Miami is a classic destination for people looking to escape the dreariness of winter temperatures and weather. It maintains a comfortable temperature of around 70 degrees in November through April, with humidity soaring in the summer months (hence its popularity as a winter getaway).
If you’re looking to hold the cold at bay, Miami could be a great option for this year’s snow-season getaway. Just don’t be worried if locals look at you askance in your bathing suit while you pull off your shorts – to them, this is cold.
To anyone used to endless rain (Oregon and Washington), driving snows (the Midwest), or desert-dry cold months (Arizona and New Mexico), Miami will come as a huge relief.
Just know that everyone else is looking for relief too, so you’ve got to be a smart shopper if you want to make your trip affordable. We’re here to help, so read on to learn everything you need to know about budgeting your Miami trip.
Average Trip to Miami Cost in 2023
An average one-week trip to Miami for two people will cost around $2,800:
- Average Accommodation Cost: $100 per night
- Average Flight Cost: $300 per person
- Food, Drink & Activities: $100 per person, per day
- Transportation: $100 total
- Total Cost: $2,800
As you can see, Miami is a fairly affordable trip for two. As long as you choose reasonable accommodations, make use of its excellent public transportation, and don’t blow it out on nightclubs and expensive restaurants, you’ll be fine.
You certainly don’t need to do any of that to have a good time in the Gateway to the Americas. Its famous Cuban food, cool architecture, public parks, and beaches mean that you can enjoy yourself for a small daily expense.
Another fact in its favor? Miami is the only major city in the US to have been founded by a woman.
Originally settled by the Seminoles, a First Nation people, Miami was later colonized and formally founded by citrus farmer Julia Tuttle. That makes me want to give it my money right there.
But like, affordably. Let’s take a look at how.
Miami Trip Cost: Average by Item
Average trip costs come down to how you like to travel. Do you like to sleep in style? Try all the best restaurants? Rent boats and jet skis? Or are you happy lying on public beaches during the day and laying your head in small hotels or motels at night?
Factors such as when you go, who you go with, and how much price-shopping you have the stomach for will also weigh in. The best way to pay less on your trip is to know the average costs, then adjust accordingly to fit your needs.
Miami’s lodging isn’t that expensive. It’s not that cheap, either, but you needn’t worry about paying Mediterranean or Riviera prices to visit this little slice of Florida heaven.
A decent hotel in Miami (2 stars) goes for about $75, while a 3- or 4-star hotel will cost between $100 and $125.
We recommend putting enough toward your budget to avoid the most budget-friendly options, as they often come with some very non-vacation accoutrements: cockroaches, for instance.
Since Miami is close to the beach, and it’s easy to get there on public transportation, you can save money by getting a hotel with a small pool – or without one at all.
The real party is down at the waterside anyway. Our opinion? Budget $100 per night for your average hotel, and you’ll have a great time.
Average flight prices to Miami are reasonable from pretty much any major city in the US. To wit, you’ll pay roughly $150 from New York City, the same from LA, $225 from Portland, and $200 from Dallas.
If you’re flying from a smaller airport, costs will go up and you’ll have fewer flight times from which to choose. From Eugene, you’ll pay about $300, and from Boise about $325. Even from nearby Mobile, it’s about $250, on average.
Still, as representations of most airports in America, that’s a pretty good cost per ticket. Budget $300 for anywhere in the US, and you should be able to hit that target.
Food, Drink & Activity Costs
At the grocery store, you’ll pay in Miami what you would in most other places in the US. However, you’ll probably spend less than you would in other major cities, such as New York or LA.
This is a very affordable way to do breakfast and snacks, so you can save your money for treats at lunch and dinnertime. At an average restaurant, expect to pay about $50 for two people (minus the cost of wine or other drinks).
At food carts, plan on paying between $5 and $10 per bite. Bars charge way more downtown than they do elsewhere in the city, so if you like nightlife, avoid those $20 club cocktails and stick to smaller neighborhoods and venues.
