A Travel Price Comparison for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons New York City vs. Los Angeles

Should you visit New York City or Los Angeles?

Which city should you visit? Read on to compare the prices of travel for New York City and Los Angeles. We’ll break down costs for accommodation, food, transportation and more to help you learn more about these two destinations. Then, you can figure out if either of these two places are accessible based on your travel budget. So, let's dig into it.

New York City

The most populated city in the United States, New York City, sits at the mouth of the Hudson River and encompasses both the island of Manhattan as well as the surrounding land on Long Island, most of which is known as Brooklyn. It's a cultural, culinary, theatrical, and art center that has much to offer domestic and international travelers alike. The city covers an area of 305 square miles and has a population of about 8.2 million people in the city proper with 18.7 million in the metropolitan area.

Los Angeles

Los Angeles, California is probably one of the most well known cities in the United States. It is the second most populated metro area in the country with more than 17 million people. The city's diversity is wide reaching, giving it a character that is unique from any other place in the country. LA has many world famous sights and neighborhoods including Hollywood, Beverly Hills, Rodeo Drive, and Santa Monica, but there is really so much more to this city.

Which city is cheaper, Los Angeles or New York City?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in New York City is $239, while the average daily cost in Los Angeles is $190. 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 New York City and Los Angeles in more detail.


Accommodation

Travelers usually pay around $274 for a double occupancy room in New York City If you want to be in a premiere location or have high end amenities, you can expect to pay a bit more.

For a normal double-occupancy room in Los Angeles, $222 is the average cost for a hotel room. Also in Los Angeles, the typical price for a place to stay for one person is $111, such as in a hostel.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    New York City $137
    Los Angeles $111
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    New York City $275
    Los Angeles $222


Food

The average traveler spends about $38 per day in New York City 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.

The average traveler spends about $35 per day in Los Angeles 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
    New York City $38
    Los Angeles $35
Typical Food prices in New York City

For New York City, here are some examples of average food and meal prices for travelers:


  • Gelato
    $7.50
  • Snacks for Two at Yankees Game
    $34
  • Coffee
    $6.53
  • Smoothie
    $6.95

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in New York City

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

  • Greenwich Village History, Culture, and Food Tour with Local Expert: $129
  • JAPANESE guided tour! Bateaux Dinner Cruise tour with hotel transportation. The best way to enjoy the Manhattan night view from the river & sea. Full course French dinner, live band music included.: $333
  • Limo trip Hotel to Dinner round trip in NEW MKT Limousine: $481

Typical Food prices in Los Angeles

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


  • Mexican Dinner (family of 4)
    $32
  • Burritos for Two
    $15
  • Coffee and Danish
    $7.70

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Los Angeles

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

  • Downtown Food Tour: $75
  • 3-Hour Secret Food Tour: $209
  • How to Cook the Perfect Steak Virtual Cooking Class: $42
  • West Hollywood Food Tour: $75
  • Downtown Los Angeles Food Tour: $77
  • Private Tour: Secret Food Tours Los Angeles Venice Beach: $96
  • Private Authentic Middle Eastern Cooking Class in Reseda, Los Angeles: $102
  • Luxury Vegan Food Tours of Los Angeles: $125
  • Secret Food Tour of Venice Beach, Los Angeles w/ Private Tour Option: $207


Local Transportation

Public transportation tends to be much less expensive in New York City than paying for a taxi or private car service, as is expected. Typically, people spend $40 on transportation in New York City on average per day.

Public transportation tends to be much less expensive in Los Angeles than paying for a taxi or private car service, as is expected. Typically, people spend $29 on transportation in Los Angeles on average per day.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    New York City $40
    Los Angeles $29
Typical Local Transportation prices in New York City

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for transportation costs in New York City:


  • Subway
    $4.50
  • Taxi Ride
    $8.00
  • Subway
    $2.50

Hired Cars and Shuttles in New York City

Also for New York City, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:

  • Private Departure Transfer Manhattan to NYC Airports JFK EWR LGA: $22
  • New York City Shared Shuttle Departure Transfer: Hotel to NYC Airports: $30
  • Private All Inclusive New York Transfer: Airport or Manhattan to Cruise Port: $71
  • Private New York airport transfer: New York airport to Manhattan and Brooklyn: $83
  • Private Transfer from New York City to LaGuardia Airport: $85
  • Private All Inclusive New York City Airport Arrival Transfer: $90
  • Private All Inclusive New York City Airport Departure Transfer: $90
  • Manhattan Private Luxury Transfer to NYC Airports: $98
  • New York Airport Luxury Departure Transfer via Stretch Limousine, SUV, Sedan: $100
  • Private Transfer from Manhattan to John F Kennedy Airport JFK by Luxury Car: $111

