A Travel Price Comparison for Canada Ottawa vs. Vancouver for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Ottawa or Vancouver?

Should I visit Ottawa or Vancouver? This is a common question asked by many travelers. By figuring out which city is more affordable, you'll understand where you can get more bang for your buck. So, let's dive into the data, which all comes from actual travelers.


Ottawa is the capital city of Canada, located on the Ontario side of the Ottawa River. A city of many ethnic populations, Ottawa is uniquely bilingual with English as the first language of the population's majority and French as a close second. It is best known as the nation's capital, which is centered on Parliament Hill, an architectural landmark as well as the seat of government.


Vancouver is a beautiful and cosmopolitan city in Western Canada. It is also the largest city in British Columbia, and is dramatically positioned between the coast and mountains. It's a very international city, with a high level of energy and countless activites that you can enjoy while you're in town. In addition to offering all of the activities and entertainment of a modern city, it is also in jumping off distance to any number of outdoor activities.

Which city is cheaper, Vancouver or Ottawa?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Ottawa is $115, while the average daily cost in Vancouver is $122. 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 Ottawa and Vancouver in more detail.


An average hotel room with basic furnishings costs about $50 in Ottawa For the most convenient locations and nicer amenities you can expect to pay a bit more.

For a normal double-occupancy room in Vancouver, $148 is the average cost for a hotel room. Also in Vancouver, the typical price for a place to stay for one person is $74, such as in a hostel.

  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Ottawa $25
    Vancouver $74
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Ottawa $50
    Vancouver $148


The average traveler spends about $15 per day in Ottawa 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.

Vancouver food costs typically run travelers around $27 per day. Eating every meal in a nicer restaurant will drive the cost up, and grabbing fast food or casual meals will help you save money.

  • Food Meals for one day
    Ottawa $15
    Vancouver $27

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Ottawa

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

  • Oh Canada Eh Dinner Show Ottawa: $73

Typical Food prices in Vancouver

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

  • All You Can Eat Sushi Lunch

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Vancouver

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

  • Little Italy Walking Food Tour: $75
  • Private Little Italy Walking Food Tour in Vancouver: $75
  • Private Historical Food Tour of Gastown: $75
  • Gastown Historic Walking Food Tour: $75
  • Private MultiCultural Vancouver Vegan Food Tour: $83
  • Vancouver Harbor Sunset Dinner Cruise: $84
  • Cooking Classes: $109
  • Bowen Island Dinner and Zodiac Tour: $118
  • Private Tour: Secret Food Tours Vancouver: $156
  • Secret Food Tour of Vancouver w/ Private Tour Option: $156
  • Shuttle to Zodiac Nature Tour, Seaside Dinner, and return to Vancouver by Seaplane: $261
  • Best of Vancouver Highlights /Suspension Bridge/ Free Pizza Party Tour Private: $331

Local Transportation

Ottawa's transportation costs can vary by the type of transport chosen by visitors. Naturally, taxis and private drivers cost much more than public transportation options. On average, visitors spend $6.26 per person, per day on transportation in Ottawa.

To get around in Vancouver, the average visitor spends $10 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.
    Ottawa $6.26
    Vancouver $10

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Ottawa

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

  • Private Transfer: Ottawa to Ottawa International Airport (YOW): $622
  • Private Transfer: Ottawa International Airport (YOW) to Ottawa: $622
  • Ottawa Macdonald–Cartier Airport (YOW) to Ottawa - Round-Trip Private Transfer: $124
  • Private Departure Transfer from Ottawa City to YOW Ottawa Airport: $75
  • Private Arrival Transfer from YOW Ottawa Airport to Ottawa City: $75
  • Ottawa to Ottawa Macdonald–Cartier Airport (YOW) - Departure Private Transfer: $62
  • Ottawa Macdonald–Cartier Airport (YOW) to Ottawa City - Arrival Private Transfer: $62
  • Private Arrival Transfer from Ottawa Macdonald-Cartier Airport YOW: $55
  • Private Departure Transfer to Ottawa Macdonald-Cartier Airport YOW: $55
  • Private Airport Transfer: Ottawa/Macdonald-Cartier Int. Airport (YOW) to Ottawa: $47
  • Private Airport Transfer: Ottawa to Ottawa/Macdonald-Cartier Int. Airport (YOW): $47

Typical Local Transportation prices in Vancouver

Some typical examples of transportation costs in Vancouver are as follows:

  • SkyTrain from Airport
  • Taxi from Airport to Downtown
  • 15 min Taxi Ride
  • SkyTrain DayPass

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Vancouver

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

  • Whistler to Vancouver Private Transfer: $451
  • Whistler Vancouver Private Transfer: $566
  • Vancouver-Whistler Private Transfer for Skiing: $447
  • Vancouver to Whistler Transfer: $394
  • Vancouver to Seattle Private Transfer: $645
  • Vancouver hotel/address to Vancouver Airport (YVR) - Departure Private Transfer: $72
  • Vancouver Whistler Private Transfer: $566
  • Vancouver Cruise Transfers/ Pre & Post Cruise City Sightseeing Tour Private: $181
  • Vancouver Cruise Transfers/ Pre & Post Cruise City Sightseeing Tour Private: $234
  • Vancouver Airport to Whistler Private Transfer: $374
  • Vancouver Airport to Whistler Private Transfer: $410
  • Vancouver Airport Transfers: Vancouver to Vancouver Airport YVR in Luxury Van: $152

Is it cheaper to fly into Ottawa or Vancouver?

