A Travel Price Comparison for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons Beijing vs. Tokyo

Should you visit Beijing or Tokyo?

Should I visit Beijing or Tokyo? This is a common question asked by many travelers. By figuring out which city is more affordable, you'll understand where you can get more bang for your buck. So, let's dive into the data, which all comes from actual travelers.

Beijing

Beijing is the capital of China and, with 21.5 million people, it is the second most populated city in the world after Shanghai. It is a city that keeps pockets of its history hidden in old neighborhoods or back alleys, despite the constant change and modernization that goes on around it. As the capital city of China, there is plenty of history and culture. You can still get yourself lost in one of the last remaining hutongs, which are old neighborhoods that remain untouched by the city's modernization. The alleys that weave between the old homes are lined with drying clothes, corner markets, and people going about their daily lives the way they have for centuries. Surrounding these hutongs you'll find modern buildings and a booming economy, all threatening to destroying these last bits of Beijing's history. Beijing offers a glimpse into a microcosm that represents the entire country of China. Make sure you give yourself enough time in China to truly experience Beijing. You can pass a lot of time soaking up life in the city, which remains as diverse as the country it resides within.

Tokyo

Tokyo, the capital of Japan, is by far the most populous city in the world with a staggering 37 million people. As a worldwide hub for technology and business, it hosts millions of visitors annually. But Tokyo is not just a place for business trips. With its incredible mixture of historical temples and shrines, remarkably beautiful parks, endless shopping malls, and genuinely wonderful people, Tokyo is a terrific place to visit and to explore.

Which city is cheaper, Tokyo or Beijing?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Beijing is $58, while the average daily cost in Tokyo is $178. 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 Beijing and Tokyo in more detail.


Accommodation

Accommodation prices vary by location and style, but travelers pay on average about $62 for a double occupancy room in Beijing.

Double occupancy rooms typically run around $168 in Tokyo For nicer amenities and a premiere location, you can expect to pay a bit more.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Beijing $31
    Tokyo $84
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Beijing $63
    Tokyo $167


Food

While meal prices in Beijing can vary, the average travelers spends about $13 per day on food. Based on the spending habits of previous travelers, when dining out, an average meal in Beijing should cost around $5.20 per person. Breakfast prices are usually a little cheaper than lunch or dinner. The price of food in sit-down restaurants in Beijing is often higher than fast food prices or street food prices.

In Tokyo travelers spend around $41 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
    Beijing $13
    Tokyo $41
Typical Food prices in Beijing

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


  • Popcorn
    $0.92
  • Hot Pot Dinner
    $7.64
  • Dumpling Breakfast for Two
    $3.06
  • Watermelon
    $2.14
  • Peking Duck Dinner for 2
    $18
  • Two Popsicles
    $0.92

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Beijing

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

  • 4-Hour Peking Duck Dinner & Kung Fu Show Night: $80
  • Kung fu Show and Peking Roasted Duck Dinner: $58
  • Path Hutong Food Tour: $30
  • Acrobatic Show w/ Peking Duck Dinner Private: $68
  • Beijing Historical Center with Peking Opera and Duck Dinner: $69
  • Beijing Highlights with Acrobatics Show and Duck Dinner: $101
  • Mutianyu Great Wall, Summer Palace and Roasted Duck Dinner: $104
  • Beijing Highlights with Kungfu Show and Roasted Duck Dinner: $107
  • Peking Opera Show and Duck Dinner with Transfer Service: $110
  • Chinese Half-Day Cooking Class: Beijing: $235

Typical Food prices in Tokyo

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


  • Late Night Noodles
    $7.30
  • Conveyor Belt Sushi Snack
    $7.30
  • Meal at Airport
    $9.52

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Tokyo

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

  • Tempura Cooking Class at Japan Culinary School: $74
  • Wagashi Japanese Sweets Cooking Experience: $79
  • Private Japanese Cooking Class in a Local Home: $108
  • Tokyo Robot Show & Dinner at Samurai-Themed Restaurant: $113
  • Private Japanese Cooking Class with a Local Chef: $120
  • Tsukiji and Asakusa Food Tour: $138
  • Traditional Japanese Food Cooking Class: $141
  • Old Town Tokyo Food Tour: $164
  • Retro Shibuya Food Tour: $175
  • Asakusa: Tokyo’s #1 Family Food Tour: $175


Local Transportation

The cost of a taxi ride in Beijing is significantly more than public transportation. On average, past travelers have spent $3.98 per person, per day, on local transportation in Beijing.

