A Travel Price Comparison for Chile Santiago vs. Puerto Varas for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Santiago or Puerto Varas?

Which city should you visit? Read on to compare the prices of travel for Santiago and Puerto Varas. 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.

Santiago

Santiago is the capital city of Chile. It is centrally located in the long and narrow country, making it a good jumping off point to explore everywhere else. It's convenient location means that you can go skiing in the Andes one day, and hang out at the beach the next.

Santiago has a cool semi-arid climate that is similar to Mediterranean climates. The summers, which are between November and March, are warm and dry. The temperatures climb to around 95 degrees Fahrenheit. The winters, between June and August, are humid with cold mornings. The daily highs are around 55 degrees Fahrenheit and the lows stay a few degrees above freezing. Rain is more common in the winter months and the dry season is between December and March.

Puerto Varas

Puerto Varas is a city in Southern Chile, in the Los Lagos (Lakes) Region, Llanquihue Province. It is a charming town, only 23 km away from Puerto Montt and surrounded by the Osorno and Calbuco volcanoes as well as the impressive Llanquihue lake. In terms of landscape, accommodation and activities, Puerto Varas is well served! Kayak, paddle, canyoning, rock climbing, trekking, ski, fishing, you name it! If you decide to stop in that area, we recommend that you stay in Puerto Varas, as it provides the perfect starting point for many memorable excursions in the area.

Which city is cheaper, Puerto Varas or Santiago?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Santiago is $137, while the average daily cost in Puerto Varas is $105. 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 Santiago and Puerto Varas in more detail.



Accommodation

Accommodation prices vary by location and style, but travelers pay on average about $214 for a double occupancy room in Santiago.

The average price for accommodation for two people in Puerto Varas is $130. This is for two people sharing a typical double occupancy hotel room.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Santiago $107
    Puerto Varas $65
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Santiago $214
    Puerto Varas $130

Food

While meal prices in Santiago can vary, the average travelers spends about $13 per day on food. Based on the spending habits of previous travelers, when dining out, an average meal in Santiago should cost around $5.20 per person. Breakfast prices are usually a little cheaper than lunch or dinner. The price of food in sit-down restaurants in Santiago is often higher than fast food prices or street food prices.

Puerto Varas food costs typically run travelers around $24 per day. Eating every meal in a nicer restaurant will drive the cost up, and grabbing fast food or casual meals will help you save money.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Santiago $13
    Puerto Varas $24
Typical Food prices in Santiago

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


  • Empanada
    $2.28
  • Hamburger
    $3.03
  • Dinner
    $31

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Santiago

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

  • Dinner at a Typical Chilean Restaurant with a Traditional Dance Show in Santiago: $73
  • A Bite of Santiago Food Tour: $77
  • Chilean Dinner and Show Experience in Santiago: $77
  • ChileCooks - Food Tours: $91
  • Traditional Dinner Show in Santiago: $96
  • Bali Hai Dinner & Show Including Transport: $97
  • San Cristobal Hill Night City Tour with Dinner Show: $106
  • Traditional Chilean Show with Dinner and Private Transportation in Santiago: $107
  • Chilean Folklore Show and Dinner with Private Transport: $110
  • Small-Group Tour: Night City Tour with Santa Lucia Hill and Dinner Show: $116
  • Small-Group Night City Tour: San Cristobal Hill and Dinner Show: $116
  • Private Market Tour and Traditional Chilean Cooking Class in a Local Home: $117

Local Transportation

The average price of local transportation around Santiago is $5.24 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.

The average price of local transportation around Puerto Varas is $20 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.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Santiago $5.24
    Puerto Varas $20
Typical Local Transportation prices in Santiago

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for transportation costs in Santiago:


  • Metro Ride
    $1.37

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Santiago

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Santiago:

  • Airport Transfer: $200
  • Arrival Private Transfer Santiago Airport SCL to Santiago in an Executive SUV: $46
  • Arrival Private Transfer Santiago Airport SCL to Santiago in an Luxury Van: $71
  • Departure Private Transfers : Santiago to Santiago Airport SCL in Business Car: $73
  • Departure Private Transfers : Santiago to Santiago Airport SCL in Luxury Van: $96
  • Maipo Valley Wine Tour, Concha y Toro, Private Transfer from Santiago: $161
  • Premium Ski resort transfer: $250
  • Private Airport Transfer: from Santiago de Chile to Santiago Int. Airport (SCL): $28
  • Private Arrival Transfer from Airport to Hotel in Santiago: $27
  • Private Arrival Transfer from Santiago de Chile Airport to Santiago City: $28
  • Private Departure Transfer from Santiago City to Santiago de Chile Airport: $28
  • Private Round Trip Transfer Santiago City to Santiago de Chile Airport: $55

