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

Should you visit Lisbon or Rio de Janeiro?

Which is cheaper to visit? Which is more expensive for vacation?

Should I visit Lisbon or Rio de Janeiro? This is a common question asked by many travelers. By figuring out which city has activities that align with your interests along with knowing which is more affordable, you'll understand where you can get more bang for your buck. So, let's dive into the details and the data, which all comes from actual travelers.

Lisbon

Portugal's capital city of Lisbon continues to grow in popularity as a travel destination. The cultural scene has come to life in recent years and the city itself is stunningly beautiful. It sits on the edge of the Atlantic Ocean and is made up of hills that create a dramatic and scenic layout. The city has many white-bleached limestone buildings, narrow alleyways, and a laidback charm that appeals to visitors.

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 Lisbon?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Lisbon is €105, while the average daily cost in Rio de Janeiro is €75. 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. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Lisbon and Rio de Janeiro in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Lisbon 47
    Rio de Janeiro 47
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Lisbon 94
    Rio de Janeiro 94

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Lisbon 19
    Rio de Janeiro 5.81
Typical Local Transportation prices in Lisbon

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


  • Taxi Ride
    6.50

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Lisbon

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

  • Airport Private Transfer in Van to Caldas da Rainha or Óbidos or Fátima: $165
  • Airport Private Transfer in Van to Cascais or Sintra or Estoril: $68
  • Airport Private Transfer to Caldas da Rainha or Óbidos or Fátima: $99
  • Airport Private Transfer to Cascais or Sintra or Estoril: $27
  • Airport Private Transfer to Costa da Caparica or Almada: $19
  • Airport Private Transfer to Ericeira or Torres Vedras: $46
  • Airport Transfer: $44
  • Airport Transfer Lisbon: $54
  • Algarve Private Direct Transfer from Lisbon: $760
  • Arrival Private Transfer Business Car Lisbon airport LIS to Lisbon City: $38
  • Arrival Private Transfer Luxury Van Lisbon airport LIS to Lisbon City: $49
  • Arrival Transfer at Family & Friends: $19

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
    2.67

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Rio de Janeiro

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Rio de Janeiro:

  • Visit to an Original Historic Coffee Farm Guided Tour including Transfer: $140
  • Visit to Madureira Park in Rio de Janeiro with Transfer: $66
  • Transfers: $139
  • Transfer in Rio: $35
  • Transfer in Private Vehicle from Rio de Janeiro Santos Dumont Airport to City: $23
  • Transfer in Private Minivan from Rio de Janeiro Santos Dumont Airport to City: $73
  • Transfer in Private Minivan from Rio de Janeiro Galeao(GIG) Airport to City: $73
  • Transfer in Private Car from Galeao Airpor t(GIG) to Rio de Janeiro city center: $23
  • Transfer from South Zone/Downtown to Santos Dumont Airport (SDU): $30
  • Transfer from Santos Dumont Airport (SDU) to South Zone/Downtown hotels: $47
  • Transfer from Santos Dumont Airport (SDU) to Barra da Tijuca/São Conrado: $71
  • Transfer from Rio de Janeiro Galeao International Airport: $33

Is it cheaper to fly into Lisbon or Rio de Janeiro?

Prices for flights to both Rio de Janeiro and Lisbon 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
  • Food Meals for one day
    Lisbon 34
    Rio de Janeiro 14
Typical Food prices in Lisbon

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


  • Coffee
    2.50

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Lisbon

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

  • Virtual Portuguese Cooking Lesson: $31
  • Live Online Cooking Class from Pastel de Nata with Filipa: $39
  • Bohemian dinner party on a beautiful rooftop near the coast: $42
  • 2-Hour Pastel de Nata Cooking Class: $51
  • The magic of Pasteis de Nata cooking class in Lisbon: $53
  • Bitemojo Self Guided Food Tour New To Lisbon: $54
  • Withlocals Your Way: Lisbon Personalised Private Food Tour: $56
  • Pastel de Nata Cooking Class with Local Baker: $57
  • Private Groups: Pastel de Nata cooking class and tasting in Lisbon's pastry shop: $57
  • Authentic Portuguese dinner with a local chef: $58
  • Lisbon Food Tour: $62
  • Lisbon Old Town Food Tour by Sitway: $63

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
    0.53
  • Corn on the Cob
    0.71
  • Hamburger
    0.89

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
  • Rio Scenarium Entrance, Dinner, and Open Bar: $72
  • Small-Group Boozy 7-Recipe Brazilian Cooking Class: $75
  • Food Tour Experience in Rio de Janeiro (Small Groups or Private): $80
  • Samba Show Ginga Tropical with Optional Dinner: $86

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Lisbon 19
    Rio de Janeiro 16

Tours and Activities in Lisbon

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

  • Lisbon Downtown Tour - The Perfect Introduction to the City: $1.24
  • Lisbon Historical Walking Tour: $3.11
  • Sintra Myths and Legends Interpretative Center Entry Ticket: $3.99
  • Contemporary Park of Nations Walking Audio Tour by VoiceMap: $5.48
  • The Soul of Alfama Self-guided Audio Tour by VoiceMap Lisbon: $5.99
  • Museu Coleção Berardo Admission Ticket: $6.22
  • Skip the Line: Pilar 7 Bridge Experience Admission Ticket: $6.22
  • Street Art Virtual Tour in Lisbon: $6.22
  • Lisboa Story Centre: 1-Day Admission Ticket: $7.41
  • Lisboa Story Centre Admission Ticket: $8.09
  • Capuchos Convent Skip-the-Line Ticket: $8.71
  • Calouste Gulbenkian Museum Admission Ticket: $12

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 Rio Downtown Sites & Bites Small Group Tour: $62
  • 4-hour Sum-up Of Rio de Janeiro "Private Tour" – Optional Airport & Port Pick-up: $92
  • 6-hour Classic Rio de Janeiro "Private City Tour" – Optional For Airport Pick-up: $123

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Lisbon 14
    Rio de Janeiro 8.82

Sample the Local Flavors in Lisbon

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

  • 1-Hour Portuguese Wine Tasting Session: $22
  • 3-Hour Portuguese History & Flavors Food & Wine Tour: $30
  • Portuguese Wine Tasting and Cheese Lunch: $56
  • Christ the King and Arrábida Small-Group Tour with Wine Tasting from Lisbon: $58
  • Craft Beer, Port & Wine Tour: $68
  • Food & Wine Tasting Walking Tour: $75
  • Santuário Cristo Rei-Sesimbra-Castle Palmela-Bacalhoa Winery with wine tasting: $81
  • Full-Day Évora Wine Tour: $84
  • Wine Tasting in Lisbon: $87
  • Private Van Tour Arrabida and Wine Tasting: $89
  • Wine tasting Private Day Tour ARRABIDA: $92
  • Van Private Tour Arrábida Wine Tour: $96

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
  • Pub Crawl in Lapa: $19
  • 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 Lisbon and Rio de Janeiro, we can see that Lisbon is more expensive. And not only is Rio de Janeiro much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. Since Lisbon is in Europe and Rio de Janeiro is in South America, 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 Rio de Janeiro would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Rio de Janeiro 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 Lisbon would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Lisbon than you might in Rio de Janeiro.

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Lisbon vs. Rio de Janeiro Travel Comparison

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