A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers Bern vs. Lyon for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Bern or Lyon?

Should I visit Bern or Lyon? 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.

Bern

The capital city of Switzerland, Bern, is a surprisingly small city with a population of only about 130,000. It's located on a peninsula that is created by the turns of the River Aare. The city is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site because it has a wonderfully preserved old town area. There are about four miles worth of quaint walkways that are lined with clock towers and fountains.

Lyon

Lyon, located within the region of Southeastern France, is France's third largest city in terms of population, with just over 500,000 inhabitants. This makes the city large, yet still small and personable enough to be explored properly in a short visit. Known as the gastronomic capital of Europe, your culinary needs are exceptionally well catered to here, and for those with historical and cultural interests, you will never be at a loss for new things to do and see.

Which city is cheaper, Lyon or Bern?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Bern is $200, while the average daily cost in Lyon is $115. 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 Bern and Lyon in more detail.



Accommodation

If you're traveling alone, you may be able to find a budget hotel or hostel for around $129. But for two people in a standard two-person hotel room in Bern the cost is $258 on average.

A hotel room in Lyon is about $96 This assumes double occupancy and modest accommodations.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Bern $129
    Lyon $48
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Bern $258
    Lyon $96

Food

The price of a meal in Bern can vary widely. However, the average price for food per day is $48 per person, and a typical meal will cost around $19 based on the spending of previous visitors. Less expensive dining options can be found by eating street food or at fast food restaurants.

On average, meal and food prices in Lyon cost around $38 per person, per day. While this price can vary widely by location, the type of restaurant, and the amount of food ordered, a typical meal often costs around $15.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Bern $48
    Lyon $38

Typical Food prices in Lyon

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


  • Pastry
    $1.94

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Lyon

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

  • Lyon Old Town Walking Guided Food Tour: $68
  • Lyon 2.5-Hour Dinner Cruise: $74
  • Lyon Old Town Half-Day Walking Food Tour with Local Specialties Tasting & Lunch: $93
  • Lyon Old Town Five Tasting Stops Walking Food Tour with Lunch: $108
  • Lyon Quais Saint Antoine Private Gastronomic Food Tour: $111
  • Private Tour: Secret Food Tours Lyon: $137
  • Halles de Lyon Paul Bocuse Food Tour: $217
  • Food tour in Lyon: $258
  • Secret Food Tours Lyon w/ Private Tour Option: $296
  • Lyon Food Tour: $880
  • Lyon Food Tour: $880

Local Transportation

The cost of a taxi ride in Bern is significantly more than public transportation. On average, past travelers have spent $27 per person, per day, on local transportation in Bern.

The average price of local transportation around Lyon is $16 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.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Bern $27
    Lyon $16

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Bern

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Bern:

  • Low Cost Private Transfer From Bern Belp Airport to Bern City - One Way: $105
  • Premium Private 1-Way Transfer to/from Interlaken: $250
  • Geneva: Premium 1-Way Private Transfer to/from Bern: $277
  • Private Transfer from Bern City Center to Zurich City Center: $318
  • Private transfer from Bern City to Zurich Airport: $416
  • Low Cost Private Transfer From Bern Belp Airport to Basel City - One Way: $586
  • Low Cost Private Transfer From Bern Belp Airport to Zurich City - One Way: $661

Typical Local Transportation prices in Lyon

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


  • Funiculaire
    $5.94
  • Hop-on Hop-off Tourist Bus
    $22

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Lyon

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Lyon:

  • Private Airport Transfer: Lyon to Lyon Saint-Exupery International Airport (LYS): $47
  • Lyon City Card with Airport Transfer: $49
  • Low Cost Private Transfer From Lyon-Bron Airport to Lyon City - One Way: $65
  • Lyon Private Transfer : Port of LYON to Lyon Railway Stations in Business Car: $65
  • Departure Private Transfer Lyon City to Lyon Airport LYS by Business Car: $66
  • Private arrival OR departure transfer in Lyon (hotel OR airport pick-up): $75
  • Departure Private Transfer Lyon City to Lyon Airport LYS by Luxury Van: $87
  • Private Transfer to/from Lyon Airport (LYS): $91
  • Private Departure Transfer: Hotel to Gare de Lyon Saint-Exupery: $91
  • Private Arrival Transfer: Gare de Lyon Saint-Exupery to Lyon Hotel: $91
  • Private Departure Transfer: Lyon Hotel to Lyon-Saint Exupery Airport: $91
  • Departure Private Transfers from Lyon City to Lyon Airport LYS in Business Car: $95

Is it cheaper to fly into Bern or Lyon?

