Travel Budget for Santa Monica Visit Santa Monica on a Budget or Travel in Style

Santa Monica, California, United States of America

How much does it cost to travel to Santa Monica?

You should plan to spend around $210 per day on your vacation in Santa Monica. This is the average daily price based on the expenses of other visitors.

Past travelers have spent, on average for one day:

  • $52 on meals
  • $50 on local transportation
  • $246 on hotels

A one week trip to Santa Monica for two people costs, on average, $2,934. This includes accommodation, food, local transportation, and sightseeing.

All of these average travel prices have been collected from other travelers to help you plan your own travel budget.

  • Average Daily Cost Per person, per day
  • One Week Per person
  • 2 Weeks Per person
  • One Month Per person
  • One Week For a couple
  • 2 Weeks For a couple
  • One Month For a couple
This data comes from the travel budgets of real travelers - How it works. Put these numbers on your website.

How much does a one week, two week, or one month trip to Santa Monica cost?

A one week trip to Santa Monica usually costs around $1,467 for one person and $2,934 for two people. This includes accommodation, food, local transportation, and sightseeing.

A two week trip to Santa Monica on average costs around $2,934 for one person and $5,868 for two people. This cost includes accommodation, food, local transportation, and sightseeing.

Please note, prices can vary based on your travel style, speed, and other variables. If you're traveling as a family of three or four people, the price per person often goes down because kid's tickets are cheaper and hotel rooms can be shared. If you travel slower over a longer period of time then your daily budget will also go down. Two people traveling together for one month in Santa Monica will often have a lower daily budget per person than one person traveling alone for one week.

A one month trip to Santa Monica on average costs around $6,288 for one person and $12,575 for two people. The more places you visit, the higher the daily price will become due to increased transportation costs.

Independent Travel

Traveling Independently to Santa Monica has many benefits including affordabilty, freedom, flexibility, and the opportunity to control your own experiences.

All of the travel costs below are based on the experiences of other independent travelers.

Is Santa Monica expensive to visit?

Prices in Santa Monica are reasonable and comparable to your average travel destination. Hotels, food, and sightseeing are generally within normal price ranges.

Within North America, which is known to be an expensive region, Santa Monica is a moderately priced destination compared to other places. The overall cost of travel here is fair for the region and comparable to Mexico City or Montreal.

For more details, and to find out if it's within your travel budget, see Is Santa Monica Expensive?

How much money do I need for a trip to Santa Monica?

The average Santa Monica trip cost is broken down by category here for independent travelers. All of these Santa Monica travel prices are calculated from the budgets of real travelers.

Category Cost
Accommodation 1 (Double Occupancy) $246
Local Transportation 1 $50
Food 2 $52
Entertainment 1 $38
Alcohol 2 $10 - 31
Accommodation Budget in Santa Monica
Average Daily Costs

Calculated from travelers like you

The average price paid for one person for accommodation in Santa Monica is $123. For two people sharing a typical double-occupancy hotel room, the average price paid for a hotel room in Santa Monica is $246. This cost is from the reported spending of actual travelers.

  • Accommodation1 Hotel or hostel for one person
  • Accommodation1 Typical double-occupancy room

Hotel Prices in Santa Monica

Looking for a hotel in Santa Monica? Prices vary by location, date, season, and the level of luxury. See below for options.

Find the best hotel for your travel style.


Actual Hotel Prices
The average hotel room price in Santa Monica based on data provided by Kayak for actual hotel rooms is $361. (Prices in U.S. Dollars, before taxes & fees.)

Kayak helps you find the best prices for hotels, flights, and rental cars for destinations around the world.

Recommended Properties

Transportation Budget in Santa Monica
Average Daily Costs

Calculated from travelers like you

  • The cost of a taxi ride in Santa Monica is significantly more than public transportation. On average, past travelers have spent $50 per person, per day, on local transportation in Santa Monica.

  • Transportation1 Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.

Flights to Santa Monica
How much does it cost to go to Santa Monica? Naturally, it depends on the dates. We recommend Kayak because they can find the best deals across all airlines.

Rental Cars in Santa Monica
The price of renting a car in Santa Monica will depends on dates, the type of car, the location, and your age. We recommend Kayak because they can find the best deals across all car rental companies.

