A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers Kingston vs. San Juan for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Kingston or San Juan?

If you're trying to decide where to visit between Kingston or San Juan, 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.

Kingston

Kingston is Jamaica's capital city with a population of about 579,000. For being located on an island, Kingston is a very large city with several different zip codes. Not only is Kingston the cultural capital of the country, but also the commercial one as well.

San Juan

If you've ever set foot on a Caribbean cruise, you've probably spent a bit of time in San Juan, Puerto Rico. However, maybe you should consider spending more than just a port day in this beautiful and historically rich city.

As the capital and largest city in all of Puerto Rico, San Juan is home to approximately 400,000 people. Established in 1521, it is also the second oldest European-founded settlement in the Americas.

As this city fuses a historic paradise with modern day energy, it has absolutely everything to offer. Intellectual wanderers, beach bums, rainforest adventurers and radical surfers will all find plenty to do in San Juan.

Which city is cheaper, San Juan or Kingston?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Kingston is $89, while the average daily cost in San Juan is $153. 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 Kingston and San Juan in more detail.



Accommodation

A hotel room in Kingston is about $104 This assumes double occupancy and modest accommodations.

An average hotel room with basic furnishings costs about $198 in San Juan For the most convenient locations and nicer amenities you can expect to pay a bit more.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Kingston $52
    San Juan $99
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Kingston $104
    San Juan $198

Food

Food in Kingston costs travelers about $22 per day on average. Restaurants can vary significantly in price, so choose wisely if you're trying to save money. Fast food and street stalls are typically your cheapest options, which sit down restaurants can be significantly more expensive.

Food in San Juan costs travelers about $29 per day on average. Restaurants can vary significantly in price, so choose wisely if you're trying to save money. Fast food and street stalls are typically your cheapest options, which sit down restaurants can be significantly more expensive.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Kingston $22
    San Juan $29

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Kingston

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

  • Jamaican Food Tour of Kingston: $90

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in San Juan

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

  • Flavors of Old San Juan Food Tour: $112
  • Authenic Puerto Rican Food Tasting Cooking Lesson (Volunteer Option Available): $115
  • Old San Juan Sunset Walk & Taste Food Tour: $119
  • Puerto Rican Food Tour: $152

Local Transportation

While taxis and private drivers typically cost much more than public transportation, people usually spend around $24 per day to get around in Kingston.

To get around in San Juan, the average visitor spends $11 per day, per person. This includes the costs of taxi rides and private drivers as well as public transportation, which tends to be much more affordable.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Kingston $24
    San Juan $11

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Kingston

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Kingston:

  • Private Airport Transfer from Kingston to Montego Bay: $660
  • Private transfer: Kingston to Kingston Airport (KIN): $622
  • Norman Manley Airport Private Round-trip Transfer to Montego Bay: $589
  • Norman Manley Airport Private Round-trip Transfer to Kingston & St Andrew: $383
  • Private Transfer From Kingston Airport To Ocho Rios Hotels 1-3 Pax: $322
  • MBJ Transfer - from Kingston: $320
  • Falmouth Hotels Private Roundtrip Airport Transfer from Kingston Airport (KIN): $315
  • Private Arrival or Departure Transfer: Norman Manley Airport to or from Montego Bay: $294
  • Private Round Trip Transfer Norman Manley Airport KIN to Port Antonio by Minivan: $283
  • Kingston Airport Transfers: $275
  • Hotel Riu, Jewel Dunn's River, Moon Palace Transfer from Kingston: $272
  • Private Transfer Kingston Airport (KIN) To Sandals South Coast: $225

