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

Should you visit San Diego or Seattle?

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

Seattle

Situated on the Puget Sound in the state of Washington, Seattle is the largest city in the United States Pacific Northwest. It's a beautiful city surrounded by the water and mountains and filled with evergreen trees. It's also the home of some famous American institutions including Starbucks Coffee, Amazon, and Microsoft. The population of almost 700,000 continues to grow. As of 2014, the city was considered the fastest growing major city in the United States. The entire metropolitan area has about 3.6 million residents, making it the 15th largest metro area in the US. The natural beauty, growing economy, and educational base give Seattle a youthful vibe that keep the city young and energetic.

Which city is cheaper, Seattle 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 Seattle is $156. 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 Seattle 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.

A hotel room in Seattle is about $188 This assumes double occupancy and modest accommodations.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    San Diego $91
    Seattle $94
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    San Diego $182
    Seattle $188

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.

The price of a meal in Seattle can vary widely. However, the average price for food per day is $38 per person, and a typical meal will cost around $15 based on the spending of previous visitors. Less expensive dining options can be found by eating street food or at fast food restaurants.


  • Food Meals for one day
    San Diego $36
    Seattle $38
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 Seattle

Some typical examples of dining costs in Seattle are as follows:


  • Expresso & cookie at Pier 70
    $7.00
  • Cashews at Pike Place Market
    $6.00
  • 6 Mini Donuts at Pike Place Market
    $3.25
  • Chinese Lunch in International District (for 2)
    $21
  • Breakfast at Lowel's in Pike Place Market (for 2)
    $32
  • Breakfast at French Cafe (for 2)
    $37

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Seattle

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

  • Chef Guided Food Tour of Pike Place Market- 1 Hour: $34
  • Pike Place Market: Walking Food Tour: $48
  • Pike Place Market Chef-Guided Food Tour: $56
  • Chef Guided Food Tour of Pike Place Market- 2 Hours: $58
  • Pacific Northwest-Style Dinner and Pairing in Seattle: $61
  • Exclusive: Early-Access Food Tour of Pike Place Market: $73
  • Street Theater and Dinner in Seattle's Fremont District: $86
  • Seattle Dinner Cruise: $115

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.

While taxis and private drivers typically cost much more than public transportation, people usually spend around $18 per day to get around in Seattle.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    San Diego $19
    Seattle $18

Hired Cars and Shuttles in San Diego

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

  • Private Airport Transfer: from San Diego to San Diego Int. Airport (SAN): $35
  • Private Departure Transfer from San Diego to SAN San Diego Airport: $46
  • Private Airport Transfer: San Diego International Airport (SAN) to San Diego: $46
  • Private Arrival Transfer from San Diego Airport SAN: $48
  • Private Departure Transfer to San Diego Airport SAN: $48
  • Private Arrival Transfer from SAN San Diego Airport to San Diego City: $49
  • San Diego Airport (SAN) to San Diego hotel or address - Arrival Private Transfer: $60
  • San Diego hotel/address to San Diego Airport (SAN) - Departure Private Transfer: $60
  • Transfer from San Diego International Airport to San Diego: $62
  • Departure Private Transfer San Diego to San Diego Airport SAN in Business Car: $63
  • Private 1-Way Private Airport Transfer: $66
  • Private Airport Transfer San Deigo Arrival And Departure: $67

Typical Local Transportation prices in Seattle

Here are some examples of typical transportation prices from actual travelers in Seattle:


  • Lightrail from Airport (for 2)
    $5.50
  • Roundtrip Ferry to Bainbridge Island (for 2)
    $15

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Seattle

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Seattle:

