A Travel Price Comparison for Mexico Playa del Carmen vs. Mazatlan for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Playa del Carmen or Mazatlan?

Should I visit Playa del Carmen or Mazatlan? 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.

Playa del Carmen

Playa del Carmen is in Quintana Roo on the Yucatan Peninsula. It's a popular resort town and is about seventy kilometers south of Cancun. It has a European atmosphere with many small hotels and a nice relaxed feel. It was originally a small fishing town but tourism began with the introduction of a passenger ferry to Cozumel. The area developed rapidly and there are many luxury hotels, condos, and resorts. There are also American chains and a variety of shopping opportunities nearby.

Mazatlan

Mazatlan is located on the Pacific coast in the Mexican state of Sinaloa. The city has a population of almost 500,000, making it the second largest city in the state. It is a popular tourist destination because of its beautiful beaches and resort hotels. Most people head to Mazatlan specifically for its beaches, but the city itself is somewhat large and diverse with many different cultures and ethnicities represented. Many foreigners come here not only to vacation, but also to retire. You'll meet people from all over Europe, as well as Canada and the United States.

Which city is cheaper, Mazatlan or Playa del Carmen?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Playa del Carmen is $54, while the average daily cost in Mazatlan is $53. 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 Playa del Carmen and Mazatlan in more detail.



Accommodation

If you're traveling alone, you may be able to find a budget hotel or hostel for around $26. But for two people in a standard two-person hotel room in Playa del Carmen the cost is $52 on average.

If you're traveling alone, you may be able to find a budget hotel or hostel for around $22. But for two people in a standard two-person hotel room in Mazatlan the cost is $44 on average.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Playa del Carmen $26
    Mazatlan $22
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Playa del Carmen $52
    Mazatlan $44

Food

On average, meal and food prices in Playa del Carmen cost around $16 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 $6.40.

The average traveler spends about $23 per day in Mazatlan 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
    Playa del Carmen $16
    Mazatlan $23

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Playa del Carmen

Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in Playa del Carmen.

  • Playa Del Carmen Authentic Downtown Food Tour: Tacos and Local Flavors: $54
  • Local Walking Food Tour: $54
  • Walking Food Tour in Downtown Playa del Carmen: $55
  • Vegan Mexican Walking Food Tour: $69
  • Playa del Carmen Food Tour: $71
  • Playa del Carmen Authentic Mexican cooking class and Market Tour: $91
  • Hands-on ● Mexican Cooking Class: $92
  • Authentic Mexican Cooking Class in Playa del Carmen: $103
  • Playa del Carmen Mexican Cooking class and Local Markets Tour: $105
  • Traditional Mexican Food Cooking Lesson: $109

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Mazatlan

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

  • Mercado walking food tour: $62

Local Transportation

While taxis and private drivers typically cost much more than public transportation, people usually spend around $16 per day to get around in Playa del Carmen.

The average price of local transportation around Mazatlan is $14 per person, per day. As this average includes both taxis and public transport, keep in mind that the prices of private drivers and taxis are significantly more expensive than public transportation.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Playa del Carmen $16
    Mazatlan $14

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Playa del Carmen

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Playa del Carmen:

  • Airport Transfers to Playa del Carmen - Private van (ROUND TRIP) FLAT RATE: $137
  • Cancun Airport Private Transfer One Way:To or From Playa de Carmen Upto 11 Pass.: $85
  • Cancun Airport Private Transfer One Way:To or From Playa del Carmen Up to 3Pass.: $68
  • Cancun Airport Private Transfer One Way:To or From Playa del Carmen Up to 7Pass.: $85
  • Cancun Airport Private Transfer One Way:To or From Playa del Carmen Upto 15Pass.: $150
  • Cancun Airport private departure transfer (Playa del Carmen to Cancun Airport): $72
  • Cancun Airport: Private Transfer to Hotels in Playa del Carmen: $60
  • Departure Private Transfer Playa del Carmen to Cancun Airport CUN by Minivan: $52
  • Departure Private Transfer Playa del Carmen to Cancun Airport CUN by SUV: $105
  • El Dorado Maroma to Cancún Airport (CUN) - Private Departure Transfer: $41
  • Mexico Private Transfer from Playa del Carmen to Cancun airport: $87
  • Parasailing in Playa del Carmen with transfer: $50

