Should you visit Flagstaff or Vail?
Trying to figure out where to travel next? This travel cost comparison between Flagstaff and Vail can help. For many travelers, the cost of a destination is a primary consideration when choosing where to go.
Located in northern Arizona near the San Francisco Peaks mountain range, Flagstaff is a small city surrounded by natural beauty. The city's proximity to a number of popular tourist sights, including Grand Canyon National Park, Oak Creek Canyon, the Arizona Snowbowl, Meteor Crater, and Historic Route 66, make it a common destination for tourists. It lies at an elevation of almost 7,000 feet with nearby areas climbing higher. In large part because of its altitude, the city has a cooler climate than the southern part of Arizona, which is famous for its low lying desert.
Vail is one of the premier ski resort areas in the United States. Located in central Colorado, Vail is not far from Denver and situated in the heart of the Rockies. Here you'll find a quaint mountain town designed around tourism, especially for the winter, although plenty of visitors come in the warmer months, too.
High-end hotels, condos, and other accommodation options are surrounded by shops and restaurants that are all somewhat expensive compared to other costs in the United States. Because of this, Vail is definitely not considered an “affordable” travel option for many. However, good deals can be found if you look around and do some research.
Which city is cheaper, Vail or Flagstaff?
These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.
The average daily cost (per person) in Flagstaff is $133, while the average daily cost in Vail is $233. 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 Flagstaff and Vail in more detail.
The average price for accommodation for two people in Flagstaff is $138. This is for two people sharing a typical double occupancy hotel room.
An average hotel room with basic furnishings costs about $278 in Vail For the most convenient locations and nicer amenities you can expect to pay a bit more.
Flagstaff food costs typically run travelers around $44 per day. Eating every meal in a nicer restaurant will drive the cost up, and grabbing fast food or casual meals will help you save money.
Vail food costs typically run travelers around $60 per day. Eating every meal in a nicer restaurant will drive the cost up, and grabbing fast food or casual meals will help you save money.
Meals for one day
While taxis and private drivers typically cost much more than public transportation, people usually spend around $30 per day to get around in Flagstaff.
Public transportation tends to be much less expensive in Vail than paying for a taxi or private car service, as is expected. Typically, people spend $16 on transportation in Vail on average per day.
Hired Cars and Shuttles in Vail
Also for Vail, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:
Private Airport Transfer Service - Vail Hotels to Denver Int'l Airport:
Private Departure Transfer to Vail Airport EGE:
Private Eagle County Airport Transfer to Vail:
Private Eagle County Regional Airport Transfer to Beaver Creek:
Private Transfer: Vail to Denver International Airport (DEN):
Shared Transfer from Vail or Beaver Creek to Denver Downtown:
Transfer in private minivan from Vail city to Denver International Airport (DEN):
Is it cheaper to fly into Flagstaff or Vail?
Prices for flights to both Vail and Flagstaff 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.
Activities, things to do, and other forms of entertainment usually cost around $22 per person, per day in Flagstaff. This cost includes the price of admission tickets to attractions and museums as well as daily tours.
Sightseeing expenses in Vail, including the cost of admission tickets for day tours, museums, and attractions, usually cost an average of $106 per day, per person.
Tours and Activities in Flagstaff
Here are a few actual costs in Flagstaff for available activities, ticket prices, and tours:
Antelope Canyon and Horseshoe Bend Day Tour from Flagstaff:
Antelope Slot Canyon and Horseshoe Bend Day Tour from Flagstaff:
Comprehensive Grand Canyon Tour from Flagstaff:
Dark Skies Astrophotography Tour:
Flagstaff Adventure Zipline Course:
Flagstaff Extreme Adventure Course-Adult Course:
Flagstaff Extreme Adventure Course-Kids Course:
Flagstaff Segway Tour:
Small-Group Haunted City Tour:
From Flagstaff or Sedona: Hopi Lands Cultural Tour & Lunch:
From Grand Canyon National Park Tour:
From Grand Canyon Railroad Full-Day Tour:
Tours and Activities in Vail
Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Vail.
Listen to a Tour Guide While you Drive between Vail & Denver:
2-Hour Small-Group Guided Segway Tour:
Vail Segway Tour from Vail Village:
Dillon Marina & Shopping Tour:
Glenwood Adventure Park Tour:
Fall Leaves Tour from Vail:
Glenwood Hot Springs Tour:
Blackhawk-Central City Casino Tour from Vail:
Aspen Independence Pass Day Tour:
Historic Mining Town Tour:
While the amount that someone spends on alcohol while visiting Flagstaff may vary from person to person, on average a person spends $23 per day on alcoholic beverages.
Alcoholic beverages can often be a significant portion of a traveler's budget, and the costs can vary greatly from person to person. In Vail, the average amount that a visitor spends on alcoholic beverages per day is $7.83.
Sample the Local Flavors in Vail
Also in Vail, these are the prices for nightlife and alcohol related activities from various tour providers:
Vail Valley Brewery & Wine Tour:
Palisade Wine Tour from Vail:
When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Flagstaff and Vail, we can see that Vail is more expensive. And not only is Flagstaff much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Flagstaff would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Flagstaff 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 Vail would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Vail than you might in Flagstaff.
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