A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers Istanbul vs. Beijing for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Istanbul or Beijing?

If you're trying to decide where to visit between Istanbul or Beijing, 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.

Istanbul

Istanbul is strategically located on the Bosphorus and is split between Europe and Asia. It truly is a city where east meets west. Istanbul is the cultural and financial hub of Turkey, and also the most populous city. The sites are countless and there's something for everybody, whether you're interested in art, music, food, or adventure. You can pass many days exploring both the residential and commercial pockets of this city. Much of the appeal is hidden away along back alleys or within corner shops.

Beijing

Beijing is the capital of China and, with 21.5 million people, it is the second most populated city in the world after Shanghai. It is a city that keeps pockets of its history hidden in old neighborhoods or back alleys, despite the constant change and modernization that goes on around it. As the capital city of China, there is plenty of history and culture. You can still get yourself lost in one of the last remaining hutongs, which are old neighborhoods that remain untouched by the city's modernization. The alleys that weave between the old homes are lined with drying clothes, corner markets, and people going about their daily lives the way they have for centuries. Surrounding these hutongs you'll find modern buildings and a booming economy, all threatening to destroying these last bits of Beijing's history. Beijing offers a glimpse into a microcosm that represents the entire country of China. Make sure you give yourself enough time in China to truly experience Beijing. You can pass a lot of time soaking up life in the city, which remains as diverse as the country it resides within.

Which city is cheaper, Beijing or Istanbul?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Istanbul is $54, while the average daily cost in Beijing is $68. 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 Istanbul and Beijing in more detail.



Accommodation

A hotel room in Istanbul is about $66 This assumes double occupancy and modest accommodations.

The average price for accommodation for two people in Beijing is $70. This is for two people sharing a typical double occupancy hotel room.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Istanbul $33
    Beijing $35
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Istanbul $66
    Beijing $70

Local Transportation

The cost of a taxi ride in Istanbul is significantly more than public transportation. On average, past travelers have spent $3.17 per person, per day, on local transportation in Istanbul.

While taxis and private drivers typically cost much more than public transportation, people usually spend around $6.70 per day to get around in Beijing.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Istanbul $3.17
    Beijing $6.70
Typical Local Transportation prices in Istanbul

Some typical examples of transportation costs in Istanbul are as follows:


  • Ferry
    $0.19
  • Local Bus
    $0.20

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Istanbul

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Istanbul:

  • 2 Ways Istanbul Airport Transfer: $109
  • 2 Ways Istanbul Airport Transfer: $56
  • 2 Ways Sabiha Gokcen Airport Transfer: $56
  • 2-Hour Bosphorus Yacht Cruise with Transfers: $500
  • 2m Transfer: $85
  • 4-Day Istanbul City Package including Full-Day Istanbul City Tour plus Airport Transfers: $350
  • 4-Day Wonderful Istanbul Including Accommodation Plus Transfer: $474
  • Air Transfer Lines | Airport Transfer Service: $44
  • Airport Transfer, Hotel Tranfer, Shuttle Service, Taxi Service: $26
  • Airport private transfer to hotel and back: $109
  • Arrival Private Transfers from New Airport IST to Istanbul in Business Car: $123
  • City Center to Istanbul Airport (IST) Departure Transfers: $87

Typical Local Transportation prices in Beijing

Here are some examples of typical transportation prices from actual travelers in Beijing:


  • Taxi
    $5.17
  • Train from Airport for Two
    $7.57
  • Taxi to Hotel
    $9.08
  • 2 Metro Passes
    $2.42
  • Metro
    $0.61

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Beijing

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Beijing:

  • Private Departure Transfer: Hotel to Beijing Train Stations: $20
  • Private Arrival Transfer: Beijing Train Stations to Hotel: $20
  • Private Airport Transfer: from Beijing to Beijing Capital Int. Airport (PEK): $21
  • Transfer from Beijing hotel downtown to Beijing International Airport: $21
  • Beijing Airport Transfer: $21
  • Private Airport Transfer: Beijing Nanyuan Airport (NAY) to Beijing: $23
  • Private Airport Transfer: from Beijing to Beijing Nanyuan Airport (NAY): $23
  • Beijing Railway Station Departure Transfer: Hotel/Apartment to Railway Station: $23
  • Private airport transfer to or from Peking International Airport max 15 Persons: $23
  • Private airport transfer to or from Peking International Airport Max 15 persons: $24
  • Beijing Capital International Airport (PEK) Private Departure Transfer: $24
  • Private Airport Transfer: Beijing Capital International Airport (PEK) to Beijing: $24

Is it cheaper to fly into Istanbul or Beijing?

Prices for flights to both Beijing and Istanbul 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

On average, meal and food prices in Istanbul cost around $14 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 $5.60.

In Beijing travelers spend around $18 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.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Istanbul $14
    Beijing $18
Typical Food prices in Istanbul

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


  • Juice
    $0.13
  • Turkish Delight
    $0.04
  • Dessert
    $0.57
  • Pastries
    $0.10

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Istanbul

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

  • Istanbul Dinner Cruise & Show: $29
  • Istanbul Dinner Cruise Show: $30
  • Bosphorus Dinner Cruise Inc. Dinner and Belly Dance Show with Hotel Transfer: $34
  • Alaturca Ottoman Dramatic Stage Show & Dinner Cruise ( Non - Alcoholic ): $35
  • Bosphorus Dinner & Show Cruise (All Inclusive): $36
  • Bosphorus Dinner Show Cruise With Non Alcoholic Menu ISTANBUL Dinner cruise: $36
  • Bosphorus Dinner Cruise An Unforgettable Experience in Istanbul: $36
  • Bosphorus Dinner Cruise & Night Show from Istanbul: $37
  • Istanbul Cruise&Show with Dinner: $37
  • Dinner Cruise on the Bosphorus: $38
  • Istanbul Dinner Cruise & Show: $39
  • Istanbul Dinner Cruise with Sema Ceremony: $40

