A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers Doha vs. Istanbul for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Doha or Istanbul?

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

Trying to figure out where to travel next? This travel comparison between Doha and Istanbul can help. It includes a travel cost comparison in addition to other factors. For many travelers, the cost of a destination is a primary consideration when choosing where to go.

Where Should I go: Doha or Istanbul?


Doha is the capital city of Qatar, modern and rapidly developing with much construction underway. It is home to Doha International Airport, the main point of entry for Qatar, as well as many of the country's best museums and examples of cultural heritage.


Istanbul is strategically located on the Bosphorus and is split between Europe and Asia. It truly is a city where east meets west. Istanbul is the cultural and financial hub of Turkey, and also the most populous city. The sites are countless and there's something for everybody, whether you're interested in art, music, food, or adventure. You can pass many days exploring both the residential and commercial pockets of this city. Much of the appeal is hidden away along back alleys or within corner shops.

Which place is cheaper, Istanbul or Doha?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Doha is $200, while the average daily cost in Istanbul is $133. 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 destination. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Doha and Istanbul in more detail.

  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Doha $119
    Istanbul $50
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Doha $238
    Istanbul $100
Compare Hotels in Doha and Istanbul

Looking for a hotel in Doha or Istanbul? 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 Doha

Hotels in Istanbul

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: Doha Hotel Prices and Istanbul Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Doha $23
    Istanbul $58

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Doha

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Doha:

  • Sharing Arrival Transfer - Doha city: $14
  • Shared Departure Transfer from Doha: $14
  • Shared Arrival Transfer - Doha City: $14
  • Shared Departure Transfer from Doha: $14
  • Sharing Arrival Transfer - West Bay: $20
  • Sharing Arrival Transfer - West bay: $20
  • Shared Departure Transfer in West Bay : $20
  • Shared Departure Transfer in West Bay: $20
  • Shared Departure Transfer - Pearl Qatar: $27
  • Sharing Arrival Transfer - Pearl Qatar: $27
  • Easy Airport Transfers (Airport to Hotel): $30
  • Doha Private Airport and City Transfers: $44

Typical Local Transportation Prices in Istanbul

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

  • Ferry
  • Local Bus

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Istanbul

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Istanbul:

  • Istanbul Airport Private Transfer to the City : $30
  • Istanbul Airport Transfer by Private Minivan + Meet & Greet Service: $85
  • Istanbul Cruise Port(Galataport) Private Transfer Service: $35
  • Private Airport Transfer in Istanbul: $110
  • 1-Way Private Transfer to/from Sabiha Gokcen Airport: $76
  • Airport - Otel Transfer and City Tours: $20
  • Airport Transfer: $59
  • Airport to Hotel---Hotel to Airport Transfer with Mercedes Vito: $66
  • Airport transfer Istanbul: $54
  • Airport vip transfer istanbul. Hotel transfer from Istanbul airports.: $66
  • Arrival & Departure Private Transfer in Istanbul: $43
  • Arrival Private Transfer IST or SAW Airport to Istambul, Levent or Taksim by Bus: $65

Is it cheaper to fly into Doha or Istanbul?

Prices for flights to both Istanbul and Doha 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 Meals for one day
    Doha $61
    Istanbul $33

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Doha

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

  • Private Dinner on Al Safliya Island: $76
  • Private Dinner on Safliya Island: $76
  • Private Souk Waqif with Lunch or Dinner Tour: $96
  • Food Tour in The Pearl Qatar Island: $119
  • The Pearl-Qatar Food Tour & Boat Ride: $119
  • Half Day Doha City Tour with Lunch or Dinner: $143
  • Full-Day Desert Safari with Buffet Dinner || Inland Sea Visit: $194
  • Full Day Desert Safari with Camp Access, Buffet Dinner,Camel Ride: $195
  • Doha : Full Day Desert Safari | BBQ Dinner | Inland sea: $197
  • Private Desert Safari with BBQ Lunch/Dinner at Souk Al Wakra Tour: $202
  • Private Desert Safari with BBQ Lunch/Dinner at Souk Al Wakra: $202
  • Private Overnight Desert Safari, Dune bashing, dinner & Breakfast: $220

Typical Food Prices in Istanbul

Some typical examples of dining costs in Istanbul are as follows:

