A Travel Price Comparison for Florida Duck Key vs. Gainesville for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Duck Key or Gainesville?

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

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 Duck Key and Gainesville can help you decide which place is right for you.

Where Should I go: Duck Key or Gainesville?

Duck Key

If you are thirsty for the taste of tropical splendor, Duck Key, Florida will surely quench your desires. Located in Monroe County, Florida, right beside its neighbor Conch Key, Duck Key stands. The community is chock full of everyone's favorite seaside activities, including fishing, jetskiing, scuba diving, canoeing, and kayaking. Though a quaint town, Duck Key attracts tourists from all over due to its quiet beaches and friendly locals. Whether you are looking to meet and greet with the dolphins or simply lie upon the sandy white beaches as the fire orange sun sets before you, Duck Key is truly a sweet and small subtropical diversion.

Gainesville

Home to the University of Florida as well as Santa Fe College, the town of Gainesville has all of the shopping, entertainment, and restaurants that you could want in a college town - plus easy access to a number of outdoor adventures from canoeing, diving, and kayaking to birding, fishing, hiking, and biking. Some of the top features include the Butterfly Rainforest, the Florida Museum of Natural History, the Kanapaha Botanical Gardens, and Devil's Millhopper Geological State Park.

For some great organized tour ideas, see The Best 2-Week Tours from Anchorage, The Best 2-Week Tours from San Francisco, The Best 2-Week Tours from Los Angeles, and The Best Family-Friendly Tours to United States of America.


Which place is cheaper, Gainesville or Duck Key?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Duck Key is $143, while the average daily cost in Gainesville is $221. 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 Duck Key and Gainesville in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Duck Key $56
    Gainesville $119
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Duck Key $112
    Gainesville $238
Compare Hotels in Duck Key and Gainesville

Looking for a hotel in Duck Key or Gainesville? 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 Duck Key


Hotels in Gainesville


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: Gainesville Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Duck Key $69
    Gainesville $40

Is it cheaper to fly into Duck Key or Gainesville?

Prices for flights to both Gainesville and Duck Key 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
    Duck Key $45
    Gainesville $70

Typical Food Prices in Gainesville

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


  • Diner Breakfast for Two
    $17
  • Lunch at Chop Stix (for 2)
    $24

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Duck Key $30
    Gainesville $44

Typical Entertainment Prices in Gainesville

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


  • Manatee Tour for Two
    $98
  • Tour Guide Tip
    $5.00

Tours and Activities in Gainesville

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

  • Butterfly Rainforest at Florida Museum of Natural History Ticket: $15
  • Private Snorkeling Tour in Florida Springs: $250
  • Unique Scavenger Hunt Experience in Gainesville by Operation City Quest: $10

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Duck Key $7.99
    Gainesville $49


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

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


Which is Bigger, Duck Key or Gainesville?

Gainesville has a larger population, and is about 260 times larger than the population of Duck Key. When comparing the sizes of Duck Key and Gainesville, 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.


When is the best time to visit Duck Key or Gainesville?

Both places have a temperate climate with four distinct seasons. As both cities are in the northern hemisphere, summer is in July and winter is in January.

Should I visit Duck Key or Gainesville in the Summer?

The summer brings many poeple to Duck Key as well as Gainesville. Additionally, many travelers come to Gainesville for the family-friendly experiences.

In July, Duck Key is generally around the same temperature as Gainesville. Daily temperatures in Duck Key average around 84°F (29°C), and Gainesville fluctuates around 81°F (27°C).

It's quite rainy in Gainesville. Duck Key usually gets less rain in July than Gainesville. Duck Key gets 3.3 inches (83 mm) of rain, while Gainesville receives 6.8 inches (174 mm) of rain this time of the year.


  • Summer Average Temperatures July
    Duck Key 84°F (29°C) 
    Gainesville 81°F (27°C)

Should I visit Duck Key or Gainesville in the Autumn?

Both Gainesville and Duck Key are popular destinations to visit in the autumn with plenty of activities. Also, many visitors come to Gainesville in the autumn for the shopping scene.

Duck Key is a little warmer than Gainesville in the autumn. The daily temperature in Duck Key averages around 80°F (27°C) in October, and Gainesville fluctuates around 71°F (22°C).

It's quite rainy in Duck Key. In October, Duck Key usually receives more rain than Gainesville. Duck Key gets 5.1 inches (129 mm) of rain, while Gainesville receives 2 inches (51 mm) of rain each month for the autumn. The hurricane season in Gainesville is June to November.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Duck Key 80°F (27°C) 
    Gainesville 71°F (22°C)

Should I visit Duck Key or Gainesville in the Winter?

Both Gainesville and Duck Key during the winter are popular places to visit. Also, most visitors come to Gainesville for the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine during these months.

In the winter, Duck Key is much warmer than Gainesville. Typically, the winter temperatures in Duck Key in January average around 70°F (21°C), and Gainesville averages at about 54°F (12°C).

Duck Key usually gets less rain in January than Gainesville. Duck Key gets 1.7 inches (43 mm) of rain, while Gainesville receives 2.9 inches (75 mm) of rain this time of the year.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Duck Key 70°F (21°C) 
    Gainesville 54°F (12°C)

Should I visit Duck Key or Gainesville in the Spring?

The spring attracts plenty of travelers to both Duck Key and Gainesville.

In April, Duck Key is generally a little warmer than Gainesville. Daily temperatures in Duck Key average around 77°F (25°C), and Gainesville fluctuates around 69°F (20°C).

In April, Duck Key usually receives less rain than Gainesville. Duck Key gets 0.8 inches (21 mm) of rain, while Gainesville receives 2 inches (50 mm) of rain each month for the spring. June to November is the hurricane season in Gainesville.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Duck Key 77°F (25°C) 
    Gainesville 69°F (20°C)

Typical Weather for Gainesville and Duck Key

Duck Key Gainesville
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 70°F (21°C) 1.7 inches (43 mm) 54°F (12°C) 2.9 inches (75 mm)
Feb 71°F (21°C) 1.4 inches (36 mm) 57°F (14°C) 4.5 inches (115 mm)
Mar 74°F (23°C) 1.7 inches (42 mm) 63°F (17°C) 3.3 inches (83 mm)
Apr 77°F (25°C) 0.8 inches (21 mm) 69°F (20°C) 2 inches (50 mm)
May 81°F (27°C) 2.7 inches (68 mm) 75°F (24°C) 3.1 inches (79 mm)
Jun 83°F (28°C) 4.5 inches (114 mm) 80°F (26°C) 6.8 inches (174 mm)
Jul 84°F (29°C) 3.3 inches (83 mm) 81°F (27°C) 6.8 inches (174 mm)
Aug 84°F (29°C) 3.9 inches (98 mm) 81°F (27°C) 8.3 inches (211 mm)
Sep 83°F (29°C) 5.7 inches (144 mm) 78°F (26°C) 5.5 inches (139 mm)
Oct 80°F (27°C) 5.1 inches (129 mm) 71°F (22°C) 2 inches (51 mm)
Nov 76°F (24°C) 2 inches (50 mm) 63°F (17°C) 2.4 inches (61 mm)
Dec 72°F (22°C) 1.4 inches (35 mm) 56°F (14°C) 2.9 inches (74 mm)