Should you visit Aspen or Rapid City?
Trying to figure out where to travel next? This travel cost comparison between Aspen and Rapid City can help. For many travelers, the cost of a destination is a primary consideration when choosing where to go.
Aspen is a famous, and notably expensive travel destination. The town is one of the country's most famous and recognizable ski destinations, and prices can climb high during the ski season. Although still expensive, you can often find better deals during the summer months or shoulder seasons. For visitors who want to enjoy the area's hiking, natural beauty, and charm, these are the times to visit.
Rapid City is a large city in western South Dakota that is considered the gateway to the Black Hills National Forest. Rapid City is often used as a base for all types of outdoor activities, including tours to the infamous Mount Rushmore and surrounding parks. The city has a budding art scene and offers the perfect combination of a metropolitan city surrounded by stunning natural scenery. Rapid City experiences the best weather from June-September with temperatures in the 70's and 80's Fahrenheit. Temperatures drop to the low 20's F in the winter and the area receives the most rain pour in April and May.
Which city is cheaper, Rapid City or Aspen?
These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.
The average daily cost (per person) in Aspen is $235, while the average daily cost in Rapid City is $93. 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 Aspen and Rapid City in more detail.
The average price for accommodation for two people in Aspen is $272. This is for two people sharing a typical double occupancy hotel room.
Double occupancy rooms typically run around $96 in Rapid City For nicer amenities and a premiere location, you can expect to pay a bit more.
The price of a meal in Aspen can vary widely. However, the average price for food per day is $68 per person, and a typical meal will cost around $27 based on the spending of previous visitors. Less expensive dining options can be found by eating street food or at fast food restaurants.
In Rapid City travelers spend around $19 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.
Meals for one day
Rapid City $19
While taxis and private drivers typically cost much more than public transportation, people usually spend around $45 per day to get around in Aspen.
Public transportation tends to be much less expensive in Rapid City than paying for a taxi or private car service, as is expected. Typically, people spend $42 on transportation in Rapid City on average per day.
Hired Cars and Shuttles in Aspen
Some specific examples of transportation prices in Aspen:
Private Transfer: Aspen to Denver International Airport (DEN):
Private Eagle County Regional Airport Transfer to Aspen:
Private Departure Transfer to Aspen Airport (ASE):
Private Arrival Transfer from Aspen Airport (ASE):
Aspen hotel or address to Denver Airport (DEN) - Departure Private Transfer:
Activities, things to do, and other forms of entertainment usually cost around $36 per person, per day in Aspen. This cost includes the price of admission tickets to attractions and museums as well as daily tours.
Sightseeing expenses in Rapid City, including the cost of admission tickets for day tours, museums, and attractions, usually cost an average of $21 per day, per person.
Tours and Activities in Aspen
Here are a few actual costs in Aspen for available activities, ticket prices, and tours:
Aspen's DarkSide Ghost Tour:
Aspen's Past to Present Historic Tour:
Glimpse of Aspen Tour:
Tours and Activities in Rapid City
For Rapid City, here are a few prices for actual activities, tours, and tickets provided by various companies:
Mount Rushmore and Black Hills Full-Day Tour:
Mount Rushmore and Black Hills Bus Tour with Live Commentary:
Bus Tour of Mount Rushmore and the Black Hills:
Bike Adventure on the Mickelson Trail - Private:
Southern Black Hills Bicycle Tour - Private:
Private Black Hills Monuments Full-Day Tour:
Black Hills: Private Tour of Mt. Rushmore & Flume Trail Hike:
Badlands National Park Private Tour:
Private Mickelson Trail Bicycling Tour/ Two Person Minimum:
Private Jeep Safari and Hiking Tour/ Two Person Minimum:
Private Badlands National Park Day Tour:
Private Mt Rushmore & Southern Black Hills Tour:
While the amount that someone spends on alcohol while visiting Aspen may vary from person to person, on average a person spends $16 per day on alcoholic beverages.
Typically, people visiting Rapid City spend on average $5.54 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.
When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Aspen and Rapid City, we can see that Aspen is more expensive. And not only is Rapid City much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Rapid City would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Rapid City 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 Aspen would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Aspen than you might in Rapid City.
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