Prices for flights to both Vancouver and Ottawa 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.


Sightseeing, admission tickets, things to do, and other entertainment expenses in Ottawa can vary widely by price. On average, visitors spend around $35 per person, per day on entertainment and sightseeing here.

In Vancouver, the costs for things to do, activities, admission tickets, and other sightseeing expenses are on average $31 per person, per day.

  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Ottawa $35
    Vancouver $31

Tours and Activities in Ottawa

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

  • 2-Hour Ottawa Express City Bike Tour: $38
  • Best of Ottawa Neighbourhoods & Nature Bike Tour: $69
  • Boat Tour in the Ottawa River: $32
  • ByWard Market Lunch Tasting Experience: $74
  • Explore Canada Through Ottawa's Eyes with Walking Tours Through The City: $4.84
  • Night on Ottawa Tour: $120
  • Ottawa Bike Tour: Hoods & Hidden Gems: $41
  • Ottawa Bike Tour: The Essentials: $41
  • Ottawa Highlights 3.5 Hour Bike Tour: $77
  • Ottawa Hop-On Hop-Off Sightseeing Tour: $37
  • Ottawa Like a Local: Customized Private Tour: $29
  • Ottawa River Tour: $26

Tours and Activities in Vancouver

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

  • "Wonderful Vancouver" - all highlights city tour, english for foreigners (easy): $129
  • "Wonderful Vancouver" - full day all highlights city tour in russian language: $121
  • $98 Vancouver Airport Layover sightseeing /Best of Vancouver in 2 Hours Private: $85
  • $99 Vancouver 2 Hours City Tour Private: $108
  • 10-day Rocky Mountains Whistler Big West Tour from Vancouver: $1,241
  • 14-day Rocky Mountains Whistler Vancouver Island Pacific Tour from Vancouver: $1,666
  • 2 Day Canadian Geographic Explorer Private Adventure: $1,359
  • 2 Hours Private tour of Vancouver ending at Airport or Hotel.: $218
  • 2-Day Rockies Roadrunner Tour from Vancouver finish Banff: $359
  • 2-Day Whistler Sea to Sky Tour from Vancouver: $220
  • 2-Hour Downtown Vancouver Private Walking Tour: $108
  • 2-Hour Vancouver Gastown Self-Guided Walking Tour: $20


Typically, people visiting Ottawa spend on average $16 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.

Alcoholic beverages can often be a significant portion of a traveler's budget, and the costs can vary greatly from person to person. In Vancouver, the average amount that a visitor spends on alcoholic beverages per day is $14.

  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Ottawa $16
    Vancouver $14

Sample the Local Flavors in Ottawa

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

  • Epic Ottawa Bar Crawl: By Let’s Roam: $12

Sample the Local Flavors in Vancouver

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Vancouver:

  • Epic Vancouver Bar Crawl: By Let’s Roam: $12
  • Vancouver Craft Brewery Tour Led by a Local: $68
  • Vancouver Behind-the-Scenes Brewery Tour: $78
  • Vancouver Wine Tour (Fraser Valley): $119
  • Stawamus Chief Hike & Local Brewery Tasting: $141
  • Oregon Coast Tour and Wine Tasting- Private Full Day Tour: $179
  • Vancouver Island Cycling Tour including Lunch and Wine Tasting: $186
  • Vancouver Private Wine Tasting Tour: $218
  • Fraser Valley Social Wine Tasting Private Tour: $256
  • Vancouver City Finest and Social Wine tasting Private Tour: $422
  • Private Fraser Valley Wine Tour: $1,000
  • Small-Group Fraser Valley Wine Tour with Lunch from Vancouver: $1,008

When comparing the travel costs between Ottawa and Vancouver, we can see that Vancouver is more expensive. However, the two cities are actually relatively comparable in price, as the difference is somewhat minimal. Generally, this means that you could travel with generally the same travel style and level of luxury in each place. Since both cities are in North America, it's no surprise that their costs are relatively close, as many destinations here have somewhat similar travel prices overall.

Budget Your Trip

Budget Your Trip has average travel costs for thousands of cities around the world, all provided by other travelers. You can also register to organize your spending by category and location with graphs, maps, charts, and tables.

Share This Page
Pin This Page
Ottawa vs. Vancouver Travel Comparison

Some of the links on this website are sponsored or affiliate links which help to financially support this site. By clicking the link and making a purchase, we may receive a small commission, but this does not affect the price of your purchase.