A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers Barcelona vs. Rio de Janeiro for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Barcelona or Rio de Janeiro?

Trying to figure out where to travel next? This travel cost comparison between Barcelona and Rio de Janeiro can help. For many travelers, the cost of a destination is a primary consideration when choosing where to go.

Barcelona

Barcelona is the second largest city in Spain with a population of over 1.5 million people. It's also the capital of Catalonia and is located on the northeastern part of the Mediterranean coast. Barcelona is one of the country's most popular travel destinations because of its rich history, interesting architecture, and vibrant culture. Barcelona hosted the 1992 Summer Olympic games and that had a strong influence over tourism in the area. Many different neighborhoods were renovated and rebuilt. Modern design became the norm in many parts of the city, although there is still an old city feel and many efforts at preservation.

Rio de Janeiro

Rio de Janeiro is the most popular travel destination in Brazil. It is the second largest city in Brazil and the sixth largest in the Americas. A portion of the city has been designated a World Heritage Site. The peak time to visit is during the city's famous Carnival festival, which is one of the most famous festivals in the world. However, Rio's appeal as a travel destination is apparent year around. The city has a wonderful natural harbour that is surrounded by Sugar Loaf Mountain, Corcovado Peak, and the hills of Tijuca, creating an absolutely breathtaking and awe-inspiring setting. And you can't miss the beach, either!

Which city is cheaper, Rio de Janeiro or Barcelona?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Barcelona is €123, while the average daily cost in Rio de Janeiro is €81. 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 Barcelona and Rio de Janeiro in more detail.



Accommodation

The average price for accommodation for two people in Barcelona is €150. This is for two people sharing a typical double occupancy hotel room.

The average price for accommodation for two people in Rio de Janeiro is €102. This is for two people sharing a typical double occupancy hotel room.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Barcelona 75
    Rio de Janeiro 51
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Barcelona 150
    Rio de Janeiro 102

Local Transportation

The cost of a taxi ride in Barcelona is significantly more than public transportation. On average, past travelers have spent €15 per person, per day, on local transportation in Barcelona.

While taxis and private drivers typically cost much more than public transportation, people usually spend around €6.24 per day to get around in Rio de Janeiro.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Barcelona 15
    Rio de Janeiro 6.24
Typical Local Transportation prices in Barcelona

Some typical examples of transportation costs in Barcelona are as follows:


  • 10 Trip Metro Ticket
    7.80
  • Airport Bus
    5.00
  • Metro
    2.10

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Barcelona

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Barcelona:

  • Airport Transfer: $127
  • Airport Transfers: $20
  • Airport, Port cruise & Hotel Transfers: $81
  • Ancient winery of vermouth, Tarragona & Reus: private Round-Trip Transfer: $311
  • Arrival Private Transfer Barcelona City or Airport to Andorra by Business Car: $445
  • Arrival Private Transfer Barcelona Port to Barcelona City by Business Car: $57
  • Arrival Private Transfer Luxury Van Barcelona Port to Barcelona City: $70
  • Arrival Private Transfers from Barcelona Cruise Port to Bacelona City: $88
  • Barcelona - Salou private transfer: $198
  • Barcelona 1-Way Private Luxury Airport or Port Transfer: $47
  • Barcelona Airport (BCN) to Cruise Port - Arrival Private Car Transfer: $46
  • Barcelona Airport (BCN) to Cruise Port - Arrival Private Van Transfer: $32

Typical Local Transportation prices in Rio de Janeiro

Here are some examples of typical transportation prices from actual travelers in Rio de Janeiro:


  • Taxi Ride
    2.87

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Rio de Janeiro

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Rio de Janeiro:

