A Travel Price Comparison for United States of America Charleston vs. New York City for Attractions, Food, Nightlife, and Music

Should you visit Charleston or New York City?

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

If you're trying to decide where to visit between Charleston or New York City, this travel comparison, which includes costs, can help. The overall cost of travel is usually a consideration when deciding where to go next, and the cost comparison down below can help you decide based on the average prices from other travelers along with your own travel budget.

Charleston

Charleston is a historic, classic, and picturesque coastal town. This is also a very beautiful destination which attracts plenty of visitors. It also has that perfectly quaint feel that is like no other place. Other reasons to visit include beaches, shopping, and museums.

New York City

New York City is a cosmopolitan, one-of-a-kind, and vibrant city. Visitors will also find so much to do here because it's a large city with many sights and attractions. It offers plenty of beauty for visitors. Other popular activities here include food, shopping, and museums.

Charleston and New York City: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Impressive beauty
  • Quaint atmosphere
Cons
  • Less museums and historical sights
  • Less popular for nightlife
  • Less active music scene
  • Less popular with backpackers
  • Less popular for students
Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Good nightlife
  • Good music scene
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Good for students
  • Big city activities


How is Charleston different from New York City?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

Let's take a look at the differences and similarities between New York City and Charleston. Then, you can decide for yourself which place is better for your next trip.

Is Charleston or New York City Better for Museums and Historical Sights?

Charleston
New York City

Head to New York City if you're looking for good museums or notable landmarks, as it has more to offer than Charleston.

You'll find many recognizable landmarks that put New York City on the map. The sights and museums around the city are too numerous to list, but some of the most famous include the Statue of Liberty, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art, Central Park, and the Empire State Building.

Charleston is a good place to visit if you're interested in museums or other recognizable sights. This city is famous for its many historic churches and plantations. You can also visit Fort Sumter National Monument by boat or take a tour of the USS Yorktown.


Is Charleston or New York City Better for Food?

Charleston
New York City

Picking the best cuisine and restaurants between Charleston and New York City can be difficult as they are each unique in their own way.

Known for it's food and restaurant scene, Charleston is always at the top of any foodie's travel list. Food lovers will enjoy the city's low country classics. Local favorites include she crab soup, shrimp and grits, cornbread, and fried green tomatoes.

Many restaurants in New York City have been singled out for their culinary prowess. The city has a diverse variety of restaurants, from local dives to Michelin star options. Quintessential NYC dishes include NYC pizza, NYC hot dogs, bagels, and Chinese dim sum.

Is Charleston or New York City Better for Nightlife?

Charleston
New York City

New York City has the better options when it comes to nightlife.

New York City has a colorful and one-of-a-kind nightlife scene. Known as the city that never sleeps, you can be assured that NYC has some of the best nightlife in the world. Several famous clubs include Paul's Cocktail Lounge, Le Bain, and Avant Gardner.

With a handful of venues, visitors can find a fairly lively vibe in Charleston. As a college town, there are plenty of bars and nightclubs around town. There's also a lively music scene.

Is Charleston or New York City Better for Music?

Charleston
New York City

For live music, you may want to head to New York City over Charleston.

In New York City you'll find nightly musicians performing at a variety of venues. Popular music venues include Music Hall of Williamsburg, Radio City Music Hall, Beacon Theatre, and Forest Hills Stadium.

You'll find some good live music in Charleston. You can hear a number of local bands or enjoy a more widely known group at larger venues in the area.

Is Charleston or New York City Better for Shopping?

Charleston
New York City

Both Charleston and New York City are good shopping destinations.

Charleston is a world class destination for shoppers. The city is famous for its historic market in the center of town. Local goods, foods, and crafts are sold daily here. There are also many clothing and local shops throughout town.

People travel from around the world to go shopping in New York City. The shopping is as diverse as the city itself. Head for Fifth Avenue for high end shopping or check out any of the many street markets for local items.


Is Charleston or New York City Better for Christmas?

Charleston
New York City

Both Charleston and New York City are fun destinations to visit around Christmas.

