A Travel Price Comparison for Mexico Cabo San Lucas vs. Puerto Vallarta for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Cabo San Lucas or Puerto Vallarta?

Trying to figure out where to travel next? This travel cost comparison between Cabo San Lucas and Puerto Vallarta can help. For many travelers, the cost of a destination is a primary consideration when choosing where to go.

Cabo San Lucas

Cabo San Lucas ("Cabo") is on the far southern end of the Baja Peninsula. It has countless resorts and activities for visitors. There are world class golf courses, fine dining options, and five star resorts. Prior to the 1980s, Cabo was a quiet fishing village but with the construction of a nearby airport in 1977, the city rapidly grew into one of Mexico's most popular resort vacation spots. Today, Cabo has one of the country's most vibrant nightlife scenes. It also has plenty of water sport activities, and a great beach scene.

Puerto Vallarta

Puerto Vallarta remains a popular tourist destination with Americans, particularly during spring break when students flock to the area. The area is quite beautiful and has many gorgeous beaches, interesting jungles and waterfalls nearby, and no shortage of luxury resorts and four star restaurants. Many of the locals speak English and are friendly and open to helping tourists with directions or general information. Puerto Vallarta's popularity means that its prices are some of the highest in Mexico, particularly during holidays when the area can get quite crowded.

Which city is cheaper, Puerto Vallarta or Cabo San Lucas?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Cabo San Lucas is $95, while the average daily cost in Puerto Vallarta is $77. 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 Cabo San Lucas and Puerto Vallarta in more detail.



Accommodation

The average price for accommodation for two people in Cabo San Lucas is $84. This is for two people sharing a typical double occupancy hotel room.

Puerto Vallarta's average price for two people sharing a typical double-occupancy hotel room is $84. A typical place to stay for one person, per day is $42.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Cabo San Lucas $42
    Puerto Vallarta $42
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Cabo San Lucas $84
    Puerto Vallarta $84

Food

The average traveler spends about $36 per day in Cabo San Lucas 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.

The price of a meal in Puerto Vallarta can vary widely. However, the average price for food per day is $25 per person, and a typical meal will cost around $10 based on the spending of previous visitors. Less expensive dining options can be found by eating street food or at fast food restaurants.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Cabo San Lucas $36
    Puerto Vallarta $25

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Cabo San Lucas

Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in Cabo San Lucas.

  • Cabo San Lucas Sunset and Dinner Cruise: $50
  • Eat Like A Local Cabo Food Tour: $59
  • Parrillada dinner with a Private Chef in your villa/condo in Cabo or San Jose: $59
  • Catch of the day dinner in your private villa/condo in Cabo or San Jose del Cabo: $62
  • Cabo San Lucas "Catch of the Day" Seafood Tour: $62
  • Sunset Mexican Dinner Cruise. Fajitas dinner & live music: $68
  • Jumbo Shrimp Dinner in Your Private Villa or Condo in Cabo or San Jose del Cabo: $78
  • Lobster Tail Dinner with a Private Chef in Your Villa in Cabo or San Jose: $80
  • Sunset Dinner Cruise with Open Bar from Cabo San Lucas: $89
  • Los Cabos Sunset Dinner Cruise: $89
  • Whale-Watching Dinner Cruise in Los Cabos: $89
  • Sunset Dinner Cruise in Cabo San Lucas: $89

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Puerto Vallarta

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

  • Taco102 - dinner taco walk - all inclusive: $45
  • Go Off The Beaten Path with a Foodie | Food Tour in Pitillal: $50
  • Food Tour after Sunset in Pitillal: $50
  • Signature Taco and Street Food Tour in Puerto Vallarta: $55
  • Downtown Puerto Vallarta Food Tour: $55
  • Taste of Pitillal Food Tour: $55
  • Food Tour in Old Town with a Foodie & Photographer: $55
  • Mole & Pozole Food Tour: $57
  • Vallarta by Road Food Tour: $68
  • Authentic Jaliscan Cooking Class with a Local Helene in a Traditional Hacienda: $77
  • Tasting Vallarta Gourmet Food Tour: $88
  • Puerto Vallarta Cooking Class: Market Tour, Lesson and Tastings: $90

Local Transportation

The cost of a taxi ride in Cabo San Lucas is significantly more than public transportation. On average, past travelers have spent $18 per person, per day, on local transportation in Cabo San Lucas.

