A Travel Price Comparison for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons Charlotte vs. Charleston

Should you visit Charlotte or Charleston?

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 Charlotte and Charleston can help you decide which place is right for you.

Charlotte

With a population of almost 800,000, Charlotte is the largest city in the state of North Carolina. The city has grown rapidly in recent years and the thriving economy has led to major revitalization efforts in the city's central district. The city is a center for finance, industry, technology, and entertainment within the state. It is the location of the corporate headquarters of Bank of America as well as the east coast operations of Wells Fargo, making it the second largest banking center in the United States. Although Charlotte has never been considered a significant tourist destination, recent efforts to enhance the urban core and develop entertainment venues have begun to appeal to outside visitors.

Charleston

Charleston is a beautiful, southern city and seaport town in South Carolina. It has a wonderful, historic downtown area that the city government works hard to maintain. Located on a peninsula that is created by two rivers, the city is a stunning setting with much character. It is a popular place to visit for its culture, architecture and cuisine. In recent years Charleston has gained popularity and it continues to grow as both a regional and international travel destination. With its rising popularity comes increasing costs. Travel costs continue to go up as restaurants and hotels raise their prices, particularly during the peak travel season and holiday periods.

Which city is cheaper, Charleston or Charlotte?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Charlotte is $153, while the average daily cost in Charleston 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 Charlotte and Charleston in more detail.




Accommodation

Double occupancy rooms typically run around $188 in Charlotte For nicer amenities and a premiere location, you can expect to pay a bit more.

A hotel room in Charleston is about $144 This assumes double occupancy and modest accommodations.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Charlotte $94
    Charleston $72
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Charlotte $188
    Charleston $144


Food

Food in Charlotte costs travelers about $37 per day on average. Restaurants can vary significantly in price, so choose wisely if you're trying to save money. Fast food and street stalls are typically your cheapest options, which sit down restaurants can be significantly more expensive.

On average, meal and food prices in Charleston cost around $46 per person, per day. While this price can vary widely by location, the type of restaurant, and the amount of food ordered, a typical meal often costs around $18.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Charlotte $37
    Charleston $46
Typical Food prices in Charlotte

Here are some examples of typical meal expenses from previous travelers to Charlotte:


  • Pizza at Airport
    $4.03
  • Cracker Barrel Lunch (family of 4)
    $29

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.

  • Charleston Harbor: Luxury Dinner Cruise & Live Music: $66
  • 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
  • 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


Local Transportation

Charlotte'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 Charlotte.

While taxis and private drivers typically cost much more than public transportation, people usually spend around $26 per day to get around in Charleston.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Charlotte $27
    Charleston $26

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Charlotte

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

  • Private Departure Transfer to Charlotte Douglas Airport (CLT): $38
  • Private Arrival Transfer from Charlotte Douglas Airport CLT: $38
  • Charlotte Douglas Airport (CLT) to Charlotte City - Arrival Private Transfer: $54
  • Charlotte City to Charlotte Douglas Airport (CLT) - Departure Private Transfer: $54
  • Departure Private Transfer Charlotte to Charlotte Douglas Airport CLT Sedan Car: $85
  • Arrival Private Transfer Charlotte Douglas Airport CLT to Charlotte by Sedan car: $86
  • Charlotte Douglas Airport (CLT) to Charlotte City - Round-Trip Private Transfer: $106
  • Departure Private Transfer Charlotte to Charlotte Douglas Airport CLT by SUV: $140
  • Arrival Private Transfer Charlotte Douglas Airport CLT to Charlotte by SUV: $141

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Charleston

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Charleston:

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


Entertainment

Sightseeing, admission tickets, things to do, and other entertainment expenses in Charlotte can vary widely by price. On average, visitors spend around $34 per person, per day on entertainment and sightseeing here.

Activities, things to do, and other forms of entertainment usually cost around $17 per person, per day in Charleston. This cost includes the price of admission tickets to attractions and museums as well as daily tours.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Charlotte $34
    Charleston $17

Tours and Activities in Charlotte

Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Charlotte.

  • Charlotte Beyond the Grave Haunted History Walking Ghost Tour: $18
  • Charlotte Ghost Walking Tour: $23
  • Charlotte Comedy City Tour: $30
  • Charlotte Comedy City PG-13 Tour: $35
  • Charlotte's Historical City Tour: $38
  • Belize Jungle Limo - Triple Activity Tour: $50
  • Historic Uptown Neighborhood Segway Tour of Charlotte: $60
  • Private and Custom Tours: $75
  • Discover Charlotte Historic City: Segway Tour: $234

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


Alcohol

Alcoholic beverages can often be a significant portion of a traveler's budget, and the costs can vary greatly from person to person. In Charlotte, the average amount that a visitor spends on alcoholic beverages per day is $16.

The average person spends about $28 on alcoholic beverages in Charleston per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Charlotte $16
    Charleston $28

Sample the Local Flavors in Charlotte

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

  • Haunted Charlotte Ghost and Pub Walking Tour: $27
  • Trolley Pub Tour of Charlotte: $41
  • 3-Hour Charlotte Brewery Crawl Tour: $54

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



When comparing the travel costs between Charlotte and Charleston, we can see that Charlotte is more expensive. However, the two cities are actually relatively comparable in price, as the difference is somewhat minimal. Generally, this means that you could travel with generally the same travel style and level of luxury in each place. Since both cities are in North America, it's no surprise that their costs are relatively close, as many destinations here have somewhat similar travel prices overall.

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Charlotte vs. Charleston Travel Comparison

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