A Travel Price Comparison for Ohio Columbus vs. Cleveland for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Columbus or Cleveland?

Should I visit Columbus or Cleveland? 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.

Columbus

The capital city of Ohio, Columbus sits at the meeting point of America's Rust Belt, Bible Belt, Appalachia, and the Plains. It is also home of Ohio State University, which is a major financial and economic force in the city. You'll likely need a car to navigate the city, although there is a bus system, COTA, which can take you to some of Columbus' highlights.

Cleveland

Located on the shores of Lake Erie of the Great Lakes, Cleveland is the second largest city in the U.S. state of Ohio. As a culturally diverse and thriving metropolitan area, the city is host to a vast range of sights and activities, such as world-class museums, cultural events, professional sports, and golf courses as well as plenty of dining, shopping, and entertainment opportunities.

Which city is cheaper, Cleveland or Columbus?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Columbus is $126, while the average daily cost in Cleveland is $106. 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 Columbus and Cleveland in more detail.



Accommodation

An average hotel room with basic furnishings costs about $116 in Columbus For the most convenient locations and nicer amenities you can expect to pay a bit more.

The prices for places to stay in Cleveland 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.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Columbus $58
    Cleveland $60
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Columbus $116
    Cleveland $120

Food

The average traveler spends about $39 per day in Columbus for food, but obviously this is dependent on the type of restaurant and the amount of food ordered. To save money you can grab a lighter lunch or dinner, or you can try fast food or street food.

On average, meal and food prices in Cleveland cost around $29 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 $12.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Columbus $39
    Cleveland $29

Typical Food prices in Cleveland

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


  • Coffee
    $1.79
  • Sandwich
    $9.75
  • Large Pizza
    $15

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Cleveland

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

  • West Side Market Food Tour: $47
  • Tremont Neighborhood Food Tour: $65
  • Ohio City Food Tour: $70
  • Little Italy Neighborhood Food Tour: $73
  • Tremont Guided Food Tour with Tasting: $246

Local Transportation

To get around in Columbus, the average visitor spends $40 per day, per person. This includes the costs of taxi rides and private drivers as well as public transportation, which tends to be much more affordable.

To get around in Cleveland, the average visitor spends $15 per day, per person. This includes the costs of taxi rides and private drivers as well as public transportation, which tends to be much more affordable.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Columbus $40
    Cleveland $15

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Columbus

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

  • Columbus to Columbus John Glen Airport (CMH) - Departure Private Transfer: $87
  • Columbus John Glen Airport (CMH) to Columbus - Round-Trip Private Transfer: $174
  • Columbus John Glen Airport (CMH) to Columbus - Arrival Private Transfer: $87

Typical Local Transportation prices in Cleveland

Some typical examples of transportation costs in Cleveland are as follows:


  • Taxi to Airport
    $36

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Cleveland

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

  • Private Departure Transfer to Cleveland Airport (CLE): $62
  • Private Arrival Transfer from Cleveland Airprot (CLE): $62
  • Cleveland to Cleveland Hopkins Airport (CLE) - Departure Private Transfer: $78
  • Cleveland Hopkins Airport (CLE) to Cleveland - Round-Trip Private Transfer: $157
  • Cleveland Hopkins Airport (CLE) to Cleveland - Arrival Private Transfer: $78
  • Cleveland Airport-Hotel Ground Transfer - One Way: $106
  • Cleveland Airport - Executive Sedan/SUV Airport/Hotel Round Trip Transfer: $261
  • CLE Airport Transfer to Downtown Cleveland: $116

Is it cheaper to fly into Columbus or Cleveland?

Prices for flights to both Cleveland and Columbus 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

In Columbus, the costs for things to do, activities, admission tickets, and other sightseeing expenses are on average $37 per person, per day.

In Cleveland, the costs for things to do, activities, admission tickets, and other sightseeing expenses are on average $32 per person, per day.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Columbus $37
    Cleveland $32

Tours and Activities in Columbus

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

  • Columbus Scavenger Hunt Adventure: $21
  • LEGOLAND Discovery Center Columbus Ticket: $21
  • Unique Scavenger Hunt Experience in Columbus: $11

Tours and Activities in Cleveland

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

  • 60's Throwback Shopping Tour: $375
  • Casual Wine transportation tour: $225
  • Cleveland History Center General Admission Entry Ticket: $12
  • Private City Tour: $250
  • Downtown Cleveland Smartphone-Guided Walking Tour: $24
  • Private Wine Full Day Tour from Atlanta City by Luxury Vehicle: $987
  • Romantic tour in Cleveland: $498
  • Skip the Line: GRAMMY Museum Mississippi General Admission Ticket: $14
  • Spring Break GREECE Tour: $3,700
  • Stradbroke Island Adventure: $672
  • The Original Cleveland Brew Tour: $108
  • The best of Cleveland walking tour: $498

Alcohol

Typically, people visiting Columbus spend on average $16 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.

Typically, people visiting Cleveland spend on average $36 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Columbus $16
    Cleveland $36

Typical Alcohol prices in Cleveland

Some typical examples of the costs for nightlife and alcohol in Cleveland are as follows:


  • A Night of Shots
    $36

Sample the Local Flavors in Cleveland

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Cleveland:

  • Cleveland Bar Hunt: Cleveland Climax Bar Crawl: $12
  • Brewery Tour with Tastings: $81


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

Budget Your Trip

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Columbus vs. Cleveland Travel Comparison

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