beach, in Queensland, offers the closest port to the Whitsunday Islands on the Great Barrier Reef. It's a small town of only 25,000 and has grown out of the area's popularity as a tourist destination. It's main industry remains tourism and, as such, there are many venues set up to accommodate travelers hoping to make trips to the Whitsunday Islands and the Outer Great Barrier Reef. The town has the feel of a vacation destination. While in the past Airlie Beach appealed specifically to the backpacker crowd, it's popularity has spread and now there are facilities catering to all travel types. The area has become more commercialized and there are plenty of large resorts to choose from. Even so, you'll still find no shortage of affordable accommodation around town.

Which city is cheaper, Airlie Beach or Adelaide?

These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.

The average daily cost (per person) in Adelaide is $88, while the average daily cost in Airlie Beach is $113. These costs include accommodation (assuming double occupancy, so the traveler is sharing the room), food, transportation, and entertainment. While every person is different, these costs are an average of past travelers in each city. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Adelaide and Airlie Beach in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Adelaide $52
    Airlie Beach $47
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Adelaide $104
    Airlie Beach $94
Compare Hotels in Adelaide and Airlie Beach

Looking for a hotel in Adelaide or Airlie Beach? Prices vary by location, date, season, and the level of luxury. See below for options and compare which is best for your budget and travel style.

Hotels in Adelaide


Hotels in Airlie Beach


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Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Adelaide $15
    Airlie Beach $16
Typical Local Transportation prices in Adelaide

Some typical examples of transportation costs in Adelaide are as follows:


  • Shuttle from the Train Station
    $3.59

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Adelaide

Also for Adelaide, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:

  • Adelaide Airport Private Chauffeured Transfer: $29
  • Private Departure Transfer: Hotel to Adelaide Airport: $40
  • Corporate transfers and wine tours: $43
  • Adelaide Airport Departure Transfer in a Tesla Model3 EV: $44
  • Transfer in private vehicle from Adelaide Downtown to Adelaide Airport: $61
  • Transfer in private minivan from Adelaide Downtown to Adelaide Airport: $61
  • Private Transfer: Adelaide to Adelaide Airport (ADL): $64
  • Departure Private Transfers: Adelaide to Adelaide Airport ADL in Business Car: $67
  • Adelaide Airport Transfers : Adelaide City to Airport ADL in Business Car: $71
  • Adelaide Airport Transfers : Adelaide City to Airport ADL in Luxury Van: $99
  • Departure Private Transfers: Adelaide to Adelaide Airport ADL in Luxury Van: $99
  • Adelaide Airport Transfers : Adelaide City to Airport ADL in Luxury Car: $121

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Airlie Beach

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Airlie Beach:

  • Whitsunday: Prosperpine Airport to Airlie Beach Transfer: $16
  • Airport Transfers - Return (round fare) share shuttle service: $28
  • Airport Transfers - One way share shuttle service: $17

Is it cheaper to fly into Adelaide or Airlie Beach?

Prices for flights to both Airlie Beach and Adelaide change regularly based on dates and travel demand. We suggest you find the best prices for your next trip on Kayak, because you can compare the cost of flights across multiple airlines for your prefered dates.





Food
  • Food Meals for one day
    Adelaide $25
    Airlie Beach $26

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Adelaide

For Adelaide, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:

  • The F Factor: Adelaide food tour: $36
  • Adelaide Central Market The Collaborators Dinner Tour: $154

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Airlie Beach

Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in Airlie Beach.

  • Whitsundays Segway Sunset and Boardwalk Tour with Dinner: $93

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Adelaide $11
    Airlie Beach $129

Tours and Activities in Adelaide

For Adelaide, here are a few prices for actual activities, tours, and tickets provided by various companies:

  • Australian Wine Discovery Tour Ticket: $12
  • Adelaide Scavenger Hunt: Adelaide Adventure: $12
  • Adelaide Self-Guided Audio Tour: $14
  • Adelaide Self-Guided Audio Tour: $15
  • Torrens River Cruise in Adelaide: $19
  • Jimmy C Street Art Walking Tour: $20
  • Cultural Caper Adelaide Walking Tour: $24
  • Adelaide Walking Tour: East End Escapade: $24
  • Around the Square Adelaide Walking Tour: $24
  • Adelaide Gaol Adults Ghost Tour & Investigation: $28
  • Australian Wine Discovery Tour with Tastings: $32
  • Adelaide Gaol Ghost Tour and Paranormal Investigation: $32