Charleston is an extremely popular place to visit during the Christmas season. During the Christmas season there are a number of festivals, light shows, and even a boat parade that everyone can enjoy.

Known for its popular Christmas activities, New York City draws large crowds. Christmas in the city is a quintessential experience. From the Christmas tree and ice skating at Rockefeller Center to seeing a live performance of the Nutcracker, everyone enjoys the holidays in New York.

Is Charleston or New York City Better for Christmas Markets?

Charleston
New York City

Charleston and New York City are both places where visitors can find Christmas markets.

Charleston has Christmas markets worth visiting. Marion Square hosts Christmas Markets on weekends throughout the holiday season.

New York City is a popular destination to visit Christmas markets. There are a number of Christmas markets that pop up around town during the holiday season. Nothing will get you more in the holiday spirit than wandering these unique venues.

Is Charleston or New York City Better for Families?

Charleston
New York City

Charleston and New York City are both fun destinations for the whole family.

Charleston is a family-friendly place to visit. The area has a number of family friendly activities like carriage rides and boat rides. The nearby beaches also make it a wonderful place to visit with kids.

New York City is a very family-friendly destination. The city has many activities for kids of all ages including world class museums, beautifully designed playgrounds, and theater shows designed just for young ones.

Is Charleston or New York City Better for Couples?

Charleston
New York City

Charleston and New York City are both fun to visit as a couple.

Charleston has so much to offer for a romantic couple's vacation. This beautiful city is one of the most popular wedding destinations in America. It's a very romantic setting with beautiful hotels and bed and breakfasts that are perfect for couples on their honeymoon or looking for a romantic setting.

New York City makes for a fun place to visit for a couple. From a beautiful carriage ride through Central Park, to a romantic river cruise at night, there is an endless list of unique activities that couples can enjoy in the city.


Is Charleston or New York City Better for Students?

Charleston
New York City

New York City is generally a better coastal town for students than Charleston.

New York City is a great destination for students. The city has a diverse population, and international students will feel right at home here exploring the city. There are also plenty of major universities including NYU, Columbia University, and Cornell University.

Plenty of students visit Charleston. The city is a college town with a young vibe that is perfect for students.

Is Charleston or New York City a more walkable city?

Charleston
New York City

Charleston and New York City both are comparable when exploring on foot.

Charleston is a very walkable destination. The downtown area is very walkable, but once you leave the historic heart, it's best to have a car.

It's very easy to get around on foot in New York City. The majority of the neighborhoods in Manhattan are very walkable and easy to explore on foot. Most people prefer not to drive here as it can be overwhelming and chaotic.

Should I spend more time in New York City or Charleston?

How long in Charleston or New York City?

Both Charleston and New York City have a number of activities to choose from. You can spend a similar amount of time exploring either.

The ideal length of time for a trip to Charleston is 2-7 days, and the ideal length of time for a trip to New York City is 3-7 days.


  • How many days in Charleston or New York City? Ideal Length of Stay
    Charleston 2-7 
    New York City 3-7

One day in Charleston or New York City?

Many travelers enjoy the museums and nightlife when visiting the classic destination of Charleston. You'll find plenty of activities on the beach. Your budget might influence how long you stay. Since there is so much to do in the area, one day is probably not enough for all of it.

When visiting New York City, people usually allow for lots of time. Anyone can find something fun to do here. But since there are so many activities, you'll likely want to spend more than one day exploring.

A weekend in Charleston or New York City?

It's hard to know how much time to spend in Charleston. Make sure you visit the old town while you're here. It has many unique tourist attractions and fascinating things to do. For many, it makes a great getaway for a weekend. A weekend is usually enough time to experience most activities.

When visiting New York City, people usually allow for lots of time. It offers something for everyone. With so much to do, a weekend is probably not enough time to see everything.


Five days in Charleston or New York City?

Many travelers enjoy the live music and food when visiting the charming destination of Charleston. Many visitors spend time at the beach while visiting the area. This coastal town offers a variety of activities to choose from. If you have five days, this is a great place to go. Five days is usually enough time to experience most activities.

