A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers Melbourne vs. Christchurch for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Melbourne or Christchurch?

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

Should I visit Melbourne or Christchurch? 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.

Melbourne

Melbourne is the second largest city in Australia, after Sydney. It is also the capital city of the state of Victoria, in southeastern Australia. Melbourne is arguably the best city to experience culture and the arts in Australia. There is a friendly rivalry between Melbourne and Sydney over livability and popularity and Melbourne is definitely the city to visit for its parks, shopping, restaurants, galleries and theaters. Like Sydney, it is situated on the water, at the head of Port Phillip Bay. It's a beautiful city, and although it lacks the major sights that you'll find in Sydney such as the Sydney Opera House or the Harbour Bridge, you will never find yourself lacking for entertainment. It is also a wonderful base for exploring many of the nearby highlights, including Grampians National Park, The Great Ocean Road, and Phillip Island where you can view the penguin parade.

Christchurch

Christchurch is the largest city on the South Island of New Zealand, right beside the Canterbury Plains. Most people begin their South Island travels here. The city itself can be fascinating to explore so it is worth allowing yourself several days in town as an introduction to the region.

The River Avon flows through the city center, twisting through the old buildings. Christchurch is referred to in New Zealand as the Garden City and it is easy to see why. It's quite a nice city with trees spread throughout. The economy is centered around international tourism as well as foreign education. There is a high Asian student population here, giving the city a diverse feel.

Christchurch's climate is temperate and the city receives moderate rainfall. In January average high temperatures are around 73 degrees Fahrenheit with averages around 52 degrees Fahrenheit in July. There is a sea breeze during the summer months that keep temperatures pleasant. Temperatures can drop below freezing at night during the winter months. Snow may also fall several times a year.

Which city is cheaper, Christchurch or Melbourne?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Melbourne is $156, while the average daily cost in Christchurch is $83. 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 Melbourne and Christchurch in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Melbourne $106
    Christchurch $43
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Melbourne $212
    Christchurch $86

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Melbourne $17
    Christchurch $13
Typical Local Transportation prices in Melbourne

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


  • Airport Bus
    $11
  • Tram Ride
    $2.71

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Melbourne

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

  • Airport Shuttle and Transfers: $118
  • Airport Transfers: $101
  • Avalon Airport Transfers: $135
  • Departure Private Transfer Melbourne City to Melbourne Airport MEL Business Car: $86
  • Departure Private Transfer Melbourne City to Melbourne Airport MEL by Luxury Van: $103
  • Departure Private Transfer Melbourne City to Melbourne Airport MEL by Sedan Car: $73
  • Departure Private Transfers: Melbourne to Melbourne Airport MEL in Business Car: $96
  • Departure Private Transfers: Melbourne to Melbourne Airport MEL in Luxury Van: $131
  • Low Cost Private Transfer From Melbourne International Airport to Melbourne City - One Way: $108
  • Melbourne AIRPORT TRANSFER: $79
  • Melbourne Airport Departure Transfer from Melbourne CBD Hotels: $23
  • Melbourne Airport To CBD Transfers Sedan (Audi A8, BMW 7 & Mercedes S-Class): $78

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Christchurch

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Christchurch:

  • VIP Sedan Christchurch Airport Transfer to or from Central Christchurch: $80
  • VIP Range Rover Christchurch Airport Transfer to or from Central Christchurch: $108
  • Transfer from Christchurch Central City to Christchurch Airport: $21
  • Private Transfer: Christchurch to Mount Cook: $790
  • Private Transfer - Airport to Central Christchurch: $44
  • Private Minibus Airport Transfer - Pickup Hotel / Residence to Airport (11 Pax): $120
  • Private Minibus Airport Transfer - Pickup Airport to Hotel / Residence (11 Pax): $120
  • Private Departure Transfer: Central Christchurch to Christchurch Airport: $59
  • Private Arrival Transfer: Christchurch Airport to Central Christchurch: $59
  • Private Airport Round-Trip Transfer:Christchurch Airport to Central Christchurch: $74
  • Private & Exclusive One-Way Transfer Christchurch to Queenstown: $1,264
  • Executive Sedan Airport Transfer(Pickup Airport to Hotel/Residence) Christchurch: $60

Is it cheaper to fly into Melbourne or Christchurch?

