A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers Hong Kong vs. Seoul for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Hong Kong or Seoul?

If you're trying to decide where to visit between Hong Kong or Seoul, this travel cost comparison can help. The overall cost of travel is usually a consideration when deciding where to go next, and the cost comparison below can help you decide based on the average prices from other travelers along with your own travel budget.

Hong Kong

In Hong Kong you will find a predominantly Cantonese population that has long been influenced by British occupation. Most residents speak English and you can see the obvious effects of years of capitalism. Shopping malls are everywhere and most are thriving. Along the waterfront every night the buildings light up in a dramatic and festive light show that highlights such businesses as Sony and Canon, which are fixtures in the city. The city is a major financial hub, and is very international in nature. The city itself is very densely packed and there are narrow high rises that look vulnerable due to their height. There are two main areas to the city, Hong Kong Island and Kowloon. Hong Kong Island is the location of the original British settlement. Today it is where you will find the highest skyscrapers, the most modern buildings, and the most popular shopping areas. Kowloon is located on a peninsula that is to the north of Hong Kong Island. The tip of the peninsula is a popular destination for backpackers as it has many of the city's hostels. This area is referred to as Tsim Sha Tsui. There are also a few high end hotels in the area. It is possible to head outside of the city so that you can escape into some rural regions where you can take a break from the crowds.

Seoul

With a population of more than 11 million, Seoul is easily the largest city in South Korea. It is also the financial, political, and cultural capital of the country and has much to offer open minded travelers. It is often overlooked by travelers who instead head to Tokyo or Shanghai, but Seoul has a wide range of cultural experiences, food options, and historical sights. Seoul is a city of contrasts with ancient traditions, flashy technology, religious temples and a modern youth culture. It is also more affordable than many of the other Asian metropolis' to which it is often compared. If you're looking for an interesting and different experience that is a little off the tourist trail, Seoul can definitely offer that opportunity.

Which city is cheaper, Seoul or Hong Kong?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Hong Kong is $128, while the average daily cost in Seoul is $100. 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 Hong Kong and Seoul in more detail.



Accommodation

The prices for places to stay in Hong Kong can vary by date, location, and type. Generally, the average cost for accommodation per person is $60, while a typical double-occupancy hotel room for two people will cost around $120.

Seoul's average price for two people sharing a typical double-occupancy hotel room is $100. A typical place to stay for one person, per day is $50.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Hong Kong $60
    Seoul $50
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Hong Kong $120
    Seoul $100

Food

In Hong Kong travelers spend around $26 a day on food. You can save money by choosing casual restaurants or food stalls, or you can spend plenty more by dining in nicer restaurants at every meal.

While meal prices in Seoul can vary, the average travelers spends about $28 per day on food. Based on the spending habits of previous travelers, when dining out, an average meal in Seoul should cost around $11 per person. Breakfast prices are usually a little cheaper than lunch or dinner. The price of food in sit-down restaurants in Seoul is often higher than fast food prices or street food prices.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Hong Kong $26
    Seoul $28
Typical Food prices in Hong Kong

For Hong Kong, here are some examples of average food and meal prices for travelers:


  • Dinner for 2
    $12

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Hong Kong

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

  • Exclusive: Noah's Ark Hotel & Resort Seaside Staycation with Buddies Builder Workshop + Dinner at Harvest Restaurant and Seaview Breakfast: $16
  • Noah's Ark Tickets in Hong Kong (Optional Afternoon Tea, Beverage Voucher, or Dinner): $16
  • Foodcation@Lamma Island (Private Food Tour): $28
  • Ms Lo Soup Family - Soup Mix Cooking Pack (Delivery Charge Inclusive): $36
  • The Butchers Club Ultimate Burger Cooking Pack Grab & Go: $42
  • E-Ticket: Symphony of Lights Dinner Cruise and Free Transfer: $64
  • Fever Food Steak Home Cooking Pack (Delivery Charge Inclusive): $81
  • 2-Hour Dinner & Shows on Victoria Harbour Night Cruise: $81
  • Klook Exclusive: Fresh go Seafood Home Cooking Pack (Delivery Charge Inclusive): $87
  • Kowloon Mong Kok Food Tour: $89
  • Hong Kong Island North Point Food Tour: $89
  • Central and Sheung Wan Food Tour: $95

