A Travel Price Comparison for New Zealand Te Anau vs. Paihia for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Te Anau or Paihia?

Trying to figure out where to travel next? This travel cost comparison between Te Anau and Paihia can help. For many travelers, the cost of a destination is a primary consideration when choosing where to go.

Te Anau

Te Anau is a town on the South Island of New Zealand, best-known as a gateway to Fiordland National Park and Milford Sound. The region is a major destination for ecotourism as it is home to rare species like the endangered flightless takahe bird and natural features like caves, waterfalls, forests, lakes, glacial valleys, and mountains.

Paihia

Paihia is a town on the North Island of New Zealand in the Bay of Islands region. It is about a three hours north of Auckland by car. For those visiting the Bay of Islands, it is the main town in the area and is located near the town of Russell and Kerikeri. There is a wharf in town where most ships depart from if you are planning on going out to explore the Bay of Islands. Paihia is a very small town with a population of about 1800 people. There is a fair climate all year round with temperatures ranging from sixty to seventy degrees Fahrenheit.

Which city is cheaper, Paihia or Te Anau?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Te Anau is $86, while the average daily cost in Paihia is $65. 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 Te Anau and Paihia in more detail.



Accommodation

Travelers usually pay around $76 for a double occupancy room in Te Anau If you want to be in a premiere location or have high end amenities, you can expect to pay a bit more.

For a normal double-occupancy room in Paihia, $60 is the average cost for a hotel room. Also in Paihia, the typical price for a place to stay for one person is $30, such as in a hostel.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Te Anau $38
    Paihia $30
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Te Anau $76
    Paihia $60

Local Transportation

Public transportation tends to be much less expensive in Te Anau than paying for a taxi or private car service, as is expected. Typically, people spend $24 on transportation in Te Anau on average per day.

Public transportation tends to be much less expensive in Paihia than paying for a taxi or private car service, as is expected. Typically, people spend $10 on transportation in Paihia on average per day.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Te Anau $24
    Paihia $10

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Te Anau

Also for Te Anau, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:

  • Te Anau to Queenstown Transfer: $39

Is it cheaper to fly into Te Anau or Paihia?

Prices for flights to both Paihia and Te Anau 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.





Food

The price of a meal in Te Anau can vary widely. However, the average price for food per day is $23 per person, and a typical meal will cost around $9.20 based on the spending of previous visitors. Less expensive dining options can be found by eating street food or at fast food restaurants.

Paihia food costs typically run travelers around $23 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
    Te Anau $23
    Paihia $23

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Paihia

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

  • Bay of Islands 3-Hours Sailing & Gourmet Dinner Burger Buffet: $74
  • 3 Hour Bay of Islands Sailing Cruise with Gourmet Dinner: $89

Entertainment

Sightseeing expenses in Te Anau, including the cost of admission tickets for day tours, museums, and attractions, usually cost an average of $41 per day, per person.

Sightseeing expenses in Paihia, including the cost of admission tickets for day tours, museums, and attractions, usually cost an average of $30 per day, per person.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Te Anau $41
    Paihia $30

Tours and Activities in Te Anau

For Te Anau, here are a few prices for actual activities, tours, and tickets provided by various companies:

  • Afternoon Te Anau Cruise on Historic Motor Yacht: $94
  • Champagne Sightseeing Cruise on Lake Te Anau: $94
  • ENVY Experiences Exclusive Milford Day trip from Te Anau: $133
  • Full-Day Milford Sound Extraordinaire Tour from Te Anau: $132
  • Full-Day Milford Sound Hiking Tour with Cruise: $103
  • Lord of the Rings and Te Anau Highlights Small Group Tour from Te Anau: $111
  • Milford Sound Coach and Nature Cruise with Picnic Lunch from Te Anau: $103
  • Milford Sound Coach and Scenic Cruise from Te Anau with Picnic Lunch: $103
  • Milford Sound Cruise and Helicopter Flight including Scenic Landings from Queenstown: $1,459
  • Milford Sound Experience Full Day from Te Anau: $124
  • Milford Sound Full-Day Tour from Te Anau: $96
  • Milford Sound Premium Day Tour and Cruise from Queenstown: $137

Tours and Activities in Paihia

For Paihia, here are a few prices for actual activities, tours, and tickets provided by various companies:

  • 6 Hour Cruise with Island stop over- Gourmet lunch cooked aboard: $113
  • 90 Mile Beach Bike Tour: $170
  • Bay of Islands Cruise & Island Tour - Snorkel, Hike, Swim, Paddleboard, Wildlife: $84
  • Bay of Islands Day Wildlife Cruise: $110
  • Bay of Islands Half-Day Private Tour: $152
  • Bay of Islands Highlights Tour - With Glow Worm Caves: $137
  • Bay of Islands Waterfall Cruise Kayak or Paddle board: $50
  • Bay of Islands and Hole in the Rock Scenic Helicopter Tour: $198
  • Bay of Islands: Bay Discovery Cruise with Island Stop-Over: $92
  • Bay of Islands: Late Afternoon Sailing Cruise: $46
  • Cape Reinga - 90 Mile Beach Tour: $104
  • Cape Reinga and 90 Mile Beach Tour from Bay of Islands: $119

Alcohol

Typically, people visiting Te Anau spend on average $12 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.

Typically, people visiting Paihia spend on average $19 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Te Anau $12
    Paihia $19

Sample the Local Flavors in Paihia

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

  • Bay of Islands Craft Beer & Wine Tour: $93
  • Private Wine Tour in a Mustang or 4x4: $148
  • Private Shore Excursion: Bay of Islands Tour with Wine Tasting: $236
  • Private Tour: Bay of Islands Tour with Wine Tasting: $236


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

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Te Anau vs. Paihia Travel Comparison

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