A Travel Price Comparison for China Chengdu vs. Beijing for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Chengdu or Beijing?

Which city should you visit? Read on to compare the prices of travel for Chengdu and Beijing. 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. So, let's dig into it.

Chengdu

Chengdu is in China's Sichuan Provence and is in what is known as the Red Basin. It is a particularly fertile region in China that is known for its agriculture. For this reason it is sometimes referred to as the "Land of Milk and Honey". The Funan River cuts through the city but has almost no boat traffic anymore. The city itself has a wonderful relaxed vibe compared to the rest of China and is filled with green parks and places to relax. It is considered one of the most livable cities in China.

Beijing

Beijing is the capital of China and, with 21.5 million people, it is the second most populated city in the world after Shanghai. It is a city that keeps pockets of its history hidden in old neighborhoods or back alleys, despite the constant change and modernization that goes on around it. As the capital city of China, there is plenty of history and culture. You can still get yourself lost in one of the last remaining hutongs, which are old neighborhoods that remain untouched by the city's modernization. The alleys that weave between the old homes are lined with drying clothes, corner markets, and people going about their daily lives the way they have for centuries. Surrounding these hutongs you'll find modern buildings and a booming economy, all threatening to destroying these last bits of Beijing's history. Beijing offers a glimpse into a microcosm that represents the entire country of China. Make sure you give yourself enough time in China to truly experience Beijing. You can pass a lot of time soaking up life in the city, which remains as diverse as the country it resides within.

Which city is cheaper, Beijing or Chengdu?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Chengdu is $45, while the average daily cost in Beijing is $69. 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 Chengdu and Beijing in more detail.



Accommodation

Accommodation prices vary by location and style, but travelers pay on average about $38 for a double occupancy room in Chengdu.

The average price for accommodation for two people in Beijing is $70. This is for two people sharing a typical double occupancy hotel room.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Chengdu $19
    Beijing $35
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Chengdu $38
    Beijing $70

Food

Food in Chengdu costs travelers about $19 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.

In Beijing travelers spend around $19 a day on food. You can save money by choosing casual restaurants or food stalls, or you can spend plenty more by dining in nicer restaurants at every meal.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Chengdu $19
    Beijing $19

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Chengdu

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

  • Chengdu Private Food Tour (With Visit to Kuanzhai Alley and Hotpot Experience): $32
  • Food and Cooking experiences in Chengdu: $51
  • Half Day Tour Chengdu Courtyard Cooking Class and Local Spice Market: $56
  • Sichuan cooking class half day tour: $56
  • Half-Day Chinese Bun Cooking Class with Local Spice Market Visit: $56
  • Private Sichuan Cooking Class including Local Wet Market Visit: $59
  • Half-Day Small Group Sichuan Cuisine Museum Tour with Cooking Class: $64
  • Half Day Chengdu Tofu Making Class with Mapo Tofu Cooking: $70
  • Authentic Chengdu Local Food Tour: $73
  • Chengdu Jinsha Site Museum and Sanxingdui Museum Private Day Tour with Hotpot Dinner: $76
  • Half-Day Private Sichuan Hot-Pot Cooking Class with Local Spice Market Visit: $78
  • Dim Sum Cooking Class and Wet Market Visit in Shanghai: $78

Typical Food prices in Beijing

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for food and meal costs in Beijing:


  • Popcorn
    $0.93
  • Hot Pot Dinner
    $7.76
  • Dumpling Breakfast for Two
    $3.10
  • Watermelon
    $2.17
  • Peking Duck Dinner for 2
    $18
  • Two Popsicles
    $0.93

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Beijing

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

  • Online Cooking Class: $25
  • Path Hutong Food Tour: $30
  • Chengdu Private Food Tour (With Visit to Kuanzhai Alley and Hotpot Experience): $32
  • Kung fu Show and Peking Roasted Duck Dinner: $58
  • Private Temple of Heaven Walking Tour with Peking Duck Dinner or Kung Fu Show: $62
  • Acrobatic Show w/ Peking Duck Dinner Private: $68
  • Beijing Historical Center with Peking Opera and Duck Dinner: $69
  • 3 hours Morning or Afternoon Tea Tasting on Maliandao Street and Tea Restaurant Lunch or Dinner Tour: $69
  • Beijing Hutong Breakfast Food Tour: $69
  • Chengdu Jinsha Site Museum and Sanxingdui Museum Private Day Tour with Hotpot Dinner: $76
  • Dim Sum Cooking Class and Wet Market Visit in Shanghai: $78
  • Old Beijing Dinner Tour: $80

Local Transportation

The average price of local transportation around Chengdu is $5.33 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.

While taxis and private drivers typically cost much more than public transportation, people usually spend around $6.87 per day to get around in Beijing.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Chengdu $5.33
    Beijing $6.87

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Chengdu

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Chengdu:

  • 1-Day Chengdu Layover Tour: Leshan Giant buddha with Round Airport Transfer: $200
  • 1-Day Chengdu Layover Tour: Panda Base, city central with Round Airport Transfer: $187
  • Airport Transfers (SHA/PVG) for Shanghai (Multiple Car Models): $38
  • Arrival Private Transfer Chengdu Airport CTU to Chengdu City by Executive Sedan: $103
  • Arrival Private Transfer Chengdu Airport CTU to Chengdu City by Standard Car: $53
  • Arrival Private Transfer Chengdu Airport CTU to Chengdu by Business Minivan: $112
  • Arrival Private Transfer Chengdu Airport CTU to Chengdu by Minivan: $61
  • Badaling Great Wall in Beijing Private Transfer: $43
  • Chengdu (CTU) - Chengdu transfer: $34
  • Chengdu City to Chengdu Shuangliu Airport (CTU) - Departure Private Transfer: $37
  • Chengdu Private Airport Arrival Transfer: $59
  • Chengdu Private Arrival Transfer: Airport to Hotel: $89