Prices for flights to both Lyon and Bern 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

Entertainment and activities in Bern 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.

Lyon's costs for entertainment, tickets, attractions, and tours will often cost around $19 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.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Bern $27
    Lyon $19

Tours and Activities in Bern

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

  • Tour with iPod Audio Guide: $20
  • Bern Like a Local: Customized Private Tour: $45
  • 1-Hour Must-See Express Tour: $72
  • Tirano to St. Moritz: Bernina Red Train Return Day-Ticket: $79
  • Art and Culture Tour with a Local Guide: $83
  • Instagram Highlights Tour: $83
  • Bern Capital City Small Group Tour: $90
  • Best Introduction Tour of Bern with a Local: $91
  • 2-Hour Historical Walking Tour: $162
  • Schilthorn Piz Gloria (James Bond Location) Small Group Tour from Bern: $179
  • GAILY TOUR in BERN - Gay & Lesbian Tour: $187
  • Bern Capital City Private Tour: $194

Typical Entertainment prices in Lyon

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


  • Lunch for 2
    $51

Tours and Activities in Lyon

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

  • Vieux Lyon Cultural & Historical Walking Guided Tour (English): $3.82
  • Lyon City Historic Neighborhoods Guided Walking Tour (English): $3.82
  • Haunted Lyon City Exploration Game & Tour: $5.66
  • Private Lyon Ghost Tour: Haunted City Center Exploration Game: $8.70
  • Lyon Croix-Rousse City Tram Tour with Audio Guide: $11
  • Lyon Museum of Cinema Miniature Admission Ticket: $12
  • 1 or 2-Hour Pedicab tour of Lyon: $31
  • 2-Hour Highlights E-Bike Tour: $34
  • Lyon Small-Group Guided Electric Bike Tour with a Local Guide: $37
  • Lyon Like a Local Customized Private Guided Tour: $38
  • Lyon Highlights & Secrets Walking Guided Tour (small group) including Funicular: $41
  • 2-Hour Day or Night Pedicab Tour: $41

Alcohol

The average person spends about $21 on alcoholic beverages in Bern per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.

The average person spends about $22 on alcoholic beverages in Lyon per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Bern $21
    Lyon $22

Typical Alcohol prices in Lyon

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


  • Drinks for 2
    $7.76
  • Bottle of Wine
    $17

Sample the Local Flavors in Lyon

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

  • Northern Rhône Valley Cheese & Wine Tasting Half Day Tour from Lyon: $111
  • Lyon Old Town Food & Wine Tasting Tour including a Bouchon Lyonnais: $112
  • The Original Syrah Wine Tour - Afternoon - Small Group Tour from Lyon: $114
  • The Original Syrah Wine Tour - Morning - Small Group Tours from Lyon: $114
  • Beaujolais Gourmet Wine Tour with Tastings from Lyon: $123
  • Macon & Beaujolais Wine Tour - Full Day - Small Group Tour from Lyon: $147
  • Cotes du Rhone Wine Tour - Full Day - Small Group Tour from Lyon: $153
  • Northern Rhône Valley Day Tour with Wine Tasting from Lyon: $160
  • Burgundy South of Region Small Group Day Tour with Local Wine Tasting from Lyon: $160
  • Beaujolais Region Vineyard Day Tour with Wine Tasting from Lyon: $160
  • Côte-Rôtie & Vienne Region Roman History with Wine Tasting from Lyon: $243
  • Rhône Valley Terroir Private Tour with Local Cheese & Wine Tasting from Lyon: $280


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

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Bern vs. Lyon Travel Comparison

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