A Travel Price Comparison for United States of America Big Sur vs. Honolulu for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Big Sur or Honolulu?

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 Big Sur and Honolulu can help you decide which place is right for you.

Big Sur

Big Sur is the 90-mile stretch of the California Central Coast which runs from the Carmel River in Monterey County south to San Carpoforo Creek in San Luis Obispo County and 20 miles east into the Santa Lucius Foothills.

However you look at it, California's Central Coast is beautiful and undoubtedly a huge tourist trap. If you're not willing to fork over big bucks for overnight stays on coastal hotels, be prepared ahead of time with your camping gear and get ready to go off the beaten track to avoid crowds as best you can and save your wallet.

While the weather in Central Coast is overall, mild and temperate, between 50 and 70 degrees year-round. The highs and lows during the year are in August and January, respectively, with dry summers and wet winters, making April through October the best times to visit but be warned: there will be crowds.

Honolulu

Hawaii's capital city of Honolulu, on the island of Oahu, is the state's center for government, finance, and transportation. It's also the home of Waikiki Beach, one of the most famous beaches in the state of Hawaii. Nearly one million people live in this Honolulu metropolitan area. This is almost 80% of the state's population. The city is not the relaxed Hawaiian destination that you might be searching for, but is instead a fast paced, cosmopolitan city. In addition to attracting many tourists every year, you'll also find international businesses, military defense and a diverse culture and population.

Which city is cheaper, Honolulu or Big Sur?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Big Sur is $0.00, while the average daily cost in Honolulu is $196. 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 Big Sur and Honolulu in more detail.



Accommodation

Double occupancy rooms typically run around $264 in Big Sur For nicer amenities and a premiere location, you can expect to pay a bit more.

Travelers usually pay around $230 for a double occupancy room in Honolulu If you want to be in a premiere location or have high end amenities, you can expect to pay a bit more.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Big Sur $132
    Honolulu $115
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Big Sur $264
    Honolulu $230

Food

In Honolulu travelers spend around $42 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
    Big Sur -
    Honolulu $42

Typical Food prices in Honolulu

Here are some examples of typical meal expenses from previous travelers to Honolulu:


  • Dinner for Two
    $73
  • Lapperts Hawaii Ice Cream
    $5.55
  • Chai's Island Bistro (for 2)
    $53
  • Cheeseburger Waikiki (for 2)
    $34
  • Matsumoto Shave Ice (for 2)
    $7.50
  • Hot Dog with the Fixins'
    $8.30
  • Sushi Dinner for Two
    $73

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Honolulu

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

  • After Dinner Tour along the Famous Waikiki Beach Strip: $68
  • Majestic Sunset Dinner and Cocktail Cruise with Live Entertainment: $97
  • Hawaii Food Tour - Off The Beaten Path: $110
  • Hawaiian Style Cooking Classes in Honolulu: $125
  • Da Local's Food Tour: $130
  • Three Star Deluxe Sunset Dinner & Show: $151
  • Private Hawaiian Food Tour by Bike in Oahu: $159
  • Oahu Fireworks Dinner Cruise: $162
  • 4th of July Sunset Dinner and Fireworks Cruise: $170
  • Oahu Food Tour with Emmy-Winning 'Cooking Hawaiian Style' Host: $177
  • Aloha Plate Food Tour: $177

Local Transportation

To get around in Honolulu, the average visitor spends $21 per day, per person. This includes the costs of taxi rides and private drivers as well as public transportation, which tends to be much more affordable.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Big Sur -
    Honolulu $21

Typical Local Transportation prices in Honolulu

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


  • Rental Car for One Day
    $35
  • Airport Shuttle for Two
    $30
  • Hilton Parking
    $24

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Honolulu

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

  • Private Transfer from Honolulu (HLN) Airport to Pupukea: $231
  • Private Transfer from Honolulu (HLN) Airport to Kawela: $231
  • Private Transfer from Honolulu (HLN) Airport to North Shore: $231
  • Honolulu Airport (HNL) to Honolulu / Waikiki - Round-Trip Private Transfer: $231
  • Private Round-Trip Transfer: Honolulu International Airport to Hotel or Cruise Terminal: $230
  • Arrival Private Transfer Honolulu Airport HNL to Beach Resorts by Executive SUV: $164
  • Private Transfer: Honolulu - Waikiki to Honolulu Airport HNL by Luxury Sedan: $164
  • Private Transfer Honolulu Airport HNL to Honolulu - Waikiki by Luxury Sedan: $164
  • Honolulu Airport Transfer - Private Sedan: $140
  • Arrival Private Transfer Honolulu Airport HNL to Beach Resorts by Executive Car: $138
  • Private Honolulu Transfer: Hotel to Airport or Cruise Port: $128
  • Private Honolulu Transfer: Airport to Hotel or Cruise Port: $128

Is it cheaper to fly into Big Sur or Honolulu?

Prices for flights to both Honolulu and Big Sur 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

In Honolulu, the costs for things to do, activities, admission tickets, and other sightseeing expenses are on average $32 per person, per day.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Big Sur -
    Honolulu $32

Typical Entertainment prices in Honolulu

For Honolulu, here are some examples of average entertainment and activity prices from previous travelers:


  • Parking for Hike
    $5.00
  • Pearl Harbor Audio Tour for Two
    $12
  • 2 hr Dinner Cruise
    $85
  • 1 Day Kayak Rental
    $36

Tours and Activities in Honolulu

Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Honolulu.

  • "Tour de Honolulu" Foodie Bike Tour: $129
  • 'Lost' and Movie Tour: $159
  • 12pm Turtle Canyon Snorkel Adventure: $87
  • 3A 6:00 AM Pearl Harbor Arizona Memorial & Historic Downtown Honolulu City Tour: $53
  • 3B 9:00 AM Pearl Harbor Arizona Memorial & Historic Downtown Honolulu City Tour: $53
  • 4 Hour Half Day Island Jeep Tour: $144
  • 5-Hour Private Customized Luxury Convertible Tour of Oahu's South Shore: $355
  • 6 Hour Local Food Plate Jeep Tour: $188
  • 6 Hour Romantic Hawaii Jeep Tour: $213
  • 6 Hour Waterfall Jeep Tour: $212
  • 6 Hour West Side Jeep Tour: $213
  • 6-Hour Private Customized Luxury Convertible Tour of Oahu's North Shore: $431

Alcohol

Alcoholic beverages can often be a significant portion of a traveler's budget, and the costs can vary greatly from person to person. In Honolulu, the average amount that a visitor spends on alcoholic beverages per day is $5.18.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Big Sur -
    Honolulu $5.18

Sample the Local Flavors in Honolulu

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Honolulu:

  • Shaxi Dive Bar Tour: $68


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

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Big Sur vs. Honolulu Travel Comparison

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