A Travel Price Comparison for Canada Banff vs. Edmonton for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Banff or Edmonton?

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

Should I visit Banff or Edmonton? This is a common question asked by many travelers. By figuring out which city has activities that align with your interests along with knowing which is more affordable, you'll understand where you can get more bang for your buck. So, let's dive into the details and the data, which all comes from actual travelers.

Where Should I go: Banff or Edmonton?


Nestled in the pristine and gorgeous mountains of the Alberta Rockies is the popular town of Banff. This town sits right in Canada's Banff National Park and is part of a UNESCO World Heritage site.

While the surrounding nature may give the impression of a quiet, little town, Banff is typically crowded with tourists. The beauty of this area is irresistible for travelers from all over the world. This may not be the place for solitude or even an authentic, country experience, you'll still find an unforgettable vacation.


The capital of Alberta, Canada, Edmonton has a population of just over one million people in its metropolitan area. It is also North America's northernmost city of this large size. It's a beautiful place to visit because of the North Saskatchewan River Valley which has over one hundred kilometers of hiking trails, wildlife spotting, and overlooks. The valley has a string of parks which are wonderful to visit. In addition to the beautiful outdoor setting and activities, Edmonton also offers the largest shopping mall in North America, West Edmonton Mall. It's also a city with a lot of culture including a lively theater scene, many different festivals, and no shortage of sporting events that you could attend.

For some great organized tour ideas, see The Best Sightseeing Tours in Canada, The Best Camping Tours in Canada, The Best Romantic Tours for Couples in Canada, and The Best Northern Lights Tours in Canada.

Which place is cheaper, Edmonton or Banff?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Banff is $85, while the average daily cost in Edmonton is $181. 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 destination. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Banff and Edmonton in more detail.

  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Banff $39
    Edmonton $102
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Banff $78
    Edmonton $204
Compare Hotels in Banff and Edmonton

Looking for a hotel in Banff or Edmonton? 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 Banff

Hotels in Edmonton

Kayak helps you find the best prices for hotels, flights, and rental cars for destinations around the world. Compare prices for multiple destinations when planning your next trip.

Our Analysis
We've analyzed the average and typical hotel prices based on guest reviews, star ratings, and hotel amenities here: Banff Hotel Prices and Edmonton Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Banff $5.22
    Edmonton $80

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Banff

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Banff:

  • Banff to Calgary YYC Airport (Private Transfer with Tesla): $277
  • Canmore/Banff to Calgary Airport (YYC) Private Transfer: $277
  • Calgary Airport to Banff - Private Transfer: $854
  • Private Banff National Park Tour with Hotel Transfers: $876

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Edmonton

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Edmonton:

  • Edmonton to Edmonton Airport (YEG) - Departure Private Transfer: $43
  • Private Departure Transfer from Hotels to Edmonton Airport: $43

Is it cheaper to fly into Banff or Edmonton?

Prices for flights to both Edmonton and Banff 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 Meals for one day
    Banff $29
    Edmonton $16
Typical Food Prices in Banff

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

  • Tea House Lunch for Two
  • Hostel Breakfast
  • McDonalds

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Banff

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

  • Banff Food Tour: Eat the Castle: $154

Typical Food Prices in Edmonton

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

  • Snacks

  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Banff $12
    Edmonton $91
Typical Entertainment Prices in Banff

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

  • Hot Springs

Tours and Activities in Banff

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

  • Banff self-guided tour App with multi-language audio guide: $2.17
  • Tunnel Mountain Trail: Nature Tour with Audio Guide: $5.84
  • Tunnel Mountain Trail: a Smartphone Audio Nature Tour : $5.98
  • The Sights of a Smartphone Audio Walking Tour: $6.20
  • Calgary & Lake Louise: Smartphone Audio Driving Tour: $6.20
  • Smartphone Audio Driving Tour between Banff and Calgary: $6.35
  • The Sights of a Smartphone Audio Walking Tour: $6.73
  • Historic Cave & Basin Self-Guided Walking Audio Tour: $8.99
  • Banff Cave and Hot Springs Self-Guided Walking Tour: $9.99
  • Banff National Park: Self-Guided Scenic Driving Tour: $13
  • Listen to a Tour Guide as You Drive & Walk with our Discover the Rockies Package: $15
  • Banff National Park Self-Guided Driving Tour: $17

Tours and Activities in Edmonton

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

  • Discover the Early History of Strathcona with Historic Walking Tour: $4.49
  • Edmonton Self-Guided Audio Tour: $9.00
  • Scavenger Hunt Adventure in Edmonton by Crazy Dash: $10
  • Self-Guided Audio Tour: $11
  • 1-Hour Segway Adventure in Louise McKinney Park: $44
  • Edmonton River Valley 60-Minute Segway Adventure: $45
  • Edmonton River Valley 90-Minute Segway Adventure: $64
  • Guided Edmonton Donut Bike Tour: $67
  • 2-Hour River Valley Guided Segway Tour & Ice Cream: $87
  • Summer Sunset Cruise (2Hr Tour): $89
  • Edmonton Food Bike Tour: $101
  • Festival Food Bike Tour: $101

  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Banff $9.41
    Edmonton -

Sample the Local Flavors in Edmonton

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Edmonton:

  • Edmonton Brewery Tour: $105

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

If you're trying to decide if either of these two destinations are within your price range, also see Is Banff Expensive? and Is Edmonton Expensive?.

Which is Bigger, Banff or Edmonton?

Edmonton has a larger population, and is about 90 times larger than the population of Banff. When comparing the sizes of Banff and Edmonton, keep in mind that a larger population does not always imply the destination has more attractions or better activities. So, always research the type of place that you want to visit along with the activities and attractions that interest you.