A Travel Price Comparison for United States of America Washington vs. New York City for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Washington or New York City?

Which city is more affordable and which is best for your travel style? If you're trying to figure out where to go next, comparing the travel costs between Washington and New York City can help you decide which place is right for you.

Washington

Washington, DC is the capital city of the United States of America. It is also a city rich in history and culture. The city dates back to 1791 when the states of Maryland and Virginia donated the land to create the capital. In 1846, Congress returned the land that was ceded by Virginia and in 1871 it created a single municipal government with the remaining area. Today, Washington, DC has a population of over 600,000 people. The metropolitan area includes suburbs in Maryland and Virginia and has a population of about 5.8 million.

New York City

The most populated city in the United States, New York City, sits at the mouth of the Hudson River and encompasses both the island of Manhattan as well as the surrounding land on Long Island, most of which is known as Brooklyn. It's a cultural, culinary, theatrical, and art center that has much to offer domestic and international travelers alike. The city covers an area of 305 square miles and has a population of about 8.2 million people in the city proper with 18.7 million in the metropolitan area.

Which city is cheaper, New York City or Washington?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Washington is $155, while the average daily cost in New York City is $238. 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 Washington and New York City in more detail.



Accommodation

Double occupancy rooms typically run around $182 in Washington For nicer amenities and a premiere location, you can expect to pay a bit more.

For a normal double-occupancy room in New York City, $274 is the average cost for a hotel room. Also in New York City, the typical price for a place to stay for one person is $137, such as in a hostel.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Washington $91
    New York City $137
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Washington $182
    New York City $274

Food

The average traveler spends about $30 per day in Washington 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.

New York City food costs typically run travelers around $37 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
    Washington $30
    New York City $37
Typical Food prices in Washington

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


  • Water
    $2.00
  • Snacks on Monuments Tour
    $6.15

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Washington

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

  • Washington D.C.: 3.5-Hour Georgetown Food Tour: $65
  • Washington DC: 3-Hour Italian Food Tour: $65
  • Washington DC Food Tour: Italian Cuisine in Dupont Circle: $65
  • Adams Morgan Food Tour: $76
  • Lonely Planet Experiences: DC Morning Food Tour on H Street: $79
  • Washington DC: Private Food Tour Experience: $79
  • Capitol Hill Walking Food Tour: $79
  • Washington, DC: The Original Brew Tour with Tasting & Dinner: $81
  • U Street Neighborhood Food Tour: $89
  • Washington DC Odyssey Dinner Cruise: $100
  • Private French Cooking Class with an Expert in the Heart of Washington DC: $108
  • Washington, DC 3-Hour Dinner Buffet Cruise: $122

Typical Food prices in New York City

For New York City, here are some examples of average food and meal prices for travelers:


  • Gelato
    $7.50
  • Snacks for Two at Yankees Game
    $34
  • Coffee
    $6.53
  • Smoothie
    $6.95

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in New York City

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

  • Greenwich Village History, Culture, and Food Tour with Local Expert: $129
  • JAPANESE guided tour! Bateaux Dinner Cruise tour with hotel transportation. The best way to enjoy the Manhattan night view from the river & sea. Full course French dinner, live band music included.: $333
  • Limo trip Hotel to Dinner round trip in NEW MKT Limousine: $481

Local Transportation

To get around in Washington, the average visitor spends $37 per day, per person. This includes the costs of taxi rides and private drivers as well as public transportation, which tends to be much more affordable.

To get around in New York City, the average visitor spends $39 per day, per person. This includes the costs of taxi rides and private drivers as well as public transportation, which tends to be much more affordable.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Washington $37
    New York City $39
Typical Local Transportation prices in Washington

Some typical examples of transportation costs in Washington are as follows:


  • Metro Day Pass
    $9.00

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Washington

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

  • Washington, DC: Private Airport Transfer(SUV): To or From: (DCA) Reagan National: $180
  • Washington, DC: Potomac Mills Outlet Private Transfer: $357
  • Washington to Washington R. Reagan Airport (DCA) - Departure Private Transfer: $61
  • Washington to Washington Dulles Airport (IAD) - Departure Private Transfer: $97
  • Washington to Newark International Airport (EWR) - Departure Private Transfer: $491
  • Washington to New York LaGuardia Airport (LGA) - Departure Private Transfer: $535
  • Washington to New York J.F. Kennedy Airport (JFK) - Departure Private Transfer: $535
  • Washington to Baltimore Washington Airport (BWI) - Departure Private Transfer: $109
  • Washington Reagan Airport Transfer to Baltimore & D. C.: $15
  • Washington DC: Private Transfer to Airports or Baltimore: $130
  • Washington City to Philadelphia City - Private Car Transfer: $392
  • Washington City to New York City - Private Car Transfer: $516

