A Travel Price Comparison for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons Christchurch vs. Auckland

Should you visit Christchurch or Auckland?

Should I visit Christchurch or Auckland? This is a common question asked by many travelers. By figuring out which city is more affordable, you'll understand where you can get more bang for your buck. So, let's dive into the data, which all comes from actual travelers.

Christchurch

Christchurch is the largest city on the South Island of New Zealand, right beside the Canterbury Plains. Most people begin their South Island travels here. The city itself can be fascinating to explore so it is worth allowing yourself several days in town as an introduction to the region.

The River Avon flows through the city center, twisting through the old buildings. Christchurch is referred to in New Zealand as the Garden City and it is easy to see why. It's quite a nice city with trees spread throughout. The economy is centered around international tourism as well as foreign education. There is a high Asian student population here, giving the city a diverse feel.

Christchurch's climate is temperate and the city receives moderate rainfall. In January average high temperatures are around 73 degrees Fahrenheit with averages around 52 degrees Fahrenheit in July. There is a sea breeze during the summer months that keep temperatures pleasant. Temperatures can drop below freezing at night during the winter months. Snow may also fall several times a year.

Auckland

Auckland is located on the North Island of New Zealand on an isthmus between the Northland Peninsula and the other parts of the North Island. Auckland is not only a city but also a region. In 2010 New Zealand combined what had previously been four separate cities into one region. These cities include the southern city of Manukau, the western city of Waitakere, the North Shore in the north, and Auckland City. The City of Auckland is the largest city in Polynesia and is very diverse with many expatriates from elsewhere in Polynesia. This diversity becomes most apparent in Auckland's many festivals and sporting events.

Which city is cheaper, Auckland or Christchurch?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Christchurch is $93, while the average daily cost in Auckland is $135. 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 Christchurch and Auckland in more detail.



Accommodation

If you're traveling alone, you may be able to find a budget hotel or hostel for around $48. But for two people in a standard two-person hotel room in Christchurch the cost is $96 on average.

Double occupancy rooms typically run around $174 in Auckland For nicer amenities and a premiere location, you can expect to pay a bit more.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Christchurch $48
    Auckland $87
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Christchurch $96
    Auckland $174

Food

Food in Christchurch costs travelers about $30 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.

Auckland food costs typically run travelers around $24 per day. Eating every meal in a nicer restaurant will drive the cost up, and grabbing fast food or casual meals will help you save money.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Christchurch $30
    Auckland $24

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Christchurch

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

  • Tramway Restaurant 4 Course Dinner Service through Christchurch: $92
  • Willowbank Kiwi Tour and Maori Concert Including Hangi Dinner from Christchurch: $174

Typical Food prices in Auckland

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


  • Breakfast
    $5.81

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Auckland

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

  • Auckland Harbour Sailboat Cruise Including Three Course Dinner: $107

Local Transportation

The average price of local transportation around Christchurch 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.

Public transportation tends to be much less expensive in Auckland than paying for a taxi or private car service, as is expected. Typically, people spend $15 on transportation in Auckland on average per day.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Christchurch $14
    Auckland $15

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Christchurch

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Christchurch:

  • VIP Sedan Christchurch Airport Transfer to or from Central Christchurch: $80
  • VIP Range Rover Christchurch Airport Transfer to or from Central Christchurch: $108
  • Transfer from Christchurch Central City to Christchurch Airport: $21
  • Private Transfer: Christchurch to Mount Cook: $790
  • Private Transfer - Airport to Central Christchurch: $44
  • Private Minibus Airport Transfer - Pickup Hotel / Residence to Airport (11 Pax): $120
  • Private Minibus Airport Transfer - Pickup Airport to Hotel / Residence (11 Pax): $120
  • Private Departure Transfer: Central Christchurch to Christchurch Airport: $59
  • Private Arrival Transfer: Christchurch Airport to Central Christchurch: $59
  • Private Airport Round-Trip Transfer:Christchurch Airport to Central Christchurch: $74
  • Private & Exclusive One-Way Transfer Christchurch to Queenstown: $1,264
  • Executive Sedan Airport Transfer(Pickup Airport to Hotel/Residence) Christchurch: $60

Typical Local Transportation prices in Auckland

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


  • Bus from Airport
    $12
  • Airport Shuttle
    $18

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Auckland

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

  • Arrival Private Transfer Auckland Airport to North Shore or Henderson Luxury Car: $118
  • Arrival Private Transfer Auckland Airport to North Shore or Henderson Luxury Van: $118
  • Arrival Private Transfer from Auckland Airport AKL to Auckland in Business Car: $95
  • Arrival Private Transfer from Auckland Airport AKL to Auckland in Luxury Van: $118
  • Arrival Private Transfer: Auckland Airport AKL to Auckland City by Luxury Car: $106
  • Arrival Private Transfer: Auckland Airport AKL to Auckland City by Luxury Van: $102
  • Arrival Private Transfer: Auckland Airport AKL to Auckland City by Sedan Car: $78
  • Arrival Transfer: Auckland Airport to Auckland Central City Centre: $21
  • Arrival Transfer: Auckland Airport to Rotorua with Optional Private Day Tour: $387
  • Auckland Airport (ADL) to City Center to Airport - Private Transfer: $74
  • Auckland Airport Private airport transfer: $74
  • Auckland Airport Transfers and Daily Tours: $493

Entertainment

Christchurch's costs for entertainment, tickets, attractions, and tours will often cost around $17 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.

