A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers Zurich vs. Madrid for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Zurich or Madrid?

Which city should you visit? Read on to compare the prices of travel for Zurich and Madrid. We’ll break down costs for accommodation, food, transportation and more to help you learn more about these two destinations. Then, you can figure out if either of these two places are accessible based on your travel budget. So, let's dig into it.

Zurich

Zurich has the biggest connection for trains in Switzerland. It also has the country's biggest and busiest airport. Because of its importance as a transportation center, it is likely to be the first place you visit in Switzerland. It is the financial capital of the country (although, contrary to what you may have thought, not the political capital). It has many international companies, and is home to the country's stock exchange.

Madrid

Madrid, the capital of Spain, overs visitors countless opportunities to experience Spain's culture, art, cuisine, and nightlife. It is the largest city in Spain, and as such has much to explore. The city is situated on the Iberian Peninsula on the Spanish central Castillian plateau. If you're flying into Spain, you'll likely fly into the Madrid airport as it's one of the largest airports in Europe. Madrid is well connected to the rest of Spain with planes, trains and buses, making it a popular place to visit for many travelers doing a European tour.

Which city is cheaper, Madrid or Zurich?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Zurich is $212, while the average daily cost in Madrid is $124. 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 Zurich and Madrid in more detail.



Accommodation

Accommodation prices vary by location and style, but travelers pay on average about $268 for a double occupancy room in Zurich.

Travelers usually pay around $138 for a double occupancy room in Madrid If you want to be in a premiere location or have high end amenities, you can expect to pay a bit more.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Zurich $134
    Madrid $69
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Zurich $268
    Madrid $138

Food

Zurich food costs typically run travelers around $49 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.

The price of a meal in Madrid can vary widely. However, the average price for food per day is $32 per person, and a typical meal will cost around $13 based on the spending of previous visitors. Less expensive dining options can be found by eating street food or at fast food restaurants.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Zurich $49
    Madrid $32
Typical Food prices in Zurich

Some typical examples of dining costs in Zurich are as follows:


  • Breakfast for 2
    $13

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Zurich

Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in Zurich.

  • Culinary Tour from Zurich with Traditional Swiss Cheese Fondue Dinner: $154
  • Overnight Mount Titlis including 4-course dinner: $545

Typical Food prices in Madrid

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


  • Coffee
    $2.33
  • Ice Cream
    $3.49
  • Kebabs (for 2)
    $18
  • Croissant
    $1.75
  • Lunch at Airport (for 2)
    $18

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Madrid

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

  • Virtual Cooking Class: The Spanish Paella Experience: $24
  • Florida Retiro Dinner Show: $38
  • Murder Mystery Dinner Experience: $49
  • Virtual cooking - spanish "tortilla de patatas": $50
  • Skip the Line: Flamenco Show with Dinner and Workshop in Madrid Ticket: $52
  • Private Food Tour in The 10 Tastings: $53
  • Homemade pasta cooking class and lunch in the heart of Madrid: $58
  • Mamaz Social Italian Dinner in Madrid: $60
  • 3-hour Virtual Spanish Cooking Class in Madrid: $62
  • Opera and Zarzuela Show and Dinner: $62
  • Authentic Italian Dinner in Madrid: $68
  • Zarzuela Opera and Dinner at La Castafiore Restaurant in Madrid: $68

Local Transportation

The average price of local transportation around Zurich is $28 per person, per day. As this average includes both taxis and public transport, keep in mind that the prices of private drivers and taxis are significantly more expensive than public transportation.

To get around in Madrid, the average visitor spends $17 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.
    Zurich $28
    Madrid $17
Typical Local Transportation prices in Zurich

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for transportation costs in Zurich:


  • City Pass (2)
    $28

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Zurich

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Zurich:

  • Private Transfer Zurich Airport or City ⇔ Zermatt: $1,374
  • Private Taxi Transfer: Zurich Airport ⇔ Zermatt both directions: $1,374
  • Private Transfer: Zurich Airport to St. Anton am Arlberg: $1,355
  • Private transfer Zurich Airport to Zermatt (Täsch) (1-3 persons): $1,131
  • Private transfer Zurich Airport to St. Moritz (1-3 persons): $970
  • Private transfer Zurich Airport to Montreux (1-3 persons): $918
  • Private Transfer: Zurich Airport to Davos: $887
  • Premium Transfer from Zürich Airport or city to Davos or Klosters or back: $862
  • Private Transfer: Zurich Airport to Andermatt: $702
  • Private Arrival Transfer: from Zurich Airport to Disentis: $693
  • Private Arrival transfer: from Zurich Airport to Gstaad Saanen: $693
  • Private Arrival Transfer: from Zurich Airport to St. Moritz: $693