Prices for flights to both Christchurch and Melbourne 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
    Melbourne $27
    Christchurch $27
Typical Food prices in Melbourne

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


  • Coffee
    $2.85
  • Pizza
    $4.99

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Melbourne

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

  • The Eynesbury Homestead: Dinner and 1.5-Hour Ghost Tour: $54
  • Eynesbury Homestead Dinner and Ghost Tour: $63
  • Traditional Sri Lankan Cooking Class: $72
  • Spice Factory 3-Hour Indian Cooking Class: $90
  • Private Australian Cooking Class in Melbourne using Native Produce: $125
  • Withlocals The 10 Tastings: Melbourne Private Food Tour: $131
  • Vegan Cooking Class: $146
  • Private Modern Australian Cooking Class with a Professional Chef in Melbourne: $166
  • Private Market Tour and Australian Cooking Class with a Local Chef in her Home: $203
  • [PRIVATE TOUR] Best Of Melbourne Food Tours: $462

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Christchurch

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

  • Tramway Restaurant 4 Course Dinner Service through Christchurch: $92
  • Willowbank Kiwi Tour and Maori Concert Including Hangi Dinner from Christchurch: $174

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Melbourne $24
    Christchurch $15

Tours and Activities in Melbourne

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

  • Live like a Local: Explore some favourite spots on a playful audio walking tour: $5.40
  • Melbourne Audio Tour: A Self-Guided Walk Through the City: $6.99
  • Questo Self-guided Haunted Melbourne Walking Tour: $12
  • Melbourne Self-Guided Audio Tour: $13
  • Melbourne Self-Guided Audio Tour: $14
  • Melbourne Sports Walking Tour: $14
  • Green Cabs Melbourne Tours: $16
  • Eureka Skydeck 88 Admission Ticket: $20
  • ArtVo Immersive Gallery Experience: $22
  • Tour guide services: $22
  • Melbourne Ghost Tour: $23
  • Gangsters & Candy Stores (night tour with laser projector): $25

Tours and Activities in Christchurch

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

  • 1 day private tour from Christchurch to Queenstown via Mt.Cook: $322
  • 1-Day Guided Walking Tour and Picnic on Banks Peninsula: $138
  • 10 Day Adrenalin Tour. Skydiving, Bungy, Rafting, Climbing, Heli MTB & more.: $4,219
  • 10 Day Adventure Tour. Hiking, Kayaking, Mountain Biking, Jet Boating & more.: $4,219
  • 2 days tour from Christchurch to Queenstown: $595
  • 2 hour Christchurch City Tour with scenic Chairlift ride: $99
  • 3 Day Christchurch and Akaroa Exclusive Private Tour: $2,026
  • 3 hour Christchurch City Tour with Ziplining at Christchurch Adventure Park: $237
  • 3-Day Christchurch City Break Tour For Locals: $337
  • 3-Day Christchurch and Akaroa Arrival Tour with Harbor Cruise: $668
  • 3-Day South Island Circle Tour from Christchurch: $1,158
  • 4 Day Kaikoura and Pancake Rocks Private Tour: $3,317

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Melbourne $15
    Christchurch $9.69
Typical Alcohol prices in Melbourne

Here are a few samples of the prices for alcohol and nightlife in Melbourne from other travelers:


  • Bottle of Wine
    $5.52

Sample the Local Flavors in Melbourne

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

  • Melbourne Bar Hunt: Melbourne Breakout Bar Crawl: $12
  • Melbourne CBD Pub Crawl: $16
  • Carlton Brewhouse Brewery Tour with Beer Tasting: $24
  • Yarra Valley Wine Tasting Day Tour from Melbourne: $78
  • Hops and Barrels- Hop on Hop off Wine Tour Mornington Peninsula.: $83
  • Small-Group Guided Yarra Valley Winery Tour with Wine Tasting: $104
  • Yarra Valley Wine Tour with Local Harvest Tastings from Melbourne: $115
  • Yarra Valley Local Produce and Wine Tasting Tour: $115
  • Yarra Valley Wine Tour inc lunch with a glass of wine, tastings and chocolate: $115
  • Yarra Valley Wine Tasting Tour Departing from Melbourne: $118
  • Mornington Peninsula Winery Tour Including Wine Tastings and 2-Course Lunch: $118
  • Yarra Valley Smaller Wineries Food and Wine Tour: $134

Sample the Local Flavors in Christchurch

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

  • A Waipara Wine Experience with Giles Tours, includes wine tastings and lunch: $95
  • All-Inclusive Waipara Region Wine Tour from Christchurch: $100
  • Akaroa Eco-Safari with Alpaca Farm Tour and Wine Tasting: $103
  • Full-day Akaroa Tour with Penguins Safari and Wine Tasting: $114
  • Lyttelton Shore Excursion - Waipara Wine Tour With Lunch: $115
  • Full-day Akaroa Tour with Dolphin Cruise & Wine Tasting: $133
  • Private Waipara Valley Wine Tasting Tour with optional Gourmet Lunch: $190
  • Hanmer Springs Private Day Tour Including Hot Pool & Wine Tasting: $356


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

Budget Your Trip

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Melbourne vs. Christchurch Travel Comparison

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