A Travel Price Comparison for Japan Tokyo vs. Osaka for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Tokyo or Osaka?

Should I visit Tokyo or Osaka? This is a common question asked by many travelers. By figuring out which city is more affordable, you'll understand where you can get more bang for your buck. So, let's dive into the data, which all comes from actual travelers.

Tokyo

Tokyo, the capital of Japan, is by far the most populous city in the world with a staggering 37 million people. As a worldwide hub for technology and business, it hosts millions of visitors annually. But Tokyo is not just a place for business trips. With its incredible mixture of historical temples and shrines, remarkably beautiful parks, endless shopping malls, and genuinely wonderful people, Tokyo is a terrific place to visit and to explore.

Osaka

The third largest city in Japan, Osaka has a lot to offer travelers. It's at the center of the Kansai region, and is a wonderful place to spend a few days. The city sits at the mouth of the Yodo River on Osaka Bay and is a major commercial hub for the country.

Osaka has a humid subtropical climate with four seasons. The winters are mild with January temperatures having an average high of almost 50 degrees Fahrenheit. Snow is very rare. Springs start cool and become hot and humid. This is also the wettest season with the rainiest time being between May and early July. Summers are hot and humid with July temperatures climbing into the high 90s Fahrenheit. The fall season becomes cooler as winter approaches.

Which city is cheaper, Osaka or Tokyo?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Tokyo is $176, while the average daily cost in Osaka is $93. 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 Tokyo and Osaka in more detail.



Accommodation

An average hotel room with basic furnishings costs about $166 in Tokyo For the most convenient locations and nicer amenities you can expect to pay a bit more.

The prices for places to stay in Osaka can vary by date, location, and type. Generally, the average cost for accommodation per person is $46, while a typical double-occupancy hotel room for two people will cost around $92.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Tokyo $83
    Osaka $46
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Tokyo $166
    Osaka $92

Food

The price of a meal in Tokyo can vary widely. However, the average price for food per day is $41 per person, and a typical meal will cost around $16 based on the spending of previous visitors. Less expensive dining options can be found by eating street food or at fast food restaurants.

The average traveler spends about $27 per day in Osaka for food, but obviously this is dependent on the type of restaurant and the amount of food ordered. To save money you can grab a lighter lunch or dinner, or you can try fast food or street food.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Tokyo $41
    Osaka $27
Typical Food prices in Tokyo

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


  • Late Night Noodles
    $7.28
  • Conveyor Belt Sushi Snack
    $7.28
  • Meal at Airport
    $9.49

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Tokyo

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

  • Lunch or Dinner with Maiko Experience in Kyoto : $14
  • Instagrammable Cooking Class (Miso-balls): $23
  • Yokohama Lunch, Tea, and Dinner Cruise with Royalwings: $25
  • Japanese Rolled Sushi cooking in Tokyo: $27
  • Online character lunch box cooking class: $27
  • Tokyo West Side Walking and Street Food Tour: $34
  • Hakodate's Famous Ikameshi Cooking Class: $36
  • Instagrammable Cooking Class (Casual): $41
  • West-Side Walking & Street Food Tour: $45
  • Okinawa Home Cooking Experience: $45
  • Moby Dick Dinner Cruise in Naha: $53
  • Instagrammable Cooking Class (Special): $59

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Osaka

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

  • Street Food Tour Around Dotonburi Canal: $9.84
  • Takoyaki Cooking Class: $13
  • Lunch or Dinner with Maiko Experience in Kyoto : $14
  • Instagrammable Cooking Class (Miso-balls): $23
  • Yokohama Lunch, Tea, and Dinner Cruise with Royalwings: $25
  • Online character lunch box cooking class: $27
  • Japanese Rolled Sushi cooking in Tokyo: $27
  • Deep Food Tour & Bar Hopping in Namba, Osaka: $30
  • Deep Food Tour & Bar Hopping in Temma, Osaka: $30
  • (Online)Popular Japanese pancake and miso soup cooking: $31
  • Tokyo West Side Walking and Street Food Tour: $34
  • Hakodate's Famous Ikameshi Cooking Class: $36

Local Transportation

Tokyo's transportation costs can vary by the type of transport chosen by visitors. Naturally, taxis and private drivers cost much more than public transportation options. On average, visitors spend $22 per person, per day on transportation in Tokyo.

Osaka's transportation costs can vary by the type of transport chosen by visitors. Naturally, taxis and private drivers cost much more than public transportation options. On average, visitors spend $16 per person, per day on transportation in Osaka.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Tokyo $22
    Osaka $16
Typical Local Transportation prices in Tokyo

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


  • Metro from Airport
    $18

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Tokyo

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

  • [5%OFF] Ferry Transfers from Ishigaki Island by Yaeyama Kanko Ferry: $6.09
  • Yokohama Private Arrival Transfer : Tokyo Hotels to Yokohama Port or Hotels: $230
  • Yokohama Port Shared Transfer : from Yokohama Port to Tokyo Hotels: $133
  • Yokohama Port Shared Transfer : from Tokyo Hotels to Yokohama Port: $133
  • Shared Transfer to/from Narita Airport: $48
  • Shared Transfer to/from Haneda (HND) Airport: $57
  • Private transfer to/from Yokohama Osanbashi Port: $261
  • Private Transfer to/from Haneda Airport (HND): $159
  • Haneda Airport Transfer w/ a Private Van: $260
  • Haneda Airport Private Transfer: $123
  • Tokyo to Tokyo Narita Airport (NRT) - Departure Private Car Transfer: $141
  • Tokyo to Tokyo Haneda Airport (HND) - Departure Private Car Transfer: $80

