A Travel Price Comparison for New Zealand Auckland vs. Aoraki Mount Cook for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Auckland or Aoraki Mount Cook?

Which city is more affordable and which is best for your travel style? If you're trying to figure out where to go next, comparing the travel costs between Auckland and Aoraki Mount Cook can help you decide which place is right for you.


Auckland is located on the North Island of New Zealand on an isthmus between the Northland Peninsula and the other parts of the North Island. Auckland is not only a city but also a region. In 2010 New Zealand combined what had previously been four separate cities into one region. These cities include the southern city of Manukau, the western city of Waitakere, the North Shore in the north, and Auckland City. The City of Auckland is the largest city in Polynesia and is very diverse with many expatriates from elsewhere in Polynesia. This diversity becomes most apparent in Auckland's many festivals and sporting events.

Aoraki Mount Cook

Aoraki Mount Cook National Park is located on the South Island of New Zealand. It was declared a national park in 1953 to protect and preserve the landscape. The park is home to the country's highest peak, Aoraki/Mount Cook. In Maori, Aoraki means, "cloud piercer", and the English name, Mt Cook, refers to the navigator James Cook, who discovered New Zealand in the 18th century. Mt Cook was the training location for Sir Edmund Hillary, who was the first person to summit Everest in 1953. Other peaks in the park include Mount Tasman, Mount Sefton, and Mount Hicks. Not only can you find lush greenery all over the park, but also, glaciers cover 40% of the parks area.

Which city is cheaper, Aoraki Mount Cook or Auckland?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Auckland is $127, while the average daily cost in Aoraki Mount Cook is $96. 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 Auckland and Aoraki Mount Cook in more detail.


Double occupancy rooms typically run around $162 in Auckland For nicer amenities and a premiere location, you can expect to pay a bit more.

For a normal double-occupancy room in Aoraki Mount Cook, $108 is the average cost for a hotel room. Also in Aoraki Mount Cook, the typical price for a place to stay for one person is $54, such as in a hostel.

  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Auckland $81
    Aoraki Mount Cook $54
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Auckland $162
    Aoraki Mount Cook $108


Auckland food costs typically run travelers around $24 per day. Eating every meal in a nicer restaurant will drive the cost up, and grabbing fast food or casual meals will help you save money.

In Aoraki Mount Cook travelers spend around $24 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.

  • Food Meals for one day
    Auckland $24
    Aoraki Mount Cook $24
Typical Food prices in Auckland

For Auckland, here are some examples of average food and meal prices for travelers:

  • Breakfast

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Auckland

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

  • Auckland Harbour Sailboat Cruise Including Three Course Dinner: $107

Local Transportation

Public transportation tends to be much less expensive in Auckland than paying for a taxi or private car service, as is expected. Typically, people spend $14 on transportation in Auckland on average per day.

Aoraki Mount Cook's transportation costs can vary by the type of transport chosen by visitors. Naturally, taxis and private drivers cost much more than public transportation options. On average, visitors spend $25 per person, per day on transportation in Aoraki Mount Cook.

  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Auckland $14
    Aoraki Mount Cook $25
Typical Local Transportation prices in Auckland

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for transportation costs in Auckland:

  • Bus from Airport
  • Airport Shuttle

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Auckland

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

  • Auckland Airport Transfers and Daily Tours: $493
  • Auckland Private Tour including Airport Transfer: $478
  • Auckland to Rotorua Private Chauffer Driven Transfer: $445
  • Arrival Transfer: Auckland Airport to Rotorua with Optional Private Day Tour: $387
  • Great Barrier transfer - fly directly from Waiheke Island: $185
  • Private Inter City Transfer From Auckland To Hamilton: $148
  • Auckland Airport Transfers: Auckland to Auckland Airport AKL in Luxury Car: $148
  • Auckland Airport Transfers: Auckland Airport AKL to Auckland in Luxury Car: $141
  • Auckland Airport Transfers: Auckland Airport AKL to Auckland in Luxury Van: $126
  • Auckland's premium luxury transfers from/to Airport / North Shore: $119
  • Arrival Private Transfer Auckland Airport to North Shore or Henderson Luxury Van: $118
  • Arrival Private Transfer Auckland Airport to North Shore or Henderson Luxury Car: $118

Is it cheaper to fly into Auckland or Aoraki Mount Cook?

Prices for flights to both Aoraki Mount Cook and Auckland 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.


Sightseeing expenses in Auckland, including the cost of admission tickets for day tours, museums, and attractions, usually cost an average of $25 per day, per person.

Sightseeing, admission tickets, things to do, and other entertainment expenses in Aoraki Mount Cook can vary widely by price. On average, visitors spend around $21 per person, per day on entertainment and sightseeing here.

  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Auckland $25
    Aoraki Mount Cook $21
Typical Entertainment prices in Auckland

Below are a few sample prices from actual travelers for Auckland's activities, tours, and tickets:

  • Auckland Sky Tour (for 2)
  • Waiheke Island Tour (for 2)

Tours and Activities in Auckland

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

  • 10-Day 'Vibe of the North' Epic Summer Tour for 18-30s!: $1,177
  • 13,000 Feet Tandem Skydive & Gannet Experience: $481
  • 14 Day - North to South Island Tour (All inclusive): $1,992
  • 16,000 Feet Tandem Skydive & Gannet Experience: $592
  • 17 day - North to South Island Tour (All inclusive): $2,333
  • 2 Day Rotorua Experience: Waitomo Caves, Maori Culture & Ziplining from Auckland: $733
  • 2 Day Waitomo Caves, Hobbiton Movie Set and Rotorua Tour from Auckland: $859
  • 20,000 Feet Tandem Skydive & Gannet Experience: $740
  • 23-Day Epic New Zealand Tour: $3,630
  • 3 Day Bay Of Islands Tour from Auckland including Waitangi and Cape Reinga: $703
  • 3 Day Bay of Islands Winterless North Tour: $370
  • 3 Day Waitomo Caves, Hobbiton Movie Set and Rotorua Tour from Auckland: $933


Typically, people visiting Auckland spend on average $12 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.

Alcoholic beverages can often be a significant portion of a traveler's budget, and the costs can vary greatly from person to person. In Aoraki Mount Cook, the average amount that a visitor spends on alcoholic beverages per day is $19.

  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Auckland $12
    Aoraki Mount Cook $19

Sample the Local Flavors in Auckland

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

  • Tour and Tastings in an Urban Craft Beer Brewery: $23
  • Wild West Coast & Black Sand Beach Tour incl Craft Beer Brewery Lunch & Tasting: $100
  • Premium Full Day Waiheke Wine Tour: $125
  • Small-Group Wine Tasting Experience on Waiheke Island: $131
  • Waiheke Island Premium Food & Wine Tour with Platter Lunch: $146
  • Waiheke Island: Afternoon Small Group Wine Tour with Lunch: $157
  • The Essence of Waiheke Wine Tour: $157
  • Full-Day Waiheke Island Food and Wine Tour: $165
  • Matakana: Full-Day Food and Wine Tour: $169
  • The Afternoon Artisan Food and Wine Tour: $169
  • Auckland Shore Excursion: City Sightseeing, Harbour Cruise and Waiheke Island Wine Tasting: $171
  • Small-Group Kumeu Wine Country Tour Includes Wine Tastings & Lunch: $189

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

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Auckland vs. Aoraki Mount Cook Travel Comparison

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