Typical Food prices in Seoul

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


  • Rice with Kimchi & Bacon
    $5.06
  • Waffle
    $0.84
  • Dippin' Dots
    $1.69
  • Chicken Fried Rice
    $4.64
  • Chicken Stick
    $1.69
  • Drinking Yoghurt & Mi Chew
    $1.60
  • Lunch Buffet
    $5.06
  • Donut
    $0.84
  • Mushroom Burger
    $4.39
  • Green Tea Ice Cream
    $2.79
  • Udon & Sushi
    $5.91
  • Fresh Burger
    $4.05
  • Soba Noodles Lunch
    $3.80
  • Bibimbap Lunch
    $4.22
  • Fried Rice
    $4.64
  • Vietnamese Dinner
    $8.02
  • Breakfast and Coffee for 2
    $8.02
  • Donut
    $2.11

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Seoul

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

  • Jeonju Virtual Tour and Online Cooking Class with Kimchi Chef: $13
  • Mokpo Virtual Tour and Online Cooking Class with Kimchi Chef: $13
  • Gangneung Virtual Tour and Online Cooking Class with Kimchi Chef: $13
  • Andong Virtual Tour and Online Cooking Class with Kimchi Chef: $13
  • Yeot-gangjeong Making Cooking Class in Gangnam: $17
  • Incheon Sunset and Seafood Tour: $22
  • Night Market Food Tour: $48
  • Busan Jagalchi Market Tour and Korean Daily Special Dish Cooking Class: $49
  • Traditional Korean Cooking Class (Kimchi) & market tour with chef Joungy: $51
  • Korean Full-Course Meal Cooking Class at Local Home with Local Market Experience in Seoul: $52
  • Private Traditional Korean Cooking Class and Dongdaemun Market Food Tour by Janet's Cooking Studio: $52
  • Korean Cooking Class with Full-Course Meal & Local Market Tour: $56

Local Transportation

Public transportation tends to be much less expensive in Hong Kong than paying for a taxi or private car service, as is expected. Typically, people spend $7.00 on transportation in Hong Kong on average per day.

The average price of local transportation around Seoul is $14 per person, per day. As this average includes both taxis and public transport, keep in mind that the prices of private drivers and taxis are significantly more expensive than public transportation.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Hong Kong $7.00
    Seoul $14
Typical Local Transportation prices in Hong Kong

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for transportation costs in Hong Kong:


  • MTR (for 2)
    $2.82
  • Local Bus
    $2.82
  • Ferry Ticket
    $0.26
  • Hong Kong Airport Express Train Ticket
    $15

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Hong Kong

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

  • Shared Coach Transfers between Hong Kong and Shenzhen Bay Port (Trans-Island): $6.45
  • Hong Kong Disneyland Transfers for Hong Kong International Airport (HKG), Tung Chung, and West Kowloon: $6.85
  • Shared Coach Transfers Between Hong Kong and Shenzhen by EE Bus: $7.75
  • Shared Coach Transfers between Hong Kong and Zhongshan: $8.75
  • Shared Coach Transfers from HKG Airport to Hong Kong Hotels: $8.75
  • Hong Kong Shared Bus Transfers (Macau Departure by Chinalink/Eternal East/One Bus): $10
  • Shared Coach Transfers between Hong Kong and Panyu by Eternal East Bus: $11
  • Shared Coach Transfers Between Hong Kong and Zhaoqing by EE Bus: $12
  • Shared Coach Transfers between Hong Kong and Shenzhen Airport (Trans-Island): $12
  • Shared Coach Transfers between Hong Kong and Foshan by Eternal East Bus: $13
  • Shared Coach Transfers between Huadu and Hong Kong by Eternal East Bus: $13
  • Shared Coach Transfers Between Hong Kong and Heyuan by EE Bus: $15

Typical Local Transportation prices in Seoul

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for transportation costs in Seoul:


  • Subway Card
    $4.22
  • Short Taxi Ride
    $5.91
  • Metro Ride
    $1.14
  • Seoul City Pass Plus
    $8.44

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Seoul

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Seoul:

  • [COVID19] Private Incheon Airport(ICN) Transfer for Seoul & Gyeonggi-do: $121
  • Summer Activity in Korea: Water Leisure Tour at Gapyeong with Private Transfer: $360
  • Shuttle Bus Transfers between Seoul and Everland by Daesung Tour: $9.35
  • Shared Transfers between Myeongdong and N Seoul Tower: $5.19
  • Shared One Way Transfer from Seoul to Nami Island or Gangchon Rail Bike: $6.59
  • Shared Airport Transfers (ICN/GMP) for Seoul: $25
  • Seoul ⇄ Alpensia / Yongpyong Ski Resort Private Van Transfers: $469
  • Round Trip Shuttle Bus Transfers to Everland from Seoul by JINA International Travel: $9.35
  • Round Trip Shuttle Bus Transfers to Everland by World Travel: $8.65
  • Round Trip Everland Shuttle Bus Transfers from Seoul by World Travel: $8.25
  • Round Trip DMZ Shuttle Bus Transfers from Seoul: $22
  • Private transfer in Korea along with a wide range of cars (3~28pax): $75

Is it cheaper to fly into Hong Kong or Seoul?

