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

Should you visit Washington or Philadelphia?

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 Philadelphia 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.

Philadelphia

Philadelphia is the fourth largest urban area, and the fifth largest city in the United States. It's located in southeastern Pennsylvania and has a rich history, having once been the capital of the United States. The city has very impressive architecture, museums, universities, and entertainment venues. It's a cultural and artistic center for the country and it continues to climb as a top travel destination.

Which city is cheaper, Philadelphia 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 Philadelphia is $151. 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 Philadelphia 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.

The prices for places to stay in Philadelphia can vary by date, location, and type. Generally, the average cost for accommodation per person is $95, while a typical double-occupancy hotel room for two people will cost around $190.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Washington $91
    Philadelphia $95
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Washington $182
    Philadelphia $190

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.

Philadelphia food costs typically run travelers around $39 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
    Philadelphia $39
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 Philadelphia

For Philadelphia, here are some examples of average food and meal prices for travelers:


  • Casual Lunch (for 3)
    $27

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Philadelphia

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

  • Flavors of Philly Food Tour: $44
  • Decadent Gourmet Food Tour: $44
  • Flavors of Philly Food Tour: $52
  • Highlights of East Passyunk Food Tour: $54
  • South Philly Italian Family Dinner Tour: $75
  • Historic Food Tour: $78
  • Private Tour: Secret Food Tours Philadelphia: $90
  • Spirit of Philadelphia Dinner Cruise with Buffet: $107
  • Secret Food Tours Philadelphia w/ Private Tour Option: $193

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.

Public transportation tends to be much less expensive in Philadelphia than paying for a taxi or private car service, as is expected. Typically, people spend $22 on transportation in Philadelphia on average per day.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Washington $37
    Philadelphia $22
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

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Philadelphia

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

  • Private Transfer: Philadelphia to Philadelphia International Airport (PHL): $622
  • Private Transfer: Philadelphia International Airport (PHL) to Philadelphia: $622
  • Philadelphia City to Washington City - Private Car Transfer: $392
  • Philadelphia City to Baltimore City - Private Car Transfer: $311
  • Philadelphia to New York J.F. Kennedy Airport(JFK) - Departure Private Transfer: $286
  • Philadelphia to New York LaGuardia Airport (LGA) - Departure Private Transfer: $280
  • Philadelphia City to New York City - Private Car Transfer: $267
  • Philadelphia to Newark International Airport (EWR) - Departure Private Transfer: $243
  • Arrival Private Transfer Philadelphia Airport PHL to Philadelphia by Minibus: $204
  • Departure Private Transfer Philadelphia to Philadelphia Airport PHL by Minibus: $204
  • Private transfer from or to MDT , PHL airports , Philadelphia and Harrisburg, PA: $200
  • RoundTrip transfer in executive private minivan from-to Airpt-Philadelphia City: $191

Is it cheaper to fly into Washington or Philadelphia?

Prices for flights to both Philadelphia 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.

Sightseeing expenses in Philadelphia, including the cost of admission tickets for day tours, museums, and attractions, usually cost an average of $22 per day, per person.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Washington $19
    Philadelphia $22

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 Philadelphia

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


  • Big Bus Tour (family of 3)
    $99

Tours and Activities in Philadelphia

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

  • 1776 History and Cheesesteak Tour: $28
  • 2-Day Philadelphia Tour from Boston: $549
  • 2-Hour German-Language Historic Walking Tour: $195
  • Amazing Philadelphia Scavenger Hunt Adventure: $44
  • Art and Controversy: An audio tour of Philadelphia's most infamous art scandals: $5.00
  • Badass Women's History Tour of Philadelphia: $40
  • Beyond the [Liberty] Bell History Tour: $40
  • Brandywine Valley Tour with Private Driver: $581
  • Cemetery and Serial Killers Walking Tour of Philadelphia: $35
  • City Sightseeing Philadelphia Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tour: $36
  • Colonial Era Philadelphia Waterfront Walking Tour: $215
  • Colonial Philadelphia Waterfront Walking Tour: $195

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 Philadelphia spend on average $17 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Washington $15
    Philadelphia $17

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

Sample the Local Flavors in Philadelphia

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

  • Haunted Pub Crawl: $45
  • Philadelphia Prohibition Pub Crawl: $45
  • Haunted Pub Crawl: $45
  • 2-Hour Philly on Tap Pub Tour: $65
  • Sip of Philly Brewery Tour: $79
  • 2-Hour Old City Wine Tasting Tour: $96


When comparing the travel costs between Washington and Philadelphia, we can see that Washington is more expensive. However, the two cities are actually relatively comparable in price, as the difference is somewhat minimal. Generally, this means that you could travel with generally the same travel style and level of luxury in each place. Since both cities are in North America, it's no surprise that their costs are relatively close, as many destinations here have somewhat similar travel prices overall.

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Washington vs. Philadelphia Travel Comparison

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