A Travel Price Comparison for China Qingdao vs. Nanjing for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Qingdao or Nanjing?

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

If you're trying to decide where to visit between Qingdao or Nanjing, this travel comparison, which includes costs, can help. The overall cost of travel is usually a consideration when deciding where to go next, and the cost comparison down below can help you decide based on the average prices from other travelers along with your own travel budget.

Where Should I go: Qingdao or Nanjing?


Qingdao, China, located in the Shandong Province, is a very large city right on the Yellow Sea coast. The city, whose name means "The Green Island" due to it's gorgeous landscapes and interesting geography, was named China's most livable city in 2012. The city is rich in history, having almost become a German territory in 1897 and being occupied by the Japanese during WWI. Evidence of these occupiers is present in much of the architecture around the city, which includes a few Catholic and Protestant churches.


Nanjing is the capital city of the Jiangsu Province on the central eastern coast of China, just north of Shanghai. This historically and culturally rich city lies at the lower end of the Yangtze river, resulting in lush and scenic landscapes. Nanjing is well-known for having many popular historical sites, some of which have been listed as UNESCO World Heritage sites.

For some great organized tour ideas, see The Best Cultural Tours in China, The Best Luxury Tours to China, The Best Budget Tours to China, and The Best Tours for Seniors to China.

Which place is cheaper, Nanjing or Qingdao?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Qingdao is $58, while the average daily cost in Nanjing 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 Qingdao and Nanjing in more detail.

  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Qingdao $26
    Nanjing $46
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Qingdao $52
    Nanjing $92
Compare Hotels in Qingdao and Nanjing

Looking for a hotel in Qingdao or Nanjing? 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 Qingdao

Hotels in Nanjing

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.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Qingdao $12
    Nanjing $38

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Qingdao

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

  • Private Departure Transfer: City Hotel to Qingdao Railway Station : $36
  • Qingdao Cruise Port Departure Transfer from City Hotels: $36
  • Qingdao Liuting Airport Transfer Service by Minivan: $86
  • Qingdao Northern Railway Station Arrival Private One-Way Transfer: $42
  • Qingdao Private Transfer from Qingdao Airport (TAO) to central Qingdao: $83
  • Qingdao Private Transfer from Qingdao central to Qingdao Airport (TAO): $83
  • Qingdao Railway Station Arrival Transfer to City Hotel: $36
  • Qingdao Railway Station Depature Transfer from City Hotels: $36

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Nanjing

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Nanjing:

  • [Airport transfer] Nanjing Lukou International Airport ⇔ Nanjing city transfer ☆ High reputation for service! <Charter charter>: $27
  • Zhenjiang Private Transfer Service from Nanjing City or Lukou Airport : $78
  • Yangzhou Private Transfer Service from Nanjing City or Lukou Airport : $80
  • Tangshan Hot Spring Resorts Private Transfer from Nanjing Railway Station: $44
  • Private Transfer to Yangzhou from Nanjing City Center: $89
  • Private Transfer to Yangzhou City from Nanjing Lukou Airport : $109
  • Private Transfer to Nanjing Railway Station from City Hotels: $33
  • Private Transfer to Gaochun City from Nanjing Lukou Airport: $88
  • Private Transfer to Gaochun City from Nanjing : $88
  • Private Transfer between Nanjing Olympic Stadium and City Hotel: $33
  • Private Round Trip Transfer to Zhenjiang from Nanjing: $94
  • Private Round Trip Transfer to Yangzhou Attractions from Nanjing: $89

Is it cheaper to fly into Qingdao or Nanjing?

Prices for flights to both Nanjing and Qingdao 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
    Qingdao $20
    Nanjing $28

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Nanjing

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

  • 3-Hour Nanjing Authentic Local Food Tour by Public Transportation: $93
  • Flexible Private Nanjing City Night Tour with Dinner Option : $112
  • Nanjing City Private Night Tour with Qinghuai River Cruise and Dinner Option: $114
  • Nanjing Tangshan Mountain Hot Spring Experience and Hot Pot Dinner: $175
  • Private Amazing Nanjing Airport Layover Tour with Lunch or Dinner: $181

  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Qingdao $20
    Nanjing $9.28

Tours and Activities in Qingdao

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

  • Private Qingdao City tour with Lunch and Qingdao beer: $175
  • Private Qingdao Historic architectural day tour with Tsingdao beer during Lunch: $190
  • Private Qingdao Laoshan half day tour with one bottle of Tsingdao beer as gift: $199
  • Qingdao private half day tour with Tsingdao Beer Lunch : $202
  • Qingdao Shore Excursion: Private Full Day Laoshan Mountain Sightseeing Tour: $207
  • Private Qingdao Essentials Tour: City Highlights and Beer Museum: $216
  • Laoshan Mountain Full Day Private Activity Tour: $224
  • Qingdao Private Day Tour to Laoshan Mountain with Lunch and Cable Car: $238
  • Private Qingdao Laoshan day tour with lunch& round way cable car: $240
  • Qingdao Discover Tour to the Mount Laoshan and Tasting Famous Local Beer: $248
  • Qingdao Private Tour: City Highlights and Laoshan Mountain with Lunch+Cable Car: $268
  • All-Inclusive Private Day Tour: Qingdao Highlights with Lunch: $285

