A Travel Price Comparison for United States of America California vs. Virginia for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit California or Virginia?

Which is cheaper to visit? Which is more expensive for vacation?

Which city should you visit? Read on to compare the activities as well as the prices of travel for California and Virginia. We'll break down costs for accommodation, food, transportation and more to help you learn more about these two destinations. Then, you can figure out if either of these two places are accessible based on your travel budget, schedule, and interests. So, let's dig into it.

Where Should I go: California or Virginia?


California is the most populous state in the U.S. and is known for a variety of attractions such as Hollywood, warm beaches, the San Francisco bay area, Redwood trees, national parks, and stunning mountain vistas. With a variety of locations and activities to offer, California has become one of the premier travel destinations in the world.


One of the original thirteen British colonies, Virginia is a place of rich history and varied environments. You might explore the historic settlement of Colonial Williamsburg, dive into the current culture of its major cities, or get lost in nature along the coast or in the scenic landscape of the Appalachian Mountains. There's a little something for everyone.

For some great organized tour ideas, see The Best Tours Under $1000 in United States of America, The Best Luxury Tours to United States of America, The Best Tours for Seniors to United States of America, and The Best Contiki Tours to United States of America.

Which place is cheaper, Virginia or California?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in California is $252, while the average daily cost in Virginia is $161. 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 destination. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for California and Virginia in more detail.

  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    California $116
    Virginia $80
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    California $232
    Virginia $160
Compare Hotels in California and Virginia

Looking for a hotel in California or Virginia? Prices vary by location, date, season, and the level of luxury. See below for options and compare which is best for your budget and travel style.

Hotels in California

Hotels in Virginia

Kayak helps you find the best prices for hotels, flights, and rental cars for destinations around the world. Compare prices for multiple destinations when planning your next trip.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    California $43
    Virginia $49

Hired Cars and Shuttles in California

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

  • Private One-way Airport Transfer (San Francisco Airport To/From San Francisco): $16
  • Private Transfer: Los Angeles Airport (LAX) to LA City Center: $26
  • One Way Transfer: Los Angeles from /to Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) : $29
  • Private Departure Transfer to John Wayne Orange County Airport SNA: $32
  • Private Arrival Transfer from John Wayne Orange County Airport SNA: $32
  • Snow Summit to Ontario Airport (ONT) - Departure Private Transfer: $33
  • Ontario Airport (ONT) to Snow Summit - Arrival Private Transfer: $33
  • Avalon Airport (AVX) to Santa Catalina - Arrival Private Transfer: $35
  • Santa Catalina to Catalina Airport - Departure Private Transfer: $35
  • Ontario City to Ontario Airport (ONT) - Departure Private Transfer: $37
  • Ontario Airport (ONT) to Ontario City - Arrival Private Transfer: $37
  • Shared Airport Departure Transfer Anaheim and Orange County to John Wayne Airport: $38

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Virginia

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Virginia:

  • Richmond City to Richmond Airport (RIC) - Departure Private Transfer: $38
  • Richmond Airport (RIC) to Richmond city - Arrival Private Transfer: $36
  • Richmond Airport (RIC) to Richmond City - Round-Trip Private Transfer: $72
  • Private transfer to or from Reston and Ronald Reagan National Airport: $200
  • Private Transfer To or From Reston and Dulles International Airport: $180
  • Private Departure Transfer to Charlottesville Airport (CHO): $50
  • Private Arrival Transfer from Charlotteville Airport (CHO): $50
  • Bamville Transportation (Private & Airport Transfers): $275
  • Airport Transfer to or from Mclean, VA and Reagan Airport(DCA): $188
  • Airport Transfer to or from Mclean, VA and Dulles Airport: $195

Is it cheaper to fly into California or Virginia?

Prices for flights to both Virginia and California 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.

  • Food Meals for one day
    California $48
    Virginia $37

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in California

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

  • San Francisco Virtual Food Tour with Local Guide: $19
  • Encinitas Food Tour: $70
  • Carlsbad Food Tour and Wine Tasting: $75
  • Pirates Dinner Adventure Buena Park: $79
  • Santa Monica Delicious Donut Adventure & Walking Food Tour: $82
  • Little Italy Food and Drink Walking Tour - Pizza, Pasta & Piazzas: $85
  • San Francisco Walking Food Tour With Secret Food Tours: $89
  • Gaslamp Quarter Downtown San Diego Food Tour: $89
  • Mission District Food Tour: $89
  • Downtown Los Angeles Food Tour: $89
  • San Francisco Food Tour: Ferry Building and Ferry Plaza Farmers Market: $90
  • Historic Old Sacramento Walking Food Tour: $95

