A Travel Price Comparison for Florida Daytona Beach vs. Panama City for Nightlife, Families, Beaches, and Food

Should you visit Daytona Beach or Panama City?

Which is cheaper to visit? Which is more expensive for vacation?

Should I visit Daytona Beach or Panama City? This is a common question asked by many travelers. By figuring out which city has activities that align with your interests along with knowing which is more affordable, you'll understand where you can get more bang for your buck. So, let's dive into the details and the data, which all comes from actual travelers.

Daytona Beach

Daytona Beach is a energetic, lively, and fun beach city. And you can't forget about the live music, beaches, and nightlife.

Panama City

Panama City is a cosmopolitan, fun-filled, and active beach town. It offers plenty of beauty for visitors. Other popular activities here include food, beaches, and shopping.

Daytona Beach and Panama City: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Good music scene
  • Popular beach
  • Good for couples and romance
Cons
  • Less family-friendly
Pros
  • Good music scene
  • Popular beach
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance


How is Daytona Beach different from Panama City?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

Let's take a look at the differences and similarities between Panama City and Daytona Beach. Then, you can decide for yourself which place is better for your next trip.

Is Daytona Beach or Panama City Better for Food?

Daytona Beach
Panama City

Both Daytona Beach and Panama City offer a number of unique restaurants to choose from.

Daytona Beach may not make the list for most foodies, but you'll find what you need while you're in town. This beach is more about the parties and drinks than it is about the food.

There are plenty of up and coming restaurants around Panama City. Fried seafood is popular when eating out.


Is Daytona Beach or Panama City Better for Nightlife?

Daytona Beach
Panama City

Both Daytona Beach and Panama City are comparable when it comes to partying.

Daytona Beach is a world class party destination. Spring break is when the parties are at their peak. For the most active nightlife head to A1A from Ormond-by-the-Sea to Ponce Inlet, Main and Beach Streets, and Seabreeze Boulevard, ONE DAYTONA and International Speedway Boulevard in Daytona Beach, and Granada Boulevard in Ormond Beach.

Panama City has a large number of nightlife venues. The nightlife is particular crazy during spring break, when the town fills with students. Head to the famous Club La Vela or Spinnaker for music and fun at night.

Is Daytona Beach or Panama City Better for Music?

Daytona Beach
Panama City

Both Daytona Beach and Panama City offer a variety of live music venues.

The music scene in Daytona Beach is active and vibrant. You can see live music at the Hard Rock Hotel Daytona Beach, Daytona Beach Bandshell and The Roof.

Music lovers will find a few good venues in Panama City. A popular way to enjoy music in the area is to find a restaurant with a lounge where local musicians perform.

Is Daytona Beach or Panama City Better for Resorts?

Daytona Beach
Panama City

Daytona Beach and Panama City offer a relatively similar set of luxury resort options.

You might not think of Daytona Beach as a resort destination, but it has a few places. Many resorts in the area focus more on affordability than luxury.

Panama City has a handful of resorts to choose from. Most people stay in condos that are VRBO's or Airbnbs, but there are resorts in the area as well.

Is Daytona Beach or Panama City Better for Beaches?

Daytona Beach
Panama City

For a relaxing beach holiday, both Daytona Beach and Panama City are good choices.

Daytona Beach is a good option for a beach vacation. The city's beaches are lively and festive, so if you're looking for a beach with music, drinking, and partying, then this is your place. In the surrounding areas you'll find some quieter, more family-friendly beaches.

Panama City is a very popular place to visit for its beaches. With miles of long white sand beaches and crystal blue waters, this areas beaches offer a beautiful escape.


Is Daytona Beach or Panama City Better for Shopping?

Daytona Beach
Panama City

Both Daytona Beach and Panama City are good shopping destinations.

Daytona Beach has some good spots for those that want to go shopping. Souvenir shops and t-shirt shops are the main shopping you'll find in this area.

Plenty of visitors enjoy shopping while in Panama City. There are a number of malls and shopping centers in the area.

Is Daytona Beach or Panama City Better for Families?

Daytona Beach
Panama City

There's generally more to do with your family in Panama City than Daytona Beach.

As it has a large number of activities for kids, Panama City is a very family-friendly destination. This area has large sandy beaches, waterparks, amusement parks, and marine parks.

Daytona Beach is not always a place people visit with their families. Best avoided during spring break, Daytona with kids can be fun when the crowds aren't too bad. There are water parks, surfing lessons, and of course the beach.