  • Rio Galeão Airport (GIG): Shuttle Transfer to/from Hotels: $14
  • Private Departure Transfer from Rio de Janeiro City or Copacabana to SDU Airport: $19
  • Executive Transfers - Rio de Janeiro - Santos Dumont Airport SDU: $20
  • Private Airport Transfer: Santos Dumont Airport (SDU) to Rio de Janeiro: $21
  • Private Airport Transfer: from Rio de Janeiro to Santos Dumont Airport (SDU): $21
  • Private Departure Transfer from Rio de Janeiro City or Copacabana to GIG Airport: $22
  • Shared Transfer from Airport to hotels in Rio de Janeiro: $22
  • Shared Transfer from hotels to Rio de Janeiro airport: $22
  • Private Airport Transfer: Galeao International Airport (GIG) to Rio de Janeiro: $23
  • Private Airport Transfer: Rio de Janeiro to Galeao International Airport (GIG): $23
  • Transfer in Private Vehicle from Rio de Janeiro Santos Dumont Airport to City: $23
  • Transfer in Private Car from Galeao Airpor t(GIG) to Rio de Janeiro city center: $23

Is it cheaper to fly into Barcelona or Rio de Janeiro?

Prices for flights to both Rio de Janeiro and Barcelona 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

The price of a meal in Barcelona can vary widely. However, the average price for food per day is €27 per person, and a typical meal will cost around €11 based on the spending of previous visitors. Less expensive dining options can be found by eating street food or at fast food restaurants.

The average traveler spends about €15 per day in Rio de Janeiro 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.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Barcelona 27
    Rio de Janeiro 15
Typical Food prices in Barcelona

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


  • Hot Cocoa & Churro
    4.15
  • Sandwich
    1.70
  • Baguette & Horchata
    3.80
  • Tapas on the beach
    8.28
  • Gelatto
    2.50

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Barcelona

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

  • Live from Potato Gnocchi Online Cooking Class: $23
  • Live from Barcelona to China: Potato Gnocchi Online Cooking Class: $23
  • Barcelona organic dinner in a beautiful rooftop garden: $35
  • Paella Cooking Experience + Boqueria Market Tour: $48
  • Interactive Spanish Cooking Experience in Barcelona: $49
  • Hands-on Brunch Cooking Class with Bottomless Mimosas!: $50
  • Born district food tour and tasting in Barcelona: $51
  • Street Food Tour & Gothic Quater Sightseeing with Local Expert: $52
  • Barcelona Street Food Tour: Local Market & Gothic Quarter with Expert Guide: $52
  • Tasty Barcelona Street Food Tour With Local Market Visit: $59
  • Skip the Line: Flamenco Show and Dinner Ticket: $62
  • 2-Hour Bites & Flavors Private Food Tour: $66

Typical Food prices in Rio de Janeiro

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for food and meal costs in Rio de Janeiro:


  • Popcorn
    0.57
  • Corn on the Cob
    0.76
  • Hamburger
    0.96

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Rio de Janeiro

Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in Rio de Janeiro.

  • Food Tour Rio de Janeiro: $30
  • Cooking Class for Cacao Lovers: $51
  • Feijoada Food Tour in Rio de Janeiro with Hotel pick-up and drop-off: $55
  • Plant-based Brazilian Flavours Cooking Class: $56
  • Dinner & Rio Scenarium Nightclub Admission with Transfer: $60
  • Private Tour in Rio Scenarium with Dinner: $65
  • Skip the line: Samba Show Admission & Transfer with Dinner Option: $70
  • Dinner and Brazilian Music Show in Rio Scenarium: $70
  • Rio Scenarium Entrance, Dinner, and Open Bar: $72
  • Small-Group Boozy 7-Recipe Brazilian Cooking Class: $75
  • Food Tour Experience in Rio de Janeiro (Small Groups or Private): $80
  • Samba Show Ginga Tropical with Optional Dinner: $86

Entertainment

Entertainment and activities in Barcelona typically cost an average of €27 per person, per day. This includes fees paid for admission tickets to museums and attractions, day tours, and other sightseeing expenses.

