A Travel Price Comparison for United States of America Durham vs. Lancaster for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Durham or Lancaster?

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 Durham and Lancaster can help you decide which place is right for you.

Durham

Durham is a city in central North Carolina with about 230,000 residents. Together with Raleigh and Chapel Hill, it forms the Research Triangle area. Durham is often referred to as the "City of Medicine" and is home to the famous Duke University.

Durham's history is rooted in tobacco. The Duke family established American Tobacco, which controlled 90% of all cigarette production in the US during the second half of the 19th century. The family donated money to Trinity College, which changed its name to Duke University in 1924.

Today much of Durham's economy is centered around the university and Research Triangle Park. The area has many technology and pharmaceutical jobs and the economy continues to grow.

Lancaster

The largest city in Pennsylvania's Dutch Country, Lancaster is surrounded by scenic landscape and a unique culture. The area is predominately agricultural in nature and you will find lush farms growing crops and produce most seasons. The Amish communities are spread throughout the area and although they remain relatively isolated, they are acknowledged by fellow community members and their customs are respected. The Amish community prides themselves on minimalist living. They do not use electricity and travel around in horse and buggy, a sight which you will grow accustomed to while you're in the area. They are excellent farmers and craftsmen and you can find shops that proudly sell Amish made goods. Their close are old fashion in nature. Women generally wear long dresses and bonnets while men wear black suits and hats. The Amish community has their own churches and their own schools. There are a handful of places where you can learn more about the Amish community in the area. The Amish Experience F/X Theater offers shows and the People's Place Quilt Museum shows some handicrafts. It is possible to take an Amish Country tour or visit the Mennonite Information Center for more information.

Which city is cheaper, Lancaster or Durham?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Durham is $130, while the average daily cost in Lancaster is $146. 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 Durham and Lancaster in more detail.



Accommodation

Durham's average price for two people sharing a typical double-occupancy hotel room is $146. A typical place to stay for one person, per day is $73.

The prices for places to stay in Lancaster can vary by date, location, and type. Generally, the average cost for accommodation per person is $73, while a typical double-occupancy hotel room for two people will cost around $146.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Durham $73
    Lancaster $73
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Durham $146
    Lancaster $146

Food

On average, meal and food prices in Durham cost around $35 per person, per day. While this price can vary widely by location, the type of restaurant, and the amount of food ordered, a typical meal often costs around $14.

On average, meal and food prices in Lancaster cost around $42 per person, per day. While this price can vary widely by location, the type of restaurant, and the amount of food ordered, a typical meal often costs around $17.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Durham $35
    Lancaster $42

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Lancaster

For Lancaster, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:

  • Private Walking Food Tour in Lancaster: $48

Local Transportation

While taxis and private drivers typically cost much more than public transportation, people usually spend around $26 per day to get around in Durham.

Lancaster's transportation costs can vary by the type of transport chosen by visitors. Naturally, taxis and private drivers cost much more than public transportation options. On average, visitors spend $55 per person, per day on transportation in Lancaster.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Durham $26
    Lancaster $55

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Durham

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Durham:

  • Private Transfer from Durham to Manchester Airport (MAN): $407
  • Durham to Raleigh-Durham Airport (RDU) - Departure Private Transfer: $139

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Lancaster

Also for Lancaster, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:

  • Private Transfer from Lancaster to Manchester Airport (MAN): $183
  • Private transfer: Lancaster to Lancaster Airport (LNS): $622

Is it cheaper to fly into Durham or Lancaster?

Prices for flights to both Lancaster and Durham 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.





Entertainment

Activities, things to do, and other forms of entertainment usually cost around $21 per person, per day in Durham. This cost includes the price of admission tickets to attractions and museums as well as daily tours.

Sightseeing, admission tickets, things to do, and other entertainment expenses in Lancaster can vary widely by price. On average, visitors spend around $15 per person, per day on entertainment and sightseeing here.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Durham $21
    Lancaster $15

Tours and Activities in Durham

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

  • Trolley Pub Public Tour of Durham: $41

Tours and Activities in Lancaster

Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Lancaster.

  • Lancaster County: National Toy Train Museum Admission Ticket: $7.50
  • Evening Ghost Tour by Candlelight: $18
  • Ghost Tour of Lancaster: $18
  • Premium Amish Country Tour including Amish Farm and House: $32
  • Truly Authentic Lancaster Experience!: $59
  • Sweet & Savory Tour of Lancaster City!: $60
  • Downtown & Amish Country Authentic Lancaster Tour: $65
  • Authentic Tour & Meal with an Amish Family!: $65
  • Lancaster City VIP Restaurant Tour: $75

Alcohol

The average person spends about $27 on alcoholic beverages in Durham per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.

Alcoholic beverages can often be a significant portion of a traveler's budget, and the costs can vary greatly from person to person. In Lancaster, the average amount that a visitor spends on alcoholic beverages per day is $9.14.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Durham $27
    Lancaster $9.14


When comparing the travel costs between Durham and Lancaster, we can see that Lancaster 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.

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Durham vs. Lancaster Travel Comparison

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