Is Daytona Beach or Panama City Better for Couples?

Daytona Beach
Panama City

With fun activities for couples, both Daytona Beach and Panama City make for a good place to visit.

Daytona Beach is a good beach city for couples to visit. Couples who like to party and be out and about will enjoy a visit to Daytona Beach.

Panama City is a nice destination for couples. The beautiful beaches and romantic restaurants make for a great romantic getaway.

Is Daytona Beach or Panama City Better for Public Transit?

Daytona Beach
Panama City

Both Daytona Beach and Panama City offer public transit options.

Public transit is limited or non-existant in Daytona Beach.

Public transit is mostly limited in Panama City. Most people need a car in Panama City but there is a trolley service that connects major tourist areas.


Is Daytona Beach or Panama City a more walkable city?

Daytona Beach
Panama City

Daytona Beach and Panama City both are comparable when exploring on foot.

Daytona Beach is not a walkable beach city. This area requires a car if you want to access restaurants, nightlife, or anything away from your hotel.

Panama City is not a very walkable beach city. There's often construction and the streets aren't designed for pedestrians.

Should I spend more time in Panama City or Daytona Beach?

How long in Daytona Beach or Panama City?

Both Daytona Beach and Panama City have a number of activities to choose from. With generally more activities and things to do, visitors tend to spend more time in Panama City than Daytona Beach.

The ideal length of time for a trip to Daytona Beach is 7 days, and the ideal length of time for a trip to Panama City is 3-7 days.


  • How many days in Daytona Beach or Panama City? Ideal Length of Stay
    Daytona Beach 7 
    Panama City 3-7

One day in Daytona Beach or Panama City?

Visitors enjoy the nightlife and live music when visiting the party-hard beach city of Daytona Beach. Most people visit for the nightlife. One day is usually not enough time for a trip here as there is plenty to do. The entire region has so many activities, and you'll want time to do everything.

Many travelers enjoy the food and shopping when visiting the cosmopolitan destination of Panama City. You'll find plenty of activities on the beach. Your budget might influence how long you stay. Since there is so much to do in the area, one day is probably not enough for all of it.

A weekend in Daytona Beach or Panama City?

Visitors enjoy the live music and nightlife when visiting the party-hard destination of Daytona Beach. This beach city offers something for everyone. Since there is so much to do in the area, a weekend is probably not enough for all of it.

It's hard to know how much time to spend in Panama City. Most people come for the beaches. It has many unique tourist attractions and fascinating things to do. A weekend is usually not enough time for a trip here as there is plenty to do.

Five days in Daytona Beach or Panama City?

The fun beach city of Daytona Beach offers nightlife and live music. Five days may feel like too much time unless you plan to do a lot of relaxing. The length of your trip often depends on your style of travel.

Many travelers enjoy the nightlife and live music when visiting the cosmopolitan destination of Panama City. Many visitors spend time at the beach while visiting the area. This beach town offers a variety of activities to choose from. If you have five days, this is a great place to go. Five days is usually enough time to experience most activities.


A week in Daytona Beach or Panama City?

Many people enjoy the live music and nightlife when visiting Daytona Beach. Anyone can find something fun to do here. Most people visit for the nightlife. Most people find that one week is more than enough time to see everything.

Many travelers enjoy the live music and food when visiting the beach town of Panama City. People usually spend lots of time at the beach. Plenty of people spend one week in the area when traveling.So, one week is just the right amount of time to spend here. The length of your ideal trip is an individual decision.

Which city is cheaper, Panama City or Daytona Beach?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Daytona Beach is $169, while the average daily cost in Panama City is $179. 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. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Daytona Beach and Panama City in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Daytona Beach $67
    Panama City $103
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Daytona Beach $134
    Panama City $206
Compare Hotels in Daytona Beach and Panama City

Looking for a hotel in Daytona Beach or Panama City? Prices vary by location, date, season, and the level of luxury. See below for options and compare which is best for your budget and travel style.

Hotels in Daytona Beach


Hotels in Panama City


Kayak helps you find the best prices for hotels, flights, and rental cars for destinations around the world. Compare prices for multiple destinations when planning your next trip.