Tours and Activities in Airlie Beach

Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for Airlie Beach are as follows:

  • 2 Day Great Barrier Reef "Reefsuites" Experience: $631
  • 2 Night Small Group Whitsundays Sailing Adventure Aboard Mandrake: $375
  • 2 night Whitsunday Islands Cruise on Atlantic Clipper from Airlie Beach: $394
  • 2-Day Great Barrier Reef "Reefsleep" Experience: $470
  • 2-Day Whitsundays Sailing Adventure: SV Whitehaven: $315
  • 2-Day Whitsundays Sailing Adventure: Summertime: $315
  • 2-Night Whitsunday Islands All-Inclusive Sailing Tour from Airlie Beach: $315
  • 2-Night Whitsunday Islands Sailing Adventure on Trimaran 'Avatar': $422
  • 2-Night Whitsundays Sailing Cruise Aboard 'Spank Me' Including Whitehaven Beach and the Great Barrier Reef: $375
  • 2Day 2Night Sail, Snorkel & SUP Adventure Whitsundays double: $439
  • 3 Day Whitsundays Sailing and Diving Adventure: Kiana: $592
  • 3 Day and 2 Night Whitsundays Maxi Sailing Adventure on Hammer: $514

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Adelaide $18
    Airlie Beach $7.23

Sample the Local Flavors in Adelaide

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Adelaide:

  • McLaren Vale and Glenelg Wine Tasting and Sightseeing (Half-day Afternoon): $55
  • Adelaide Highlights, Hahndorf & McLaren Vale Wine Tasting and Sightseeing Tour: $78
  • Adelaide Hills Wine Tour: $81
  • The Lane Vineyard: Panorama Private Wine Tasting Experience: $103
  • From Barossa Valley Food and Wine Tour: $107
  • Barossa Valley Wine Tours - Small Private Groups: $119
  • Barossa Valley Cellar Doors Luxury Wine Tour: $121
  • McLaren Vale Wine Tour by Bike: $126
  • Small-Group Barossa Valley Food and Wine Tour: $126
  • McLaren Vale Luxury Wine Tour: $155
  • McLaren Vale Winery Small Group Tour with Wine Tasting and Lunch: $158
  • Small-Group Full-Day Adelaide Hills and Hahndorf Wine Tour from Adelaide: $158


When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Adelaide and Airlie Beach, we can see that Airlie Beach is more expensive. And not only is Adelaide much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Adelaide would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Adelaide and be able to afford a more luxurious travel style by staying in nicer hotels, eating at more expensive restaurants, taking tours, and experiencing more activities. The same level of travel in Airlie Beach would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Airlie Beach than you might in Adelaide.


When is the best time to visit Adelaide or Airlie Beach?

Both places have a temperate climate with four distinct seasons. As both cities are in the southern hemisphere, summer is in January and winter is in July.

Should I visit Adelaide or Airlie Beach in the Summer?

The summer brings many poeple to Adelaide as well as Airlie Beach.

Adelaide is cooler than Airlie Beach in the summer. The temperature in Adelaide is usually 22°C (72°F) in January, and Airlie Beach stays around 26°C (79°F).

The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Airlie Beach. People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Adelaide this time of the year. In the summer, Adelaide often gets more sunshine than Airlie Beach. Adelaide gets 330 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Airlie Beach receives 285 hours of full sun.

It's quite rainy in Airlie Beach. Adelaide usually gets less rain in January than Airlie Beach. Adelaide gets 19 mm (0.7 in) of rain, while Airlie Beach receives 331 mm (13 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Summer Average Temperatures January
    Adelaide 22°C (72°F) 
    Airlie Beach 26°C (79°F)

Should I visit Adelaide or Airlie Beach in the Autumn?

