A Travel Price Comparison for Mexico Cancun vs. Mazatlan for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Cancun or Mazatlan?

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 Cancun and Mazatlan can help you decide which place is right for you.

Cancun

In the northeast corner of the Mexican Caribbean, Cancun is one of Mexico's most popular destinations. The area that is now Cancun was actually selected specifically by the Mexican government for development as a tourist destination. The area was chosen because it has fourteen miles of beautiful white beaches, nearby Mayan ruins, and turquoise blue water with nearby snorkeling and scuba diving opportunities. Prior to its development as a tourist destination, there were few inhabitants in the area.

Mazatlan

Mazatlan is located on the Pacific coast in the Mexican state of Sinaloa. The city has a population of almost 500,000, making it the second largest city in the state. It is a popular tourist destination because of its beautiful beaches and resort hotels. Most people head to Mazatlan specifically for its beaches, but the city itself is somewhat large and diverse with many different cultures and ethnicities represented. Many foreigners come here not only to vacation, but also to retire. You'll meet people from all over Europe, as well as Canada and the United States.

Which city is cheaper, Mazatlan or Cancun?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Cancun is $98, while the average daily cost in Mazatlan is $53. 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 Cancun and Mazatlan in more detail.



Accommodation

Double occupancy rooms typically run around $132 in Cancun For nicer amenities and a premiere location, you can expect to pay a bit more.

If you're traveling alone, you may be able to find a budget hotel or hostel for around $22. But for two people in a standard two-person hotel room in Mazatlan the cost is $44 on average.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Cancun $66
    Mazatlan $22
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Cancun $132
    Mazatlan $44

Food

The price of a meal in Cancun can vary widely. However, the average price for food per day is $18 per person, and a typical meal will cost around $7.20 based on the spending of previous visitors. Less expensive dining options can be found by eating street food or at fast food restaurants.

The average traveler spends about $23 per day in Mazatlan 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.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Cancun $18
    Mazatlan $23
Typical Food prices in Cancun

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


  • Lunch for Two
    $18

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Cancun

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

  • Captain Hook: Pirate Show and Dinner Cruise in Cancun: $35
  • Cancun Authentic Untouristed Food Tour: $43
  • Authentic Downtown Food Tour: Tacos and Local Flavors: $44
  • Dinner and Show on a Pirate Ship in Cancun with Open Bar: $50
  • Dinner-Show-Party on a Pirate Ship from Cancun! (Open bar included).: $55
  • Experience a Pirate Party Dinner Show at Cancun with Open Bar included!: $56
  • Dinner Show on a Pirate Ship from Cancun with Open Bar: $62
  • Mexican Dinner and Sprits Tasting in Cancun with transportation: $79
  • Captain Hook - Pirate Show and Dinner (Grilled Chicken) 2X1: $85
  • Captain Hook 2X1 - Pirate Show & Dinner with Open Bar: $85
  • Combo Capitan Hook chicken dinner + Isla Mujeres Catamaran: $86
  • Captain Hook - Pirate Show & Dinner (Grilled Chicken) 2X1: $89

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Mazatlan

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

  • Mercado walking food tour: $62

Local Transportation

Public transportation tends to be much less expensive in Cancun than paying for a taxi or private car service, as is expected. Typically, people spend $12 on transportation in Cancun on average per day.

The average price of local transportation around Mazatlan is $14 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.
    Cancun $12
    Mazatlan $14
Typical Local Transportation prices in Cancun

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


  • Taxi Around Town
    $1.41
  • Airport Shuttle (for 2)
    $12
  • Ferry to Isla de Mujeres (for 2)
    $14
  • Local Bus (for 2)
    $1.71

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Cancun

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

  • ATV Combo (Horseback, Ziplines, Cenote, Water, Lunch and Transfer Included): $82
  • Airport Private Transfer Puerto Aventuras: $85
  • Airport Transfer Cancun: $48
  • Airport Transfer Playa del Carmen: $85
  • Airport Transfers to Isla Blanca - Private van (ROUND TRIP) FLAT RATE: $138
  • Airport Transfers to Puerto Juarez - Private van (ROUND TRIP) FLAT RATE: $112
  • Airport transfers to Isla Mujeres: $95
  • Arrival Private Transfer Cancun Airport CUN to Cancun by Minivan: $26
  • Arrival Private Transfer Cancun Airport CUN to Playa Mujeres by Minivan: $31
  • Arrival Private Transfer Cancun Airport CUN to Playa del Carmen by Minivan: $52
  • Arrival Private Transfer Cancun Airport CUN to Playa del Carmen by SUV: $117
  • Arrival Private Transfer Cancun Airport CUN to Puerto Aventuras by Minivan: $76