Our Analysis
We've analyzed the average and typical hotel prices based on guest reviews, star ratings, and hotel amenities here: Daytona Beach Hotel Prices and Panama City Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Daytona Beach $42
    Panama City $38

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Daytona Beach

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Daytona Beach:

  • Daytona Beach & surrounding areas Private 14 passenger Luxury Mini-bus transfer: $62
  • Daytona Beach International Airport One Way Transfer: $43
  • Private Transfer from Daytona to Orlando (MCO) Airport: $377
  • Private Transfer from Daytona to Orlando-Sanford (SFB) Airport: $228
  • Private Transfer from Daytona to Port Canaveral: $360

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Panama City

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Panama City:

  • Transfer to Panama Canal (Miraflores Locks): $11
  • Private Departure Transfer to Panama City Airport (PTY): $12
  • Private Arrival Transfer from Panama City Airport (PTY): $12
  • Shared Arrival Transfer: Tocumen International Airport to Panama City Hotels: $15
  • Shared Departure Transfer: Panama City Hotels to Tocumen International Airport: $15
  • Airport Private Transfer Tocumen Direct to Panama City: $18
  • Transfer to Dreams Playa Bonita: $18
  • Private Airport Transfer: Panama City to Tocumen International Airport (PTY): $19
  • Private Airport Transfer: Tocumen International Airport (PTY) to Panama City: $19
  • Transfer from Panama City to Tocumen Airport: $19
  • Private Transfer from Tocumen Airport to Downtown Panama City, Panama: $20
  • Private Transfer Airport PTY to Panama City: $22

Is it cheaper to fly into Daytona Beach or Panama City?

Prices for flights to both Panama City and Daytona Beach 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.





Food
  • Food Meals for one day
    Daytona Beach $64
    Panama City $53

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Panama City

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

  • Food Tour - Panama Gastronomy: $102
  • Casco Antiguo Sunset Walking Tour with Dinner: $170
  • The 'Real' Panamanian Private Food Tour: $200
  • Whale Watching + Beach + Seafood Dinner - BEST VALUE IN PANAMA: $205

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Daytona Beach $22
    Panama City $15

Tours and Activities in Daytona Beach

Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for Daytona Beach are as follows:

  • Zipline Adventure through Tuscawilla Park: $41
  • Small-Group Sailing Tour in Daytona Beach: $49
  • Historic Pub and Bar Pedal Bus Tour of Beach Street: $54
  • Hopcycles Pedal Bus 2 Hour South Tour: $54
  • Dolphin and Manatee Stand Up Paddleboard Tour in Daytona Beach: $56

Tours and Activities in Panama City

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

  • Casco Antiguo Virtual Live Tour: $12
  • Skip the Line: Panama La Vieja Admission Ticket: $15
  • Dolphin Sightseeing Tour on The Footloose Catamaran from Panama City Beach: $25
  • Sea Breeze Champagne Adventure: $28
  • Panama City and Canal Tour ( Centro de Visitante de Miraflores): $31
  • Panama City Beach: Gulf World Marine Park Entrance Ticket: $36
  • Private Panama Canal Tour: $41
  • Shopping Tour in Panama: $42
  • Tour Colonial Panama: $42
  • Panama Viejo Ruins Sightseeing Tour: $43
  • Panama City Tour highlight: $45
  • Panama City Sunset E-Bike Adventure: $48

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Daytona Beach $34
    Panama City $45

Sample the Local Flavors in Panama City

Also in Panama City, these are the prices for nightlife and alcohol related activities from various tour providers:

  • Panama Bar Crawl (private): $33


When comparing the travel costs between Daytona Beach and Panama City, we can see that Panama City is more expensive. However, the two cities are actually relatively comparable in price, as the difference is somewhat minimal. Generally, this means that you could travel with generally the same travel style and level of luxury in each place. Since both cities are in North America, it's no surprise that their costs are relatively close, as many destinations here have somewhat similar travel prices overall.


When is the best time to visit Daytona Beach or Panama City?

Both destinations experience a temperate climate with four distinct seasons. And since both cities are in the northern hemisphere, summer is in July and winter is in January.

Should I visit Daytona Beach or Panama City in the Summer?

The summer attracts plenty of travelers to both Daytona Beach and Panama City. Many travelers come to Daytona Beach for the beaches, the music scene, and the family-friendly experiences. Furthermore, many visitors come to Panama City in the summer for the beaches, the music scene, and the family-friendly experiences.

In July, Daytona Beach is generally around the same temperature as Panama City. Temperatures in Daytona Beach average around 81°F (27°C), and Panama City stays around 82°F (28°C).

