Should you visit Cozumel or Cancun?
Which city is more affordable and which is best for your travel style? If you're trying to figure out where to go next, comparing the travel costs between Cozumel and Cancun can help you decide which place is right for you.
Cozumel is a Caribbean island just off the Yucatan Peninsula. It'as a popular tourist destination because of its beautiful beaches and excellent snorkeling and scuba diving. With crystal clear waters and vibrant colored coral, Cozumel is one of the most popular dive destinations in the area. The island's economy is centered around tourism, and as such, you'll find plenty of amenities for visitors. The prices are comparable to other coastal towns in the area and there is no shortage of activities or attractions nearby.
In the northeast corner of the Mexican Caribbean, Cancun is one of Mexico's most popular destinations. The area that is now Cancun was actually selected specifically by the Mexican government for development as a tourist destination. The area was chosen because it has fourteen miles of beautiful white beaches, nearby Mayan ruins, and turquoise blue water with nearby snorkeling and scuba diving opportunities. Prior to its development as a tourist destination, there were few inhabitants in the area.
Which city is cheaper, Cancun or Cozumel?
These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.
The average daily cost (per person) in Cozumel is $62, while the average daily cost in Cancun is $98. 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 Cozumel and Cancun in more detail.
Double occupancy rooms typically run around $60 in Cozumel For nicer amenities and a premiere location, you can expect to pay a bit more.
Double occupancy rooms typically run around $132 in Cancun For nicer amenities and a premiere location, you can expect to pay a bit more.
Cozumel food costs typically run travelers around $16 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.
The price of a meal in Cancun can vary widely. However, the average price for food per day is $18 per person, and a typical meal will cost around $7.20 based on the spending of previous visitors. Less expensive dining options can be found by eating street food or at fast food restaurants.
Meals for one day
Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Cozumel
For Cozumel, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:
Typical Food prices in Cancun
For Cancun, here are some examples of average food and meal prices for travelers:
Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Cancun
For Cancun, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:
Captain Hook: Pirate Show and Dinner Cruise in Cancun:
Cancun Authentic Untouristed Food Tour:
Authentic Downtown Food Tour: Tacos and Local Flavors:
Dinner and Show on a Pirate Ship in Cancun with Open Bar:
Dinner-Show-Party on a Pirate Ship from Cancun! (Open bar included).:
Experience a Pirate Party Dinner Show at Cancun with Open Bar included!:
Dinner Show on a Pirate Ship from Cancun with Open Bar:
Mexican Dinner and Sprits Tasting in Cancun with transportation:
Captain Hook - Pirate Show and Dinner (Grilled Chicken) 2X1:
Captain Hook 2X1 - Pirate Show & Dinner with Open Bar:
Combo Capitan Hook chicken dinner + Isla Mujeres Catamaran:
Captain Hook - Pirate Show & Dinner (Grilled Chicken) 2X1:
To get around in Cozumel, 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.
Public transportation tends to be much less expensive in Cancun than paying for a taxi or private car service, as is expected. Typically, people spend $12 on transportation in Cancun on average per day.
