A Travel Price Comparison for Brazil Recife vs. Sao Paulo for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Recife or Sao Paulo?

Trying to figure out where to travel next? This travel cost comparison between Recife and Sao Paulo can help. For many travelers, the cost of a destination is a primary consideration when choosing where to go.

Recife

One of the largest cities on Brazil's northeast coast, Recife is also the capital of the state of Pernambuco. The city gets its name from the Portuguese word for "reef," as it was built around a landscape of natural reef beaches. Many people visit to enjoy these beaches, experience the culture, and explore the history of this important Brazilian city.

Sao Paulo

With a population of around 11 million, and 20 million in the metropolitan area, Sao Paulo is the largest city in Brazil. It's also one of the wealthiest cities in the southern hemisphere, although you don't have to look far to see the income disparities and inequalities that exist. The city is diverse and culturally rich, with excellent food, music, and entertainment.

Which city is cheaper, Sao Paulo or Recife?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Recife is $129, while the average daily cost in Sao Paulo 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 Recife and Sao Paulo in more detail.



Accommodation

The average price for accommodation for two people in Recife is $138. This is for two people sharing a typical double occupancy hotel room.

The prices for places to stay in Sao Paulo can vary by date, location, and type. Generally, the average cost for accommodation per person is $23, while a typical double-occupancy hotel room for two people will cost around $46.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Recife $69
    Sao Paulo $23
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Recife $138
    Sao Paulo $46

Food

In Recife travelers spend around $55 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.

The average traveler spends about $11 per day in Sao Paulo 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
    Recife $55
    Sao Paulo $11

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Sao Paulo

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

  • Sao Paulo - Pinheiros Gourmet Food Tour (4 hours tour + 3 dishes included): $45
  • Brazilian Cooking Class: $79
  • Cooking Class in São Paulo: $268
  • Private Food Tour in São Paulo: $278

Local Transportation

The average price of local transportation around Recife is $6.61 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.

Sao Paulo'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 $4.61 per person, per day on transportation in Sao Paulo.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Recife $6.61
    Sao Paulo $4.61

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Recife

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Recife:

  • Private Transfer from Recife (REC) Airport to Belém de São Francisco: $771
  • Private Transfer from Recife (REC) Airport to Triunfo: $708
  • Private Transfer from Recife (REC) Airport to Serra Talhada: $708
  • Private Transfer from Recife (REC) Airport to Maceió: $438
  • Private Transfer from Recife (REC) Airport to Natal: $438
  • Private Transfer from Recife (REC) Airport to Buíque: $424
  • Private Transfer from Recife (REC) Airport to Praia da Pipa: $374
  • Private Transfer from Recife (REC) Airport to Santa Cruz do Capibaribe: $322
  • Private Transfer from Recife (REC) Airport to São Miguel dos Milagres: $322
  • Private Transfer from Recife (REC) Airport to Porto de Pedras: $290
  • Private Transfer from Recife (REC) Airport to Garanhuns: $281
  • Private Transfer from Recife (REC) Airport to Nova Jerusalém: $256

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Sao Paulo

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

  • Private Airport Transfer: Sao Paulo/Congonhas Airport (CGH) to Sao Paulo: $22
  • Private Airport Transfer: from Sao Paulo to Sao Paulo/Congonhas Airport (CGH): $22
  • Private Airport Transfer: Sao Paulo-Guarulhos Int. Airport (GRU) to Sao Paulo: $23
  • Private Airport Transfer: Sao Paulo to Sao Paulo-Guarulhos Int. Airport (GRU): $23
  • Transfer in Private Vehicle from Sao Paulo City to Airport: $25
  • Private Arrival or Departure Transfer: Sao Paulo Congonhas Airport: $28
  • Private Arrival Transfer: Congonhas Airport to São Paulo Hotels: $30
  • Private Departure Transfer: São Paulo Hotels to Congonhas Airport: $30
  • CGH Airport transfer Sao Paulo city / Hotel: $38
  • Private Arrival Transfer: Guarulhos International Airport to São Paulo Hotels: $40
  • Private Departure Transfer: São Paulo Hotels to Guarulhos International Airport: $40
  • Private Arrival Transfer from São Paulo Guarulhos Airport to São Paulo City: $41

Is it cheaper to fly into Recife or Sao Paulo?

Prices for flights to both Sao Paulo and Recife 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

Recife's costs for entertainment, tickets, attractions, and tours will often cost around $8.78 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.

Sightseeing, admission tickets, things to do, and other entertainment expenses in Sao Paulo can vary widely by price. On average, visitors spend around $3.16 per person, per day on entertainment and sightseeing here.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Recife $8.78
    Sao Paulo $3.16

Tours and Activities in Recife

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

  • 5-Day Pernambuco Tour from Recife: $385
  • Carneiros Beach Day Tour: $40
  • City Tour Olinda And Recife Antigo: $26
  • City Tour of Olinda Including Instituto Ricardo Brennand: $77
  • City Tour of Recife Including the Park of Sculptures: $64
  • Cultutal Tour in Recife with Ricardo Brennand Institute: $26
  • Day Trip to Igarassu and Itamaracá Island Tour from Recife: $29
  • Full-Day Caruaru and Nova Jerusalém Theater Tour: $80
  • Gastronomic and Boat Evening Tour in Recife: $100
  • Half-Day Tour: Oficina Francisco Brennand and Ricardo Brennand Institute plus Park of Sculptures in Recife: $71
  • Igarassu And Itamaraca Island Tour: $38
  • Maragogi Beach Tour from Recife: $43

Tours and Activities in Sao Paulo

Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Sao Paulo.

  • Downtown São Paulo: An audio tour tracing the city's epic history: $5.00
  • Virtual Live Tour of Sao Paulo Graffiti Hosted by Artist: $25
  • Street art is not for lazy tourists :P: $25
  • São Paulo Like a Local: Customized Private Tour: $31
  • Discover Sao Paulo History Guided Tour: $31
  • Paulista Avenue Walking Tour: $31
  • Private São Paulo Historic Center Walking Tour: $45
  • Small Group Highlights Tour in São Paulo: $49
  • City Tour Meet São Paulo Half-Day: $50
  • Alternative City Tour: $50
  • Rain Forest Trail - Cantareira Natural Park day tour from São Paulo: $58
  • Embu das Artes Largest Handicraft Fair Tour from São Paulo: $58

Alcohol

Alcoholic beverages can often be a significant portion of a traveler's budget, and the costs can vary greatly from person to person. In Sao Paulo, the average amount that a visitor spends on alcoholic beverages per day is $2.75.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Recife -
    Sao Paulo $2.75

Sample the Local Flavors in Sao Paulo

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

  • 4 Hours Pub Crawl in Vila Madalena: $69


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

Budget Your Trip

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Recife vs. Sao Paulo Travel Comparison

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