Typical Local Transportation prices in Madrid

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


  • Taxi Ride
    $30

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Madrid

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

  • Ultra - Madrid Private Airport Transfer from Madrid airport MAD to city centre: $9.41
  • Ultra - Madrid Private Airport Transfer from city centre to Madrid airport MAD: $9.41
  • Luxury Las Rozas Shopping Village Transfers from Madrid: $21
  • Hotel Madrid City Private Transfer To Madrid Barajas Airport: $29
  • Private Airport Transfer: Madrid-Barajas Adolfo Suárez Airport (MAD) to Madrid: $29
  • Private Airport Transfer: Madrid to Madrid-Barajas Adolfo Suárez Airport (MAD): $29
  • Transfer in private vehicle from Madrid City to Madrid Barajas Airport: $31
  • Transfer in Private Vehicle from Madrid Barajas Airport to City: $31
  • Madrid Barajas Airport Private Transfer To Alcorcón, & cities close to Madrid: $33
  • Madrid to Madrid Airport (MAD) - Departure Private Van Transfer: $34
  • Madrid Airport (MAD) to Madrid - Arrival Private Van Transfer: $34
  • Madrid Barajas Airport Private Transfer To Madrid City: $34

Is it cheaper to fly into Zurich or Madrid?

Prices for flights to both Madrid and Zurich 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

Zurich's costs for entertainment, tickets, attractions, and tours will often cost around $28 per person, per day. This cost can vary widely by the type of activity, however, as this includes admission tickets, day tours, museums, and other things to do.

In Madrid, the costs for things to do, activities, admission tickets, and other sightseeing expenses are on average $31 per person, per day.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Zurich $28
    Madrid $31

Tours and Activities in Zurich

Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for Zurich are as follows:

  • 2-Day Alps Tour from Mt Pilatus and Mt Titlis: $592
  • 2-Day Jungfraujoch Top of Europe Tour from Interlaken or Grindelwald: $557
  • 2-Day Mt Rigi Tour from Zurich Including Mineral Baths and Lake Lucerne Cruise: $474
  • 2-Day Switzerland Tour from Zurich to Geneva: Mt.Titlis,Interlaken,Bern,Gruyères: $693
  • 2-Day Winter Tour from Mt Pilatus and Mt Titlis: $592
  • 2-hour Private Guided Zurich Downtown Tour: $225
  • 3 in 1: Zurich Walking Tour - Cruise on the Lake - Cable Car Ride to Felsenegg: $98
  • 3-Day Glacier Express Self-Guided Tour from Zurich: $556
  • 3-Day GoldenPass Line Self-Guided Tour from Zurich: $439
  • 4-Day Glacier and Bernina Express Self-Guided Tour from Zurich: $768
  • 4-Day Switzerland Tour from Zurich Including Mt. Titlis Cable Car: $1,662
  • 5-Day Famous Mountain Peaks Self-Guided Tour from Zurich: $982

Tours and Activities in Madrid

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

  • Free Walking Tour: $1.21
  • Madrid's Private Tour with your Family: Highlights & Hidden Gems: $4.04
  • A local's Tuck into the city's history and some tapas on an audio tour: $5.00
  • History Tour of The Town Too High To Die Walking Audio Tour by VoiceMap: $5.13
  • Madrid from the Inquisition to Multiculturalism Walking Audio Tour by VoiceMap: $5.43
  • Let's Tapear! The Madrid Tapas Route Walking Audio Tour by VoiceMap: $5.43
  • Madrid Private Tour: Fun Old Town Exploration Game: $7.45
  • Teatro Real: Ticket and 1-Hour Audio Tour: $8.24
  • Skip the Line: Museo Lázaro Galdiano Admission Ticket: $8.71
  • Madrid of the Austrias Walking Tour: $9.69
  • Skip the Line: Ticket for the Reina Sofia Museum in Madrid: $9.95
  • Madrid 90 Minutes Kickstart Private Tour: $9.95

Alcohol

The average person spends about $23 on alcoholic beverages in Zurich per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.

Alcoholic beverages can often be a significant portion of a traveler's budget, and the costs can vary greatly from person to person. In Madrid, the average amount that a visitor spends on alcoholic beverages per day is $18.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Zurich $23
    Madrid $18

Sample the Local Flavors in Zurich

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

  • Pub Crawl Zurich: $29

Typical Alcohol prices in Madrid

Some typical examples of the costs for nightlife and alcohol in Madrid are as follows:


  • Beer
    $5.82
  • Drinks and Tapas (for 2)
    $15

Sample the Local Flavors in Madrid

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Madrid:

  • 5-Hour Pub Crawl: $13
  • Madrid Pub Crawl: $14
  • Pub Crawl in Madrid: $15
  • Pub Crawl Madrid by Madpartycrew: $19
  • Wine Tasting near Plaza Mayor: $20
  • Private Pub Crawl Madrid: $21
  • Wine Tasting Experience: $32
  • Madrid Wine Tasting, Flamenco Class, and Pub Crawl: $44
  • Madrid 6-Hour Tapas and Flamenco Bar Crawl: $46
  • Madrid Tapas and Mysteries Walking Tour with Private Option and Pub Crawl: $47
  • Wine Tasting and Flamenco Master Class in Madrid: $58
  • Segovia and Spanish Versailles Full-Day Tour with Wine Tasting: $62


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

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Zurich vs. Madrid Travel Comparison

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