A Travel Price Comparison for United States of America Texas vs. California for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Texas or California?

Which city should you visit? Read on to compare the prices of travel for Texas and California. 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.


Texas is the second largest and second most populated state in the United States. It measures 267,000 square miles in size and exploring even a large section of the state takes longer than you might expect. The size and distinctive culture of the area brings much pride to the state's natives. The state was briefly its own country for ten years, starting in 1836 after the residents rebelled as a territory of first Spain and then Mexico. It then joined the United States in 1845. The state maintains its independent personality and many Texans proudly display the state flag near their home or car.


California is the most populous state in the U.S. and is known for a variety of attractions such as Hollywood, warm beaches, the San Francisco bay area, Redwood trees, national parks, and stunning mountain vistas. With a variety of locations and activities to offer, California has become one of the premier travel destinations in the world.

Which city is cheaper, California or Texas?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Texas is $156, while the average daily cost in California is $197. 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 Texas and California in more detail.


Accommodation prices vary by location and style, but travelers pay on average about $124 for a double occupancy room in Texas.

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

  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Texas $62
    California $91
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Texas $124
    California $182


In Texas travelers spend around $34 a day on food. You can save money by choosing casual restaurants or food stalls, or you can spend plenty more by dining in nicer restaurants at every meal.

On average, meal and food prices in California cost around $37 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 $15.

  • Food Meals for one day
    Texas $34
    California $37

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in California

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

  • Napa or Sonoma Dinner Transportation: $500

Local Transportation

The cost of a taxi ride in Texas is significantly more than public transportation. On average, past travelers have spent $39 per person, per day, on local transportation in Texas.

Public transportation tends to be much less expensive in California than paying for a taxi or private car service, as is expected. Typically, people spend $32 on transportation in California on average per day.

  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Texas $39
    California $32

Hired Cars and Shuttles in California

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

  • Departure Private Transfer to San Francisco Cruise Port by Business Car: $84
  • Low Cost Private Transfer From San Francisco International Airport to Mountain View City - One Way: $147
  • Low Cost Private Transfer From San Francisco International Airport to Oakland City - One Way: $105
  • Low Cost Private Transfer From San Francisco International Airport to San Francisco City - One Way: $166
  • Low Cost Private Transfer From San Francisco International Airport to San Jose City - One Way: $194
  • Low Cost Private Transfer From San Francisco International Airport to San Mateo City - One Way: $73
  • Low Cost Private Transfer From San Francisco International Airport to Union City - One Way: $137
  • Private Airport Transfer from SFO to San Francisco: $79
  • Private San Francisco Transfer: Hotel to Airport or Cruise Port: $122
  • SUV Airport Transfer from Napa to SFO (one way): $449
  • SUV Airport Transfer from SFO to Napa (one way): $449
  • SUV Airport Transfer from SFO to St Helena (one way): $499

Is it cheaper to fly into Texas or California?

Prices for flights to both California and Texas 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 and activities in Texas typically cost an average of $19 per person, per day. This includes fees paid for admission tickets to museums and attractions, day tours, and other sightseeing expenses.

Sightseeing expenses in California, including the cost of admission tickets for day tours, museums, and attractions, usually cost an average of $49 per day, per person.

  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Texas $19
    California $49

Tours and Activities in California

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

  • Guided Tour of Historic Virginia City and Carson City from South Lake Tahoe: $55
  • El Dorado Wine Country Tour from South Lake Tahoe: $90
  • Snowshoe Lake Tahoe Tour: $100
  • Golden Gate Park and Haight-Ashbury Tour from San Francisco: $107
  • Private San Francisco Walking Tour of Mission and Castro: $128
  • Best of San Francisco Private Walking Tour: $156
  • City By The Bay San Francisco Tours With An Interpreter: $187
  • Rappelling Adventure in Joshua Tree National Park (4 Hours): $195
  • Bay Area Tour With An Arabic Interpreter: $200
  • Bay Area Tour With A Spanish Interpreter: $225
  • Bay Area Tour With A Farsi Interpreter: $225
  • Bay Area Tour With A Persian Interpreter: $225


While the amount that someone spends on alcohol while visiting Texas may vary from person to person, on average a person spends $15 per day on alcoholic beverages.

Typically, people visiting California spend on average $17 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.

  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Texas $15
    California $17

Sample the Local Flavors in California

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

  • Healdsburg Wine Tasting and Food Pairing Guided Walking Tour: $119
  • Golf Somm - A Sommelier-Led Golf and Wine Tour in Napa Valley: $308
  • 6-Hours Customized Private NAPA Valley Wine Tour From San Francisco Bay Area: $480
  • 6-Hour Customized Private LIVERMORE Valley Wine Tour From San Francisco Bay Area: $480
  • 6-Hours Customized Private RUSSIAN RIVER Valley Wine Tour From San Francisco Bay: $480
  • 6-Hours Customized Private SONOMA Valley Wine Tour From San Francisco Bay Area: $480
  • Napa Wine Tour: $500
  • Sonoma Wine Tours: $500
  • Napa Valley Wine Tour Planning and Transportation: $513
  • 8-Hour Napa Valley Wine Tour: $570
  • Sprinter Wine Tour: $700
  • Sonoma County and Napa Valley Private Wine Tour: $775

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

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Texas vs. California Travel Comparison

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