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

Should you visit Durham or San Diego?

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

Where Should I go: Durham or San Diego?

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.

San Diego

For many visitors and locals alike, San Diego is a paradise. Located in southern California, not far from Los Angeles, it has the perfect climate, wonderful beaches, and a culturally rich environment. It's surrounded by beautiful landscape and has a strong focus on wildlife conservation and eco-friendly living. Home to about 1.3 million residents, it is California's second largest city. It also has many universities, a large tech industry, and a thriving economy. Despite its size, many people perceive San Diego as a slower, more relaxed city with a pleasant vibe away from the chaos of a large city.

Which city is cheaper, San Diego 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 San Diego is $161. 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 Durham and San Diego in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Durham $73
    San Diego $91
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Durham $146
    San Diego $182
Compare Hotels in Durham and San Diego

Looking for a hotel in Durham or San Diego? 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 Durham


Hotels in San Diego


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: Durham Hotel Prices and San Diego Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Durham $26
    San Diego $19

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 San Diego

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

  • Private Airport Transfer: from San Diego to San Diego Int. Airport (SAN): $35
  • Private Departure Transfer from San Diego to SAN San Diego Airport: $46
  • Private Airport Transfer: San Diego International Airport (SAN) to San Diego: $46
  • Private Arrival Transfer from San Diego Airport SAN: $48
  • Private Departure Transfer to San Diego Airport SAN: $48
  • Private Arrival Transfer from SAN San Diego Airport to San Diego City: $49
  • San Diego Airport (SAN) to San Diego hotel or address - Arrival Private Transfer: $60
  • San Diego hotel/address to San Diego Airport (SAN) - Departure Private Transfer: $60
  • Transfer from San Diego International Airport to San Diego: $62
  • Departure Private Transfer San Diego to San Diego Airport SAN in Business Car: $63
  • Private Airport Transfer San Deigo Arrival And Departure: $67
  • Private Airport Transfer: Hotel to and from San Diego International Airport: $70

Is it cheaper to fly into Durham or San Diego?

Prices for flights to both San Diego 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.





Food
  • Food Meals for one day
    Durham $35
    San Diego $36

Typical Food prices in San Diego

Here are some examples of typical meal expenses from previous travelers to San Diego:


  • Mexican Lunch for Two
    $27
  • Breakfast at Starbucks
    $20

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in San Diego

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

  • San Diego North Park Food Tour: $49
  • Liberty Station Food Tour: $49
  • Market and Guacamole Cooking Class in Tijuana Mexico: $89
  • Private Cooking Demonstration of Indian Fusion Cuisine in San Diego: $96
  • Farmers Market Tour & Social Cooking With A Chef: $100
  • San Diego Harbor Dinner Cruise: $111
  • Private Tour: Secret Food Tours San Diego: $129
  • Secret Food Tours San Diego w/ Private Tour Option: $277

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Durham $21
    San Diego $38

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

Typical Entertainment prices in San Diego

For San Diego, here are some examples of average entertainment and activity prices from previous travelers:


  • San Diego Zoo
    $15
  • Sea World Parking
    $12

Tours and Activities in San Diego

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

  • La Jolla: Explore California's Riviera on a self-guided audio tour: $5.40
  • La Jolla: Ultimate Self-Guided Combo Tour: $12
  • San Diego Zoo Hunt: Roar with Rex Adventure at the San Diego Zoo: $12
  • San Diego's Gaslamp Quarter Historic True Crime Tour: $16
  • San Diego Scavenger Hunt Adventure: $21
  • San Diego Balboa Park Scavenger Hunt Adventure: $21
  • Behind-the-Scenes at Petco Park Tour: $23
  • San Diego Gaslamp District Ghost Tour: $24
  • Ghost-Themed Walking Tour: $25
  • Skip-the-Line: USS Midway Museum Entry Ticket: $26
  • San Diego Harbor Cruise: $28
  • Tijuana Walking Tour from San Diego: $28

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Durham $27
    San Diego $17

Sample the Local Flavors in San Diego

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

  • San Diego Bar Hunt: Slammin' San Diego Bar Crawl: $12
  • Wine Tasting Or Beer Tasting: $15
  • San Diego Brewery Tour: $85
  • San Diego Micro Brewery Tour: $91
  • The San Diego Downtown Craft Brewery Tour: $95
  • The San Diego Downtown Craft Brewery Tour: $101
  • Private San Diego Brewery Tour: $107
  • All inclusive brewery tour-Fire Truck: $189
  • Luxury Private Wine Tasting Tour to Guadalupe Valley from San Diego.: $249
  • Private Wine Tour of Temecula from San Diego: $475


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


When is the best time to visit Durham or San Diego?

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 Durham or San Diego in the Summer?

