A Travel Price Comparison for United States of America Baltimore vs. Chicago for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Baltimore or Chicago?

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 Baltimore and Chicago can help you decide which place is right for you.

Baltimore

Baltimore is a large, industrial city and popular tourist destination in the state of Maryland. It is about an hour outside of Washington, D.C. and is a hub of tourism and entertainment for the area. It has a vibrant nightlife, comfortable climate, and is a great place to visit when you're in the area. The city proper has a population of about 600,000 and the metropolitan area has 2.7 million. Its economy is centered around science, technology, engineering and math and it has many undergraduate and graduate schools including the world renowned Johns Hopkins University.

Chicago

Located in the Midwest, Chicago is the third largest city in the United States. It has a population of almost 3 million and a metropolitan area that covers more than 10,000 square kilometers. It is also a hub for music, comedy and theater. It's skyline is beautiful with modern skyscrapers and Lake Michigan as a backdrop. It is easy to stay entertained in Chicago for weeks. There are world class museums, upscale or eclectic shopping opportunities, and impressive architecture.

Which city is cheaper, Chicago or Baltimore?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Baltimore is $143, while the average daily cost in Chicago is $221. 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 Baltimore and Chicago in more detail.



Accommodation

Baltimore's average price for two people sharing a typical double-occupancy hotel room is $150. A typical place to stay for one person, per day is $75.

Chicago's average price for two people sharing a typical double-occupancy hotel room is $304. A typical place to stay for one person, per day is $152.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Baltimore $75
    Chicago $152
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Baltimore $150
    Chicago $304

Food

The average traveler spends about $37 per day in Baltimore for food, but obviously this is dependent on the type of restaurant and the amount of food ordered. To save money you can grab a lighter lunch or dinner, or you can try fast food or street food.

The price of a meal in Chicago can vary widely. However, the average price for food per day is $37 per person, and a typical meal will cost around $15 based on the spending of previous visitors. Less expensive dining options can be found by eating street food or at fast food restaurants.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Baltimore $37
    Chicago $37
Typical Food prices in Baltimore

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


  • Seafood Dinner (for 2) in Fells Point
    $76

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Baltimore

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

  • Federal Hill Food Tour: $71
  • Little Italy and Jonestown Food Tour: $71
  • Fells Point Food Tour in Baltimore: $73
  • Spirit of Baltimore Dinner Cruise with Buffet: $100
  • Baltimore Helicopter Sightseeing Tour Plus Dinner: $288
  • Platinum Package - Helicopter Tour with Dinner at Ruth's Chris or Capital Grille: $315
  • Baltimore Helicopter Tour plus Lunch or Dinner Cruise: $321

Typical Food prices in Chicago

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


  • Dinner for 1
    $24
  • Dinner for 3
    $118

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Chicago

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

  • Traveling Spoon Chicago-Style Deep Dish Pizza Private Online Cooking Class: $27
  • Factories to Calories Fulton Market Food Tour: $46
  • Learn to Make Chicago Deep-Dish Pizza with a Local: $49
  • Chicago Crime & Pizza Walk: $50
  • Lonely Planet Experiences: Chicago History and Food Tour: $59
  • Lonely Planet Experiences: River North Historical Food Tour: $61
  • Signature Food Tour at Chicago's Navy Pier: $64
  • Best in Chow: Chicago River North Food Tour: $64
  • Private Fusion Cooking Class in Downtown Chicago: $64
  • Skip the Line: Tommy Gun's Garage Dinner and Show Ticket: $67
  • Small-Group Chicago Food Tour: Gold Coast and Old Town: $75
  • Best of Chicago Tour Including a Deep-Dish Pizza: $75

Local Transportation

The average price of local transportation around Baltimore is $15 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 $29 per day to get around in Chicago.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Baltimore $15
    Chicago $29

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Baltimore

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Baltimore:

  • Arrival Private Transfer Washington Airport BWI to Washington DC by SUV: $129
  • Baltimore City to New York City - Private Car Transfer: $454
  • Baltimore City to New York LaGuardia Airport (LGA) - Departure Private Transfer: $448
  • Baltimore City to Newark International Airport (EWR)- Departure Private Transfer: $411
  • Baltimore City to Philadelphia City - Private Car Transfer: $311
  • Baltimore City to Washington City - Private Car Transfer: $168
  • Baltimore Washington Airport (BWI) to Washington - Arrival Private Transfer: $109
  • Baltimore Washington Airport (BWI) to Washington - Round-Trip Private Transfer: $219
  • Baltimore Washington International Airport Transfer to Downtown Baltimore: $120
  • Baltimore to New York J.F. Kennedy Airport (JFK) - Departure Private Transfer: $448
  • Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport One Way Transfer: $69
  • Departure Private Transfer Baltimore to Baltimore Airport BWI - Business Vehicle: $74