New York City, a popular city, is full of activities for travelers. This is a popular place to visit for five days. In five days, you should have a good grasp of this city. Your budget might influence how long you stay.

A week in Charleston or New York City?

Many travelers enjoy the food and shopping when visiting the beautiful coastal town of Charleston. People usually spend lots of time at the beach. Plenty of people spend one week in the area when traveling.So, one week is just the right amount of time to spend here. The length of your ideal trip is an individual decision.

New York City is a popular place that is full of things to see and experience. If you have one week, this city makes for a great vacation. One week should give you a good understanding of everything this city has to offer. It has many unique tourist attractions and fascinating things to do.

Which city is cheaper, New York City or Charleston?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Charleston is $136, while the average daily cost in New York City is $238. 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. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Charleston and New York City in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Charleston $72
    New York City $137
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Charleston $144
    New York City $274
Compare Hotels in Charleston and New York City

Looking for a hotel in Charleston or New York City? 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 Charleston


Hotels in New York City


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.


Our Analysis
We've analyzed the average and typical hotel prices based on guest reviews, star ratings, and hotel amenities here: Charleston Hotel Prices and New York City Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Charleston $26
    New York City $39

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Charleston

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Charleston:

  • Private transfer: Charleston to Charleston Airport (CHS): $622
  • Private Departure Transfer to Charleston Airport (CHS): $52
  • Charleston city to Charleston Airport (CHS) - Departure Private Transfer: $124

Typical Local Transportation prices in New York City

Some typical examples of transportation costs in New York City are as follows:


  • Subway
    $4.50
  • Taxi Ride
    $8.00
  • Subway
    $2.50

Hired Cars and Shuttles in New York City

Also for New York City, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:

  • Private Departure Transfer Manhattan to NYC Airports JFK EWR LGA: $22
  • Private Departure Transfer Brooklyn to NYC Airports (JFK) (LGA) (EWR): $29
  • New York City Shared Shuttle Departure Transfer: Hotel to NYC Airports: $30
  • Private All Inclusive New York Transfer: Airport or Manhattan to Cruise Port: $71
  • Private New York airport transfer: New York airport to Manhattan and Brooklyn: $83
  • Private Transfer from New York City to LaGuardia Airport: $85
  • Private transfer: New York to New York Airport (LGA): $86
  • Private All Inclusive New York City Airport Arrival Transfer: $90
  • Private All Inclusive New York City Airport Departure Transfer: $90
  • Manhattan Private Luxury Transfer to NYC Airports: $98
  • New York Airport Luxury Departure Transfer via Stretch Limousine, SUV, Sedan: $100
  • Private Transfer from Manhattan to John F Kennedy Airport JFK by Luxury Car: $111

Is it cheaper to fly into Charleston or New York City?

Prices for flights to both New York City and Charleston 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
  • Food Meals for one day
    Charleston $46
    New York City $37
Typical Food prices in Charleston

Some typical examples of dining costs in Charleston are as follows:


  • Lunch in downtown Charleston for two
    $21
  • Breakfast
    $26

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Charleston

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

  • Downtown Charleston Culinary Walking Food Tour: $73
  • Savor the Flavors of Charleston Walking Food Tour: $75
  • Charleston's Savor the Flavors of Upper King Street Walking Food Tour: $75
  • Charleston Chef's Kitchen Guided Walking Food Tour: $75
  • Charleston Harbor: Luxury Dinner Cruise: $77
  • Savor the Flavors Upper King Street Food Tour: $95
  • Private Tour: Secret Food Tours Charleston: $129
  • Undiscovered 1/2 Day Food, Wine & History Tour with Cooking Class: $154
  • 3-Hour Secret Food Tour in Charleston w/ Private Tour Option: $277

Typical Food prices in New York City

For New York City, here are some examples of average food and meal prices for travelers:


  • Gelato
    $7.50
  • Snacks for Two at Yankees Game
    $34
  • Coffee
    $6.53
  • Smoothie
    $6.95

