Should you visit Punta Arenas or Pucon?
Should I visit Punta Arenas or Pucon? 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.
Punta Arenas is in the far south of Chile and has a long history of maritime commerce, oil extraction, and sheep farming. It's the most populated city on the Strait of Magellan and has all the facilities you might need as a traveler, including banks, markets, drugstores and equipment shops. With a population of about 130,000, the city is a comfortable place to spend time. It serves as a base for Antarctic expeditions, although many expeditions also start in Ushuaia, Argentina, and Christchurch New Zealand.
A popular hub for adventure tourism, Pucon is a town in the Lake District of the South American nation of Chile. Located on Lake Villarirca with the snowcapped Villarrica volcano looming above and plenty of forested valleys below, the town has become a home base year-round for a full range of outdoor activities.
Check out our ultimate guide to Traveling in Patagonia.
Which city is cheaper, Pucon or Punta Arenas?
These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.
The average daily cost (per person) in Punta Arenas is $61, while the average daily cost in Pucon is $97. 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 Punta Arenas and Pucon in more detail.
An average hotel room with basic furnishings costs about $62 in Punta Arenas For the most convenient locations and nicer amenities you can expect to pay a bit more.
The average price for accommodation for two people in Pucon is $84. This is for two people sharing a typical double occupancy hotel room.
While meal prices in Punta Arenas can vary, the average travelers spends about $20 per day on food. Based on the spending habits of previous travelers, when dining out, an average meal in Punta Arenas should cost around $8.00 per person. Breakfast prices are usually a little cheaper than lunch or dinner. The price of food in sit-down restaurants in Punta Arenas is often higher than fast food prices or street food prices.
Pucon food costs typically run travelers around $36 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.
Meals for one day
Punta Arenas $20
Typical Food prices in Punta Arenas
Here are some examples of typical meal expenses from previous travelers to Punta Arenas:
Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Punta Arenas
For Punta Arenas, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:
Punta Arenas Small Group Sightseeing and food Tour with a Local Guide:
Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Pucon
Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in Pucon.
Learn to Cook Like a Local: Private Cooking Class in a Viña del Mar Home:
Punta Arenas'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 $1.74 per person, per day on transportation in Punta Arenas.
The cost of a taxi ride in Pucon is significantly more than public transportation. On average, past travelers have spent $19 per person, per day, on local transportation in Pucon.
Hired Cars and Shuttles in Punta Arenas
Also for Punta Arenas, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:
Arrival Transfer: Punta Arenas Airport to Hotel:
Bus transfer from Punta Arenas to Ushuaia:
Private Airport Transfer: Punta Arenas Ibanez Airport (PUQ) to Punta Arenas:
Private Airport Transfer: from Punta Arenas to Punta Arenas Ibanez Airport (PUQ):
Transfer from Punta Arenas (city or airport) to Puerto Natales:
Transfer from Punta Arenas Hotel to Punta Arenas Airport:
Hired Cars and Shuttles in Pucon
Some specific examples of transportation prices in Pucon:
Private Transfer from Pucon To Temuco Airport:
Pucon Temuco Airport Private Transfer:
Is it cheaper to fly into Punta Arenas or Pucon?
Prices for flights to both Pucon and Punta Arenas 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 Punta Arenas can vary widely by price. On average, visitors spend around $6.24 per person, per day on entertainment and sightseeing here.
Entertainment and activities in Pucon typically cost an average of $36 per person, per day. This includes fees paid for admission tickets to museums and attractions, day tours, and other sightseeing expenses.
Tours and Activities in Punta Arenas
Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Punta Arenas.
Half day traditional City Tour:
Punta Arenas Sightseeing Tour:
Punta Arenas Highlights Shared Tour:
Small Group Punta Arenas Shore Excursion: Fort Bulnes and City Tour:
Puntarenas City tour and Mangroove Tour:
Bus ticket from Punta Arenas (Chile) to Ushuaia (Argentina):
Full-Day Punta Arenas and Magellan Strait Tour:
Rainforest Skywalk & Tarcoles River Eco Cruise Tour Puntarenas Shore excursion:
Punta Arenas Shore Excursion: City Sightseeing Tour:
Full day Punta Arenas (Regular tours):
Regular Tour of Andino Club Ski Mountain and Chairlift from Punta Arenas, Chile:
City Tour of Punta Arenas:
Tours and Activities in Pucon
Here are a few actual costs in Pucon for available activities, ticket prices, and tours:
Full Day Tour to Conguillio National Park from Pucon:
Half Day Tour to The Eyes Of Caburgua from Pucon:
Mapuche Reserve Horseback Riding Tour in Pucon:
Pucón Sightseeing City Tour:
Sightseeing Tour in Pucon with optional Villarica:
Villarrica Volcanic Caves Park Admission Ticket:
Alcoholic beverages can often be a significant portion of a traveler's budget, and the costs can vary greatly from person to person. In Punta Arenas, the average amount that a visitor spends on alcoholic beverages per day is $4.70.
While the amount that someone spends on alcohol while visiting Pucon may vary from person to person, on average a person spends $26 per day on alcoholic beverages.
Typical Alcohol prices in Punta Arenas
Below are a few samples from actual travelers for alcohol and nightlife costs in Punta Arenas:
Sample the Local Flavors in Punta Arenas
Here are a few nightlife and alcohol tours and activities from local tour providers in Punta Arenas:
Punta Arenas Small Group Beers & Brewery Tour with a Local Guide:
When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Punta Arenas and Pucon, we can see that Pucon is more expensive. And not only is Punta Arenas much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Punta Arenas would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Punta Arenas 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 Pucon would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Pucon than you might in Punta Arenas.
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