A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers La Plata vs. Rio de Janeiro for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit La Plata or Rio de Janeiro?

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 La Plata and Rio de Janeiro can help you decide which place is right for you.

La Plata

Just over an hour from Buenos Aires, the bustling university city of La Plata is notable for being South America's first planned city. Indeed, also known as the City of Diagonal, La Plata's intricate grid system includes diagonal streets that run through it, contributing to easy navigation but confusing intersections.La Plata is the Capital of the Province of Buenos Aires, the main Argentine state, so you will find lots of elaborate government buildings alongside leafy green plazas in this laid back as well as active city. La Plata is a happening university town with a population of over 700,000. You can walk the width of it in under an hour, stopping at trendy craft beer bars, local music joints, and great restaurants along the way. Also, football is a religion in Argentina and if you're looking for some local atmosphere, La Plata is the place to go! Two of Argentina's biggest football teams, Gimnasia y Esgrima La Plata and Estudiantes de La Plata challenge each other each year. If you are around during that special day for the city, you will witness thousands of fans wearing the relevant colours heading off to watch the match and parade by calle 7.

Rio de Janeiro

Rio de Janeiro is the most popular travel destination in Brazil. It is the second largest city in Brazil and the sixth largest in the Americas. A portion of the city has been designated a World Heritage Site. The peak time to visit is during the city's famous Carnival festival, which is one of the most famous festivals in the world. However, Rio's appeal as a travel destination is apparent year around. The city has a wonderful natural harbour that is surrounded by Sugar Loaf Mountain, Corcovado Peak, and the hills of Tijuca, creating an absolutely breathtaking and awe-inspiring setting. And you can't miss the beach, either!

Which city is cheaper, Rio de Janeiro or La Plata?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in La Plata is $61, while the average daily cost in Rio de Janeiro is $81. 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 La Plata and Rio de Janeiro in more detail.



Accommodation

Double occupancy rooms typically run around $48 in La Plata For nicer amenities and a premiere location, you can expect to pay a bit more.

The average price for accommodation for two people in Rio de Janeiro is $100. This is for two people sharing a typical double occupancy hotel room.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    La Plata $24
    Rio de Janeiro $50
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    La Plata $48
    Rio de Janeiro $100

Food

On average, meal and food prices in La Plata cost around $24 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 $9.60.

The average traveler spends about $15 per day in Rio de Janeiro for food, but obviously this is dependent on the type of restaurant and the amount of food ordered. To save money you can grab a lighter lunch or dinner, or you can try fast food or street food.


  • Food Meals for one day
    La Plata $24
    Rio de Janeiro $15
Typical Food prices in La Plata

Here are some examples of typical meal expenses from previous travelers to La Plata:


  • Ice Cream
    $0.12

Typical Food prices in Rio de Janeiro

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for food and meal costs in Rio de Janeiro:


  • Popcorn
    $0.57
  • Corn on the Cob
    $0.76
  • Hamburger
    $0.95

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Rio de Janeiro

Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in Rio de Janeiro.

  • Food Tour Rio de Janeiro: $30
  • Cooking Class for Cacao Lovers: $51
  • Feijoada Food Tour in Rio de Janeiro with Hotel pick-up and drop-off: $55
  • Plant-based Brazilian Flavours Cooking Class: $56
  • Dinner & Rio Scenarium Nightclub Admission with Transfer: $60
  • Private Tour in Rio Scenarium with Dinner: $65
  • Skip the line: Samba Show Admission & Transfer with Dinner Option: $70
  • Dinner and Brazilian Music Show in Rio Scenarium: $70
  • Small-Group Boozy 7-Recipe Brazilian Cooking Class: $75
  • Brazilian Food And Caipirinhas Cooking Class: $75
  • Food Tour Experience in Rio de Janeiro (Small Groups or Private): $80
  • Secret Food Tours Rio de Janeiro: $82

Local Transportation

Public transportation tends to be much less expensive in La Plata than paying for a taxi or private car service, as is expected. Typically, people spend $17 on transportation in La Plata on average per day.