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in New York City

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

  • New York Pizza, Beer, and History Tour: $69
  • Greenwich Village History, Culture, and Food Tour with Local Expert: $129
  • Private New York City Food Tour of East Village and Greenwich Village: $147
  • JAPANESE guided tour! Bateaux Dinner Cruise tour with hotel transportation. The best way to enjoy the Manhattan night view from the river & sea. Full course French dinner, live band music included.: $333
  • Limo trip Hotel to Dinner round trip in NEW MKT Limousine: $481

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Charleston $17
    New York City $77
Typical Entertainment prices in Charleston

Some typical examples of activities, tours, and entrance ticket prices in Charleston are as follows:


  • Patriots Point (for 2)
    $60

Tours and Activities in Charleston

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

  • 2-Hour Guided Kayaking Eco Tour in Charleston: $48
  • 2-Hour Paddle Board Eco Tour of Charleston Lowcountry: $48
  • 90-Minute Historic Walking Tour of Charleston: $25
  • Amazing Ladies of Charleston Walking Tour: $35
  • Best of Historic Charleston Walking Tour: $35
  • Boone Hall Plantation Admission & Tour with Transportation from Charleston: $61
  • Bruce Knows Insider Walking Tour of Downtown: $26
  • Car Service: Airport to / from Cruise Port: $130
  • Charleston Attraction & Tour Pass for 1, 2, or 3 Days: $73
  • Charleston Boo Hag & Brews Walking Ghost and Bar Tour: $29
  • Charleston Chicora Walking Tour: $26
  • Charleston City Bus Tour with Charleston Museum Admission: $32

Typical Entertainment prices in New York City

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


  • Comedy Show Tickets
    $56
  • City Map
    $8.00
  • Broadway Musical
    $111
  • Broadway Show Program
    $10
  • Magazine
    $6.99

Tours and Activities in New York City

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

  • New York: Brooklyn Heights & DUMBO Self-Guided Walking Tour: $6.00
  • 9/11 Tribute Museum Admission Ticket: $12
  • Central Park Zoo General Admission Ticket: $14
  • New York Self-Guided Audio Tour: $14
  • Brooklyn Museum General Admission Ticket: $14
  • New York: The Rubin Museum of Art Admission Ticket: $19
  • New York Aquarium Admission Tickets: $20
  • Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island Ticket: $21
  • American Dream: TiLT Interactive Museum Admission Ticket: $21
  • American Museum of Natural History Ticket: $23
  • New York Botanical Garden Admission Ticket: $23
  • American Museum of Natural History Admission Ticket: $23

For more ideas for your next trip, check out The Best Things to do in New York City with Kids, Things to Do in Central Park in NYC, and The Best Museums in New York City.


Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Charleston $28
    New York City $23

Sample the Local Flavors in Charleston

Here are a few nightlife and alcohol tours and activities from local tour providers in Charleston:

  • Charleston Bar Hunt: Charleston Chase Bar Crawl: $12
  • Ghost Walking Tour and Pub Crawl in Haunted Charleston: $27
  • Haunted Pub Crawl of the Market: $37

Sample the Local Flavors in New York City

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in New York City:

  • Pub Crawl Tour of Historic Stone Street: $40


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


When is the best time to visit Charleston or New York City?

Both places have a temperate climate with four distinct seasons. As both cities are in the northern hemisphere, summer is in July and winter is in January.

Should I visit Charleston or New York City in the Summer?

Both New York City and Charleston during the summer are popular places to visit. Many travelers come to Charleston for the beaches, the music scene, and the family-friendly experiences. Also, many visitors come to New York City in the summer for the city activities, the music scene, and the family-friendly experiences.

In the summer, Charleston is around the same temperature as New York City. Typically, the summer temperatures in Charleston in July are around 82°F (28°C), and New York City is about 77°F (25°C).

New York City gets a good bit of rain this time of year. It rains a lot this time of the year in Charleston. Charleston usually gets more rain in July than New York City. Charleston gets 6.9 inches (176 mm) of rain, while New York City receives 4.5 inches (114 mm) of rain this time of the year.