The summer brings many poeple to Durham as well as San Diego. Also, most visitors come to San Diego for the beaches, snorkeling, the hiking, the city activities, the music scene, and the family-friendly experiences during these months.

In July, Durham is generally a little warmer than San Diego. Temperatures in Durham average around 79°F (26°C), and San Diego stays around 71°F (22°C).

The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in San Diego. People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Durham this time of the year. In the summer, Durham often gets less sunshine than San Diego. Durham gets 259 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while San Diego receives 306 hours of full sun.

Durham receives a lot of rain in the summer. Durham usually gets more rain in July than San Diego. Durham gets 5.1 inches (129 mm) of rain, while San Diego receives 0 inches (1 mm) of rain this time of the year.


  • Summer Average Temperatures July
    Durham 79°F (26°C) 
    San Diego 71°F (22°C)

Should I visit Durham or San Diego in the Autumn?

Both San Diego and Durham are popular destinations to visit in the autumn with plenty of activities. Also, the autumn months attract visitors to San Diego because of the hiking trails, the city's sights and attractions, the shopping scene, the music scene, and the natural beauty of the area.

Durham is cooler than San Diego in the autumn. The temperature in Durham is usually 61°F (16°C) in October, and San Diego stays around 68°F (20°C).

It's quite sunny in San Diego. The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Durham. Durham usually receives less sunshine than San Diego during autumn. Durham gets 211 hours of sunny skies, while San Diego receives 244 hours of full sun in the autumn.

In October, Durham usually receives more rain than San Diego. Durham gets 2.8 inches (71 mm) of rain, while San Diego receives 0.4 inches (9 mm) of rain each month for the autumn.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Durham 61°F (16°C) 
    San Diego 68°F (20°C)

Should I visit Durham or San Diego in the Winter?

Both San Diego and Durham during the winter are popular places to visit. Furthermore, the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine are the main draw to San Diego this time of year.

The weather in Durham can be very cold. In the winter, Durham is much colder than San Diego. Typically, the winter temperatures in Durham in January are around 40°F (5°C), and San Diego is about 57°F (14°C).

In San Diego, it's very sunny this time of the year. In the winter, Durham often gets less sunshine than San Diego. Durham gets 162 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while San Diego receives 239 hours of full sun.

Durham usually gets more rain in January than San Diego. Durham gets 3.2 inches (82 mm) of rain, while San Diego receives 1.8 inches (46 mm) of rain this time of the year.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Durham 40°F (5°C) 
    San Diego 57°F (14°C)

Should I visit Durham or San Diego in the Spring?

The spring attracts plenty of travelers to both Durham and San Diego. Furthermore, many travelers come to San Diego for the beaches, the activities around the city, and the natural beauty.

In April, Durham is generally around the same temperature as San Diego. Temperatures in Durham average around 60°F (16°C), and San Diego stays around 62°F (17°C).

People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in San Diego this time of the year. In Durham, it's very sunny this time of the year. Durham usually receives less sunshine than San Diego during spring. Durham gets 251 hours of sunny skies, while San Diego receives 277 hours of full sun in the spring.

In April, Durham usually receives more rain than San Diego. Durham gets 3.1 inches (78 mm) of rain, while San Diego receives 0.8 inches (20 mm) of rain each month for the spring.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Durham 60°F (16°C) 
    San Diego 62°F (17°C)

Typical Weather for San Diego and Durham

Durham San Diego
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 40°F (5°C) 3.2 inches (82 mm) 57°F (14°C) 1.8 inches (46 mm)
Feb 43°F (6°C) 3.3 inches (84 mm) 59°F (15°C) 1.5 inches (39 mm)
Mar 52°F (11°C) 3.4 inches (87 mm) 59°F (15°C) 1.8 inches (45 mm)
Apr 60°F (16°C) 3.1 inches (78 mm) 62°F (17°C) 0.8 inches (20 mm)
May 68°F (20°C) 3.3 inches (84 mm) 64°F (18°C) 0.2 inches (5 mm)
Jun 76°F (24°C) 3.7 inches (93 mm) 67°F (19°C) 0.1 inches (2 mm)
Jul 79°F (26°C) 5.1 inches (129 mm) 71°F (22°C) 0 inches (1 mm)
Aug 78°F (26°C) 4.9 inches (125 mm) 73°F (23°C) 0.1 inches (3 mm)
Sep 73°F (23°C) 3.8 inches (96 mm) 71°F (22°C) 0.2 inches (6 mm)
Oct 61°F (16°C) 2.8 inches (71 mm) 68°F (20°C) 0.4 inches (9 mm)
Nov 53°F (11°C) 2.8 inches (72 mm) 62°F (17°C) 1.5 inches (37 mm)
Dec 44°F (7°C) 3.1 inches (78 mm) 57°F (14°C) 1.6 inches (40 mm)


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Durham vs. San Diego Travel Comparison

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