Should you visit Punta del Este or Quito?
If you're trying to decide where to visit between Punta del Este or Quito, this travel cost comparison can help. The overall cost of travel is usually a consideration when deciding where to go next, and the cost comparison below can help you decide based on the average prices from other travelers along with your own travel budget.
Punta del Este
Punta del Este with its many beaches, elegant seaside homes, yacht harbor, high-rise apartment buildings, pricey hotels, ardent night scene and glitzy restaurants is a chic beach resort town in Uruguay. Many tourists come from Brazil and Argentina, on the other side of the Rio de la Plata, to get some nice sun and lay on the beach for a weekend getaway. Punta del Este is more expensive than other areas in Uruguay and has been called the Monaco of South America. Tourist season varies wildly from totally deserted in the winter to very crowded in the summer.
Nestled between two mountain ranges lies the world's highest capital city, Quito, Ecuador. For history lovers, Quito is a very desirable destination as it's home to the Quito Historic Center – one of the largest and best-preserved historic centers in the Americas.
Even though Quito is full of people – in fact, it's the second most populous city in the country – very few of its inhabitants speak English. Luckily, however, the citizens of Quito tend to speak a slower and more clear Spanish than surrounding areas. This is the perfect place to practice what you read in your Intro to Spanish book.
Before visiting Quito, there are a few things to keep in mind. First, give yourself a few days to grow accustomed to the elevation. Staying 9,350 feet above sea level takes some getting used to. Second, don't be fooled into thinking that just because you're visiting a town on the equator that you'll need all your summer clothes. Because of the city's elevation, the area keeps a relatively cool climate year round.
Which city is cheaper, Quito or Punta del Este?
These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.
The average daily cost (per person) in Punta del Este is $71, while the average daily cost in Quito is $41. 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 del Este and Quito in more detail.
The prices for places to stay in Punta del Este can vary by date, location, and type. Generally, the average cost for accommodation per person is $39, while a typical double-occupancy hotel room for two people will cost around $78.
If you're traveling alone, you may be able to find a budget hotel or hostel for around $18. But for two people in a standard two-person hotel room in Quito the cost is $36 on average.
The price of a meal in Punta del Este can vary widely. However, the average price for food per day is $22 per person, and a typical meal will cost around $8.80 based on the spending of previous visitors. Less expensive dining options can be found by eating street food or at fast food restaurants.
In Quito travelers spend around $16 a day on food. You can save money by choosing casual restaurants or food stalls, or you can spend plenty more by dining in nicer restaurants at every meal.
Meals for one day
Punta del Este $22
Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Quito
Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in Quito.
Quito Like a Local Cooking Class:
Ecuadorian Cooking Classes Rooftop (English):
Quito Best Markets and Local Food Tour:
Quito Top Ecuadorian Food Tour and Canelazo at “La Ronda”:
Quito Cooking Class:
Jacchigua Show Including Dinner + Transfer:
Ecuadorian Cooking Class in Quito + Local Market Tour & Exotic Fruit Tasting:
Quito Culinary Tour and Cooking Class:
Gourmet Cooking Class in Historic Quito + Market Tour with Chef Pancho:
Cooking Class at the Andes & Roses (PRIVATE DAY TOUR):
Punta del Este'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 $16 per person, per day on transportation in Punta del Este.
The average price of local transportation around Quito is $5.59 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.
Hired Cars and Shuttles in Punta del Este
Also for Punta del Este, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:
Private Arrival Transfer: Punta del Este Airport to Hotel:
Private Departure Transfer: Hotel to Punta del Este Airport:
Private Transfer to Garzon Restaurant by Francis Mallmann:
Punta del Este Airport Private Transfer:
Punta del Este Wine Tour, Bodega Garzon, Private Transfer:
Typical Local Transportation prices in Quito
Below are a few samples from actual travelers for transportation costs in Quito:
Hired Cars and Shuttles in Quito
Some specific examples of transportation prices in Quito:
8-Day Tour of Galapagos and Quito Including Hotels and Transfers:
7-Day Tour of Galapagos and Quito Including Hotel and Transfers:
Private transfer: Quito to Quito International Airport (UIO):
Private transfer: Quito International Airport (UIO) to Quito:
2-Night Quito Experience: Transfer, Tour and Mariscal Accommodation:
transfer airport to hotel in Quito or from Quito to airport:
Quito Airport Private Transfer Service:
Private transfers To Mindo:
Private transfer in or out Quito airport. Bilingual guide-driver:
Transfer IN & OUT of Quito:
Transfer IN & OUT of Quito:
Round-Trip Transfer in Private Minivan from Quito Airport (UIO) to Quito City:
Is it cheaper to fly into Punta del Este or Quito?
Prices for flights to both Quito and Punta del Este 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 del Este can vary widely by price. On average, visitors spend around $7.60 per person, per day on entertainment and sightseeing here.
Quito's costs for entertainment, tickets, attractions, and tours will often cost around $13 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.
Tours and Activities in Punta del Este
Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Punta del Este.
La Vista 360 Admission Ticket:
Punta del Este City Tour Clasico con Puesta del Sol en Casapueblo:
Punta del Este City Sightseeing Tour:
Art Studio Tour in Punta del Este:
Punta del Este City Tour:
Wine Lovers - Punta Wine Experience:
Punta del Este Special Art Tour:
Punta del Este Shore Excursion: Private Sightseeing Tour of Punta del Este:
Typical Entertainment prices in Quito
Here are a few typical costs in Quito for activities, ticket prices, and tours that come from previous visitors:
Tours and Activities in Quito
Here are a few actual costs in Quito for available activities, ticket prices, and tours:
10 days True Ecuador Experience:
12 Day Galapagos Snorkeling Tour:
15-Day Ecuador and Galapagos Highlights Tour from Quito:
15-day Adventure: Experiencing the Andes and Amazon of Ecuador:
16-Day Ecuador Adventure: Andes, Amazon & Galapagos:
1914 Original Trolley City Tour of Quito:
2 Day Private Tour to Mindo Cloud Forest from Quito:
2 Day Private Tour to Otavalo Market & surroundings from Quito:
2 Full Days Exploring The Ecuadorian Amazon | Tour Start In Quito:
2-Day Avenue of the Volcanoes and BaÃ±os Tour from Quito -"Small Group":
2-Day BaÃ±os Full Adrenaline Tour from Quito:
2-Day Private Sightseeing Tour Cotopaxi and Quilotoa:
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 del Este, the average amount that a visitor spends on alcoholic beverages per day is $5.57.
While the amount that someone spends on alcohol while visiting Quito may vary from person to person, on average a person spends $14 per day on alcoholic beverages.
Sample the Local Flavors in Punta del Este
Here are a few nightlife and alcohol tours and activities from local tour providers in Punta del Este:
Wine Tasting from Punta del Este:
Typical Alcohol prices in Quito
Here are a few samples of the prices for alcohol and nightlife in Quito from other travelers:
When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Punta del Este and Quito, we can see that Punta del Este is more expensive. And not only is Quito much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Quito would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Quito 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 Punta del Este would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Punta del Este than you might in Quito.
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