While taxis and private drivers typically cost much more than public transportation, people usually spend around $6.22 per day to get around in Rio de Janeiro.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    La Plata $17
    Rio de Janeiro $6.22

Hired Cars and Shuttles in La Plata

Also for La Plata, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:

  • La Plata hotels to El Palomar Airport (EPA) - Departure Private Transfer: $75

Typical Local Transportation prices in Rio de Janeiro

Here are some examples of typical transportation prices from actual travelers in Rio de Janeiro:


  • Taxi Ride
    $2.86

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Rio de Janeiro

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Rio de Janeiro:

  • Private Transfer: Rio de Janeiro to Rio de Janeiro Santos Dumont Airport (SDU): $622
  • Private Transfer: Rio de Janeiro Santos Dumont Airport (SDU) to Rio de Janeiro: $622
  • Tandem Skydiving with Transfers: $617
  • Arrival Private Transfer: GIG or SDU Airport to Arraial do Cabo by Minivan: $481
  • Arrival Private Transfer: Rio GIG or SDU Airport to Angra dos Reis by Minivan: $458
  • Arrival Private Transfer Rio Airport to Buzios or Cabo Frio by Minivan: $428
  • ARMORED Airport Transfer - Rio de Janeiro (COVID-19 Prepared): $387
  • Rio de Janeiro Airport to Búzios Transfer: $360
  • Private Transfer to Paraty: $341
  • Buzios Day Trip from Rio de Janeiro Including Airport Transfer: $310
  • Rio de Janeiro & Angra Private Transfer Business Sedan: $310
  • Private Transfer from Rio to Búzios: $300

Is it cheaper to fly into La Plata or Rio de Janeiro?

Prices for flights to both Rio de Janeiro and La Plata 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 La Plata, including the cost of admission tickets for day tours, museums, and attractions, usually cost an average of $15 per day, per person.

Activities, things to do, and other forms of entertainment usually cost around $17 per person, per day in Rio de Janeiro. This cost includes the price of admission tickets to attractions and museums as well as daily tours.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    La Plata $15
    Rio de Janeiro $17
Typical Entertainment prices in La Plata

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


  • Sciencias Naturales Museum Entrance Fee
    $0.06

Tours and Activities in Rio de Janeiro

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

  • 2 Days in Rio: Cultural & Ecologic Tours: $284
  • 2 Days in Rio: Tijuca Forest & Two Brothers Hiking Tours: $265
  • 2 Hour Vidigal Favela Tour Discovery the Most Laidback Favela: $19
  • 3 Hour Sailing Experience in Rio: $39
  • 3-Day Customizable Tour of Rio de Janeiro: $365
  • 4 horas - Tour private: Corcovado e praias: $154
  • 4 hours - Tour Private: Pão de Açúcar e Catedral Metropolitana: $154
  • 4-Day Private Guided Tour from Rio de Janeiro to São Paulo – Coastal Trip: $990
  • 4-Days Ilha Grande Experience - Unlocking Brazil's 'Garden of Eden': $1,025
  • 4-Hour Urban Arts Walking Tour: $43
  • 4-hour Rio Downtown Sites & Bites Small Group Tour: $62
  • 4-hour Sum-up Of Rio de Janeiro "Private Tour" – Optional Airport & Port Pick-up: $92

Alcohol

Alcoholic beverages can often be a significant portion of a traveler's budget, and the costs can vary greatly from person to person. In La Plata, the average amount that a visitor spends on alcoholic beverages per day is $8.49.

While the amount that someone spends on alcohol while visiting Rio de Janeiro may vary from person to person, on average a person spends $9.43 per day on alcoholic beverages.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    La Plata $8.49
    Rio de Janeiro $9.43

Sample the Local Flavors in Rio de Janeiro

Here are a few nightlife and alcohol tours and activities from local tour providers in Rio de Janeiro:

  • Pub Crawl Rio de Janeiro: $11
  • Skip the line: Ipanema Pub Crawl: $28
  • Beautiful Imperial Petropolis City Tour Optional Lunch & Bohemia Brewery: $34
  • Rio By Night Tour: Pub Crawl Experiencing Music, Dancing, Drinks & Local Culture: $105
  • Petrópolis City and Brewery Bohemia Tour - Best of Rio's Mountains: $135
  • Rio: Sitio Burle Marx and Cachaça Distillery Private Tour: $160


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

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La Plata vs. Rio de Janeiro Travel Comparison

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