Both Airlie Beach and Adelaide are popular destinations to visit in the autumn with plenty of activities.

In the autumn, Adelaide is cooler than Airlie Beach. Typically, the autumn temperatures in Adelaide in April are around 18°C (64°F), and Airlie Beach is about 23°C (73°F).

It's quite sunny in Airlie Beach. The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Adelaide. Adelaide usually receives around the same amount of sunshine as Airlie Beach during autumn. At this time of the year, Adelaide gets 215 hours of sunny skies, while Airlie Beach receives 207 hours of full sun.

It rains a lot this time of the year in Airlie Beach. In April, Adelaide usually receives less rain than Airlie Beach. At this time of the year, Adelaide gets 38 mm (1.5 in) of rain, while Airlie Beach receives 143 mm (5.6 in) of rain.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures April
    Adelaide 18°C (64°F) 
    Airlie Beach 23°C (73°F)

Should I visit Adelaide or Airlie Beach in the Winter?

Both Airlie Beach and Adelaide during the winter are popular places to visit.

In July, Adelaide is generally cooler than Airlie Beach. Temperatures in Adelaide average around 11°C (52°F), and Airlie Beach stays around 16°C (62°F).

In Airlie Beach, it's very sunny this time of the year. In the winter, Adelaide often gets less sunshine than Airlie Beach. Adelaide gets 159 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Airlie Beach receives 226 hours of full sun.

Adelaide usually gets more rain in July than Airlie Beach. Adelaide gets 67 mm (2.6 in) of rain, while Airlie Beach receives 40 mm (1.6 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Winter Average Temperatures July
    Adelaide 11°C (52°F) 
    Airlie Beach 16°C (62°F)

Should I visit Adelaide or Airlie Beach in the Spring?

The spring attracts plenty of travelers to both Adelaide and Airlie Beach.

Adelaide is cooler than Airlie Beach in the spring. The temperature in Adelaide is usually 16°C (61°F) in October, and Airlie Beach stays around 23°C (73°F).

People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Airlie Beach this time of the year. In Adelaide, it's very sunny this time of the year. Adelaide usually receives less sunshine than Airlie Beach during spring. At this time of the year, Adelaide gets 256 hours of sunny skies, while Airlie Beach receives 298 hours of full sun.

In October, Adelaide usually receives less rain than Airlie Beach. At this time of the year, Adelaide gets 37 mm (1.5 in) of rain, while Airlie Beach receives 48 mm (1.9 in) of rain.


  • Spring Average Temperatures October
    Adelaide 16°C (61°F) 
    Airlie Beach 23°C (73°F)

Typical Weather for Airlie Beach and Adelaide

Adelaide Airlie Beach
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 22°C (72°F) 19 mm (0.7 in) 26°C (79°F) 331 mm (13 in)
Feb 23°C (73°F) 20 mm (0.8 in) 26°C (78°F) 377 mm (14.8 in)
Mar 21°C (69°F) 22 mm (0.9 in) 25°C (77°F) 312 mm (12.3 in)
Apr 18°C (64°F) 38 mm (1.5 in) 23°C (73°F) 143 mm (5.6 in)
May 15°C (58°F) 57 mm (2.2 in) 20°C (68°F) 67 mm (2.6 in)
Jun 12°C (54°F) 50 mm (2 in) 17°C (63°F) 57 mm (2.2 in)
Jul 11°C (52°F) 67 mm (2.6 in) 16°C (62°F) 40 mm (1.6 in)
Aug 12°C (54°F) 51 mm (2 in) 18°C (65°F) 27 mm (1.1 in)
Sep 13°C (56°F) 40 mm (1.6 in) 20°C (68°F) 15 mm (0.6 in)
Oct 16°C (61°F) 37 mm (1.5 in) 23°C (73°F) 48 mm (1.9 in)
Nov 18°C (65°F) 22 mm (0.9 in) 25°C (77°F) 107 mm (4.2 in)
Dec 21°C (69°F) 25 mm (1 in) 26°C (78°F) 191 mm (7.5 in)


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Adelaide vs. Airlie Beach Travel Comparison

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