Food Budget in Santa Monica
Average Daily Costs

Calculated from travelers like you

  • While meal prices in Santa Monica can vary, the average cost of food in Santa Monica is $52 per day. Based on the spending habits of previous travelers, when dining out an average meal in Santa Monica should cost around $21 per person. Breakfast prices are usually a little cheaper than lunch or dinner. The price of food in sit-down restaurants in Santa Monica is often higher than fast food prices or street food prices.

  • Food2 Meals for one day


Entertainment Budget in Santa Monica
Average Daily Costs

Calculated from travelers like you

  • Entertainment and activities in Santa Monica typically cost an average of $38 per person, per day based on the spending of previous travelers. This includes fees paid for admission tickets to museums and attractions, day tours, and other sightseeing expenses.

  • Entertainment1 Entrance tickets, shows, etc.

Recommended Activities

Alcohol Budget in Santa Monica
Average Daily Costs

Calculated from travelers like you

  • The average person spends about $21 on alcoholic beverages in Santa Monica per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.

  • Alcohol2 Drinks for one day


Santa Monica On a Budget
Santa Monica Santa Monica, California
When it comes to visiting Los Angeles, Santa Monica is high on the must-see-and-do list. Chances are you'll recognize the iconic ferris wheel from Pacific Park in films and TV shows, and nothing beats the relaxed yet bustling vibe of this laid-back city.

Santa Monica is a popular and diverse beach town, cultural hub, fitness venue, shopping district, and neighborhood full of unique and trendy restaurants, all rolled into one. Visited by more than 6 million people a year, it's no wonder you'll always find a crowd there.

So whether you're up for a high-end shopping spree, bicycling down the waterfront, an eclectic food crawl or simply a stroll down the promenade, Santa Monica is sure to have something in store for you.

The weather in Santa Monica is moderate, with average summer highs in the low to mid 70s and winter climate that rests comfortably around the low 50s. Though flip flops and sandals are considered year-round footwear in Los Angeles, bring comfortable walking shoes for browsing galleries, malls, and boutiques. Santa Monica is the perfect place to break out your California-casual wardrobe.
Walk down the iconic Santa Monica Pier and see fishermen patiently waiting for their daily catches. Children (and the child in you) will enjoy the classic Playland Arcade, which still takes quarters and dispenses tickets for prizes. Head toward Pacific Park for midway games, specialty foods like funnelcakes, souvenir shops, and of course, thrill rides on the pier.

Just south of the Pier is the retired Original Muscle Beach, where you can swing on the rings and ropes at this the outdoor gym. If you're up for a walk, take the 2.5 mile beachfront path south, toward Venice Beach, where you'll come across the world-famous Venice Beach Freakshow, the Venice Beach Boardwalk featuring street performers, restaurants, and a multitude of independent and souvenir shops.

Don't forget to stop by the Venice Public Art Walls for a look at fresh street art, much-loved by the community. Want to contribute to the wall? Anyone is welcome to paint on weekends and city holidays, after signing an Artist's Agreement and presenting a photo I.D. to the In Creative Unity arts organization.

Keep heading south and you'll reach the newer Muscle Beach, Venice, where it's not uncommon to see body-builders and fitness fanatics pumping iron and their admirers nearby.

Head inland to visit the homes that line the tranquil Venice Canals Historic District, where each home has its own dock and the sidewalks run along the waterfront.

Head to Downtown Santa Monica where the famous Third Street Promenade and Santa Monica Place are located for designer shopping, movies, and the trendiest of restaurants and pubs in the area. If smaller boutique shopping is what you prefer, Montana Avenue may be more your pace with unique small shops along a quieter neighborhood from 7th to 17th Street.

Besides fun in the sun, sea, and sand with the usual watersports such as swimming surfing, paddle-boarding and skim boarding activities, fitness buffs may want to bike or skate down the 26-Mile Bike Path, also known as the Marvin Braude Bike Trail or The Strand, which runs along the shorefront from Will Rogers State Beach south to Torrance State Beach. Santa Monica Bike Center and Sea Mist Rentals are nearby for bike rentals.

If you're feeling daring, Trapeze School New York has a location on the Santa Monica Pier for thrill-seekers who want to learn from trapeze, aerial, or trampoline classes.

To take in the natural scenery of the mountains and Pacific Ocean, head to the Santa Monica Mountains, the largest urban national park in the world. The Santa Monica Mountains Natural Recreational Area offers more than 30 hiking trails at different levels of difficulty whether you're a beginner or seasoned hiker. The park is also a popular spot for mountain biking, rock climbing, horseback riding and camping.

