A Travel Price Comparison for South Africa Pretoria vs. Johannesburg for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Pretoria or Johannesburg?

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

Should I visit Pretoria or Johannesburg? 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.

Where Should I go: Pretoria or Johannesburg?


Located in Gauteng Province, Pretoria is the administrative capital city of South Africa, making it home to many government buildings and three universities. It is actually one of three capital cities, being home to the executive branch, with Cape Town as the legislative capital and Bloemfontein as the judicial capital. Within South Africa, Pretoria is also known as the "Jacaranda City" due to the thousands of jacaranda trees lining its streets, parks, and gardens.


Johannesburg is the largest city in South Africa with a population of over 3 million people. Most of the population is made up of South Africa's black residents, who predominately reside in the Soweto area. There are approximately half a million white residents and 300,000 residents of other descent. Half of the population live in the Soweto area as well as the nearby suburbs.

For some great organized tour ideas, see The Best Eco Tours in South Africa, The Best Sightseeing Tours in South Africa, The Best Vineyard & Wine Tours in South Africa, and The Best Food and Culinary Tours in South Africa.

Which place is cheaper, Johannesburg or Pretoria?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Pretoria is $50, while the average daily cost in Johannesburg is $96. 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 destination. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Pretoria and Johannesburg in more detail.

  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Pretoria $25
    Johannesburg $55
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Pretoria $50
    Johannesburg $110
Compare Hotels in Pretoria and Johannesburg

Looking for a hotel in Pretoria or Johannesburg? Prices vary by location, date, season, and the level of luxury. See below for options and compare which is best for your budget and travel style.

Hotels in Pretoria

Hotels in Johannesburg

Kayak helps you find the best prices for hotels, flights, and rental cars for destinations around the world. Compare prices for multiple destinations when planning your next trip.

Our Analysis
We've analyzed the average and typical hotel prices based on guest reviews, star ratings, and hotel amenities here: Johannesburg Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Pretoria $12
    Johannesburg $16

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Pretoria

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

  • Private One-way Airport Transfer(Johannesburg Airport To/From Johannesburg): $17
  • Airport transfers,door to door shuttle: $47
  • Shuttle Transfer from Gauteng to Greater Kruger: $61
  • One Way Private Transfer from Airports and Hotels in Sandton: $89

Typical Local Transportation Prices in Johannesburg

Here are some examples of typical transportation prices from actual travelers in Johannesburg:

  • Taxi Ride

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Johannesburg

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Johannesburg:

  • Wheel Chair Accessible Airport Transfers Around Johannesburg: $50
  • Transfers Between OR Tambo and Pilanesburg : $182
  • Transfers: $362
  • Suncity Transfer: $199
  • South Africa Airport Transfer, Johannesburg Guided day Tour: $109
  • Shuttle Transfer from Johannesburg Airport to Hazyview: $68
  • Private Transfer: Tambo Airport JNB to Johannesburg in Luxury Van: $76
  • Private Transfer: Tambo Airport JNB to Johannesburg in Luxury Car: $103
  • Private Transfer: Johannesburg to Tambo Airport JNB in Sedan Car: $65
  • Private Transfer: Johannesburg to Tambo Airport JNB in Luxury Van: $76
  • Private Transfer from Johannesburg OR Tambo Airport (JNB) to Pretoria hotels: $164
  • Private Transfer Johannesburg Pretoria or SunCity to JNB Airport by Business Car: $71

Is it cheaper to fly into Pretoria or Johannesburg?

Prices for flights to both Johannesburg and Pretoria 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 Meals for one day
    Pretoria $15
    Johannesburg $17

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Pretoria

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

  • Pan African Cooking Class & Organic food experience: $201

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Johannesburg

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

  • Unique street food tour from at least 6 different cultures!: $48
  • Maboneng Street Art and Street Food Tour: $50
  • Zulu Food Cooking & Dining Experience with a local Chef: $61
  • Pan-African Cooking & Dinning Experience: $223

  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Pretoria $15
    Johannesburg $21

Tours and Activities in Pretoria

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

  • Apartheid Museum Tour in Johannesburg from Pretoria, every FRIDAY afternoon: $52
  • Apartheid Museum Tour in Johannesburg, every FRIDAY afternoon: $52
  • Private local authentic soweto Moto taxi experience : $55
  • Soweto and Johannesburg Tours: $56
  • Johannesburg and Soweto guided tour: $56
  • Johannesburg Walking Tours: $56
  • Soweto Township Tour from Pretoria, Centurion & Midrand every FRIDAY morning: $58
  • Pretoria Tour-Voortrekker Monument, Town, Union Buildings: $61
  • Cullinan Diamond Mine Surface Guided Tour from Pretoria, every MONDAY: $61
  • Taste of Africa Food tasting Experience & Optional Beer Tasting: $61
  • Pretoria Tour - Voortrekker Monument, Union Buildings, Pretoria : $61
  • Soweto and Johannesburg Tour: $61

Tours and Activities in Johannesburg

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

  • Half-Day Safari Tour of the Magaliesberg Mountains by Zipline: $125
  • Private Full Day Johannesburg Historical Tour : $199
  • Rhino and Lion Park Safari Tour : $100
  • Soweto half day guided tour.Pick up and drop off: $51
  • (Meet the Artist)Art Gallery & Street Art tour with lunch: $54
  • 10 Days Overland Tour-Johannesburg and Cape Town: $2,783
  • 15 Days Johannesburg, Kruger National Park – Cape Town Tour: $4,175
  • 3 Day Kruger National Park Private Tour from Johannesburg: $832
  • 3 Days 2 Nights Panorama Tour & Kruger National park Safari: $857
  • 4-Days Overnight Experience in The Panorama Route & Safari: $1,787
  • 6 Days Johannesburg and Kruger National Park Tour: $1,670
  • 6 Days of The Best of Johannesburg Experience: $1,002

  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Pretoria $31
    Johannesburg $4.77

Sample the Local Flavors in Johannesburg

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

  • Wine Tasting Experience in Johannesburg: $8.55
  • Wine Tasting: $11
  • Hop on Hop Off Johannesburg Pub Crawl: $13
  • Wine Tasting and Cableway Half Day Tour: $118
  • Experience Johannesburg Wine Tour Views and Luxury: $225

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

If you're trying to decide if either of these two destinations are within your price range, also see Is Pretoria Expensive? and Is Johannesburg Expensive?.

Which is Bigger, Pretoria or Johannesburg?

Johannesburg has a larger population, and is about 25% larger than the population of Pretoria. When comparing the sizes of Pretoria and Johannesburg, keep in mind that a larger population does not always imply the destination has more attractions or better activities. So, always research the type of place that you want to visit along with the activities and attractions that interest you.