A Travel Price Comparison for China Xi'an vs. Harbin for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Xi'an or Harbin?

Trying to figure out where to travel next? This travel cost comparison between Xi'an and Harbin can help. For many travelers, the cost of a destination is a primary consideration when choosing where to go.

Xi'an

Xi'an is an ancient city in the Shaanxi Province in China. Today it is most notable as the location of the Terracotta Warriors, but for visitors who choose to linger, there is so much more to see and do in the area. The city itself is more than 3,000 years old and for about one thousand years, through 13 dynasties and 73 emperors, it was the capital. Because of its rich history there are many historical ruins and a strong culture in the city. Today the city is a pleasant place to visit, although much of it's influence and power has dwindled. The city has both cosmopolitan and modern areas as well as historic and culturally rich areas. The neighborhoods are diverse and by exploring the city in depth you can learn a little more about what China really has to offer.

Harbin

Harbin, China is the northernmost major city in the country, with a population of over 10 million. Harbin was founded in 1897 by Russia, which has resulted in a lot of Russian influence throughout the city and many Russian citizens. The city is most famous for their annual International Snow and Ice Festival, a two-month-long festival running from January through February of each year.

Which city is cheaper, Harbin or Xi'an?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Xi'an is $84, while the average daily cost in Harbin is $49. 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 Xi'an and Harbin in more detail.



Accommodation

The average price for accommodation for two people in Xi'an is $108. This is for two people sharing a typical double occupancy hotel room.

Double occupancy rooms typically run around $36 in Harbin For nicer amenities and a premiere location, you can expect to pay a bit more.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Xi'an $54
    Harbin $18
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Xi'an $108
    Harbin $36

Food

In Xi'an travelers spend around $11 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 Harbin cost around $12 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 $4.80.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Xi'an $11
    Harbin $12

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Harbin

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

  • 3-hour Private Food Tour in Harbin: $100
  • Half-Day Private Harbin Beer Museum and Food Tour Including Harbin Beer1900: $150
  • Harbin Dumpling Cooking Class: $150
  • Hot Spring Experience with Hot Pot Dinner in Harbin: $160
  • 4-Hour Private Night Tour to Harbin Ice and Snow World with Dinner Options: $250
  • Private Full Day Tour to Harbin Beifang Forest Zoo and Optional Seafood Dinner: $250

Local Transportation

While taxis and private drivers typically cost much more than public transportation, people usually spend around $11 per day to get around in Xi'an.

Public transportation tends to be much less expensive in Harbin than paying for a taxi or private car service, as is expected. Typically, people spend $1.34 on transportation in Harbin on average per day.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Xi'an $11
    Harbin $1.34

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Harbin

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

  • 5-Hour Private Transfer to Harbin Ice and Snow World: $99
  • 6-Hour Private Transfer to Sun Island Snow Sculptures and Siberia Tiger Park: $110
  • Full-DayPrivateTransfer to Harbin Volga Manor&Harbin City from Yabuli Ski Resort: $270
  • Full-DayPrivateTransfer to Harbin Volga Manor&Yabuli Ski Resort from Harbin City: $300
  • Group Transfer to Harbin Ice and Snow World plus Sun Island Snow Sculpture Festival: $88
  • Harbin Airport Chauffeur Service, Harbin Airport Transfer: $27
  • Harbin Airport Chauffeur Service, Harbin Airport Transfer: $40
  • Harbin Catholic Church Car Transfer Service: $200
  • Harbin City Car Transfer Service with Driver: $120
  • Harbin Private Arrival Transfer: Airport to Hotel: $89
  • Harbin Private Departure Transfer: Hotel to Airport: $89
  • Harbin Private Departure Transfer: Hotel to Railway Station: $56

Is it cheaper to fly into Xi'an or Harbin?

Prices for flights to both Harbin and Xi'an 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

Activities, things to do, and other forms of entertainment usually cost around $31 per person, per day in Xi'an. This cost includes the price of admission tickets to attractions and museums as well as daily tours.

Sightseeing expenses in Harbin, including the cost of admission tickets for day tours, museums, and attractions, usually cost an average of $47 per day, per person.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Xi'an $31
    Harbin $47

Tours and Activities in Harbin

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

  • Hagia Sophia TOURS /Skip The Lines: $12
  • 2-Hour Harbin City Tour: $50
  • 1-Day Harbin Private Tour: $70
  • Half-Day Private Harbin City Walking Tour to Zhongyang Street and Sophia Church: $80
  • Private Half Day City Tour including Russian Town and Harbin Ropeway Ride: $90
  • Private Customized Harbin City Day Tour by Public Transportation: $96
  • Private 2-hour Winter Local Culture Experience Tour with Ice Swimming Show, Songhua River Ropeway and Walking on Songhua River: $100
  • "Visit Museum of Heilongjiang" - a guide tour.: $100
  • Harbin Ethnic Museum Guided Tour.: $100
  • 80-Minute Foot Massage Private Tour in Harbin City: $100
  • 4-Hour Tour to Harbin Church,Gogol Street,Hongbo Square and Heilongjiang Museum: $100
  • Half Day Tour for Harbin Guandong Ancient Lane and Wood Sculpture Museum: $100

Alcohol

While the amount that someone spends on alcohol while visiting Xi'an may vary from person to person, on average a person spends $6.47 per day on alcoholic beverages.

Typically, people visiting Harbin spend on average $7.01 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Xi'an $6.47
    Harbin $7.01


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

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Xi'an vs. Harbin Travel Comparison

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