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Mazatlan

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Mazatlan:

  • Mazatlan International Airport (MZT) to Mazatlan - Round-Trip Private Transfer: $194
  • Mazatlan International Airport(MZT) to Mazatlan hotels -Arrival Private Transfer: $97
  • Mazatlan to Mazatlan International Airport (MZT) - Departure Private Transfer: $97
  • Private Airport Transfer: Mazatlan International Airport (MZT) to Mazatlan: $69
  • Private Airport Transfer: from Mazatlan to Mazatlan International Airport (MZT): $69
  • Private Airport-Hotel Transfer: $130
  • Private Arrival Transfer: Mazatlan International Airport to Hotels (1 - 6): $120
  • Private Departure Transfer: Hotel to Mazatlan International Airport (1 - 6): $120
  • Private Round-Trip Transfer: Mazatlan International Airport (1 - 6): $240
  • Shared Arrival Transfer: Mazatlan International Airport to Hotel: $12
  • Shared Departure Transfer: Hotel to Mazatlan International Airport: $12
  • Shared Round -Trip Transfer: Mazatlan International Airport: $24

Is it cheaper to fly into Playa del Carmen or Mazatlan?

Prices for flights to both Mazatlan and Playa del Carmen 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

Activities, things to do, and other forms of entertainment usually cost around $11 per person, per day in Playa del Carmen. This cost includes the price of admission tickets to attractions and museums as well as daily tours.

Mazatlan's costs for entertainment, tickets, attractions, and tours will often cost around $6.42 per person, per day. This cost can vary widely by the type of activity, however, as this includes admission tickets, day tours, museums, and other things to do.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Playa del Carmen $11
    Mazatlan $6.42

Tours and Activities in Playa del Carmen

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

  • Playa del Carmen Shopping Tour Fifth Avenue and Mamitas Beach Club: $9.99
  • Playa del Carmen Street Art Tour: $27
  • Playa del Carmen City Tour: $27
  • 3D Museum of Wonders Admission Ticket: $32
  • Reef Snorkeling Experience in Playa del Carmen: $34
  • PDC Running Experience w/Breakfast: $35
  • Playa del Carmen PhotoWalk and City Tour: $37
  • Playa del Carmen Private PhotoWalk Tour: $41
  • Playa del Carmen Private Art Tour and Gallery Visit: $41
  • Playa del Carmen Bike Art Tour: $42
  • Chichen itza full day tour: $43
  • Chichen Itza FULL DAY TOUR: $43

Tours and Activities in Mazatlan

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

  • Mazatlan Sightseeing and Shopping Tour: $31
  • Mazatlan - City Tour: $34
  • Mazatlan Smart Bike Tour: $36
  • Half-Day Mazatlan City Bike Tour: $36
  • Mazatlan City Sightseeing Tour with Shopping Time and Lunch: $39
  • Mazatlan Sightseeing and Golden Zone: $41
  • Puerta de Canoas Tour from Mazatlán with Tortilla Making: $48
  • Sunset Cruise in Mazatlan: $50
  • Morning Tour All Inclusive Boat Cruise through Mazatlan Bay: $56
  • Mazatlan - La Noria Artisan Tour The Blue Agave: $56
  • Old Town Mazatlan Segway Tour: $56
  • Mazatlan Tropical Bike Adventure: $56

Alcohol

While the amount that someone spends on alcohol while visiting Playa del Carmen may vary from person to person, on average a person spends $14 per day on alcoholic beverages.

While the amount that someone spends on alcohol while visiting Mazatlan may vary from person to person, on average a person spends $12 per day on alcoholic beverages.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Playa del Carmen $14
    Mazatlan $12

Sample the Local Flavors in Playa del Carmen

Here are a few nightlife and alcohol tours and activities from local tour providers in Playa del Carmen:

  • Playa Del Carmen Private Mexican Wine Tasting: $152

Sample the Local Flavors in Mazatlan

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

  • Private Tour to El Quelite Village and Tequila Distillery from Mazatlan: $323


When comparing the travel costs between Playa del Carmen and Mazatlan, we can see that Playa del Carmen 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.

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Playa del Carmen vs. Mazatlan Travel Comparison

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