  • Seattle to Whistler Private Transfer: $1,076
  • Private transfer from Seattle or Sea-Tac Seattle Airport to Vancouver, BC: $1,023
  • Private Transfer from Seattle or Sea-Tac Seattle Airport to Vancouver, BC: $894
  • Private transfer: Seattle to Seattle Airport (SEA): $622
  • One-Way Seattle Private Transfer up to 12 Pax: Cruises, Sea-Tac, Hotels: $319
  • Seattle Roundtrip Chauffeur Driven Airport Transfer by Private Van: $210
  • Departure Private Transfer Seattle or Cruise Port to Seattle Airport SEA Minibus: $195
  • Arrival Private Transfer Seattle Airport SEA to Seattle or Cruise Port - Minibus: $195
  • Seattle Tacoma Airport (SEA) to Seattle - Round-Trip Private Transfer: $184
  • RoundTrip Transfer in Private Minivan from-to Tacoma Airport in Seattle Downtown: $169
  • Low Cost Private Transfer From Seattle Tacoma International Airport to Seattle City - One Way: $149
  • Seattle Airport Transfers : Seattle City to Seattle Airport SEA in Luxury Car: $149

Is it cheaper to fly into San Diego or Seattle?

Prices for flights to both Seattle 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.

Activities, things to do, and other forms of entertainment usually cost around $12 per person, per day in Seattle. This cost includes the price of admission tickets to attractions and museums as well as daily tours.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    San Diego $38
    Seattle $12
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.

  • La Jolla: Explore California's Riviera on a self-guided audio tour: $5.40
  • San Diego Zoo Hunt: Roar with Rex Adventure at the San Diego Zoo: $12
  • San Diego's Gaslamp Quarter Historic True Crime Tour: $16
  • San Diego Scavenger Hunt Adventure: $21
  • San Diego Balboa Park Scavenger Hunt Adventure: $21
  • Behind-the-Scenes at Petco Park Tour: $23
  • San Diego Gaslamp District Ghost Tour: $24
  • San Diego Harbor Cruise: $28
  • Harbor Cruise: $28
  • Tijuana Walking Tour from San Diego: $28
  • Off the grid Christian tour.: $28
  • Old Town Scavenger Hunt, Walking Tour: $29

Tours and Activities in Seattle

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

  • 20-Minute Greater Seattle Scenic Airplane Tour: $102
  • 3-Day Seattle Olympic+Mount Rainier National Park tour(Seattle departure) APOR3: $285
  • 3-Hour Seattle City Tour: $80
  • 4-Hour Seattle City Tour: $77
  • 5-Day Yellowstone+Grand Teton National Park Tour ( Seattle departure ) SYG5: $615
  • A Feast for Foodies Walking Tour In Seattle: $201
  • Afternoon 3-Hour Seattle City Tour: $76
  • Bainbridge Island Wine and History - Private Luxury Day Tour with Lunch: $450
  • Bainbridge Island Wine and History Luxury Small-Group Day Tour with Lunch: $249
  • Beneath The Streets Underground History Tour: $29
  • Best of Mount Rainier National Park from All-Inclusive Small-Group Tour: $263
  • Best of Olympic National Park from All-Inclusive Small-Group Day Tour: $263

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.

The average person spends about $13 on alcoholic beverages in Seattle per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    San Diego $17
    Seattle $13

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

Sample the Local Flavors in Seattle

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

  • Seattle Bar Hunt: Sleepless in Seattle Bar Crawl: $12
  • Haunted Seattle Ghost and Pub Walking Tour: $27
  • Georgetown Brewery Tour: $72
  • Bon Vivant Woodinville Wine Tasting Tour: $98
  • Half-Day Coffee, Chocolate, and Wine Tour: $99
  • Seattle Coffee, Chocolate and Wine Tour: $112
  • Seattle Wine Tour (Hourly): $135
  • 7-Hour Wenatchee White Water Rafting and Wine Tour: $145
  • From Snoqualmie Falls & Woodinville Wine Tasting: $209
  • Seattle All-Inclusive: Hike Mt. Rainier and Wine Tasting: $263


When comparing the travel costs between San Diego and Seattle, we can see that San Diego 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 North America, it's no surprise that their costs are relatively close, as many destinations here have somewhat similar travel prices overall.

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San Diego vs. Seattle Travel Comparison

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