A Travel Price Comparison for California Palm Springs vs. Sacramento for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Palm Springs or Sacramento?

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 Palm Springs and Sacramento can help you decide which place is right for you.

Palm Springs

Palm Springs is a desert resort town located about two hours east of Los Angeles, most famously known as Hollywood's playground, where stars and starlets could escape for rest and relaxation but still be close enough to return for impromptu work.

It's no wonder that Palm Springs is increasingly popular as a weekend getaway for special occasions, and even for bachelor and bachelorette parties. Closer than the typical Las Vegas weekend for Southern California residents, Palm Springs provides a desert getaway with endless possibilities of activities, whether visitors want to gamble, shop, hike, or wander through an art gallery.

Climate in the high-desert is generally warm with highs in the 100s during the hot and dry summers, and lows in the mid 40s in the winter months, with sparse rainfall. However, if you're visiting during winter, be sure to pack versatile attire and layers as the days may be warm, but the nights in the low desert can get chilly enough to convince you to change into long pants.


Sacramento is the capital city and one of the oldest cities in the state of California. It was founded in 1849 in the midst of the Gold Rush, and has since grown to a population of over 500,000 people. The atmosphere is more laid back than most major cities, and its heritage is rooted in the Gold Rush and Transcontinental Railroad era.

Which city is cheaper, Sacramento or Palm Springs?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Palm Springs is $165, while the average daily cost in Sacramento is $225. 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 Palm Springs and Sacramento in more detail.


Palm Springs's average price for two people sharing a typical double-occupancy hotel room is $192. A typical place to stay for one person, per day is $96.

The prices for places to stay in Sacramento can vary by date, location, and type. Generally, the average cost for accommodation per person is $88, while a typical double-occupancy hotel room for two people will cost around $176.

  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Palm Springs $96
    Sacramento $88
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Palm Springs $192
    Sacramento $176


On average, meal and food prices in Palm Springs cost around $42 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 $17.

While meal prices in Sacramento can vary, the average travelers spends about $42 per day on food. Based on the spending habits of previous travelers, when dining out, an average meal in Sacramento should cost around $17 per person. Breakfast prices are usually a little cheaper than lunch or dinner. The price of food in sit-down restaurants in Sacramento is often higher than fast food prices or street food prices.

  • Food Meals for one day
    Palm Springs $42
    Sacramento $42

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Palm Springs

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

  • Private French-Inspired Cooking Class with a Fun Local: $72

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Sacramento

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

  • Downtown Sacramento Historical Food Tour: $82
  • Midtown Sacramento Arts and Food Tour: $85

Local Transportation

The cost of a taxi ride in Palm Springs is significantly more than public transportation. On average, past travelers have spent $42 per person, per day, on local transportation in Palm Springs.

Public transportation tends to be much less expensive in Sacramento than paying for a taxi or private car service, as is expected. Typically, people spend $41 on transportation in Sacramento on average per day.

  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Palm Springs $42
    Sacramento $41

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Palm Springs

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Palm Springs:

  • Palm Springs Private Transfer To San Diego, CA.: $398
  • Palm Springs International Airport One Way Transfer: $37
  • Palm Springs International Airport (PSP) to SANTA ANA - Arrival Private Transfer: $365
  • Palm Springs International Airport (PSP) to ONTARIO -Round-Trip Private Transfer: $597
  • Palm Springs International Airport (PSP) to ONTARIO - Arrival Private Transfer: $299
  • Palm Springs Airport (PSP) to SANTA ANA - Round-Trip Private Transfer: $729
  • Palm Springs Airport (PSP) to PALM SPRINGS - Round-Trip Private Transfer: $197
  • Palm Springs Airport (PSP) to PALM SPRINGS - Arrival Private Transfer: $98
  • Palm Springs Airport (PSP) to PALM DESERT - Round-Trip Private Transfer: $212
  • Palm Springs Airport (PSP) to PALM DESERT - Arrival Private Transfer: $106
  • Palm Springs Airport (PSP) to LOS ANGELES - Round-Trip Private Transfer: $970
  • Palm Springs Airport (PSP) to LOS ANGELES - Arrival Private Transfer: $485

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Sacramento

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

  • Sacramento Airport (SMF) to Sacramento hotel/address - Arrival Private Transfer: $72
  • Sacramento City to Sacramento Airport (SMF) - Departure Private Transfer: $72
  • Low Cost Private Transfer From Sacramento Executive Airport to Sacramento City - One Way: $73
  • Sacramento Airport (SMF) to Sacramento hotel/address- RoundTrip Private Transfer: $144
  • Low Cost Private Transfer From Sacramento Executive Airport to Roseville City - One Way: $144
  • Private Sacramento Transfer Hotel to Airport: $150
  • Private Sacramento Transfer Airport to Hotel: $150
  • Sacramento Airport (SMF) to Napa, CA - Arrival Private Transfer: $228
  • Private transfer from Sacramento to SFO: $340
  • Sacramento Airport (SMF) to Napa, CA - Round-Trip Private Transfer: $455

Is it cheaper to fly into Palm Springs or Sacramento?

Prices for flights to both Sacramento and Palm Springs 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 and activities in Palm Springs typically cost an average of $23 per person, per day. This includes fees paid for admission tickets to museums and attractions, day tours, and other sightseeing expenses.

Sightseeing expenses in Sacramento, including the cost of admission tickets for day tours, museums, and attractions, usually cost an average of $15 per day, per person.

  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Palm Springs $23
    Sacramento $15

Tours and Activities in Palm Springs

Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for Palm Springs are as follows:

  • Indian Canyons Walking Tour by Jeep from Palm Desert: $250
  • Indian Canyons Walking Tour by Jeep from Palm Springs: $250
  • Modern & More Bike Tours Palm Springs: $55
  • Mods & Icons Tour of Palm Springs: $127
  • Palm Springs All-City Tour: $323
  • Palm Springs Day Tour and Outlet Shopping from Los Angeles: $169
  • Palm Springs Scavenger Hunt Walking Tour: $29
  • Palm Springs Windmill Self-Driving Tour Interactive Fun Safe: $49
  • Playground of the Stars Palm Springs Tour: $323
  • Private Golden Days Tour of Palm Springs: $323
  • Private Tour of Joshua Tree National Park from Palm Springs: $495
  • The Legends & Icons Tour of Palm Springs: $114

Tours and Activities in Sacramento

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

  • Sacramento Urban Murals: Cycle the streets of Sacramento with an audio tour: $5.00
  • California Gold Rush: The Sacramento Grid on a Self-Guided Bicycle Audio Tour: $8.30
  • Sacramento Historic River Cruise: $20
  • Sacramento Scavenger Hunt Adventure: $21
  • Sacramento Sutter District History and Food Walking Tour: $78


The average person spends about $10 on alcoholic beverages in Palm Springs per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.

Typically, people visiting Sacramento spend on average $9.31 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.

  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Palm Springs $10
    Sacramento $9.31

Sample the Local Flavors in Sacramento

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

  • Sacramento Bar Hunt: Sacramento Sprint Bar Crawl: $12
  • Bk Best Wine Tasting Tours Amador County 4 Hour Chevrolet Suburban Passengers 7: $385
  • 4 Hour Private Amador County Wine Tasting Tours Mercedes Sprinter Passengers Van: $409
  • Amador Wine Tour from Sacramento: $436
  • 6 Hour Wine Tasting Tours Napa Valley Mercedes-Benz Sprinter Passengers Van: $625

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

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
Palm Springs vs. Sacramento 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.