Typical Food prices in Beijing

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for food and meal costs in Beijing:


  • Popcorn
    $0.91
  • Hot Pot Dinner
    $7.57
  • Dumpling Breakfast for Two
    $3.03
  • Watermelon
    $2.12
  • Peking Duck Dinner for 2
    $18
  • Two Popsicles
    $0.91

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Beijing

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

  • Online Cooking Class: $25
  • Private Temple of Heaven Walking Tour with Peking Duck Dinner or Kung Fu Show: $62
  • 3 hours Morning or Afternoon Tea Tasting on Maliandao Street and Tea Restaurant Lunch or Dinner Tour: $69
  • Beijing Hutong Breakfast Food Tour: $69
  • Old Beijing Dinner Tour: $80
  • Authentic Local Food Tour in Center Beijing: $90
  • Vegetarian / Peking Duck / Hotpot Dinner with Kungfu Show Private Tour: $90
  • Private Evening Hutong Walking Tour with Mongolia Hotpot Dinner: $96
  • Private Nightlife Trip to See Wonderful Acrobatic Show Enjoy Delicious Barbecue Buffet Dinner: $96
  • Peking Duck Dinner with Face Changing show plus Full Body Massage: $98
  • Private Tour: Beijing by Night including Imperial Performance and Dinner: $98
  • Half Day Food Tour with Public Transit of Breakfast or Local Street Snacks: $99

Entertainment

Entertainment and activities in Istanbul typically cost an average of $20 per person, per day. This includes fees paid for admission tickets to museums and attractions, day tours, and other sightseeing expenses.

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


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Istanbul $20
    Beijing $21
Typical Entertainment prices in Istanbul

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


  • Bosphurus Boat (for 2)
    $1.35
  • Yerebatan Cistern for Two
    $1.35
  • Museum of Turkish and Islamic Arts for Two
    $0.67
  • Hagia Sofia entrance
    $2.02

Tours and Activities in Istanbul

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

  • Just Hagia Sophia Tour /Skip The Lines: $8.71
  • VR Dervish Experience: $10
  • Museum of Illusions Istanbul Ticket: $11
  • Piri Self-Guided Audio Tour: Istanbul, Historical Peninsula: $11
  • Old City Insider Walking Tour: $11
  • Bosphorus Cruise with Audio App: $11
  • Basilica Cistern VIP Tickets: $12
  • Vip Ticket For Hagi̇a Sophi̇a: $12
  • Hagia Sophia & Blue Mosque&Hippodrome Guided Tours Everyday /No que / No line!: $12
  • Istanbul LEGOLAND Discovery Center Entrance Ticket: $14
  • SEA LIFE Istanbul Entry Ticket: $14
  • Hagia Sophia: Entry with Guided Tour: $14

Typical Entertainment prices in Beijing

Here are a few typical costs in Beijing for activities, ticket prices, and tours that come from previous visitors:


  • Entry to Summer Palace for Two
    $9.08
  • Two Opera Tickets
    $64
  • Temple of Heaven Park Entrance (for 2)
    $11
  • Forbidden City (for 2)
    $18
  • Forbidden City Tickets
    $18
  • Audio Guides at Forbidden City
    $12

Tours and Activities in Beijing

Here are a few actual costs in Beijing for available activities, ticket prices, and tours:

  • Temple of Heaven Tickets Booking: $4.00
  • MTY test product for tours: $5.00
  • Beijing Summer Palace Admission Ticket: $5.13
  • Train Tickets in China: $5.34
  • Private Tailor made tour for your family only in China around: $5.34
  • Beijing National Center for the Performing Arts Admission Ticket: $6.45
  • Beijing Temple of Heaven Admission Ticket: $7.06
  • Summer Palace Tickets Booking: $8.00
  • Beijing Forbidden City Entrance Ticket (with Optional Guided Service): $8.21
  • Beijing Automobile Museum Admission Ticket: $8.71
  • Skip the Line: Beijing Forbidden City Admission Ticket: $8.80
  • Skip the Line: Forbidden City Tickets & Optional Guide Tours: $8.88

Alcohol

The average person spends about $4.85 on alcoholic beverages in Istanbul per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.

While the amount that someone spends on alcohol while visiting Beijing may vary from person to person, on average a person spends $10 per day on alcoholic beverages.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Istanbul $4.85
    Beijing $10

Sample the Local Flavors in Istanbul

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Istanbul:

  • Daily Tekirdag Wine Tasting Tour from Istanbul: $427

Sample the Local Flavors in Beijing

Here are a few nightlife and alcohol tours and activities from local tour providers in Beijing:

  • Evening Food Private Tour with Brewery Taproom Hopping at Slow Boat in Beijing: $138
  • 5-Hour Private Changyu Chateau Wine Tasting Tour from Beijing: $178
  • Private Wonderful Beijing Bar Crawl Tour: $195
  • Private Changyu Chateau Wine Tasting Tour and Mutianyu Great Wall Visit: $228


When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Istanbul and Beijing, we can see that Beijing is more expensive. And not only is Istanbul much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. Since Istanbul is in Europe and Beijing is in Asia, this is one of the main reasons why the costs are so different, as different regions of the world tend to have overall different travel costs. So, traveling to Istanbul would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Istanbul 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 Beijing would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Beijing than you might in Istanbul.

Budget Your Trip

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Istanbul vs. Beijing Travel Comparison

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