Hired Cars and Shuttles in Cozumel
Also for Cozumel, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:
Private Departure Transfer: Hotel to Cozumel International Airport 5 - 8:
Private Departure Transfer: Hotel to Cozumel International Airport (1 - 6):
Private Arrival Transfer: Cozumel International Airport to Hotels (1 - 6):
Typical Local Transportation prices in Cancun
Below are a few samples from actual travelers for transportation costs in Cancun:
Hired Cars and Shuttles in Cancun
Also for Cancun, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:
Licenced Transfer - Cancun International Airport or Hotels to Merida Return:
Luxury SUV R/T Transfer-Airport-Isla Mujeres Ferry Dock-Airport W/ Ferry Tickets:
Private Roundtrip Transfer-Airport-Hotel-Airport- Cozumel Hotels W/Ferry Tickets:
Chichen Itza Private Transportation, Round Trip Transfer:
Licenced Transfer - Cancun International Airport or Hotels to Merida One-Way:
Luxury SUV Private Roundtrip Transfer- Airport-Hotel-Airport - Tulum Hotels:
Luxury SUV Private Roundtrip Transfer Airport-Hotel-Airport - Akumal Hotels:
Private R/T Transfer-Airport-Isla Mujeres Ferry Dock-Airport With Ferry Tickets:
Private VAN Roundtrip Transfer- Airport-Hotel-Airport - Tulum Hotels:
Cancun Airport Private Transfer One Way:To or From Holbox Ferry Up to 15 Pass.:
Private VAN Roundtrip Transfer- Airport-Hotel-Airport - Akumal Hotels:
Luxury SUV Private R/T Transfer- Airport-Hotel-Airport Playa del Carmen Hotel:
Is it cheaper to fly into Cozumel or Cancun?
Prices for flights to both Cancun and Cozumel 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 Cozumel, the costs for things to do, activities, admission tickets, and other sightseeing expenses are on average $29 per person, per day.
Sightseeing expenses in Cancun, including the cost of admission tickets for day tours, museums, and attractions, usually cost an average of $23 per day, per person.
Tours and Activities in Cozumel
Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Cozumel.
Amazing Cozumel Race: Scavenger Hunt/Sightseeing Tour:
Amazing Private Jeep Adventure in Cozumel:
Cozumel City Tour with Lunch:
Cozumel Dune Buggy Off-Road Adventure to Punta Sur:
Cozumel Historical Walking Tour with Lunch:
Cozumel Island Tour by Open-Top Safari Bus Including Tequila Tasting:
Cozumel Island: Half-Day Private Jeep Tour and Eco Park:
Cozumel Motorcycle Tour Aboard a Harley-Davidson or KTM 1290:
Cozumel Private Jeep Tour with Lunch and Snorkeling:
Cozumel Shore Excursion: ATV, Ziplines and Cenote Tour Extreme Adventure Park:
Typical Entertainment prices in Cancun
Below are a few sample prices from actual travelers for Cancun's activities, tours, and tickets:
Whale Shark Tour (for 2)
Tours and Activities in Cancun
For Cancun, here are a few prices for actual activities, tours, and tickets provided by various companies:
(4x1) Tour Plus Coba,Tulum,Playa del Carmen & Cenote - from Riviera Maya:
(4x1) Tulum, Coba, Cenote and Playa del Carmen a complete tour from Cancún:
(4x1) Tulum, Coba, Cenote and Playa del Carmen in Our Full Day Tour:
(All inclusive) Catamaran Tour to Isla Mujeres from Cancun for the less:
1 Day Tour to Bacalar, Cenotes and 7 color Lagoon with lunch from Cancun:
1 Lagoon + 3 Cenotes Tour Plus from Cancun and Playa del Carmen:
1 Lagoon and 3 Cenotes Tour Departure form Cancun:
1-Day Coba-Tulum Tour (Cancun departure) EMC1T:
1-day Chichen Itza Classic Tour ( Cancun departure) ( EMC1CE ):
10-Day Wildlife Adventure Ecofriendly Tour from Cancun:
10-Day Yucatan Heritage Ecofriendly Tour from Cancun:
11 Day-Birdwatching Ecofriendly Tour from Cancun:
Alcoholic beverages can often be a significant portion of a traveler's budget, and the costs can vary greatly from person to person. In Cozumel, the average amount that a visitor spends on alcoholic beverages per day is $7.46.
Typically, people visiting Cancun spend on average $8.82 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.
Sample the Local Flavors in Cancun
Also in Cancun, these are the prices for nightlife and alcohol related activities from various tour providers:
Cancun Private Mexican Wine Tasting:
When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Cozumel and Cancun, we can see that Cancun is more expensive. And not only is Cozumel much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Cozumel would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Cozumel 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 Cancun would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Cancun than you might in Cozumel.
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