Typical Local Transportation prices in Osaka

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


  • Subway
    $11

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Osaka

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

  • Osaka Private Transfer from Osaka central to Kansai International Airport (KIX): $539
  • KIX Airport Transfers (to or from OSAKA) by Minivan Toyota HIACE 2019: $398
  • KIX Airport Transfers (to or from OSAKA) by Toyota ALPHARD 2019: $398
  • Private Kansai International Airport (KIX) Transfers for Osaka (Same Day Booking): $338
  • Private Narita International Airport Transfers (NRT) for Tokyo (Same Day Booking): $323
  • KIX Airport Transfers (to or from OSAKA) by Land Rover Discovery Sport 2018: $323
  • Osaka Private Transfer from Osaka central to Itami Airport (ITM): $314
  • Private One Way Airport Transfer Osaka-Namba: $290
  • Osaka ITM Airport to Main Osaka door to door Private Transfer 9 seats Hiace: $289
  • Private One Way Airport Transfer Osaka-Umeda: $285
  • Departure Private Transfers: Osaka City to Kansai Airport KIX in Business Van: $269
  • Osaka Airport Transfers : Osaka City to Kansai Airport KIX in Business Van: $256

Is it cheaper to fly into Tokyo or Osaka?

Prices for flights to both Osaka and Tokyo 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, admission tickets, things to do, and other entertainment expenses in Tokyo can vary widely by price. On average, visitors spend around $79 per person, per day on entertainment and sightseeing here.

Sightseeing, admission tickets, things to do, and other entertainment expenses in Osaka can vary widely by price. On average, visitors spend around $20 per person, per day on entertainment and sightseeing here.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Tokyo $79
    Osaka $20

Tours and Activities in Tokyo

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

  • Art Aquarium Museum Ticket in Tokyo: $21
  • Beppu Tower Admission Ticket: $3.65
  • Chiba Mother Farm Ticket Tokyo: $12
  • Hakodate-Onuma Segway Tours: $82
  • Hakone Kamakura 3-Day Ticket Pass: $63
  • Hakone Kowaki-en Yunessun Hot Spring Theme Park One Day Ticket : $21
  • Hakone Segway Tours: $82
  • Izu Teddy Bear Museum Admission Ticket: $13
  • Japanese Culture Experience at Kanda Myoujin Shrine EDOCCO Cha-ya in Tokyo: $27
  • Kanda Myoujin Rakugo Show Ticket in Tokyo: $7.29
  • Kanda Myoujin Shrine Experience Ticket in Tokyo: $45
  • Kouri Ocean Tower Observation Deck Ticket in Okinawa: $6.99

Typical Entertainment prices in Osaka

Below are a few sample prices from actual travelers for Osaka's activities, tours, and tickets:


  • Osaka Aquarium (for 2)
    $42

Tours and Activities in Osaka

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

  • Art Aquarium Museum Ticket in Tokyo: $21
  • Beppu Tower Admission Ticket: $3.65
  • Chiba Mother Farm Ticket Tokyo: $12
  • Hakodate-Onuma Segway Tours: $82
  • Hakone Kamakura 3-Day Ticket Pass: $63
  • Hakone Kowaki-en Yunessun Hot Spring Theme Park One Day Ticket : $21
  • Hakone Segway Tours: $82
  • Izu Teddy Bear Museum Admission Ticket: $13
  • Japanese Culture Experience at Kanda Myoujin Shrine EDOCCO Cha-ya in Tokyo: $27
  • Kanda Myoujin Rakugo Show Ticket in Tokyo: $7.29
  • Kanda Myoujin Shrine Experience Ticket in Tokyo: $45
  • Kouri Ocean Tower Observation Deck Ticket in Okinawa: $6.99

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 Tokyo, the average amount that a visitor spends on alcoholic beverages per day is $37.

Typically, people visiting Osaka spend on average $13 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Tokyo $37
    Osaka $13
Typical Alcohol prices in Tokyo

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for alcohol and nightlife costs in Tokyo:


  • Sake
    $5.46

Sample the Local Flavors in Tokyo

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

  • Hiroshima Sake Brewery Guided Tour in "Saijo", one of the three largest Japanese Sake spot: $12
  • Tokyo Pub Crawl: $22
  • Sake Brewery Tour with Sake Tasting: $307

Sample the Local Flavors in Osaka

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

  • Hiroshima Sake Brewery Guided Tour in "Saijo", one of the three largest Japanese Sake spot: $12
  • Osaka Pub Crawl and Nightlife Tour: $20
  • Private Tour - Fashionable Pub Crawl at Osaka, Enjoy the Japanese Alcohol!: $98


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

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Tokyo vs. Osaka Travel Comparison

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