Prices for flights to both Seoul and Hong Kong 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

Sightseeing expenses in Hong Kong, including the cost of admission tickets for day tours, museums, and attractions, usually cost an average of $76 per day, per person.

Seoul's costs for entertainment, tickets, attractions, and tours will often cost around $25 per person, per day. This cost can vary widely by the type of activity, however, as this includes admission tickets, day tours, museums, and other things to do.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Hong Kong $76
    Seoul $25
Typical Entertainment prices in Hong Kong

Below are a few sample prices from actual travelers for Hong Kong's activities, tours, and tickets:


  • Peak Tram
    $7.70
  • Madame Tussauds Hong Kong
    $24

Tours and Activities in Hong Kong

For Hong Kong, here are a few prices for actual activities, tours, and tickets provided by various companies:

  • A Food Adventure in Hong Kong with a Local Foodie: $2.64
  • 18 Challenge Karting Experience in Hong Kong: $4.89
  • MTR Tourist Day Pass: $8.25
  • Starferry Sunset Cruise : $11
  • Peak Tram Sky Pass: Tram Ticket, Hong Kong Sky Tour and Sky Terrace 428 Entry: $13
  • Hidden Side of Hong Kong Adventure Walking Tour: $14
  • Hong Kong Historic Adventure Walking Tour: $14
  • Sense Beauty & Spa Experience in Hong Kong (4 Locations for Selection): $16
  • E-Ticket: Peak Tram Round Trip and Sky Terrace: $17
  • Hong Kong Secret Garden and Coastline Discovery Eco Tour: $18
  • VAR LIVE: D2 Place VR Experience in Lai Chi Kok: $18
  • [Exclusive Lane] Ngong Ping 360 Cable Car Ticket (Advance Roundtrip Standard with FREE snack or Discovery Centre admission): $19

Typical Entertainment prices in Seoul

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


  • Palace Tickets
    $6.75
  • Movie Ticket
    $6.75
  • Kimchi Museum
    $2.53

Tours and Activities in Seoul

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

  • AREX Incheon Airport Express, Lotte World Pass and Running Man Thematic Experience Center Combo Package: $17
  • Busan Skywalk, Gamcheon Culture Village, and Haedong Yonggungsa Temple Day Tour: $37
  • Cheese Smile Studio Self Photoshoot Experience in Bukchon: $41
  • GOT7 Ahgase Tour in Seoul: $59
  • Han River Sevit Island Yacht Experience (Pets allowed): $16
  • Hanbok Experience (Hanboknam Gyeongbokgung Store) with Korean Hairstyling: $6.95
  • Instant Ticket! Korea Rail Pass (KR PASS) 2/3/4/5Days: $96
  • Instant Ticket: Korea Rail Pass (KR PASS) 2/3/4/5 Days: $96
  • Instant Ticket: Korea Rail Pass (KR PASS) 2/3/4/5 Days: $93
  • Instant Ticket: Korea Rail Pass (KR PASS) 2/3/4/5 Days: $96
  • Nami Island, Gangchon Rail Bike, Petite France, Garden of Morning Calm, and Alpaca World Day Tour: $62
  • "Nami Island" & "Petite France" or "Garden of Morning Calm" ※ Private Tour: $97

Alcohol

Typically, people visiting Hong Kong spend on average $17 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.

The average person spends about $11 on alcoholic beverages in Seoul per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Hong Kong $17
    Seoul $11

Sample the Local Flavors in Hong Kong

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

  • Amber Coffee Brewery in Central: $8.10

Sample the Local Flavors in Seoul

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

  • Absolute Busan Pub Crawl Experience in Seomyeon and Haeundae: $11
  • Absolute Seoul Pub Crawl Experience in Hongdae and Itaewon: $19
  • Seoul Pub Crawl and Party with Free Shots: $24
  • 3-Hour Small Group Korean Pub Crawl + Food Tasting in Hongdae: $86


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

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Hong Kong vs. Seoul Travel Comparison

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