Panama City receives a lot of rain in the summer. Daytona Beach gets a good bit of rain this time of year. In July, Daytona Beach usually receives less rain than Panama City. Daytona Beach gets 5.4 inches (137 mm) of rain, while Panama City receives 7.3 inches (184 mm) of rain each month for the summer.


  • Summer Average Temperatures July
    Daytona Beach 81°F (27°C) 
    Panama City 82°F (28°C)

Should I visit Daytona Beach or Panama City in the Autumn?

The autumn brings many poeple to Daytona Beach as well as Panama City. Many visitors come to Daytona Beach in the autumn for the shopping scene and the music scene. Additionally, most visitors come to Panama City for the shopping scene, the music scene, and the natural beauty of the area during these months.

Daytona Beach is around the same temperature as Panama City in the autumn. The temperature in Daytona Beach is usually 74°F (23°C) in October, and Panama City stays around 71°F (22°C).

Daytona Beach receives a lot of rain in the autumn. Daytona Beach usually gets more rain in October than Panama City. Daytona Beach gets 4.1 inches (105 mm) of rain, while Panama City receives 3.4 inches (86 mm) of rain this time of the year.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Daytona Beach 74°F (23°C) 
    Panama City 71°F (22°C)

Should I visit Daytona Beach or Panama City in the Winter?

Both Panama City and Daytona Beach are popular destinations to visit in the winter with plenty of activities. Most visitors come to Daytona Beach for the shopping scene and the cuisine during these months. Also, the winter months attract visitors to Panama City because of the shopping scene and the cuisine.

In the winter, Daytona Beach is a little warmer than Panama City. Typically, the winter temperatures in Daytona Beach in January are around 58°F (14°C), and Panama City is about 52°F (11°C).

In January, Daytona Beach usually receives less rain than Panama City. Daytona Beach gets 2.8 inches (70 mm) of rain, while Panama City receives 3.9 inches (99 mm) of rain each month for the winter.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Daytona Beach 58°F (14°C) 
    Panama City 52°F (11°C)

Should I visit Daytona Beach or Panama City in the Spring?

Both Panama City and Daytona Beach during the spring are popular places to visit. The spring months attract visitors to Daytona Beach because of the beaches. Also, the beaches and the natural beauty are the main draw to Panama City this time of year.

In April, Daytona Beach is generally around the same temperature as Panama City. Temperatures in Daytona Beach average around 69°F (21°C), and Panama City stays around 68°F (20°C).

Daytona Beach usually gets less rain in April than Panama City. Daytona Beach gets 2.2 inches (57 mm) of rain, while Panama City receives 2.7 inches (69 mm) of rain this time of the year.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Daytona Beach 69°F (21°C) 
    Panama City 68°F (20°C)

Typical Weather for Panama City and Daytona Beach

Daytona Beach Panama City
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 58°F (14°C) 2.8 inches (70 mm) 52°F (11°C) 3.9 inches (99 mm)
Feb 59°F (15°C) 3.1 inches (79 mm) 55°F (13°C) 3.8 inches (96 mm)
Mar 65°F (18°C) 2.9 inches (74 mm) 61°F (16°C) 4.3 inches (108 mm)
Apr 69°F (21°C) 2.2 inches (57 mm) 68°F (20°C) 2.7 inches (69 mm)
May 75°F (24°C) 3.5 inches (88 mm) 74°F (24°C) 2.7 inches (68 mm)
Jun 80°F (26°C) 6 inches (152 mm) 80°F (27°C) 4.6 inches (116 mm)
Jul 81°F (27°C) 5.4 inches (137 mm) 82°F (28°C) 7.3 inches (184 mm)
Aug 81°F (27°C) 6.2 inches (157 mm) 82°F (28°C) 7.5 inches (191 mm)
Sep 80°F (26°C) 6.3 inches (161 mm) 79°F (26°C) 7.5 inches (192 mm)
Oct 74°F (23°C) 4.1 inches (105 mm) 71°F (22°C) 3.4 inches (86 mm)
Nov 66°F (19°C) 2.8 inches (72 mm) 63°F (17°C) 3.2 inches (81 mm)
Dec 60°F (16°C) 2.6 inches (66 mm) 56°F (13°C) 4.1 inches (104 mm)


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Daytona Beach vs. Panama City Travel Comparison

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