Hired Cars and Shuttles in San Juan

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

  • Airport Transfers: SJU to Hotels in Isla Verde/Condado/Old San Juan Puerto Rico: $25
  • Luxury Private Round-Trip Airport Transfer : Luis Muñoz Marín Airport to Hotel: $95
  • Private Airport Transfer: from San Juan to Luis Munoz Marin Int. Airport (SJU): $52
  • Private Arrival Transfer from San Juan Cruise Port to Hotel in Fajardo: $128
  • Private Arrival Transfer from San Juan Cruise Port to Hotel in Ponce: $228
  • Private Arrival Transfer from San Juan Cruise Port to Hotel in San Juan: $51
  • Private Arrival Transfer from San Juan Cruise Port to Hotel in Vieques: $151
  • Private Departure Transfer - Hotel / Accommodation to San Juan Airport: $16
  • Private Departure Transfer from San Juan Hotel to San Juan Cruise Port: $51
  • Private San Juan, PR Transfer: Cruise Port to Airport or Hotel: $109
  • Private San Juan, PR Transfer: Hotel to Airport or Cruise Port: $109
  • Private Transfer San Juan SJU Airport to San Juan-Isla Verde-Condado by Van: $141

Is it cheaper to fly into Kingston or San Juan?

Prices for flights to both San Juan and Kingston 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 $10 per person, per day in Kingston. This cost includes the price of admission tickets to attractions and museums as well as daily tours.

In San Juan, the costs for things to do, activities, admission tickets, and other sightseeing expenses are on average $40 per person, per day.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Kingston $10
    San Juan $40

Tours and Activities in Kingston

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

  • 3-days Jamaica Sightseeing Tour of Treasure Beach and Negril departing from Kingston: $695
  • 3-days Sightseeing Tour of Ocho Rios & Montego Bay departing from Kingston: $695
  • 6-Day Private Tour of Jamaica from Kingston: $2,800
  • Black River Safari Tour from Kingston: $272
  • Blue Mountain Coffee and Sightseeing Tour: $315
  • Blue Mountains Coffee Private Tour from Kingston: $160
  • Bob Marley Museum and Tuff Gong Studio Combo Entrance Ticket: $50
  • Cultural Walking Tour of Kingston: $65
  • Dirt Bike Tours: $256
  • Dunn's River Falls & Jungle River Tubing Adventure Tour from Kingston: $241
  • Dunns River Falls Scenic Tour: $300
  • Dunns River Falls Scenic Tour: $300

Typical Entertainment prices in San Juan

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


  • Horseback Riding Tour
    $40
  • Full Day Snorkeling Trip
    $100
  • 1 Hr Windsurfing Lesson
    $75

Tours and Activities in San Juan

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

  • Old Let the city's buildings tell you their stories on an audio tour: $5.00
  • Skip the line! Port-Airport transportation: $10
  • Scenic Walking Tour in the Historic Old San Juan: $30
  • San Juan Sightseeing Tour: $30
  • City Tour San Juan and surroundings: $30
  • Guided Sunrise Kayak Experience at Condado Lagoon: $39
  • Old San Juan Walking Tour: $41
  • Oneway - to/from SJUAirport, Cruise Port, Hotels in SAN JUAN - Standard Sedan: $43
  • Pinones(Loiza) Tour: An Authentic Food & Beach Experience: $45
  • The Best Old San Juan Walking Tour: $45
  • Fountain of Youth Tour of Old San Juan: $46
  • San Juan Small-Group Snorkeling Tour on Coral Reef: $49

Alcohol

While the amount that someone spends on alcohol while visiting Kingston may vary from person to person, on average a person spends $9.03 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 San Juan, the average amount that a visitor spends on alcoholic beverages per day is $9.83.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Kingston $9.03
    San Juan $9.83

Sample the Local Flavors in San Juan

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in San Juan:

  • Bacardi Rum Distillery and Old San Juan Tour: $95
  • Private Old San Juan and Bacardí or Barrilito Distillery Experience: $195
  • Bacardi Rum Distillery with Cocktail Class and Old San Juan tour: $208
  • 3 Day Puerto Rico Extravaganza (Beach, Biobay, Rain Forest, Distillery & Old SJ): $902


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

Budget Your Trip

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Kingston vs. San Juan Travel Comparison

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