Should you visit Columbus or Hershey?
Should I visit Columbus or Hershey? 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.
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.
Often called "Chocolatetown, USA" and "The Sweetest Place on Earth," Hershey, Pennsylvania is most known for being home to the famous Hershey's chocolates. The Hershey Company was founded in 1894 by Milton S. Hershey, and has grown to sell products in over sixty countries worldwide. Before the town was named Hershey, it was called Derry Church and was the hometown of the chocolatier. While there are now manufacturing plants in many locations, Hershey, PA, remains the location that draws the crowds. It is the place where the Hershey Company originated and is home to attractions like Hershey Park, Hershey Gardens, and Hershey's Chocolate World.
Which city is cheaper, Hershey 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 Hershey is $170. 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 Hershey in more detail.
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.
If you're traveling alone, you may be able to find a budget hotel or hostel for around $91. But for two people in a standard two-person hotel room in Hershey the cost is $182 on average.
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.
While meal prices in Hershey can vary, the average travelers spends about $49 per day on food. Based on the spending habits of previous travelers, when dining out, an average meal in Hershey should cost around $20 per person. Breakfast prices are usually a little cheaper than lunch or dinner. The price of food in sit-down restaurants in Hershey is often higher than fast food prices or street food prices.
Meals for one day
Typical Food prices in Hershey
Below are a few samples from actual travelers for food and meal costs in Hershey:
Frozen Hot Chocolate
Plain and Fancy Farm
Homemade Apple Butter
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.
The cost of a taxi ride in Hershey is significantly more than public transportation. On average, past travelers have spent $39 per person, per day, on local transportation in Hershey.
Hired Cars and Shuttles in Columbus
Also for Columbus, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:
Columbus John Glen Airport (CMH) to Columbus - Arrival Private Transfer:
Columbus John Glen Airport (CMH) to Columbus - Round-Trip Private Transfer:
Columbus to Columbus John Glen Airport (CMH) - Departure Private Transfer:
Is it cheaper to fly into Columbus or Hershey?
Prices for flights to both Hershey 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.
In Columbus, the costs for things to do, activities, admission tickets, and other sightseeing expenses are on average $37 per person, per day.
Entertainment and activities in Hershey typically cost an average of $43 per person, per day. This includes fees paid for admission tickets to museums and attractions, day tours, and other sightseeing expenses.
Tours and Activities in Columbus
For Columbus, here are a few prices for actual activities, tours, and tickets provided by various companies:
Unique Scavenger Hunt Experience in Columbus:
Columbus Scavenger Hunt Adventure:
LEGOLAND Discovery Center Columbus Ticket:
Central Park Bike Tour:
Typical Entertainment prices in Hershey
Here are a few typical costs in Hershey for activities, ticket prices, and tours that come from previous visitors:
Tours and Activities in Hershey
Here are a few actual costs in Hershey for available activities, ticket prices, and tours:
Skip the Line: AACA Museum Admission Ticket:
Typically, people visiting Columbus spend on average $16 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.
While the amount that someone spends on alcohol while visiting Hershey may vary from person to person, on average a person spends $22 per day on alcoholic beverages.
When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Columbus and Hershey, we can see that Hershey is more expensive. And not only is Columbus much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Columbus would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Columbus 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 Hershey would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Hershey than you might in Columbus.
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