Typical Local Transportation prices in New York City

Some typical examples of transportation costs in New York City are as follows:


  • Subway
    $4.50
  • Taxi Ride
    $8.00
  • Subway
    $2.50

Hired Cars and Shuttles in New York City

Also for New York City, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:

  • Private Departure Transfer from Hamptons, NY to JFK or LGA Airport: $513
  • Private New York City Airport Departure Transfer: $229
  • Private SUV New York City Airport Departure Transfer: $190
  • New York Airport Luxury Transfer : New York City to Newark Airport: $181
  • Private Airport Transfer in New York: $180
  • Private New York City Transfer: New York City Hotel to EWR Airport: $180
  • Private Arrival Transfer From JFK Airport to NYC Hotel: $166
  • Private Departure Transfer From NYC Hotel to LaGuardia Airport: $166
  • Private Departure Transfer From NYC Hotel to JFK Airport: $166
  • Private Departure Transfer From NYC Hotel to EWR Airport: $165
  • Transfer Aeroporto-Hotel NYC até 4 pessoas: $160
  • New York Airport Private Luxury Departure transfer via Sedan, Limousine or SUV: $159

Is it cheaper to fly into Washington or New York City?

Prices for flights to both New York City and Washington 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

In Washington, the costs for things to do, activities, admission tickets, and other sightseeing expenses are on average $19 per person, per day.

In New York City, the costs for things to do, activities, admission tickets, and other sightseeing expenses are on average $77 per person, per day.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Washington $19
    New York City $77

Tours and Activities in Washington

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

  • "HEROES OF FREEDOM" PRIVATE TOUR (4 Hour Military Tribute): $658
  • "SHINING CITY" PRIVATE TOUR (3 Hour Evening Tour): $658
  • 2 Day Grand Tour with George Washington's Mount Vernon: $95
  • 2-Day Colonial Williamsburg Guided Tour from Washington DC: $330
  • 24/48-Hour Washington, D.C. Hop-on Hop-off Tour: $49
  • 3-Hour "DC After Dark" Night-Time Guided Bus Tour with Stops at Top Attractions: $35
  • 3-Hour Private Jeep Tour of Washington D.C.: $495
  • 3-Hour Washington DC "Monuments By Night" Guided Night-Time Sightseeing Bus Tour: $49
  • 3-Hour Washington DC "Morning Monuments" Guided Sightseeing Walking & Bus Tour: $64
  • 3-Hour Washington, D.C Urban Adventure Scavenger Hunt: $44
  • 30-Minutes Supercar Driving Pilot Experience in Washington DC: $275
  • Advance Tickets to Washington, D.C.'s Newseum: $24

Typical Entertainment prices in New York City

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


  • Comedy Show Tickets
    $56
  • City Map
    $8.00
  • Broadway Musical
    $111
  • Broadway Show Program
    $10
  • Magazine
    $6.99

Tours and Activities in New York City

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

  • 24-Hour NYC Downtown Hop-On Hop-Off Tour with Statue of Liberty Cruise: $35
  • 4-Day Tour of America from New York City: $713
  • 9/11 Memorial & Ground Zero Tour with Optional Skip-the-Line 9/11 Museum Ticket: $35
  • 9/11 Memorial Museum Admission Ticket: $28
  • 9/11 Tribute Museum Admission Ticket: $12
  • American Museum of Natural History Admission Ticket: $23
  • American Museum of Natural History Tickets: $23
  • Amish Country Private Tour from New York plus Outlet Shopping: $999
  • Art Studio Tour of New York City: $140
  • Attraction entrance tickets: $200
  • Best NYC VIP Luxury Photography Sightseeing Leisure Tour ( Up to 4 People ): $5,500
  • Best of NYC Private Half-Day Lower Manhattan Limousine Tour: $775

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 Washington, the average amount that a visitor spends on alcoholic beverages per day is $15.

Typically, people visiting New York City spend on average $23 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Washington $15
    New York City $23

Sample the Local Flavors in Washington

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Washington:

  • Epic Washington DC Bar Crawl: By Let’s Roam: $12
  • Haunted Washington D.C. Ghost and Pub Walking Tour: $27
  • DC: 'New York Times Journeys' Walking Tour with Beer, Cheese and Wine Tasting: $120
  • NOVA Private Custom Wine Tours & Tasting from DMV: $645
  • 6 Hours Northern VA Wine Tour: $920


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

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Washington vs. New York City Travel Comparison

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