Typical Local Transportation prices in Chicago

Here are some examples of typical transportation prices from actual travelers in Chicago:


  • Parking
    $19
  • Taxi Ride
    $10
  • Taxi from Airport
    $45

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Chicago

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Chicago:

  • Arrival Private Transfer Chicago O'Hare Airport ORD to Chicago City by SUV: $96
  • Arrival Private Transfer Chicago O'Hare Airport ORD to Chicago by Sedan Car: $79
  • Arrival Private Transfer Chicago O'Hare Airport to Chicago City by Minibus: $333
  • Chicago Airport Private Arrival Transfer by SUV: $115
  • Chicago Airport Private Arrival Transfer by Sedan: $96
  • Chicago Airport Private Departure Transfer by SUV: $115
  • Chicago Airport Private Departure Transfer by Sedan: $96
  • Chicago Airport Transfer by Private Sedan: $119
  • Chicago Airport Transfer: Midway Airport MDW to O'Hare Airport ORD in Luxury SUV: $133
  • Chicago Airport Transfers : Chicago City to O'Hare Airport ORD by Luxury SUV: $119
  • Chicago Airport Transfers : Chicago City to O'Hare Airport ORD in Business Car: $100
  • Chicago Airport Transfers : Chicago City to O'Hare Airport ORD in Luxury Car: $123

Is it cheaper to fly into Baltimore or Chicago?

Prices for flights to both Chicago and Baltimore 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.





Entertainment

Baltimore's costs for entertainment, tickets, attractions, and tours will often cost around $14 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 $34 per person, per day in Chicago. This cost includes the price of admission tickets to attractions and museums as well as daily tours.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Baltimore $14
    Chicago $34

Tours and Activities in Baltimore

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

  • Baltimore Monuments Walking Tour: $12
  • 2 Hour Chesapeake Signature Cruise: $15
  • Baltimore Scavenger Hunt Adventure: $21
  • Baltimore Inner Harbor Sightseeing Tour: $23
  • History & Culture Small-Group Tour with a Local: $41
  • History of Chesapeake Bay Sailing Tour: $49
  • Baltimore Inner Harbor Sailing Experience: $49
  • West Bank Tour: $60
  • Inner Harbor Small-Group Culture Tour with a Local: $69
  • Small-Group Food and Drink Tour with Local Snacks: $73
  • Private Baltimore Historical Sightseeing Tours: $75
  • Wine Beer and Spirit Tour in Frederick: $97

Typical Entertainment prices in Chicago

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


  • Sears Tower (family of 4)
    $102
  • Aquarium for 4
    $118
  • Water Taxi (family of 4)
    $22
  • IMAX Movie for Two
    $35
  • Shakespeare Play (2)
    $116
  • Art Institute (2)
    $36
  • U-Boat Tour (2)
    $8.00

Tours and Activities in Chicago

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

  • A Storied Neighborhood: Dance the dialectic with Bill Ayers on an audio tour: $5.00
  • Discovering Vintage The Loop Walking Audio Tour by VoiceMap: $5.34
  • Chicago Riverwalk Self-Guided Walking Tour: $6.00
  • Millennium Park Exploration Game & Self-Guided Tour: $12
  • Skip the Line: American Writers Museum Admission Ticket: $14
  • Pilsen Walking Tour of Local Publicly Displayed Art: $15
  • The Chicago Theatre Marquee Tour: $18
  • Behind-the-Scenes Tour of Historic Chicago Theatre: $18
  • Chicago Scavenger Hunt Adventure: $21
  • Chicago Skydeck Experience Ticket: $22
  • Ghosts of Lincoln Park Walking Tour: $22
  • Best Architecture Walking Tour for Design Lovers: $22

Alcohol

While the amount that someone spends on alcohol while visiting Baltimore may vary from person to person, on average a person spends $14 per day on alcoholic beverages.

While the amount that someone spends on alcohol while visiting Chicago may vary from person to person, on average a person spends $20 per day on alcoholic beverages.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Baltimore $14
    Chicago $20

Sample the Local Flavors in Baltimore

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

  • Sip of Baltimore Brewery Tour: $90
  • Westminster Region Wine Tour: $97
  • Chesapeake Region Wine Tour: $97
  • Heritage Region Wine Tour: $97
  • Chocolate and Wine Tour: $106

Sample the Local Flavors in Chicago

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

  • Haunted Chicago Ghost and Pub Walking Tour: $25
  • Walking tour to Chicago dive bars: $41
  • Chicago Barrel Bus Craft Distillery Tour: $90
  • Chicago Craft Brewery Barrel Bus Tour: $90
  • Ultimate Girl's Night Out in Sparkling Wine, Photo Shoot, Burlesque: $900


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

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Baltimore vs. Chicago Travel Comparison

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