Art and culture lovers are bound to find something that piques their interest, whether it's a photo exhibit at the Annenberg Space for Photography, the Bergamot Station Arts Center which houses more than 30 art galleries, or artists outside performing, exhibiting, or peddling their works at the Third Street Promenade.
Food and Dining
Santa Monica boasts the trendiest and newest restaurants, whether you're into farm-to-table organics, vegan, or the most innovative California fusion cuisine.

For quick, inexpensive, and casual dining, try the famous Godmother sandwich at Bay Cities Italian Deli and Bakery, the place to go for a hearty Italian sandwich as well as imported Italian products and groceries to bring home.

Nearby, Milo and Olive is a trendy but moderately-priced restaurant and bakery, especially known for their famous burrata pizza, garlic knots and chicken meatballs. If you want to avoid a wait, the restaurant offers communal seating and bar seating, which may be a quicker way to sit, check out what others are ordering and possibly even make a few new friends.

For one of the most raved-about burgers in the neighborhood, stop by Father's Office for an artisan burger, sweet potato fries, and an extensive selection of beers, both on tap and in bottles.

If you're looking for fine dining, you're in the right neighborhood. Melisse is one of the most highly-regarded restaurants with 2 Michelin stars, serving French fare and seafood. Diners love the egg caviar, lobster bolognese, and full 15-course Carte Blanche tasting menu. If you order the latter, be sure to reserve several hours for a leisurely and luxurious dining experience.

Tar & Roses serves new American fare in a rustic and intimate, yet modern and hip environment. Customer favorites consist of decadent menu items such as bone marrow, oxtail dumplings and braised lamb belly, with honeycomb ice cream and ricotta crostata for dessert.

For an altogether different shopping and dining experience, visit one of the four Santa Monica Farmer's Markets, which take place on Wednesday mornings, Saturday mornings, and Sunday mornings in different locations. Don't be surprised by A-list celebrity sightings; even renowned chefs from all over Los Angeles frequent these markets for their fresh produce and seafood.

Los Angeles International Airport is a mere 10 miles away from the heart of Santa Monica. For just $1-2, you can take the Big Blue Bus to Santa Monica. From the LAX Lot C Bus Terminal, take Bus 3 or R3 (R3 is the express bus, which costs extra) all the way to 4th Street and Santa Monica Blvd, which will drop you off right next to Third Street Promenade.

The light blue Expo Line on the Los Angeles Metro Rail also serves Santa Monica with the nearest exit located at Downtown Santa Monica.

Once in the area, the Big Blue Bus is still the most economical way to get around without renting a car of your own, but if you so choose to, you can easily find a car for hire at LAX. Bus fares on the Big Blue Bus range from $1.25 - $2.50 for regular riders (5 - 61 years old) and $0.50 for seniors and disabled passengers.

However, if you're exploring locally, walking and biking are the best ways to get around, considering the city is very walkable and either of these rids you of the hassle and costs of parking.


Looking for a party hostel in Las Vegas or San Diego? Traveling alone to NYC or LA? Want a budget hostel in San Francisco?

We've been gathering travel costs from tens of thousands of actual travelers since 2010, and we use the data to calculate average daily travel costs for destinations around the world. We also systematically analyze the prices of hotels, hostels, and tours from travel providers such as Kayak, HostelWorld, TourRadar, Viator, and others. This combination of expenses from actual travelers, combined with pricing data from major travel companies, gives us a uniqe insight into the overall cost of travel for thousands of cities in countries around the world. You can see more here: How it Works.

1 Categories averaged on a per-item basis.
2 Categories averaged on a per-day basis.
For example, the Food2 daily average is for all meals for an entire day, while Entertainment1 is for each individual purchase. Thus, the overall daily average cost is not a summation of the individual categories.

Budget Your Trip is all about finding out how much everything costs so that you can travel cheaper and longer. Created by avid travelers Laurie and Bryan, our goal is to help you plan your next trip on the right budget. With average daily travel costs that are calculated from the budgets of real travelers, plus an analysis of hotel and tour prices, you can find out how much money you need to plan your next adventure. We also have plenty of travel advice, accommodation reviews, and activity suggestions.

Search for Travel Costs

Some of the links on this website are sponsored or affiliate links which help to financially support this site. By clicking the link and making a purchase, we may receive a small commission, but this does not affect the price of your purchase.