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Puerto Varas

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Puerto Varas:

  • Cruce Andino Office Shuttle Transfer from Puerto Varas: $9.69
  • Transfer from Puerto Varas to Puerto Montt Airport: $14
  • Puerto Varas Airport Shuttle Transfer: $29
  • Puerto Montt Departure Transfer from Hotel in Puerto Varas: $32
  • Puerto Varas Bus Terminal Private Transfer: $39
  • Cruce Andino Office Private Transfer from Puerto Varas: $43
  • Puerto Varas Airport Private Transfer: $49

Is it cheaper to fly into Santiago or Puerto Varas?

Prices for flights to both Puerto Varas and Santiago 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

Santiago's costs for entertainment, tickets, attractions, and tours will often cost around $46 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.

Puerto Varas's costs for entertainment, tickets, attractions, and tours will often cost around $18 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.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Santiago $46
    Puerto Varas $18

Tours and Activities in Santiago

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

  • Museo Chileno de Arte Precolombino Admission Ticket: $14
  • "Tour Tradicional" Viña Cousiño Macul Oficial español: $18
  • "Tour Tradicional" Viña Cousiño Macul Oficial portugués: $18
  • Santiago City Tour SCL & Santa Lucía Hill: $25
  • Santiago City Tour: $27
  • Half-Day Small-Group Panoramic Santiago Tour: $27
  • Small-Group Tour to Valle Nevado and Farellones from Santiago: $30
  • Half Day Guided City Tour in Santiago - Small Groups - Multi Language: $30
  • Welcome to Private Tour with a Local: $30
  • Santiago Like a Local: Customized Private Tour: $32
  • Walking tour "Popular flavors of Chile": $33
  • Santiago Half-Day Small-Group Panoramic Tour: $35

Tours and Activities in Puerto Varas

Here are a few actual costs in Puerto Varas for available activities, ticket prices, and tours:

  • Osorno Volcano Tour: $26
  • Frutillar Tour: Southern Traditions: $34
  • Sightseeing Tour Puerto Varas & Puerto Montt: $37
  • Half day, traditional city tour: $40
  • Speed Boat City Tour in Puerto Varas: $45
  • Petrohue Waterfalls & Osorno Volcano Half-Day Tour: $49
  • Half-Day Small-Group Rafting Experience in Petrohué River: $60
  • Greater Island Chiloe Tour from Puerto Varas: $62
  • Full-Day Guided Tour to Villa Peulla from Puerto Varas: $67
  • Speed Boat and Walking City Tour in Puerto Varas: $69
  • Frutillar Bike Tour from Puerto Varas: $69
  • Private Sightseeing Tour in Puerto Varas & Puerto Montt: $70

Alcohol

The average person spends about $8.14 on alcoholic beverages in Santiago per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.

While the amount that someone spends on alcohol while visiting Puerto Varas may vary from person to person, on average a person spends $6.30 per day on alcoholic beverages.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Santiago $8.14
    Puerto Varas $6.30

Sample the Local Flavors in Santiago

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

  • Traditional Wine Tour in Viña Cousiño Macul Official English: $18
  • "Premium Wine Tour" Viña Cousiño Macul Official english: $30
  • "Premium Wine Tour" Viña Cousiño Macul Oficial portugués: $30
  • Premium Wine Tour in Viña Cousiño Macul Spanish official: $30
  • Half Day Trip to Undurraga Vineyard from Santiago - Wine Tasting Included: $40
  • Concha y Toro Traditional Wine Tour from Santiago: $45
  • Half Day Trip to Concha y Toro Vineyard from Santiago - Wine Tasting Included: $45
  • Half Day Trip to Santa Rita Vineyard from Santiago - Wine Tasting Included: $50
  • Half Day Trip to Cousiño Macul Vineyard from Santiago - Wine Tasting Included: $55
  • half day wine tour to concha y toro from Santiago seasonal offer: $57
  • Concha y Toro Marques Wine Tour from Santiago: $64
  • Premium Wine Tasting in Santiago de Chile: $71

Sample the Local Flavors in Puerto Varas

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

  • Osorno Volcano & Brewery Tour in Puerto Varas: $64
  • Heritage City Tour and Brewery in Puerto Varas: $150


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

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Santiago vs. Puerto Varas Travel Comparison

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