Typical Local Transportation prices in Beijing

Here are some examples of typical transportation prices from actual travelers in Beijing:


  • Taxi
    $5.30
  • Train from Airport for Two
    $7.76
  • Taxi to Hotel
    $9.31
  • 2 Metro Passes
    $2.48
  • Metro
    $0.62

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Beijing

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Beijing:

  • 1-Day Beijing Layover Private Tour: Forbidden City with Round Airport transfers: $190
  • 1-Day Beijing Layover Tour: Mutianyu Great Wall with Round Airport Transfers: $195
  • 1-Day Bejing Layover Tour:Mutianyu Great Wall,Forbidden City & Airport Transfers: $250
  • 1-Hour Private Tai Chi Class in the Temple of Heaven Park with One Way Transfer: $78
  • 1-Way Private Transfer Service between Tianjin cruise Port and Beijing hotels: $301
  • 1-Way Private Transfer between Beijing Airport and City Hotels: $30
  • 2 Days Beijing to Feng Ning Ba Shang Grassland tour with private transfer: $448
  • 2-Day Customizable Beijing Highlight Tour with Airport Transfer Option: $520
  • 2-Day Highlights Group Tour With Beijing Airport Transfer Service: $247
  • 2-Day Private Beijing Tour with PEK Airport Transfer: $265
  • 2-Way Share Transfer Service to Mutianyu Great Wall from Beijing Capital Airport: $84
  • 3 Days Beijing Private Tour with Airport (Train Station) Transfer: $305

Is it cheaper to fly into Chengdu or Beijing?

Prices for flights to both Beijing and Chengdu 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

Chengdu's costs for entertainment, tickets, attractions, and tours will often cost around $14 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.

Activities, things to do, and other forms of entertainment usually cost around $21 per person, per day in Beijing. This cost includes the price of admission tickets to attractions and museums as well as daily tours.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Chengdu $14
    Beijing $21

Tours and Activities in Chengdu

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

  • Hupao Park Ticket in Hangzhou (For Mainland China ID Holders): $2.35
  • China Red Sandalwood Museum Ticket in Beijing : $2.79
  • Simatai Great Wall Admission with Cable Car Ticket in Beijing: $3.09
  • Giant Panda Breeding Research Base Ticket Chengdu - ID Card Direct Entry: $4.19
  • Evergreen Resort Ticket in Shenzhen: $6.19
  • Jinxi Ancient Town Attractions Combo Ticket: $6.99
  • Gulangyu Seashell Museum Ticket: $7.45
  • Ferry Round Trip Ticket between Xiamen City and Gulangyu Neicuoao Pier: $8.55
  • Wuyishan Xiamei Ancient Village Admission Ticket: $8.55
  • Ferry Round Trip Ticket between Xiamen City and Gulangyu Sanqiutian Pier: $8.55
  • Guangdong First Peak Ticket: $9.29
  • Beijing Palace Museum Ticket (The Forbidden City): $9.29

Typical Entertainment prices in Beijing

Here are a few typical costs in Beijing for activities, ticket prices, and tours that come from previous visitors:


  • Entry to Summer Palace for Two
    $9.31
  • Two Opera Tickets
    $66
  • Temple of Heaven Park Entrance (for 2)
    $11
  • Forbidden City (for 2)
    $19
  • Forbidden City Tickets
    $19
  • Audio Guides at Forbidden City
    $12

Tours and Activities in Beijing

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

  • Hupao Park Ticket in Hangzhou (For Mainland China ID Holders): $2.35
  • China Red Sandalwood Museum Ticket in Beijing : $2.79
  • Simatai Great Wall Admission with Cable Car Ticket in Beijing: $3.09
  • Temple of Heaven Tickets Booking: $4.00
  • Giant Panda Breeding Research Base Ticket Chengdu - ID Card Direct Entry: $4.19
  • MTY test product for tours: $5.00
  • Beijing Summer Palace Admission Ticket: $5.13
  • Train Tickets in China: $5.34
  • Private Tailor made tour for your family only in China around: $5.34
  • Evergreen Resort Ticket in Shenzhen: $6.19
  • Beijing National Center for the Performing Arts Admission Ticket: $6.45
  • Jinxi Ancient Town Attractions Combo Ticket: $6.99

Alcohol

While the amount that someone spends on alcohol while visiting Chengdu may vary from person to person, on average a person spends $3.53 per day on alcoholic beverages.

While the amount that someone spends on alcohol while visiting Beijing may vary from person to person, on average a person spends $11 per day on alcoholic beverages.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Chengdu $3.53
    Beijing $11

Sample the Local Flavors in Chengdu

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

  • Half Day Explore Chinese White Wine Distillery in Chengdu: $128

Sample the Local Flavors in Beijing

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

  • Evening Food Private Tour with Brewery Taproom Hopping at Slow Boat in Beijing: $138
  • 5-Hour Private Changyu Chateau Wine Tasting Tour from Beijing: $178
  • Private Wonderful Beijing Bar Crawl Tour: $195
  • Private Changyu Chateau Wine Tasting Tour and Mutianyu Great Wall Visit: $228


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

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Chengdu vs. Beijing Travel Comparison

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