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


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Barcelona 27
    Rio de Janeiro 17
Typical Entertainment prices in Barcelona

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


  • Picasso Walking Tour and Museum Pass
    42
  • Souvenir Gaudi Book
    8.55
  • Admission to Museo Picasso
    6.00

Tours and Activities in Barcelona

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

  • A Culinary Audio Tour of El Born by VoiceMap: $5.50
  • Self-Guided Tour with Over 100 Sights: $5.67
  • Private Barcelona Ghost Tour: Gothic Quarter Exploration Game: $7.45
  • Museu de la Xocolata Admission Ticket: $7.46
  • History Museum of Catalonia Skip-The-Line Ticket: $9.08
  • Skip the Line: Erotic Museum of Barcelona Admission Ticket with free souvenir: $9.95
  • Skip the Line: Human Bodies - Entrance to the exhibition Ticket: $9.95
  • Skip the Line: History Museum of Catalonia & Rooftop Access Ticket: $9.95
  • Guided Tour at Catalonia's Royal Academy of Medicine: $10
  • Guided Tour at Barcelona's Royal Academy of Sciences and Arts: $10
  • IDEAL Frida Kahlo, the Life of an Icon Ticket: $10
  • Hash Marihuana & Hemp Museum Entry Ticket: $10

Tours and Activities in Rio de Janeiro

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

  • Rio Line Panoramic City Tour - Boulevard Route: $10
  • Inside Rio Photography Walking Tour: $10
  • Hiking Tour to Pedra do Telégrafo (Telegraph Stone): $12
  • Carnival Backstage Tour - Visit a traditional Samba School: $16
  • Rocinha Lucky Tour: $16
  • Rio Street Art Experience 2 Hours: $19
  • Christ the Redeemer and Escadaria Selarón Half-Day Tour: $19
  • 2 Hour Vidigal Favela Tour Discovery the Most Laidback Favela: $19
  • Rio: Christ the Redeemer Official Ticket with Van Transport: $20
  • Historical Downtown and Lapa - Walking Tour: $20
  • Favela Tour -The path of Michael Jackson in Rio: $20
  • Rio: Christ the Redeemer Official Ticket by Cog Train: $25

Alcohol

The average person spends about €14 on alcoholic beverages in Barcelona per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.

While the amount that someone spends on alcohol while visiting Rio de Janeiro may vary from person to person, on average a person spends €9.46 per day on alcoholic beverages.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Barcelona 14
    Rio de Janeiro 9.46

Sample the Local Flavors in Barcelona

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Barcelona:

  • Estrella Damm Brewery Guided Tour with Tasting: $9.08
  • Generation Pub Crawl in Barcelona: $19
  • Barcelona Pub Crawl: $20
  • Wine Tasting Experience in Barcelona: $22
  • Opera Samfaina: Food and Wine Tasting Interactive Experience in Barcelona: $26
  • Wine tasting & tapas: $39
  • Barcelona Guided Local Wine Tasting Tour: $44
  • Wine Tasting near Sagrada Familia: $47
  • Home Food and Wine Tasting with Wine Lover: $51
  • Fun Wine Tasting in Barcelona with a Sommelier!: $53
  • Spanish wine tasting in a historic building with a Sommelier: $54
  • Food Tasting Tapas and Wine Tour: $62

Sample the Local Flavors in Rio de Janeiro

Here are a few nightlife and alcohol tours and activities from local tour providers in Rio de Janeiro:

  • Pub Crawl Rio de Janeiro: $11
  • Pub Crawl in Lapa: $19
  • Skip the line: Ipanema Pub Crawl: $28
  • Beautiful Imperial Petropolis City Tour Optional Lunch & Bohemia Brewery: $34
  • Rio By Night Tour: Pub Crawl Experiencing Music, Dancing, Drinks & Local Culture: $105
  • Petrópolis City and Brewery Bohemia Tour - Best of Rio's Mountains: $135
  • Rio: Sitio Burle Marx and Cachaça Distillery Private Tour: $160


When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Barcelona and Rio de Janeiro, we can see that Barcelona is more expensive. And not only is Rio de Janeiro much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. Since Barcelona is in Europe and Rio de Janeiro is in South America, this is one of the main reasons why the costs are so different, as different regions of the world tend to have overall different travel costs. So, traveling to Rio de Janeiro would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Rio de Janeiro 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 Barcelona would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Barcelona than you might in Rio de Janeiro.

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Barcelona vs. Rio de Janeiro Travel Comparison

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