Should you visit Saint Petersburg or Moscow?
Should I visit Saint Petersburg or Moscow? 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.
Saint Petersburg is a beautiful city that sits on the eastern edge of the Baltic Sea. Its historical city center is threaded with canals and architecturally impressive buildings, leaving little doubt as to why this city is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is the second largest city in Russia, but perhaps a favorite among travelers. The metropolitan area has a population of over 5 million as well as an impressive culture with fascinating museums, restaurants, and architecture. The city has no shortage of sights and attractions, and many days can be passed while you wander its intricate streets.
Moscow is the capital of Russia and is notable for its important role in history. It's a very sprawling city with many museums and fascinating buildings. Ten percent of Russia's population lives in this capital city and it's a financial and political center for the country. The Moskva River weaves its way through the city and you will find most of the city's sights and attractions on the northern side of the river.
Which city is cheaper, Moscow or Saint Petersburg?
These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.
The average daily cost (per person) in Saint Petersburg is $65, while the average daily cost in Moscow is $63. 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 Saint Petersburg and Moscow in more detail.
An average hotel room with basic furnishings costs about $74 in Saint Petersburg For the most convenient locations and nicer amenities you can expect to pay a bit more.
For a normal double-occupancy room in Moscow, $80 is the average cost for a hotel room. Also in Moscow, the typical price for a place to stay for one person is $40, such as in a hostel.
Food in Saint Petersburg costs travelers about $19 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.
On average, meal and food prices in Moscow cost around $14 per person, per day. While this price can vary widely by location, the type of restaurant, and the amount of food ordered, a typical meal often costs around $5.60.
Meals for one day
Saint Petersburg $19
Typical Food prices in Saint Petersburg
For Saint Petersburg, here are some examples of average food and meal prices for travelers:
Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Saint Petersburg
For Saint Petersburg, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:
Enjoy Russian Delicacies in St Petersburg: Cooking Demo and Meal with a Local:
Private Dining: Russian dinner in a traditional St. Petersburg apartment:
Cooking Class and a Dinner with a Local Family (8 people max):
Off-the-tourist Path Food Tour:
Local Market Tour and Cooking Demo with a Homemade Russian Meal in St Petersburg:
Borscht and cabbage pie cooking class and dinner for small private groups:
FOOD TOUR. St.Petersburg:
Private Cooking Class: Learn the secrets of Borsch and Beef Stroganoff:
Private Cooking Class: Russian Blini with Red Caviar and Shchi soup:
Private Cooking Class: Russian Shchi soup and Blini with Red Caviar:
Private Cooking Class: Hands-on Siberian Pelmeni Making Workshop:
Private Cooking Class: Siberian Pelmeni, Stolichny salad and Borsch:
Typical Food prices in Moscow
For Moscow, here are some examples of average food and meal prices for travelers:
Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Moscow
For Moscow, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:
Virtual Home Cooking with Russian Family:
Moscow Food Tour:
An evening at the monastery with dinner:
Traditional Russian Cooking Class and Meal in Moscow with a Friendly Local:
Private Market Tour and Traditional Russian Cooking Class in Moscow:
Traditional Russian Cooking Class and Meal in a Local Home in Moscow:
Moscow Metro and Russian Dinner Private tour:
Moscow River Cruise with Dinner and Lively Firework with a Private Guide:
Private food tour: Russian culinary culture:
Moscow Yummy Food tour:
Red Square and River Cruise with Dinner Private Tour:
Public transportation tends to be much less expensive in Saint Petersburg than paying for a taxi or private car service, as is expected. Typically, people spend $7.43 on transportation in Saint Petersburg on average per day.
To get around in Moscow, the average visitor spends $6.19 per day, per person. This includes the costs of taxi rides and private drivers as well as public transportation, which tends to be much more affordable.