  • Summer Average Temperatures July
    Charleston 82°F (28°C) 
    New York City 77°F (25°C)

Should I visit Charleston or New York City in the Autumn?

The autumn attracts plenty of travelers to both Charleston and New York City. Many visitors come to Charleston in the autumn for the shopping scene, the music scene, and the natural beauty of the area. Also, most visitors come to New York City for the city's sights and attractions, the shopping scene, the music scene, and the natural beauty of the area during these months.

In October, Charleston is generally a little warmer than New York City. Temperatures in Charleston average around 67°F (19°C), and New York City stays around 57°F (14°C).

In October, Charleston usually receives around the same amount of rain as New York City. Charleston gets 2.9 inches (74 mm) of rain, while New York City receives 3.1 inches (78 mm) of rain each month for the autumn.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Charleston 67°F (19°C) 
    New York City 57°F (14°C)

Should I visit Charleston or New York City in the Winter?

The winter brings many poeple to Charleston as well as New York City. Most visitors come to Charleston for the museums, the Christmas ambience, the shopping scene, and the cuisine during these months. Also, the winter months attract visitors to New York City because of the museums, the Christmas ambience, the shopping scene, the theater shows, and the cuisine.

The weather in New York City can be very cold. Charleston is much warmer than New York City in the winter. The temperature in Charleston is usually 47°F (9°C) in January, and New York City stays around 31°F (-1°C).

Charleston usually gets around the same amount of rain in January as New York City. Charleston gets 3.3 inches (85 mm) of rain, while New York City receives 3.4 inches (86 mm) of rain this time of the year.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Charleston 47°F (9°C) 
    New York City 31°F (-1°C)

Should I visit Charleston or New York City in the Spring?

Both New York City and Charleston are popular destinations to visit in the spring with plenty of activities. The spring months attract visitors to Charleston because of the beaches and the natural beauty. Also, the activities around the city and the natural beauty are the main draw to New York City this time of year.

In the spring, Charleston is much warmer than New York City. Typically, the spring temperatures in Charleston in April are around 64°F (18°C), and New York City is about 52°F (11°C).

In April, Charleston usually receives less rain than New York City. Charleston gets 2.7 inches (69 mm) of rain, while New York City receives 3.8 inches (98 mm) of rain each month for the spring.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Charleston 64°F (18°C) 
    New York City 52°F (11°C)

Typical Weather for New York City and Charleston

Charleston New York City
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 47°F (9°C) 3.3 inches (85 mm) 31°F (-1°C) 3.4 inches (86 mm)
Feb 50°F (10°C) 3.3 inches (85 mm) 33°F (1°C) 3 inches (77 mm)
Mar 58°F (14°C) 4.3 inches (110 mm) 42°F (6°C) 3.9 inches (98 mm)
Apr 64°F (18°C) 2.7 inches (69 mm) 52°F (11°C) 3.8 inches (98 mm)
May 72°F (22°C) 4.2 inches (106 mm) 63°F (17°C) 4.1 inches (105 mm)
Jun 78°F (26°C) 6.4 inches (163 mm) 72°F (22°C) 3.2 inches (82 mm)
Jul 82°F (28°C) 6.9 inches (176 mm) 77°F (25°C) 4.5 inches (114 mm)
Aug 81°F (27°C) 7.1 inches (181 mm) 76°F (24°C) 3.9 inches (99 mm)
Sep 76°F (25°C) 4.8 inches (121 mm) 68°F (20°C) 3.7 inches (93 mm)
Oct 67°F (19°C) 2.9 inches (74 mm) 57°F (14°C) 3.1 inches (78 mm)
Nov 58°F (15°C) 2.5 inches (63 mm) 47°F (8°C) 3.9 inches (99 mm)
Dec 51°F (10°C) 3.1 inches (78 mm) 36°F (2°C) 3.4 inches (88 mm)


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Charleston vs. New York City Travel Comparison

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