A Travel Price Comparison for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons Cologne vs. Hamburg

Should you visit Cologne or Hamburg?

Should I visit Cologne or Hamburg? 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.

Cologne

Spanning the Rhine River in western Germany, the city of Cologne dates back 2,000 years, once existing as the largest city of the Holy Roman Empire in medieval times. Today, it is the region's cultural hub - a center of museums, galleries, and towering Gothic cathedrals.

Hamburg

Hamburg is most noted for its port, which is the largest in Germany and the second busiest in Europe. Despite it's size, it is actually located about 100 kilometers from the North Sea on the River Elbe. The popularity of this port has given Hamburg the nickname as Germany's Gateway to the World. The city itself is the second largest in Germany and the metropolitan area has a population of over 4 million people.

Which city is cheaper, Hamburg or Cologne?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Cologne is €126, while the average daily cost in Hamburg is €68. 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 Cologne and Hamburg in more detail.




Accommodation

If you're traveling alone, you may be able to find a budget hotel or hostel for around €70. But for two people in a standard two-person hotel room in Cologne the cost is €140 on average.

Hamburg's average price for two people sharing a typical double-occupancy hotel room is €62. A typical place to stay for one person, per day is €31.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Cologne 70
    Hamburg 31
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Cologne 140
    Hamburg 62


Food

In Cologne travelers spend around €40 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.

The price of a meal in Hamburg can vary widely. However, the average price for food per day is €22 per person, and a typical meal will cost around €8.80 based on the spending of previous visitors. Less expensive dining options can be found by eating street food or at fast food restaurants.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Cologne 40
    Hamburg 22
Typical Food prices in Cologne

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


  • Dinner
    14
  • Donner Kebab
    4.00

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Cologne

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

  • Traveling Spoon French Quiche Private Online Cooking Class: $27
  • Private Gourmet Cooking Class in the Heart of Cologne: $129
  • Private Market Tour and Gourmet Vegetarian Cooking Class in the Heart of Cologne: $183

Typical Food prices in Hamburg

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


  • Pink Thai Soup Dinner and Spring Rolls
    15
  • Currywurst and Pommes Frites
    5.00
  • Donner Kebab and Coke
    6.00
  • Traditional Hamburg Dinner w/ Beer
    15
  • Donner Kebab Lunch
    4.00
  • Sandwich and Coffee Break
    6.00
  • Fish Sandwich from Fish Market
    3.50
  • Coffee and Donut
    4.00

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Hamburg

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

  • Historic Reeperbahn Tour with Optional Dinner in Hamburg: $38
  • St. Georg Hamburg - Food Tour: $45
  • HafenCity & Elbphilharmonie - Food Tour: $50
  • Sternschanze Hamburg - Food Tour: $53
  • St. Pauli - Food Tour: $53
  • Eat Like A Local : Hamburg Private Food Tour With Tastings: $146


Local Transportation

While taxis and private drivers typically cost much more than public transportation, people usually spend around €15 per day to get around in Cologne.

While taxis and private drivers typically cost much more than public transportation, people usually spend around €10 per day to get around in Hamburg.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Cologne 15
    Hamburg 10

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Cologne

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Cologne:

  • Arrival Private Transfer Cologne-Bonn Airport CGN to Cologne City - Business Car: $73
  • Arrival Private Transfer Cologne-Bonn Airport to Cologne City by Luxury Van: $87
  • Departure Private Transfer Cologne-Bonn Airport CGN to Cologne by Business Car: $73
  • Low Cost Private Transfer From Cologne Bonn Airport to Cologne City - One Way: $69
  • Low Cost Private Transfer From D├╝sseldorf International Airport to Cologne City - One Way: $201
  • Low Cost Private Transfer From Eindhoven Airport to Cologne City - One Way: $243
  • Low Cost Private Transfer From Frankfurt am Main International Airport to Cologne City - One Way: $540
  • Low Cost Private Transfer From M├Ânchengladbach Airport to Cologne City - One Way: $192
  • Luxury Car Arrival Transfer: Cologne-Bonn Airport to Cologne City: $98
  • Luxury Car Private Departure Transfer: Cologne city to Cologne-Bonn Airport: $98
  • Luxury Van Private Departure Transfer: Cologne-Bonn Airport: $87
  • Private Airport Transfer: Cologne Bonn Airport (CGN) to Bonn: $50