Public transportation tends to be much less expensive in Tokyo than paying for a taxi or private car service, as is expected. Typically, people spend $22 on transportation in Tokyo on average per day.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Beijing $3.98
    Tokyo $22
Typical Local Transportation prices in Beijing

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


  • Taxi
    $5.22
  • Train from Airport for Two
    $7.64
  • Taxi to Hotel
    $9.17
  • 2 Metro Passes
    $2.45
  • Metro
    $0.61

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Beijing

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Beijing:

  • Beijing Railway Station - Hotel Transfer and Vice Versa: $14
  • Hotel to Beijing Capital International Airport Transfer: $26
  • Acrobatic Show Night Tour w/ Transfer: $32
  • Beijing Acrobatic Show with Private Car Transfer: $35
  • Private Transfer between Beijing Airport and Downtown: $45
  • Beijing Kung Fu Show with Private Car Transfer: $49
  • Beijing Airport Private Transfer and Arrival Assistance: $49
  • Beijing King Fu Night Show with Transfer: $52
  • Private Transfer: Between Beijing and Port of Tianjin: $59
  • Beijing to Xi’an Bullet Train Ticket with Optional Transfer: $88

Typical Local Transportation prices in Tokyo

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


  • Metro from Airport
    $18

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Tokyo

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

  • Disneyland or DisneySea: 1-Day Ticket and Private Transfer: $138
  • Private Haneda Transfer Service to/from Yokohama City: $179
  • Haneda Airport Transfer w/ a Private Van: $260
  • Tokyo Haneda Airport to One-Way Private Transfer: $290
  • Haneda Airport to/from Tokyo City: Private One-Way Transfer: $129
  • Shared Transfer to/from Narita Airport: $48
  • Tokyo Station to/from Tokyo City: One-Way Shared Transfer: $25
  • Honshu, Japan: Luggage Transfer Between Accommodations: $28
  • Hello Kitty Puroland Ticket with Transfer: $35
  • Tokyo City View: Observation Deck with 1-Way Transfer: $41


Entertainment

Entertainment and activities in Beijing typically cost an average of $23 per person, per day. This includes fees paid for admission tickets to museums and attractions, day tours, and other sightseeing expenses.

Sightseeing expenses in Tokyo, including the cost of admission tickets for day tours, museums, and attractions, usually cost an average of $79 per day, per person.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Beijing $23
    Tokyo $79
Typical Entertainment prices in Beijing

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


  • Entry to Summer Palace for Two
    $9.17
  • Two Opera Tickets
    $65
  • Temple of Heaven Park Entrance (for 2)
    $11
  • Forbidden City (for 2)
    $18
  • Forbidden City Tickets
    $18
  • Audio Guides at Forbidden City
    $12

Tours and Activities in Beijing

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

  • Beijing Day Tour: Badaling Great Wall and Ming Tombs: $29
  • Tibetan Yonghe Lama Temple Guided Walking Tour: $29
  • Walk the Streets Like a Local Tour: $39
  • The Great Wall One Day Tour: $43
  • Beijing Day Tour: Zoo, Silk Factory, Palace, & Temple: $56
  • Small Group: Beijing Illuminations Night Tour: $68
  • From Mutianyu Great Wall of China Private Tour: $79
  • Beijing Zoo, Lama Temple and Hutongs Full-Day Tour: $90
  • Beijing Classic Full-Day Private Sightseeing Tour: $95
  • Private Tour of Beijing Zoo, Aquarium & Hutong Rickshaw: $95

Tours and Activities in Tokyo

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

  • Harajuku: Kawaii Culture Guided Tour: $43
  • Shibuya & Harajuku: Hidden Gems & Highlights Private Tour: $49
  • Nakagin Capsule Tower Tour in Tokyo: $50
  • Shinjuku Night Walking Tour: $55
  • Yanaka District: Historical Walking Tour in Tokyo's Old Town: $65
  • Harajuku Omotesando Architecture Tour: $70
  • Kintsugi (Pottery Repairing) Experience: $76
  • Ginza Architecture Tour: $80
  • Traditional Japanese Calligraphy Experience: $88
  • 2-Hour Asakusa Food Hunt & Cultural Tour: $98


Alcohol

The average person spends about $6.62 on alcoholic beverages in Beijing per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.

The average person spends about $37 on alcoholic beverages in Tokyo per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Beijing $6.62
    Tokyo $37

Sample the Local Flavors in Beijing

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Beijing:

  • Evening Food Private Tour with Brewery Taproom Hopping at Slow Boat in Beijing: $138
  • 5-Hour Private Changyu Chateau Wine Tasting Tour from Beijing: $178
  • Private Wonderful Beijing Bar Crawl Tour: $195
  • Private Changyu Chateau Wine Tasting Tour and Mutianyu Great Wall Visit: $228

Typical Alcohol prices in Tokyo

Here are a few samples of the prices for alcohol and nightlife in Tokyo from other travelers:


  • Sake
    $5.47

Sample the Local Flavors in Tokyo

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

  • Tokyo Pub Crawl: $22
  • Sake Brewery Tour with Sake Tasting: $307



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

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Budget Your Trip has average travel costs for thousands of cities around the world, all provided by other travelers. You can also register to organize your spending by category and location with graphs, maps, charts, and tables.

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Beijing vs. Tokyo Travel Comparison

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