A Travel Price Comparison for United States of America San Diego vs. Moab for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit San Diego or Moab?

Which city should you visit? Read on to compare the prices of travel for San Diego and Moab. 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.

San Diego

For many visitors and locals alike, San Diego is a paradise. Located in southern California, not far from Los Angeles, it has the perfect climate, wonderful beaches, and a culturally rich environment. It's surrounded by beautiful landscape and has a strong focus on wildlife conservation and eco-friendly living. Home to about 1.3 million residents, it is California's second largest city. It also has many universities, a large tech industry, and a thriving economy. Despite its size, many people perceive San Diego as a slower, more relaxed city with a pleasant vibe away from the chaos of a large city.

Moab

Moab is the closest town to Arches National Park in Utah's Canyon Country. It is also a popular base for exploring Canyonlands National Park. It's a small town that serves mainly to accommodate tourists to the popular national parks and other surrounding wildlife areas. It has grown dramatically in recent years and has a population of just over 5,000. In town you will find hotels and motels, a handful of restaurants and a few shops where you can stock up on supplies. There's a small museum, the Museum of Moab, and a variety of tour operators in town. You can easily book river rafting trips, jeep expeditions, and tours of the surrounding area. For many, exploring Arches National Park on your own is a more enjoyable and independent experience.

Which city is cheaper, Moab or San Diego?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in San Diego is $161, while the average daily cost in Moab is $124. 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 San Diego and Moab in more detail.



Accommodation

For a normal double-occupancy room in San Diego, $182 is the average cost for a hotel room. Also in San Diego, the typical price for a place to stay for one person is $91, such as in a hostel.

An average hotel room with basic furnishings costs about $164 in Moab For the most convenient locations and nicer amenities you can expect to pay a bit more.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    San Diego $91
    Moab $82
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    San Diego $182
    Moab $164

Food

The price of a meal in San Diego can vary widely. However, the average price for food per day is $36 per person, and a typical meal will cost around $14 based on the spending of previous visitors. Less expensive dining options can be found by eating street food or at fast food restaurants.

While meal prices in Moab can vary, the average travelers spends about $30 per day on food. Based on the spending habits of previous travelers, when dining out, an average meal in Moab should cost around $12 per person. Breakfast prices are usually a little cheaper than lunch or dinner. The price of food in sit-down restaurants in Moab is often higher than fast food prices or street food prices.


  • Food Meals for one day
    San Diego $36
    Moab $30
Typical Food prices in San Diego

Here are some examples of typical meal expenses from previous travelers to San Diego:


  • Mexican Lunch for Two
    $27
  • Breakfast at Starbucks
    $20

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in San Diego

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

  • San Diego North Park Food Tour: $49
  • Liberty Station Food Tour: $49
  • Market and Guacamole Cooking Class in Tijuana Mexico: $89
  • Private Cooking Demonstration of Indian Fusion Cuisine in San Diego: $96
  • Farmers Market Tour & Social Cooking With A Chef: $100
  • San Diego Harbor Dinner Cruise: $111
  • Dinner Cruise: $117
  • Private Tour: Secret Food Tours San Diego: $129
  • Secret Food Tours San Diego w/ Private Tour Option: $277

Typical Food prices in Moab

Here are some examples of typical meal expenses from previous travelers to Moab:


  • Moab Brewery
    $42
  • Breakfast for Two
    $17

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Moab

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

  • Sound and Light Show with Dinner: $79
  • Moab Dinner Cruise with Sound and Light Show: $81
  • Colorado River Sunset Boat Tour with Optional Dinner: $89
  • Sunset Jetboat Ride with Dinner on the Colorado River from Moab: $102

Local Transportation

Public transportation tends to be much less expensive in San Diego than paying for a taxi or private car service, as is expected. Typically, people spend $19 on transportation in San Diego on average per day.

