Should you visit Roatan or Jaco?
Which city should you visit? Read on to compare the prices of travel for Roatan and Jaco. We’ll break down costs for accommodation, food, transportation and more to help you learn more about these two destinations. Then, you can figure out if either of these two places are accessible based on your travel budget. So, let's dig into it.
Your next great vacation lies just thirty miles off the north coast of Honduras. Right above the world's largest coral reef is the island of Roatan. As a popular tourist attraction and standard cruise destination, it's not uncommon to see tons of Americans during your trip. In fact, the cruising industry has had huge impact on the island's culture. While ships are in port, traffic will be heavier and prices may go up. Because of the growth of tourism, most locals speak both Spanish and English.
Jaco is a beach destination on the Central Pacific Coast of Costa Rica. This resort city is located in the county of Garabito in the Puntarenas province. It has a population of about 10,000 residents and a 2.5 mile long beach that is an excellent surfing destination.
Because Jaco is located on the coast, it's weather is influenced by the water. The climate is humid with a relative humidity of about 80%, but climbing to 90% in the month of June. The temperature is usually between 85 and 90 degrees Fahrenheit during the day and between 75 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit at night. There are distinct wet and dry seasons with August through early December being the rainy season and late December through early April being the dry season. Rain is irregular during the rest of the year.
Which city is cheaper, Jaco or Roatan?
These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.
The average daily cost (per person) in Roatan is $31, while the average daily cost in Jaco is $62. 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 Roatan and Jaco in more detail.
Accommodation prices vary by location and style, but travelers pay on average about $18 for a double occupancy room in Roatan.
The prices for places to stay in Jaco can vary by date, location, and type. Generally, the average cost for accommodation per person is $40, while a typical double-occupancy hotel room for two people will cost around $80.
Food in Roatan costs travelers about $7.72 per day on average. Restaurants can vary significantly in price, so choose wisely if you're trying to save money. Fast food and street stalls are typically your cheapest options, which sit down restaurants can be significantly more expensive.
The average traveler spends about $12 per day in Jaco 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.
Meals for one day
Typical Food prices in Jaco
For Jaco, here are some examples of average food and meal prices for travelers:
Taco Bar Dinner
Pizza & Smoothie Lunch
Breakfast Taco Bar
Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Jaco
For Jaco, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:
Traveling Spoon Ceviche Private Online Cooking Class:
Online Costa Rican Cooking Class with cookbook author Melissa Guzman:
Costa Rican cooking class with cookbook author Melissa Guzman:
The cost of a taxi ride in Roatan is significantly more than public transportation. On average, past travelers have spent $15 per person, per day, on local transportation in Roatan.
Typical Local Transportation prices in Roatan
Some typical examples of transportation costs in Roatan are as follows:
Hired Cars and Shuttles in Roatan
Some specific examples of transportation prices in Roatan:
bus & Taxi Uber Roatan transfer to the beach customize your tour:
Hired Cars and Shuttles in Jaco
Also for Jaco, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:
Transfer TO or FROM Jaco Beach Area to SJO Airport:
Jaco to Juan Santamaria International Airport (SJO) - Departure Private Transfer:
Jacó Private Transfer to San Jose Airport for 1 to 5 People:
Jaco Airport Transfers:
Private transfer from Jaco Beach to Hotels in San Jose or the Airport:
Private Departure Transfer: Jaco Beach to Juan Santamaría International Airport:
Transfer from Jaco to Monteverde up to 5 passengers:
Is it cheaper to fly into Roatan or Jaco?
Prices for flights to both Jaco and Roatan 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 and activities in Roatan typically cost an average of $22 per person, per day. This includes fees paid for admission tickets to museums and attractions, day tours, and other sightseeing expenses.
Sightseeing, admission tickets, things to do, and other entertainment expenses in Jaco can vary widely by price. On average, visitors spend around $39 per person, per day on entertainment and sightseeing here.
Tours and Activities in Roatan
Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for Roatan are as follows:
2 Hour Zip Lining Private Tour in Mahogany Bay:
4-Hour East Side Roatan Private Guided Tour with Canoe Ride:
AJ's Monkey/Sloth Family Experience, City Tour and Chocolate Tasting:
ATV East & West End Tour:
Cruise Ship Multiple Snorkeling, Snacks, Music & Private Vehicle:
Do It Your Way Roatán Free Style Tour.:
Garifuna Village plus Daniel Johnson Monkey and Sloth and Mangrove Tunnel Tour.:
Good Samaritan Tour:
Island tour in Roatan:
Island tour sightseeing +sanctuary and beach:
Mangrove tunnel and Garifuna culture tour:
Mayan Jungle Canopy & Zip-line Tour, Monkey Business & West Bay Beach!:
Typical Entertainment prices in Jaco
Below are a few sample prices from actual travelers for Jaco's activities, tours, and tickets:
Tortuga Island Tour
Tours and Activities in Jaco
For Jaco, here are a few prices for actual activities, tours, and tickets provided by various companies:
High Ropes Course Adventure in Jaco:
4x4 Land Cruiser Ride to the Waterfalls Tour:
Jungle Crocodile Safari and Bird Watching Tour:
Rainforest Costa Rica Sunset Tour:
Guided Motorcycle Tour of Jaco:
Chocolate Experience by CRHR:
ATV Tour in Jaco:
Jacó beach horseback riding experience:
Rainforest Adventures Costa Rica Pacific Aerial Tram:
Jungle Waterfall and River Crossing ATV Tour at Jaco:
Waterfall Adventure Prohiker:
The average person spends about $5.79 on alcoholic beverages in Roatan per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.
Typically, people visiting Jaco spend on average $21 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.
Typical Alcohol prices in Jaco
Below are a few samples from actual travelers for alcohol and nightlife costs in Jaco:
Night at the Bar
When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Roatan and Jaco, we can see that Jaco is more expensive. And not only is Roatan much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Roatan would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Roatan 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 Jaco would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Jaco than you might in Roatan.
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