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Virginia

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

  • Taste of Williamsburg Food Tour by Junket: $79
  • The Carytown Food Tour in Richmond: $80
  • Church Hill Food Tour in Richmond, VA: $80
  • Arts District Food Tour in Richmond: $85
  • Delicious Pizza & Ice Cream Tour of Richmond: $90
  • Norfolk Buffet Dinner Cruise : $101
  • Norfolk Father's Day Buffet Dinner Cruise: $126
  • The UVA Corner Food Tour: Private Walking Food Tour in Charlottesville: $139
  • The Downtown Mall Food Tour: $149
  • Roanoke Ebike Food Tour: $150
  • Norfolk Mother's Day Signature Dinner Cruise: $162
  • Norfolk 4th of July Buffet Dinner Cruise: $182

  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    California $63
    Virginia $24

Tours and Activities in California

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

  • Avalon City: A Self-Guided Audio Tour: $5.13
  • Cow Heaven: A Self-Guided Driving Tour from Point Reyes Seashore to Tomales: $5.99
  • The Heart of Los Angeles’ Dreamland: A Self-Guide Tour in Culver City: $5.99
  • Gold Rush and Ghosts of Sacramento Smart Phone guided (App/GPS) Walking Tour: $6.75
  • The Ghosts of San Francisco Haunted Audio App Walking Tour: $6.99
  • Essential Downtown SLO: A Self-Guided Audio Tour: $6.99
  • LA Little Tokyo to Olvera St Smartphone (App/GPS) Walking Tour: $7.50
  • A Seaside Stroll: La Jolla's Hidden Treasures Self-Guided Tour: $7.99
  • Off the Beaten Path in Carmel-by-the-Sea: A Self-Guided Tour: $7.99
  • Downtown Carmel-by-the-Sea: A Self-Guided Audio Tour: $7.99
  • Historic Folsom: A Self-Guided Audio Tour: $7.99
  • Historic Cannery Row: A Self-Guided Audio Tour of John Steinbeck's Monterey: $7.99

Tours and Activities in Virginia

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

  • Colonial Williamsburg Ghost Stories and Walking Tour: $25
  • 1 Hour Christmastide Walking Tour in Virginia Past and Present : $25
  • 2-Hour Private Guided The best of Williamsburg Walking Tour: $175
  • 3-Hour E-Bike Sightseeing and Breweries Tour in Roanoke: $109
  • Blue Ridge Parkway (Roanoke to Afton) Self-Guided Audio Tour: $15
  • Blue Ridge Parkway Virginia Audio Driving Tour: $9.99
  • Busch Gardens Williamsburg Admission Ticket: $101
  • Charlottesville Dark History Ghost Tour : $30
  • Charlottesville Historic Downtown APP/GPS Smartphone Walking Tour: $7.75
  • Church Hill Chillers Ghost Tour: $25
  • Church Hill Segway Tour in Richmond: $80
  • Colonial Ghosts Tour By US Ghost Adventures: $30

  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    California $21
    Virginia $19

Sample the Local Flavors in California

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

  • Long Beach Bar Hunt: Long Beach Boss Bar Crawl: $12
  • Sacramento Bar Hunt: Sacramento Sprint Bar Crawl: $12
  • San Diego Bar Hunt: Slammin' San Diego Bar Crawl: $13
  • Vintner's Private Wine Tasting Experience: $20
  • Gaslamp Bar Crawls and Events: $20
  • Sunset Distillery with Local Whiskey or Cocktail Tasting: $40
  • Walk with Spirits: A Haunted Pub Crawl in San Francisco: $45
  • Wine Tasting Around the World: $48
  • Large Group Wine Tasting Tour (For 6+ Guests • We Drive Your Car): $60
  • 4 Hour Livermore Valley Wine Tour: $100
  • Paranormal Pairing: Wine Tasting Walk with Ghost Storytelling: $105
  • 6 Hour Wine Tour in Napa & Sonoma with Pick-Up from Napa: $109

Sample the Local Flavors in Virginia

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Virginia:

  • Richmond Ghosts Boos and Booze Haunted Pub Crawl : $34
  • Colonial Ghosts Boos and Brews Haunted Pub Crawl : $35
  • The Murder Tour and Pub Crawl: $48
  • Richmond Craft Brewery Crawl By Junket: $74
  • Drink Richmond Craft Brewery Crawl: $74
  • Private Wine Tours (Minimum 3 & Maximum 6 ) Pickup Maximum 30 Mi : $85
  • Brewery Tour of Richmond, VA: $90

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

If you're trying to decide if either of these two destinations are within your price range, also see Is California Expensive? and Is Virginia Expensive?.

Which has a larger population, California or Virginia?

California has a larger population, and is about 5 times larger than the population of Virginia. When comparing the sizes of California and Virginia, keep in mind that a larger population does not always imply the destination has more attractions or better activities. So, always research the type of place that you want to visit along with the activities and attractions that interest you.