While taxis and private drivers typically cost much more than public transportation, people usually spend around $13 per day to get around in Puerto Vallarta.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Cabo San Lucas $18
    Puerto Vallarta $13

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Cabo San Lucas

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Cabo San Lucas:

  • Arrival Share Transfer Service One way from Los Cabos airport to Hotel: $21
  • Departure Private Transfer Service One way from Hotel to Los Cabos airport: $66
  • Cabo San Lucas hotels to Los Cabos Airport (SJD) - Private Departure Transfer: $92
  • Transfer in private minivan from Cabo San Lucas to San José del Cabo(SJD): $113
  • Private Round Trip Transfer - Los Cabos Int. Airport and Local Area: $180
  • Wild Canyon Adventures Park Pass with transfers included: $199
  • Transfer in Private Car from Cabo San Lucas to Los Cabos Airport (SJD): $201
  • Private Tesla Transfer from Los Cabos Airport to Cabo San Lucas Area: $261
  • Round trip transfer from Cabo to La Paz up to 5 passengers: $400
  • Round trip transfer from Cabo to La Paz up to 10 passengers: $457
  • Round trip transfer from Cabo San Lucas to La Paz up to 15 passengers: $514
  • Private transfer: Cabo San Lucas to Cabo San Lucas Airport (SJD): $622

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Puerto Vallarta

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Puerto Vallarta:

  • Airport Transfer Puerto Vallarta: $117
  • BEST PRICE Puerto Vallarta round-trip transfer Hotel Airport (by areas): $53
  • Mexico Private Transfer from Marina Vallarta to Puerto Vallarta (PVR) Airport: $58
  • Mexico Private Transfer from Puerto Vallarta (PVR) Airport to Marina Vallarta: $58
  • Mexico Private Transfer from Puerto Vallarta (PVR) Airport to Nuevo Vallarta: $106
  • Mexico Private Transfer from Puerto Vallarta (PVR) Airport to Puerto Vallarta: $68
  • Mexico Private Transfer from Puerto Vallarta (PVR) Airport to Punta de Mita: $173
  • Mexico Private Transfer from Puerto Vallarta to Puerto Vallarta (PVR) Airport: $68
  • Private AC Airport Transfer to Sayulita: $72
  • Private Airport Transfer: Licenciado Díaz Ordaz Airport (PVR) to Puerto Vallarta: $28
  • Private Airport Transfer: Puerto Vallarta to Licenciado Díaz Ordaz Airport (PVR): $28
  • Private Arrival Transfer: Puerto Vallarta International Airport to Hotel (1 - 3): $26

Is it cheaper to fly into Cabo San Lucas or Puerto Vallarta?

Prices for flights to both Puerto Vallarta and Cabo San Lucas 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 Cabo San Lucas typically cost an average of $29 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 $12 per person, per day in Puerto Vallarta. This cost includes the price of admission tickets to attractions and museums as well as daily tours.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Cabo San Lucas $29
    Puerto Vallarta $12

Tours and Activities in Cabo San Lucas

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

  • Glass Bottom Boat Tour - Cabo San Lucas: $17
  • Glass Bottom Boat Sightseeing Tour in Cabo San Lucas: $20
  • Glass Bottom Boat Tour: $20
  • Land's End Tour in a Glass Bottom Boat (VisitA Cabo): $26
  • Cabo's Only Clear Boat Tour- see it all in one tour!: $28
  • Glass Bottom Boat Tour to the Arch in Cabo San Lucas: $30
  • Cabo's only Clear Boat Tour to Lands End, Lover's Beach, the Arch and more!: $33
  • Lands End & Snorkeling Adventure: $33
  • Cabo San Lucas only Clear Boat Tour to Lands End: $33
  • Sunset Tour & Land's End in a Glass Bottom Boat (VisitA Cabo): $36
  • Clear Glass-Bottom Boat Cabo Tour: $36
  • The Fenway Bar Experience: $39

Tours and Activities in Puerto Vallarta

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

  • Puerto Vallarta City Tour: $8.50
  • Puerto Vallarta City Tour: $24
  • Puerto Vallarta Art Tour: $27
  • Full-Day Puerto Vallarta City Highlights Tour: $29
  • Puerto Vallarta City Tour: $29
  • Sayulita And San Pancho Beachs Tour: $34
  • Puerto Vallarta PhotoWalk and City Tour: $35
  • City Tour and Tequila Tasting Puerto Vallarta: $36
  • Zip Line Canopy Jungle Adventure from Puerto Vallarta: $39
  • Private Tour in El Malecon Boardwalk Bike Ride: $40
  • Puerto Vallarta Local-Style Walking tour: $41
  • Sayulita & San Pancho Beach Town Tour: $43

Alcohol

While the amount that someone spends on alcohol while visiting Cabo San Lucas may vary from person to person, on average a person spends $19 per day on alcoholic beverages.

The average person spends about $16 on alcoholic beverages in Puerto Vallarta per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Cabo San Lucas $19
    Puerto Vallarta $16


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

Budget Your Trip

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Cabo San Lucas vs. Puerto Vallarta Travel Comparison

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