To get around in Moab, the average visitor spends $14 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.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    San Diego $19
    Moab $14

Hired Cars and Shuttles in San Diego

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

  • Private transfer: San Diego to San Diego Airport (SAN): $622
  • Private transfer: San Diego Airport (SAN) to San Diego: $622
  • San Diego Private Transfer To N. Hollywood/Burbank area.: $398
  • Tijuana Border Crossing Private Transfer To Los Angeles.: $398
  • San Diego Private Transfer To Palm Springs.: $398
  • Private Transfer from San Diego to Hollywood Burbank: $397
  • San Diego Private Transfer To Los Angeles.: $389
  • San Diego to Long Beach Airport (LGB) - Departure Private Transfer: $357
  • San Diego to Hollywood Burbank Airport (BUR) - Departure Private Transfer: $342
  • Private Transfer From San Diego To Orange County.: $298
  • Private San Diego Transfer: Cruise Port to Airport or Hotel: $192
  • Private San Diego Transfer: Airport to Hotel or Cruise Port: $128

Is it cheaper to fly into San Diego or Moab?

Prices for flights to both Moab and San Diego 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

Sightseeing expenses in San Diego, including the cost of admission tickets for day tours, museums, and attractions, usually cost an average of $38 per day, per person.

In Moab, the costs for things to do, activities, admission tickets, and other sightseeing expenses are on average $2.50 per person, per day.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    San Diego $38
    Moab $2.50
Typical Entertainment prices in San Diego

For San Diego, here are some examples of average entertainment and activity prices from previous travelers:


  • San Diego Zoo
    $15
  • Sea World Parking
    $12

Tours and Activities in San Diego

Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for San Diego.

  • 1-Hour Voodoo Escape Room Experience in San Diego: $35
  • 1Hr GPS Guided Scooter Tour: Harbor/Gaslamp Quarter: $63
  • 2 Hour Whale Watching Kayak Tour for Two: $77
  • 4 Hour Whale Watching/Eco Adventure: $163
  • 90-Minute San Diego SEAL Tour: $42
  • Affordable, Luxury Sailing Tour of San Diego's Bay and Coastal Waterways: $112
  • All Day San Diego City and Shopping Tour: $95
  • All Inclusive Beer Tour-Party bus: $169
  • Behind-the-Scenes at Petco Park Tour: $23
  • Brothels, Bites and Booze: A Culinary Tour of San Diego's Questionable Past: $69
  • Catamaran Sailing Cruise on San Diego Bay for up to 12 Guests: $1,200
  • Catamaran Sailing Cruise on San Diego Bay for up to 6 Guests: $600

Typical Entertainment prices in Moab

For Moab, here are some examples of average entertainment and activity prices from previous travelers:


  • Slickrock Trail Pass
    $5.00

Tours and Activities in Moab

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

  • 4 Hours Guided Mountain Biking Tour: $110
  • Arches National Park 4x4 Adventure from Moab: $123
  • Arches National Park Air tour: $119
  • Arches National Park Backcountry 4x4 Half-Day Tour: $131
  • Arches National Park Self-Driving Audio Tour: $10
  • Backcountry Jeep Adventure: $341
  • Canyonlands & Arches National Park Air Tour: $239
  • Canyonlands Backcountry 4x4 Half-Day Tour: $131
  • Canyonlands National Park Air Tour: $194
  • Canyonlands National Park Half-Day Tour from Moab: $123
  • Cataract Canyon Rafting Adventure from Moab: $504
  • Colorado River Fisher Towers Full-Day Rafting Adventure: $129

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 San Diego, the average amount that a visitor spends on alcoholic beverages per day is $17.

Alcoholic beverages can often be a significant portion of a traveler's budget, and the costs can vary greatly from person to person. In Moab, the average amount that a visitor spends on alcoholic beverages per day is $53.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    San Diego $17
    Moab $53

Sample the Local Flavors in San Diego

Also in San Diego, these are the prices for nightlife and alcohol related activities from various tour providers:

  • San Diego Bar Hunt: Slammin' San Diego Bar Crawl: $12
  • Wine Tasting Or Beer Tasting: $15
  • San Diego Brewery Tour: $85
  • San Diego Micro Brewery Tour: $91
  • The San Diego Downtown Craft Brewery Tour: $95
  • The San Diego Downtown Craft Brewery Tour: $101
  • Private San Diego Brewery Tour: $107
  • All inclusive brewery tour-Fire Truck: $189
  • Luxury Private Wine Tasting Tour to Guadalupe Valley from San Diego.: $249
  • Private Wine Tour of Temecula from San Diego: $475


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

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San Diego vs. Moab Travel Comparison

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