A Travel Price Comparison for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons Asheville vs. Charleston

Should you visit Asheville or Charleston?

Which city should you visit? Read on to compare the prices of travel for Asheville and Charleston. We’ll break down costs for accommodation, food, transportation and more to help you learn more about these two destinations. Then, you can figure out if either of these two places are accessible based on your travel budget. So, let's dig into it.

Asheville

Asheville is a beautiful mountain town between the Blue Ridge Mountains and the Great Smoky Mountains. It's a popular tourist destination in western North Carolina that attracts hikers, shoppers, and adventurers alike. It's the largest city in the area and is famous for it's liberal mindset and large art community. Local crafts are frequently available for sale in the downtown shops.

Charleston

Charleston is a beautiful, southern city and seaport town in South Carolina. It has a wonderful, historic downtown area that the city government works hard to maintain. Located on a peninsula that is created by two rivers, the city is a stunning setting with much character. It is a popular place to visit for its culture, architecture and cuisine. In recent years Charleston has gained popularity and it continues to grow as both a regional and international travel destination. With its rising popularity comes increasing costs. Travel costs continue to go up as restaurants and hotels raise their prices, particularly during the peak travel season and holiday periods.

Which city is cheaper, Charleston or Asheville?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Asheville is $106, while the average daily cost in Charleston is $136. 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. Below is a breakdown of travel costs for Asheville and Charleston in more detail.




Accommodation

Accommodation prices vary by location and style, but travelers pay on average about $142 for a double occupancy room in Asheville.

A hotel room in Charleston is about $144 This assumes double occupancy and modest accommodations.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Asheville $71
    Charleston $72
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Asheville $142
    Charleston $144


Food

In Asheville travelers spend around $26 a day on food. You can save money by choosing casual restaurants or food stalls, or you can spend plenty more by dining in nicer restaurants at every meal.

On average, meal and food prices in Charleston cost around $46 per person, per day. While this price can vary widely by location, the type of restaurant, and the amount of food ordered, a typical meal often costs around $18.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Asheville $26
    Charleston $46
Typical Food prices in Asheville

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for food and meal costs in Asheville:


  • Biltmore Estate Entrance Fee
    $60

Typical Food prices in Charleston

Some typical examples of dining costs in Charleston are as follows:


  • Lunch in downtown Charleston for two
    $21
  • Breakfast
    $26

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Charleston

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

  • Charleston Harbor: Luxury Dinner Cruise & Live Music: $66
  • Downtown Charleston Culinary Walking Food Tour: $73
  • Savor the Flavors of Charleston Walking Food Tour: $75
  • Charleston's Savor the Flavors of Upper King Street Walking Food Tour: $75
  • Charleston Chef's Kitchen Guided Walking Food Tour: $75
  • Private Tour: Secret Food Tours Charleston: $129
  • Undiscovered 1/2 Day Food, Wine & History Tour with Cooking Class: $154
  • 3-Hour Secret Food Tour in Charleston w/ Private Tour Option: $277


Local Transportation

The average price of local transportation around Asheville is $11 per person, per day. As this average includes both taxis and public transport, keep in mind that the prices of private drivers and taxis are significantly more expensive than public transportation.

While taxis and private drivers typically cost much more than public transportation, people usually spend around $26 per day to get around in Charleston.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Asheville $11
    Charleston $26

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Charleston

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Charleston:

  • Charleston city to Charleston Airport (CHS) - Departure Private Transfer: $124
  • Private Departure Transfer to Charleston Airport (CHS): $52
  • Private transfer: Charleston to Charleston Airport (CHS): $622


Entertainment

Asheville's costs for entertainment, tickets, attractions, and tours will often cost around $13 per person, per day. This cost can vary widely by the type of activity, however, as this includes admission tickets, day tours, museums, and other things to do.

Activities, things to do, and other forms of entertainment usually cost around $17 per person, per day in Charleston. This cost includes the price of admission tickets to attractions and museums as well as daily tours.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Asheville $13
    Charleston $17
Typical Entertainment prices in Asheville

Here are a few typical costs in Asheville for activities, ticket prices, and tours that come from previous visitors:


  • Massage
    $40

Tours and Activities in Asheville

Here are a few actual costs in Asheville for available activities, ticket prices, and tours:

  • Asheville tip-based sightseeing Walking Tour with Donut & Spirits/Beer Tastings: $5.00
  • Asheville Scavenger Hunt: Downtown Asheville Adventure: $12
  • Asheville Scavenger Hunt Adventure: $21
  • Asheville Night-Time Walking Ghost Tour: $21
  • Asheville Night-Time Guided Walking Ghost Tour (1 or 1.5-Hour Options Available): $21
  • Asheville Literary Tour: $30
  • Asheville Insider Guided Walking Tour: $30
  • History and Architecture Tour: $40
  • Asheville Private Guided Bird Watching Tour: $41
  • Amazing Asheville Scavenger Hunt Adventure: $44
  • Wellness-Focused Walking Tour: $45
  • North Carolina Arboretum Running Tour in Asheville: $45

Typical Entertainment prices in Charleston

Some typical examples of activities, tours, and entrance ticket prices in Charleston are as follows:


  • Patriots Point (for 2)
    $60

Tours and Activities in Charleston

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

  • Charleston's Haunted Ghost Tour - Smart Phone Guided Tour: $5.00
  • Charleston Scavenger Hunt Adventure: $16
  • Charleston's French Quarter Guided Walking Tour: $20
  • Shem Creek Culture Tour: $20
  • Downtown Charleston Walking Tour with Certified Local Guide: $21
  • Charleston's Pleasing Terrors Night-Time Walking Ghost Tour: $21
  • Historic Charleston Guided Sightseeing Walking Tour: $21
  • Highlights of Charleston Guided Walking Tour: $22
  • Charleston Historical Walking Tour: $22
  • Charleston French Quarter Historic Guided Walking Tour: $22
  • Drayton Hall Plantation Admission Ticket in Charleston: $22
  • Small-Group Tour: Charleston Old Walled City Historical Walking Tour: $23


Alcohol

While the amount that someone spends on alcohol while visiting Asheville may vary from person to person, on average a person spends $13 per day on alcoholic beverages.

The average person spends about $28 on alcoholic beverages in Charleston per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Asheville $13
    Charleston $28

Sample the Local Flavors in Asheville

Also in Asheville, these are the prices for nightlife and alcohol related activities from various tour providers:

  • Downtown Asheville Guided Brewery Walking Tour: $38
  • Private Adventure Brews Cruise Brewery Tours in Asheville (Up To 5 Breweries): $1,013

Sample the Local Flavors in Charleston

Here are a few nightlife and alcohol tours and activities from local tour providers in Charleston:

  • Charleston Bar Hunt: Charleston Chase Bar Crawl: $12
  • Ghost Walking Tour and Pub Crawl in Haunted Charleston: $27
  • Haunted Pub Crawl of the Market: $37



When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Asheville and Charleston, we can see that Charleston is more expensive. And not only is Asheville much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Asheville would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Asheville 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 Charleston would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Charleston than you might in Asheville.

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Asheville vs. Charleston Travel Comparison

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