Should you visit Columbia or Virginia Beach?
Should I visit Columbia or Virginia Beach? 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.
Both the largest and capital city of South Carolina, Columbia is literally the center of everything. Geographically it is located in the middle of the state, and it is the home to the University of South Carolina, the Army's Fort Jackson, as well as a variety of museums that celebrate the city's art, history, and culture.
Virginia Beach sits on the edge of the Atlantic Ocean and the Chesapeake Bay. It's a popular beach destination and has many of the characteristics of most southeastern beach towns. There are many activities that you can enjoy and there's a concrete boardwalk that runs parallel to the water for about three miles. The boardwalk is a fun place to walk or bicycle. The beach itself is wide and sandy and is a great place to soak up some sun. During the summer months and school holidays it can get quite crowded and you might struggle to find a place for your towel and beach chairs. There are also many beach side resorts that line the water front. Most have pools and hot tubs where you can relax and some hotels have indoor pools as well, which can be nice during the cool winter months.
Which city is cheaper, Virginia Beach or Columbia?
These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.
The average daily cost (per person) in Columbia is $0.00, while the average daily cost in Virginia Beach is $104. 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 Columbia and Virginia Beach in more detail.
The prices for places to stay in Virginia Beach can vary by date, location, and type. Generally, the average cost for accommodation per person is $60, while a typical double-occupancy hotel room for two people will cost around $120.
The price of a meal in Columbia can vary widely. However, the average price for food per day is $4.02 per person, and a typical meal will cost around $1.61 based on the spending of previous visitors. Less expensive dining options can be found by eating street food or at fast food restaurants.
Food in Virginia Beach costs travelers about $25 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.
Meals for one day
Virginia Beach $25
Public transportation tends to be much less expensive in Virginia Beach than paying for a taxi or private car service, as is expected. Typically, people spend $31 on transportation in Virginia Beach on average per day.
Typical Local Transportation prices in Virginia Beach
Below are a few samples from actual travelers for transportation costs in Virginia Beach:
Is it cheaper to fly into Columbia or Virginia Beach?
Prices for flights to both Virginia Beach and Columbia 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.
Sightseeing expenses in Virginia Beach, including the cost of admission tickets for day tours, museums, and attractions, usually cost an average of $17 per day, per person.
Tours and Activities in Virginia Beach
Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Virginia Beach.
Sunset Stand Up Paddleboard Tour of Linkhorn Bay:
Wetland Zip Tour:
Sunset Dolphin Kayak Tours:
Small Group Dolphin Kayak Eco-Tour:
RIDE ALONG GREEK GODS & AQUATISM *Certified Tours*:
Tour of Virginia Beach (half day), for GROUPS of 10-16:
Tour of Virginia Beach, for GROUPS of 10-16:
All-Inclusive, Autumn Weekend Tour for GROUPS of 10-16:
The average person spends about $70 on alcoholic beverages in Columbia per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.
Alcoholic beverages can often be a significant portion of a traveler's budget, and the costs can vary greatly from person to person. In Virginia Beach, the average amount that a visitor spends on alcoholic beverages per day is $8.51.
When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Columbia and Virginia Beach, we can see that Virginia Beach is more expensive. And not only is Columbia much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Columbia would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Columbia 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 Virginia Beach would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Virginia Beach than you might in Columbia.
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