Sightseeing expenses in Auckland, including the cost of admission tickets for day tours, museums, and attractions, usually cost an average of $27 per day, per person.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Christchurch $17
    Auckland $27

Tours and Activities in Christchurch

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

  • 1 day private tour from Christchurch to Queenstown via Mt.Cook: $322
  • 1-Day Guided Walking Tour and Picnic on Banks Peninsula: $138
  • 10 Day Adrenalin Tour. Skydiving, Bungy, Rafting, Climbing, Heli MTB & more.: $4,219
  • 10 Day Adventure Tour. Hiking, Kayaking, Mountain Biking, Jet Boating & more.: $4,219
  • 2 days tour from Christchurch to Queenstown: $595
  • 2 hour Christchurch City Tour with scenic Chairlift ride: $99
  • 3 Day Christchurch and Akaroa Exclusive Private Tour: $2,026
  • 3 hour Christchurch City Tour with Ziplining at Christchurch Adventure Park: $237
  • 3-Day Christchurch City Break Tour For Locals: $337
  • 3-Day Christchurch and Akaroa Arrival Tour with Harbor Cruise: $668
  • 3-Day South Island Circle Tour from Christchurch: $1,158
  • 4 Day Kaikoura and Pancake Rocks Private Tour: $3,317

Typical Entertainment prices in Auckland

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


  • Auckland Sky Tour (for 2)
    $40
  • Waiheke Island Tour (for 2)
    $146

Tours and Activities in Auckland

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

  • Auckland Self Guided Audio Tour: $12
  • Maritime Museum Entry Ticket: $14
  • Hīkoi To Britomart Māori Art Walking Tour: $18
  • Vibrosaun Therapy Experience: $19
  • Sky Tower General Admission Ticket: $23
  • The Hunt for the Missing Monarch - An Auckland Adventure: $30
  • Auckland Welcome Tour: Private Tour with a Local: $30
  • Clue Zealand - The Hunt for the Missing Monarch - An Auckland Adventure: $31
  • Auckland Harbour Cruise: $33
  • Escape Game Adventure: $36
  • Cultural Guided Walking Tour of Mount Eden: $37
  • Axe Throwing - 2 hour experience: $37

Alcohol

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

Typically, people visiting Auckland spend on average $7.63 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Christchurch $11
    Auckland $7.63

Sample the Local Flavors in Christchurch

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

  • A Waipara Wine Experience with Giles Tours, includes wine tastings and lunch: $95
  • All-Inclusive Waipara Region Wine Tour from Christchurch: $100
  • Akaroa Eco-Safari with Alpaca Farm Tour and Wine Tasting: $103
  • Full-day Akaroa Tour with Penguins Safari and Wine Tasting: $114
  • Lyttelton Shore Excursion - Waipara Wine Tour With Lunch: $115
  • Full-day Akaroa Tour with Dolphin Cruise & Wine Tasting: $133
  • Private Waipara Valley Wine Tasting Tour with optional Gourmet Lunch: $190
  • Hanmer Springs Private Day Tour Including Hot Pool & Wine Tasting: $356

Sample the Local Flavors in Auckland

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

  • Tour and Tastings in an Urban Craft Beer Brewery: $23
  • Wild West Coast & Black Sand Beach Tour incl Craft Beer Brewery Lunch & Tasting: $100
  • Premium Full Day Waiheke Wine Tour: $125
  • Small-Group Wine Tasting Experience on Waiheke Island: $131
  • Waiheke Island Premium Food & Wine Tour with Platter Lunch: $147
  • Waiheke Island: Private Wine Tour with Tastings: $151
  • The Essence of Waiheke Wine Tour: $157
  • Waiheke Island: Afternoon Small Group Wine Tour with Lunch: $158
  • Full-Day Waiheke Island Food and Wine Tour: $165
  • Matakana: Full-Day Food and Wine Tour: $169
  • The Afternoon Artisan Food and Wine Tour: $169
  • Auckland Shore Excursion: City Sightseeing, Harbour Cruise and Waiheke Island Wine Tasting: $171


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

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Christchurch vs. Auckland Travel Comparison

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