Should you visit Ushuaia or Punta Arenas?
Should I visit Ushuaia or Punta Arenas? 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.
Ushuaia is a city on the Tierra del Fuego island of Argentina on the Beagle Strait. The city is considered to be one of the southernmost cities in the world and is often used as a base for cruises to Antarctica. Ushuaia's close proximity to Antarctica and their amazing hiking trails have made it a popular tourist destination over the past few decades.
Punta Arenas is in the far south of Chile and has a long history of maritime commerce, oil extraction, and sheep farming. It's the most populated city on the Strait of Magellan and has all the facilities you might need as a traveler, including banks, markets, drugstores and equipment shops. With a population of about 130,000, the city is a comfortable place to spend time. It serves as a base for Antarctic expeditions, although many expeditions also start in Ushuaia, Argentina, and Christchurch New Zealand.
Which city is cheaper, Punta Arenas or Ushuaia?
These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.
The average daily cost (per person) in Ushuaia is $81, while the average daily cost in Punta Arenas is $61. 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 Ushuaia and Punta Arenas in more detail.
An average hotel room with basic furnishings costs about $80 in Ushuaia For the most convenient locations and nicer amenities you can expect to pay a bit more.
An average hotel room with basic furnishings costs about $62 in Punta Arenas For the most convenient locations and nicer amenities you can expect to pay a bit more.
On average, meal and food prices in Ushuaia cost around $15 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 $6.00.
While meal prices in Punta Arenas can vary, the average travelers spends about $20 per day on food. Based on the spending habits of previous travelers, when dining out, an average meal in Punta Arenas should cost around $8.00 per person. Breakfast prices are usually a little cheaper than lunch or dinner. The price of food in sit-down restaurants in Punta Arenas is often higher than fast food prices or street food prices.
Meals for one day
Punta Arenas $20
Typical Food prices in Ushuaia
Here are some examples of typical meal expenses from previous travelers to Ushuaia:
Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Ushuaia
For Ushuaia, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:
Meeting with Beavers and Lagoon Tour with Dinner:
Typical Food prices in Punta Arenas
Here are some examples of typical meal expenses from previous travelers to Punta Arenas:
Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Punta Arenas
For Punta Arenas, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:
Punta Arenas Small Group Sightseeing and food Tour with a Local Guide:
Punta Arenas'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 $1.74 per person, per day on transportation in Punta Arenas.
Typical Local Transportation prices in Ushuaia
Some typical examples of transportation costs in Ushuaia are as follows:
Hired Cars and Shuttles in Ushuaia
Also for Ushuaia, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:
Overnight Ushuaia - Airport transfers, Tierra del Fuego National Park and Lakes!:
Ushuaia Combo: Tierra del Fuego National Park & Round Trip Transfers to airport:
Private Transfer Airport-Port or Port-Airport (Ushuaia):
Private Transfer Airport-Hotel-Airport (Ushuaia):
Shared Round-Trip Airport Transfer:
Transfer Ushuaia Airport - Hotel in Ushuaia - Ushuaia Airport:
Transfer Ushuaia Airport - Hotel in Ushuaia - Ushuaia Airport:
Private Transfer Hotel-Bus Station or Bus Station-Hotel (Ushuaia):
Shared Transfer Airport-Hotel-Airport (Ushuaia):
Transfer Cerro Castor (Round Trip):
Ushuaia Airport Departure Transfer:
Ushuaia Airport Arrival Transfer:
Hired Cars and Shuttles in Punta Arenas
Also for Punta Arenas, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:
Transfer from Punta Arenas (city or airport) to Puerto Natales:
Bus transfer from Punta Arenas to Ushuaia:
Arrival Transfer: Punta Arenas Airport to Hotel:
Transfer from Punta Arenas Hotel to Punta Arenas Airport:
Private Airport Transfer: Punta Arenas Ibanez Airport (PUQ) to Punta Arenas:
Private Airport Transfer: from Punta Arenas to Punta Arenas Ibanez Airport (PUQ):
Is it cheaper to fly into Ushuaia or Punta Arenas?
Prices for flights to both Punta Arenas and Ushuaia 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.
In Ushuaia, the costs for things to do, activities, admission tickets, and other sightseeing expenses are on average $89 per person, per day.
Sightseeing, admission tickets, things to do, and other entertainment expenses in Punta Arenas can vary widely by price. On average, visitors spend around $6.24 per person, per day on entertainment and sightseeing here.
Tours and Activities in Ushuaia
Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Ushuaia.
2-Day Ushuaia Trekking and Rowing Small-Group Tour:
2-Days and 1 Night Experience Ushuaia with Airfare from Buenos Aires:
2-day tour: Tierra del Fuego National Park + Fagnano and Escondido Lakes:
2-day tour:Tierra del Fuego NP + Beagle Channel Navigation + Fagnano & Escondido:
3-Day Adventure Tour of Hiking, Canoeing and Sailing at the End of the World:
3-Days Unique Adventure at the End of the World - Ushuaia:
4 hours Tierra del Fuego National Park Tour with Chinese Guide:
4-Day Ushuaia Overland adventure - Lake Fagnano, Lake Escondido & San Pablo Cape:
4-Days Experience for Nature Lovers at Ushuaia:
4WD Off-Road Lakes Tierra del Fuego Adventure From Ushuaia:
5-Day Adventure Trip in Ushuaia:
5-Day Ushuaia Overland adventure - Lake Fagnano, San Pablo Cape & Beagle Channel:
Tours and Activities in Punta Arenas
Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Punta Arenas.
4-Day Private Tour to Patagonia: Torres del Paine, Glaciers & Penguins:
Bus ticket from Punta Arenas (Chile) to Ushuaia (Argentina):
City Tour of Punta Arenas:
FULL DAY KING PENGUIN COLONY (private tours):
FULL DAY KING PENGUIN COLONY (regular tours):
Full Day Torres del Paine Private tour, departing from Punta Arenas:
Full Day Torres del Paine, From Punta Arenas (Private Tours):
Full day Punta Arenas (Regular tours):
Full day Torres del Paine from Punta Arenas ,Regular tours:
Full-Day Punta Arenas and Magellan Strait Tour:
Full-day experience in Chilean Antártica:
Isla Tortuga Catamarán Cruises from San Jose:
Alcoholic beverages can often be a significant portion of a traveler's budget, and the costs can vary greatly from person to person. In Punta Arenas, the average amount that a visitor spends on alcoholic beverages per day is $4.70.
Typical Alcohol prices in Ushuaia
Some typical examples of the costs for nightlife and alcohol in Ushuaia are as follows:
Typical Alcohol prices in Punta Arenas
Below are a few samples from actual travelers for alcohol and nightlife costs in Punta Arenas:
Sample the Local Flavors in Punta Arenas
Here are a few nightlife and alcohol tours and activities from local tour providers in Punta Arenas:
Punta Arenas Small Group Beers & Brewery Tour with a Local Guide:
When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Ushuaia and Punta Arenas, we can see that Ushuaia is more expensive. And not only is Punta Arenas much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Punta Arenas would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Punta Arenas 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 Ushuaia would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Ushuaia than you might in Punta Arenas.
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