Tours and Activities in Nanjing

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

  • Half-Day Nanjing City Private Flexible Tour : $109
  • 2-Day Unlimited Nanjing Private Flexible Tour with Lunch Option : $295
  • 4-Hour Nanjing City Private Tailor-Made Tour in Your Way : $109
  • 4-Hour Nanjing Private Tour: Xiaoling Tomb, Ming City Wall and Memorial Hall : $115
  • All Inclusive Amazing Nanjing City Highlights Private Day Tour: $193
  • All-Inclusive Nanjing Purple Mountain Scenic Area Private Day Tour: $187
  • All-inclusive Customized Nanjing Layover Tour: $201
  • Flexible Private Nanjing City Highlights Day Tour: $164
  • Flexible Private Nanjing Independent Tour : $63
  • Flexible Private Nanjing Layover Tour: $171
  • Flexible Suzhou Private Day Tour from Nanjing by Bullet Train: $245
  • Flexible Yangzhou Private Day Tour from Nanjing: $212

  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Qingdao $14
    Nanjing $9.48

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

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

Which is Bigger, Qingdao or Nanjing?

Nanjing has a larger population, and is about 88% larger than the population of Qingdao. When comparing the sizes of Qingdao and Nanjing, 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.

When is the best time to visit Qingdao or Nanjing?

Both places have a temperate climate with four distinct seasons. As both cities are in the northern hemisphere, summer is in July and winter is in January.

Should I visit Qingdao or Nanjing in the Summer?

Both Nanjing and Qingdao during the summer are popular places to visit.

In July, Qingdao is generally cooler than Nanjing. Daily temperatures in Qingdao average around 25°C (77°F), and Nanjing fluctuates around 28°C (83°F).

Nanjing gets a good bit of rain this time of year. It rains a lot this time of the year in Qingdao. Qingdao usually gets more rain in July than Nanjing. Qingdao gets 211 mm (8.3 in) of rain, while Nanjing receives 174 mm (6.9 in) of rain this time of the year.

  • Summer Average Temperatures July
    Qingdao 25°C (77°F) 
    Nanjing 28°C (83°F)

Should I visit Qingdao or Nanjing in the Autumn?

The autumn attracts plenty of travelers to both Qingdao and Nanjing.

Qingdao is around the same temperature as Nanjing in the autumn. The daily temperature in Qingdao averages around 17°C (62°F) in October, and Nanjing fluctuates around 17°C (63°F).

In October, Qingdao usually receives around the same amount of rain as Nanjing. Qingdao gets 45 mm (1.8 in) of rain, while Nanjing receives 44 mm (1.7 in) of rain each month for the autumn.

  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Qingdao 17°C (62°F) 
    Nanjing 17°C (63°F)

Should I visit Qingdao or Nanjing in the Winter?

The winter brings many poeple to Qingdao as well as Nanjing.

It's quite cold in Nanjing in the winter. The weather in Qingdao can be very cold. In the winter, Qingdao is much colder than Nanjing. Typically, the winter temperatures in Qingdao in January average around -0°C (32°F), and Nanjing averages at about 3°C (37°F).

Qingdao usually gets less rain in January than Nanjing. Qingdao gets 11 mm (0.4 in) of rain, while Nanjing receives 27 mm (1.1 in) of rain this time of the year.

  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Qingdao -0°C (32°F) 
    Nanjing 3°C (37°F)

Should I visit Qingdao or Nanjing in the Spring?

Both Nanjing and Qingdao are popular destinations to visit in the spring with plenty of activities.

In April, Qingdao is generally cooler than Nanjing. Daily temperatures in Qingdao average around 12°C (53°F), and Nanjing fluctuates around 15°C (60°F).

It rains a lot this time of the year in Nanjing. In April, Qingdao usually receives less rain than Nanjing. Qingdao gets 37 mm (1.5 in) of rain, while Nanjing receives 101 mm (4 in) of rain each month for the spring.

  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Qingdao 12°C (53°F) 
    Nanjing 15°C (60°F)

Typical Weather for Nanjing and Qingdao

Qingdao Nanjing
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan -0°C (32°F) 11 mm (0.4 in) 3°C (37°F) 27 mm (1.1 in)
Feb 1°C (34°F) 12 mm (0.5 in) 4°C (40°F) 52 mm (2 in)
Mar 6°C (43°F) 21 mm (0.8 in) 9°C (48°F) 69 mm (2.7 in)
Apr 12°C (53°F) 37 mm (1.5 in) 15°C (60°F) 101 mm (4 in)
May 17°C (62°F) 51 mm (2 in) 21°C (69°F) 88 mm (3.5 in)
Jun 21°C (70°F) 81 mm (3.2 in) 25°C (77°F) 114 mm (4.5 in)
Jul 25°C (77°F) 211 mm (8.3 in) 28°C (83°F) 174 mm (6.9 in)
Aug 26°C (79°F) 162 mm (6.4 in) 28°C (83°F) 158 mm (6.2 in)
Sep 22°C (72°F) 99 mm (3.9 in) 23°C (74°F) 105 mm (4.1 in)
Oct 17°C (62°F) 45 mm (1.8 in) 17°C (63°F) 44 mm (1.7 in)
Nov 10°C (49°F) 28 mm (1.1 in) 11°C (52°F) 64 mm (2.5 in)
Dec 3°C (37°F) 10 mm (0.4 in) 5°C (41°F) 25 mm (1 in)