  • Juice
  • Turkish Delight
  • Dessert
  • Pastries

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Istanbul

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

  • Dinner Cruise and Entertainment with Private Table: $17
  • Bosphorus Dinner Cruise Tour With Turkish Night Show: $21
  • Bosphorus Dinner Cruise , Unlimited Drinks, & Show: $22
  • Bosphorus Dinner Cruise and Turkish Night Show: $22
  • Bosphorus Dinner Cruise & Show with Private Table: $22
  • Istanbul Bosphorus Cruise with All inclusive Dinner and Belly-Dancer Show : $27
  • Dinner Cruise Bosphorus with Hotel Transfer: $28
  • Istanbul Bosphorus Dinner Cruise: $28
  • Istanbul Bosphorus Dinner Cruise with Unlimited Drinks and Shows: $28
  • Istanbul Bosphorus Dinner Cruise and Turkish Night Show: $29
  • Half Day Sunset Luxury Yacht Dinner Cruise Tour in Istanbul: $30
  • 3 Hour Ottoman Dinner Cruise in Istanbul : $30

  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Doha $18
    Istanbul $84

Tours and Activities in Doha

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

  • Doha Tour App Hidden Gems Game and Big Qatar Quiz: $19
  • Al Safliya Island Boat Tour with Drinks: $25
  • Al Safliya Island Photo Tour: $25
  • Walking tour SOUQ WAKIF & MSHEIREB: $25
  • Guided Walking Tour of Souq Waqif: $30
  • City Highlights Layover Tour: $32
  • Doha City Tour - Airport or Cruise Terminal Pick Up/Drop Off: $35
  • Doha Geocaching & City Tour Combo: $35
  • From Doha Cruise terminal: Doha City Highlights Guided Tour: $35
  • From Doha Cruise Terminal: Doha Private or Group City Tour: $35
  • 4-hour Downtown City Tour: $37
  • Transit Private city layover tour.: $42

Typical Entertainment Prices in Istanbul

Some typical examples of activities, tours, and entrance ticket prices in Istanbul are as follows:

  • Bosphurus Boat (for 2)
  • Yerebatan Cistern for Two
  • Museum of Turkish and Islamic Arts for Two
  • Hagia Sofia entrance

Tours and Activities in Istanbul

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

  • First Discovery Walk and Reading Walking Tour: $3.25
  • Private Guided Walking Tour in Istanbul: $5.00
  • Istanbul Sites: Peel back the layers of Turkish history a self-guided audio tour: $5.40
  • Highlights Self Guided Scavenger Hunt & Tour: $5.42
  • Hagia Sophia Exclusive Digital Audio Guided Tour: $5.42
  • Kadikoy's history, theatres and sweet shops: a self-guided audio tour: $5.99
  • City Exploration Game and Tour: $6.50
  • Istanbul Scavenger Hunt and Best Landmarks Self-Guided Tour: $6.61
  • Istanbul's Karaköy Neighbourhood: A Self-Guided Photography Tour: $6.79
  • Istanbul Outdoor Escape Game: The Royal Adventure: $7.15
  • Hippodrome Guided Tours: $7.72
  • Istanbul, Hagia Sophia, Blue Mosque, Grand Bazaar Walk Tour: $9.00

  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Doha $15
    Istanbul $16

Sample the Local Flavors in Istanbul

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Istanbul:

  • Istanbul Pub Crawl Big Nightout . Rooftop parties,party Bus & Nightlife: $22
  • Famous Istanbul Pub Crawl #1 Nightlife Experience: $27
  • #1 Rated Istanbul Party Pub Crawl w Party Bus/Sultanahmet&Taksim: $28
  • Party Pub Crawl with Party Bus: $29
  • Istanbul 7-Hour Pub Crawl: Big Night Out: $33
  • Istanbul Wine Tasting at Home with Local Family: $80
  • Istanbul Wine Tasting at Home with Local Family: $86
  • 2-Day Wine Tasting Tour along the Thracian Wine Route: $180
  • Istanbul Private Wine Tasting Tour Through 3 City Wineries : $248
  • Guided, Food and Wine Tasting Tour in Istanbul : $300
  • Istanbul Private and Guided, Food and Wine Tasting Tour: $430
  • Luxury Wine Tasting on a Private Yacht: $855

When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Doha and Istanbul, we can see that Doha is more expensive. And not only is Istanbul much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. Since Doha is in Middle East and Istanbul is in Europe, this is one of the main reasons why the costs are so different, as different regions of the world tend to have overall different travel costs. So, traveling to Istanbul would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Istanbul 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 Doha would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Doha than you might in Istanbul.

If you're trying to decide if either of these two destinations are within your price range, also see Is Doha Expensive? and Is Istanbul Expensive?.

Which is Bigger, Doha or Istanbul?

Istanbul has a larger population, and is about 30 times larger than the population of Doha. When comparing the sizes of Doha and Istanbul, keep in mind that a larger population does not always imply the destination has more attractions or better activities. So, always research the type of place that you want to visit along with the activities and attractions that interest you.