Typical Local Transportation prices in Hamburg

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


  • Short Distance Ubahn Ticket
    1.70

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Hamburg

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Hamburg:

  • Airport Transfer Luxury Van 8-seater: $299
  • Airport transfer executive sedan: $148
  • Airport-Transfer First Class: $198
  • Airport-Transfer Premium Van: $180
  • Arrival Private Transfers from Hamburg Airport HAM to Hamburg City: $59
  • Arrival Private Transfers from Hamburg Airport HAM to Hamburg City: $77
  • Arrival Private Transfers from Hamburg Airport XFW to Hamburg City: $87
  • Arrival Private Transfers from Hamburg Airport XFW to Hamburg City: $105
  • Deluxe Private Transfer From Hamburg City to Berlin City: $249
  • Departure Private Transfers from Hamburg City to Hamburg Airport HAM: $77
  • Departure Private Transfers from Hamburg City to Hamburg Airport HAM: $62
  • Departure Private Transfers from Hamburg City to Hamburg Airport XFW: $87


Entertainment

Activities, things to do, and other forms of entertainment usually cost around €16 per person, per day in Cologne. This cost includes the price of admission tickets to attractions and museums as well as daily tours.

Activities, things to do, and other forms of entertainment usually cost around €29 per person, per day in Hamburg. This cost includes the price of admission tickets to attractions and museums as well as daily tours.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Cologne 16
    Hamburg 29

Tours and Activities in Cologne

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

  • English guided tour (other languages offered): $6.22
  • Experience KölnCard: $11
  • 1-hour Rhine River Panorama Cruise: $12
  • Panorama City Cruise Options: $13
  • Cologne Sightseeing round-trip Cruise: $15
  • Skip-the-Line Ticket to Chocolate Museum in Cologne: $23
  • Skip the Line: Hard Rock Cafe Cologne: $24
  • Cologne Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tour and Rhine River Sightseeing Cruise: $30
  • Cologne Like a Local: Customized Private Tour: $38
  • Cologne All-inclusive Evening Cruise: $87
  • Cologne Walking tour of Old Town: $200
  • Private tour of the best of Cologne - Sightseeing, Food & Culture with a local: $249

Typical Entertainment prices in Hamburg

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


  • Tower at St. Michael's Church
    3.50

Tours and Activities in Hamburg

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

  • Panoptikum Hamburg Ticket: $8.58
  • Hamburg Self-Guided Audio Tour: $15
  • City Cruise on Alster Lake: $18
  • Express outer Elbphilharmonietour: $19
  • GROUP TICKETS HOP-ON HOP-OFF City Tour by Bus: $20
  • Hop-On Hop-Off Tour - Yellow Double Decker - GROUP TICKETS: $20
  • City Tour of Hamburg with Hop-On, Hop-Off Ticket: $22
  • Line A Hop-On Hop-Off Sightseeing Tour: $22
  • Hop-On/ Hop-Off Sightseeing Tour Classic Line: $22
  • City Walking Tour JEWISH HAMBURG: $22
  • City Walking Tour DEADLY KIEZ: $22
  • Hop-on Hop-off Tour by Bus: $23


Alcohol

While the amount that someone spends on alcohol while visiting Cologne may vary from person to person, on average a person spends €18 per day on alcoholic beverages.

While the amount that someone spends on alcohol while visiting Hamburg may vary from person to person, on average a person spends €13 per day on alcoholic beverages.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Cologne 18
    Hamburg 13

Sample the Local Flavors in Cologne

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

  • Pub Crawl Cologne Including Admission Fee for Bars and Shots: $24

Sample the Local Flavors in Hamburg

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

  • Hamburg Pub Crawl: 4 Bars, 1 Shot per Bar: $14
  • Corona Pub Crawl with special drinks: $62
  • Private guided Club & Pub tour - Pub Crawl: $358



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

Budget Your Trip

Budget Your Trip has average travel costs for thousands of cities around the world, all provided by other travelers. You can also register to organize your spending by category and location with graphs, maps, charts, and tables.

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Cologne vs. Hamburg Travel Comparison

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