Typical Local Transportation prices in Saint Petersburg
Below are a few samples from actual travelers for transportation costs in Saint Petersburg:
Hired Cars and Shuttles in Saint Petersburg
Also for Saint Petersburg, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:
St. Petersburg to St.Petersburg Pulkovo Airport - Departure Private Transfer:
St. Petersburg Pulkovo Airport (LED) to hotel - Arrival Private Transfer:
St Petersburg Transfer from city hotels or Cruise port to Pulkovo Airport (LED):
St Petersburg Departure Private Transfers from St Petersburg City to Airport LED:
St Petersburg Airport Transfers : St Petersburg to Airport LED in Luxury Van:
St Petersburg Airport Transfers : St Petersburg to Airport LED in Luxury Car:
St Petersburg Airport Transfers : St Petersburg to Airport LED by Business Car:
Private Transfer from St. Petersburg City Center to Peterhof Palace:
Private Transfer from Peterhof Palace to St. Petersburg City Center:
Private Airport Transfer: from St Petersburg to Pulkovo Airport (LED):
Departure Private Transfer St. Petersburg to Pulkovo Airport LED by Business Car:
Departure Private Transfer St Petersburg City to Pulkovo Airport LED - LuxuryVan:
Typical Local Transportation prices in Moscow
Some typical examples of transportation costs in Moscow are as follows:
Hired Cars and Shuttles in Moscow
Also for Moscow, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:
Yellow Drive - Vnukovo - Moscow - Vnukovo Transfers:
Yellow Drive - Domodedovo Airport Transfers:
Yellow Drive - Airport Transfers:
Ultra - Moscow Private Airport Transfer City Centre to Sheremetyevo Airport SVO:
Ultra - Moscow Private Airport Transfer - City Center to Domodedovo Intl Airport:
Transfer from Moscow to the Golden Ring (Ideal for Backpackers On a Shoestring!):
The Kremlin & Cathedrals Private Tour (with roundtrip transfer):
Sergiev Posad private tour with transfer from Moscow:
Round Trip Vnukovo Airport (VKO) Transfer to Moscow City Center:
Round Trip Sheremetyevo Airport (SVO) Transfer to Moscow City Center:
Round Trip Domodedovo Airport (DME) Transfer to Moscow City Center:
Private transfer from the Moscow center hotel to Sheremetyevo Airport:
Is it cheaper to fly into Saint Petersburg or Moscow?
Prices for flights to both Moscow and Saint Petersburg 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 expenses in Saint Petersburg, including the cost of admission tickets for day tours, museums, and attractions, usually cost an average of $18 per day, per person.
In Moscow, the costs for things to do, activities, admission tickets, and other sightseeing expenses are on average $16 per person, per day.
Tours and Activities in Saint Petersburg
For Saint Petersburg, here are a few prices for actual activities, tours, and tickets provided by various companies:
1-Day Visa-Free Tour in St Petersburg with Faberge Collection:
1-day private Visa-Free tour in St Petersburg with Peterhof:
1.5-Hours Saint Petersburg's Metro Tour Hidden Treasures:
2-Day Small-Group Visa-Free Tour - Top Highlights of St Petersburg:
3 Hour Photo Shoot Tours St. Petersburg, Russia:
Basic 2-day tour in St Petersburg for cruise passengers:
Catherine Palace and Park: Private tour to Tsarskoe Selo:
Classic 2 Day Tour of St Petersburg Russia.No hidden costs.9 years of experience:
Daily Canon Shot at Peter and Paul Fortress + Museum of Revolution Private Tour:
Essential 2-Day Visa-Free Tour for Cruise Ships in St Petersburg:
Evening River and Canal Cruise Visas Included:
Guided Tour Peter and Paul Fortress, Cathedral and Prison:
Typical Entertainment prices in Moscow
Below are a few sample prices from actual travelers for Moscow's activities, tours, and tickets:
Kremlin Entry (2)
Tours and Activities in Moscow
For Moscow, here are a few prices for actual activities, tours, and tickets provided by various companies:
"Moscow Versailles" Kuskovo estate Private Tour:
'Communist Moscow' walking tour:
1 Day City Tour in Moscow city:
1-day Moscow Tour (Top sights: Kremlin, Red Square, Arbat street, etc.):
1-day Tour to Saint-Petersburg from Moscow (Hermitage Museum and Peterhof):
1-day Tour to Saint-Petersburg from Moscow (Hermitage Museum and sights tour):
1-hour scenic Moscow River Cruise:
10-Day Climbing Tour to Elbrus Mountain the Highest in Europe:
12-Day River Cruise on a 3-Star Ship from Moscow:
14-Day River Cruise along the Volga from Moscow to Astrakhan:
15-Day Altai Mountains Horse Riding Tour from Moscow:
15-day Trekking Tour in Siberia Altai Mountains:
Typically, people visiting Saint Petersburg spend on average $9.88 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.
Typically, people visiting Moscow spend on average $7.95 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.
Sample the Local Flavors in Moscow
Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Moscow:
Pub Crawl Moscow Guided Tour in Classic Soviet Van:
Private Wine Tour in Moscow with History, Architecture and Friendly Local Guide:
When comparing the travel costs between Saint Petersburg and Moscow, we can see that Saint Petersburg is more expensive. However, the two cities are actually relatively comparable in price, as the difference is somewhat minimal. Generally, this means that you could travel with generally the same travel style and level of luxury in each place. Since both cities are in Europe, it's no surprise that their costs are relatively close, as many destinations here have somewhat similar travel prices overall.
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