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Mazatlan

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Mazatlan:

  • Shared Round -Trip Transfer: Mazatlan International Airport: $24
  • Shared Departure Transfer: Hotel to Mazatlan International Airport: $12
  • Shared Arrival Transfer: Mazatlan International Airport to Hotel: $12
  • Private Round-Trip Transfer: Mazatlan International Airport (1 - 6): $240
  • Private Departure Transfer: Hotel to Mazatlan International Airport (1 - 6): $120
  • Private Arrival Transfer: Mazatlan International Airport to Hotels (1 - 6): $120
  • Private Airport-Hotel Transfer: $130
  • Private Airport Transfer: from Mazatlan to Mazatlan International Airport (MZT): $69
  • Private Airport Transfer: Mazatlan International Airport (MZT) to Mazatlan: $69
  • Mazatlan to Mazatlan International Airport (MZT) - Departure Private Transfer: $97
  • Mazatlan International Airport(MZT) to Mazatlan hotels -Arrival Private Transfer: $97
  • Mazatlan International Airport (MZT) to Mazatlan - Round-Trip Private Transfer: $194

Is it cheaper to fly into Cancun or Mazatlan?

Prices for flights to both Mazatlan and Cancun 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

Sightseeing expenses in Cancun, including the cost of admission tickets for day tours, museums, and attractions, usually cost an average of $24 per day, per person.

Mazatlan's costs for entertainment, tickets, attractions, and tours will often cost around $6.42 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.
    Cancun $24
    Mazatlan $6.42
Typical Entertainment prices in Cancun

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


  • Seasick Pills
    $0.50
  • Whale Shark Tour (for 2)
    $85

Tours and Activities in Cancun

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

  • Museo Maya de Cancun Admission ticket: $4.99
  • Turibus Hop-on Hop-off City Tour Cancun: $5.00
  • Turibus Hop-on Hop-off City Tour Cancun plus Aquatic Activity: $19
  • Turibus Hop-on Hop-off City Tour Cancun plus Wax Museum: $19
  • Holbox Street Art Tour: $25
  • Cancun Street Art Tour: $27
  • Cancun City Tour: $27
  • Reef Snorkeling Experience in Puerto Morelos: $27
  • Skip the Line: Cancun Wax Museum Admission Ticket: $28
  • 3 Hours Private Kayak Experience in Cancun: $28
  • Classic 3-island tour on a shared boat: $32
  • Cancun Shopping Tour: $39

Tours and Activities in Mazatlan

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

  • ATV Tour: $75
  • Agave Distilled Factory and Salsa Combo Tour: $67
  • Agave Distilled Factory and Salsa Combo Tour Private Vehicle: $536
  • Barrio Bites tour: $62
  • Canopy and ATV Tour: $125
  • El Rosario Half-Day Tour with Optional Visit to Caimanero Lagoon: $62
  • Full-Day Sierra Madre Bike Tour with Lunch: $140
  • Half-Day Mazatlan City Bike Tour: $36
  • Half-Day Tour to Tequila Factory and Villages from Mazatlan: $62
  • Malpica Concordia and Copala Foothills Tour Private Vehicle: $472
  • Mazatlan - City Tour: $34
  • Mazatlan - La Noria Artisan Tour The Blue Agave: $56

Alcohol

Typically, people visiting Cancun spend on average $9.00 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.

While the amount that someone spends on alcohol while visiting Mazatlan may vary from person to person, on average a person spends $12 per day on alcoholic beverages.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Cancun $9.00
    Mazatlan $12

Sample the Local Flavors in Cancun

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

  • Cancun Private Mexican Wine Tasting: $161

Sample the Local Flavors in Mazatlan

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

  • Private Tour to El Quelite Village and Tequila Distillery from Mazatlan: $323


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

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Cancun vs. Mazatlan Travel Comparison

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