Typical Local Transportation prices in Los Angeles

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


  • Hotel Parking for a Day
    $22
  • Taxi to Airport
    $55

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Los Angeles

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

  • LA in a Day: City Highlights Tour with Transfer Options: $94
  • Private Arrival Transfer from Los Angeles Airport LAX: $30
  • Private Departure Transfer to Los Angeles Airport LAX: $30
  • Los Angeles Arrival Private Transfer: LAX Airport: $31
  • Small-Group Amazing Hollywood Sign Tour with Transfer: $32
  • Transfer to Los Angeles International Airport (LAX): $39
  • Los Angeles Airport (LAX) to Santa Monica - Arrival Private Transfer: $41
  • Private Airport Transfer: from Los Angeles to Los Angeles Int. Airport (LAX): $52
  • Private Van Airport Arrival Transfer: LAX Airport to Anaheim Resort Area: $53
  • Private Departure Transfer from Los Angeles City to Los Angeles Airport: $53


Entertainment

Sightseeing expenses in New York City, including the cost of admission tickets for day tours, museums, and attractions, usually cost an average of $77 per day, per person.

Sightseeing expenses in Los Angeles, including the cost of admission tickets for day tours, museums, and attractions, usually cost an average of $64 per day, per person.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    New York City $77
    Los Angeles $64
Typical Entertainment prices in New York City

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


  • Comedy Show Tickets
    $56
  • City Map
    $8.00
  • Broadway Musical
    $111
  • Broadway Show Program
    $10
  • Magazine
    $6.99

Tours and Activities in New York City

Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for New York City are as follows:

  • Statue of Liberty & Ellis Island: Ticket Options with Ferry: $21
  • New York City Lights Schooner Cruise: $54
  • New York City Sunset Cruise: Sail Schooner Adirondack: $76
  • Full-Day Boston and Woodbury Shopping Tour: $128
  • Boston by Rail from New York: Full-Day Round Trip Tour: $329
  • Lower Manhattan Tour: Wall Street & 9/11 Memorial: $35
  • From Boston in One Day Tour: $130
  • NYC: Top of the Rock Observation Deck Timed-Entry Ticket: $41
  • Niagara Falls, Toronto and 1000 Islands 3-Day Tour from NYC: $460
  • Madison Square Garden All Access Tour and Times Square Meal: $75

Typical Entertainment prices in Los Angeles

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


  • Santa Monica Pier Rides (family of 4)
    $37
  • Bowling
    $13
  • Hollywood Tour for Two
    $30
  • Six Flags for 2
    $96

Tours and Activities in Los Angeles

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

  • Hollywood Sign Comedy and Pictures Tour: $30
  • Lonely Planet Experiences: Downtown Los Angeles Taco Tour: $55
  • Marina Del Rey: Kayak and Paddleboard Tour with Sea Lions: $59
  • Los Angeles, Hollywood, & Beverly Hills Afternoon City Tour: $68
  • Make the Most of LA Small Group Tour: $119
  • Best of Los Angeles Day Tour with German-Speaking Guide: $149
  • California Coastline Helicopter Tour: $199
  • 30-Minute Tandem Paragliding Experience: $240
  • 1 Hour Sightseeing Helicopter Tour: $445
  • Los Angeles Romantic Helicopter Tour with Mountain Landing: $499


Alcohol

The average person spends about $23 on alcoholic beverages in New York City per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.

The average person spends about $11 on alcoholic beverages in Los Angeles per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    New York City $23
    Los Angeles $11

Sample the Local Flavors in Los Angeles

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

  • Malibu: Vintage VW Hippie Sightseeing Tour with Wine Tasting: $139
  • Malibu: Exclusive Wine Tasting and Falconry Experience: $109
  • Brews Cruise- DTLA Brewery tour by bike: $50
  • Brewery Walking Tour -- Downtown / Arts District: $81
  • Santa Barbara Wine Tasting Day Tour from Los Angeles: $249
  • Los Angeles Wine Tour: $250
  • The Private Malibu Wine Tour: $419
  • Food and Wine Tasting Party: $750
  • Private Tour: Malibu Wine Tasting for Two by Limousine from Los Angeles: $999



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

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New York City vs. Los Angeles Travel Comparison

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