A Travel Price Comparison for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons Boise vs. Portland

Should you visit Boise or Portland?

Should I visit Boise or Portland? 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.

Boise

The capital of the U.S. state of Idaho, Boise is an urban center with the adventure of the outdoors just a step away. The metropolis itself has an active arts community and a lively downtown filled with shops and restaurants. Boise is a regional hub for jazz, theater, and indie music, hosting musical festivals throughout the year and several theater groups that operate in the city. There is even a Department of Arts and History that was created with the goal of promoting the arts, culture, and history of the city among its residents and visitors.

Portland

Referred to as "The City of Roses", Portland is the largest city in Oregon. It sits on the banks of the Columbia River and offers breathtaking views of Mount Hood when the weather allows. Portland is famous for its alternative vibe, live music scene, and popular microbreweries. It's also a mecca for environmentally conscious urban planning. The downtown area is quite compact and walkable. While the city itself may be smaller than you expect, it is still the largest metropolitan area between San Francisco and Seattle.

Which city is cheaper, Portland or Boise?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Boise is $116, while the average daily cost in Portland is $136. 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 Boise and Portland in more detail.




Accommodation

An average hotel room with basic furnishings costs about $120 in Boise For the most convenient locations and nicer amenities you can expect to pay a bit more.

Travelers usually pay around $152 for a double occupancy room in Portland 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
    Boise $60
    Portland $76
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Boise $120
    Portland $152


Food

Boise food costs typically run travelers around $36 per day. Eating every meal in a nicer restaurant will drive the cost up, and grabbing fast food or casual meals will help you save money.

While meal prices in Portland can vary, the average travelers spends about $34 per day on food. Based on the spending habits of previous travelers, when dining out, an average meal in Portland should cost around $14 per person. Breakfast prices are usually a little cheaper than lunch or dinner. The price of food in sit-down restaurants in Portland is often higher than fast food prices or street food prices.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Boise $36
    Portland $34
Typical Food prices in Boise

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


  • Hotel
    $59
  • Cracker Barrel Lunch (for 4)
    $55

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Boise

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

  • Vegan Food Tour Experience in Boise: $91

Typical Food prices in Portland

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


  • Afternoon Drinks (for 2)
    $9.50

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Portland

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

  • Arts District Food Tour: $84
  • Portland's Art District Food Tour: $84
  • Walking Food Tour in Downtown Portland with Brunch: $86
  • Downtown Deluxe Food Tour: $89
  • Tastes of Downtown Portland Walking Food Tour: $89
  • 2.5-Hour Dinner Cruise Through Downtown Portland: $108


Local Transportation

Boise's transportation costs can vary by the type of transport chosen by visitors. Naturally, taxis and private drivers cost much more than public transportation options. On average, visitors spend $27 per person, per day on transportation in Boise.

To get around in Portland, the average visitor spends $20 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.
    Boise $27
    Portland $20

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Boise

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

  • Boise Air Terminal Airport One Way Transfer: $80

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Portland

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

  • Transfer from Portland International Airport to Portland: $109
  • Private Departure Transfer to Portland Airport (PDX): $32
  • Private Arrival Transfer from Portland Airport PDX: $32
  • Portland downtown to Portland Airport (PDX) - Departure Private Transfer: $102
  • Portland International Airport One Way Transfer: $69
  • Portland Airport (PDX) to Tigard hotel or address - Round-Trip Private Transfer: $281
  • Portland Airport (PDX) to Tigard hotel or address - Arrival Private Transfer: $141
  • Portland Airport (PDX) to Portland downtown - Round-Trip Private Transfer: $204
  • Portland Airport (PDX) to Portland downtown - Arrival Private Transfer: $102
  • Portland Airport (PDX) to Lake Oswego - Round-Trip Private Transfer: $281
  • Portland Airport (PDX) to Lake Oswego - Arrival Private Transfer: $141
  • Portland Airport (PDX) to Beaverton hotel or address - Arrival Private Transfer: $141


Entertainment

Sightseeing, admission tickets, things to do, and other entertainment expenses in Boise can vary widely by price. On average, visitors spend around $24 per person, per day on entertainment and sightseeing here.

In Portland, the costs for things to do, activities, admission tickets, and other sightseeing expenses are on average $19 per person, per day.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Boise $24
    Portland $19
Typical Entertainment prices in Boise

Below are a few sample prices from actual travelers for Boise's activities, tours, and tickets:


  • Edwards Boise Imax
    $27

Tours and Activities in Boise

For Boise, here are a few prices for actual activities, tours, and tickets provided by various companies:

  • Boise Booze and Bites Cocktail Tour: $91
  • Boise Scavenger Hunt Adventure: $21
  • Culinary and Cultural Tour of Boise: $81
  • Sunday Brunch Tour in Downtown Boise: $77

Tours and Activities in Portland

For Portland, here are a few prices for actual activities, tours, and tickets provided by various companies:

  • 1-Hour Private Air Tour of Mount Hood and Columbia Gorge: $430
  • 2-Hour Champagne Brunch Cruise Through Downtown Portland: $78
  • 2-Hour Lunch Cruise Through Downtown Portland: $69
  • 20-Minute Columbia River Gorge Air Tour: $65
  • 20-minute Private Gorge Air Tour for 3: $130
  • 30-minute Multnomah Falls & Columbia Gorge Air Tour: $128
  • 40-minute Aerial Tour of Portland: $184
  • 40-minute Private Downtown Portland Air Tour for 3: $286
  • 5 Lighthouse Bike Tour with XL Lobster Roll: $132
  • A Walk Through Time Tour in Portland: $40
  • Afternoon Half-Day Multnomah Falls and Columbia River Gorge Waterfalls Tour from Portland: $65
  • All Day Northern Oregon Wineries and Forest Bike Tour: $245


Alcohol

Typically, people visiting Boise spend on average $19 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.

Typically, people visiting Portland spend on average $14 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Boise $19
    Portland $14

Sample the Local Flavors in Portland

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Portland:

  • Power Through Portland Bar Crawl: $12
  • Oregon Priority Wine Tasting Pass: $40
  • Weird Bar Crawl with Fanatical Local: $49
  • Portland's Eastside Craft Brewery Walking Tour: $55
  • Portland Brewery Bike Tour: $71
  • Oregon Famous Wine Country Wine Tasting Adventure: $75
  • Brews & Bites - Food Carts & Brewery Tour: $94
  • Views and Brews, Portland Brewery Bike Tour: $118
  • 5-Hour Willamette Valley Wine Tour with Tastings: $120
  • Oregon Coast Brewery Tour: $130
  • Willamette Valley Wine Tasting from Portland: $139
  • Full-Day City & Oregon Wine Tasting Tour: $140



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

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Boise vs. Portland Travel Comparison

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