Tours are reasonably priced as well. A 90-minute boat cruise that shows off South Beach, millionaire homes, and islands is about $30 per person.
A 3-hour food tour in Little Havana is about $70, while $400 will get you a private yacht with champagne for up to 12 people. In general, if you budget about $50 a day for tours and $50 for food, you’ll have a great time. That comes to $100 per person, per day.
Hands down, the best way to get around Miami is to take Metrorail and Metrobus. These cost $2.25 for a one-way ticket, and transfers are now free. You can pay $5.65 for a one-day pass, which will get you anywhere you want to go all day.
In general, Miami is so well-served by public transportation that it’s silly to use taxis and Uber. You’ll pay much more for the privilege, but you won’t get there faster or more safely.
If you really care about getting out of the city to explore nature, or you just want the freedom and flexibility of a car, you’ll pay about $20 a day, on average.
This is an affordable way to get out to the Everglades or down to Biscayne, both natural wonders that are well worth seeing. Overall, give yourself about $100 in Miami. That’s two days of car rentals plus a lot of public transport, plus an Uber if you need one.
Pro tip: “All day” actually means 24 hours. If you have evening plans on Tuesday and brunch plans on Wednesday, try to time your Tuesday morning and Wednesday evening activities so you don’t need to use the pass. Then you can stretch your “day” to cover two days.
Things to Consider
Here are a few other things to consider when planning your trip to Miami:
- Miami Beach is not a beach in Miami. It is a distinct city with its own governing body, hotel rates, and beaches. It’s about 30 minutes away from Miami, so while it makes a great day trip, don’t assume that the prices you find for one equate to the other. Make sure if you’re visiting both to do individual research before crafting your budget.
- Hurricanes are a concern from June through November. While many people avoid traveling during this time due to temperature and humidity, this is when you’ll find some of the lowest prices. However, make sure to storm watch. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has a helpful site for this.
- If you’re traveling during summer, get the travel insurance. That way, if a hurricane does make landfall – or just sends a lot of crappy rain Miami’s way – you can opt out and get your money back. Most travel insurance costs about 5% to 6% of the cost of your trip, and it’s well worth it.
- Miami has a grip of amazing Art Deco buildings. If you’re an architecture enthusiast, consider taking a walking tour (with cocktails if you like) to see the main sights and fill that camera roll. You can also take a self-guided tour with a little internet research; you just won’t get as much history with it.
- There are plenty of ways to enjoy the nightlife in Miami, and you don’t have to spend your life savings to do it. Check out the Greater Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau guide for an idea of how, when, and where to get your fun on for less.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some frequently asked questions about budgeting your trip to Miami:
Is the traffic always bad?
Pretty much, yes. Unless you like an excuse to go all Gran Turismo on people, there’s no need to rent a car in Miami. Instead, leave the aggressive driving to the taxis and Ubers. You can also take public transportation, which is cheap, reliable, and frequent – let the bus driver worry about being cut off!
Is Miami expensive?
Miami can be expensive, especially if you opt for resort lodgings or chic hotels, take foodie tours, or use taxis. However, you can easily avoid these costs by choosing cute boutique hotels ($80 a night), eating at street stalls ($5 to $10 for amazing local fare), and riding public transportation ($2 to $5).
Is Miami safe?
Yes, Miami is safe. You’ll face the normal amount of petty theft and scams – especially on tourists – but you needn’t worry about assault, robbery, or murder unless you’re taking unnecessary risks. These include walking alone at night, especially as a female, getting too intoxicated to track where you are, or flashing valuables around.
What’s the deal with Cuban food?
The deal is that Miami has a lot of it, and it’s all really freaking good. Cuban cuisine is a glorious mix of African, Spanish, and Caribbean flavor palates, with rice, chicken, and fragrant veggies making up much of its staples.
If you’re, well, a person who, well, likes food, then you have to make time to visit some of the city’s best Cuban restaurants. The Michelin Guide recommends Sanguich De Miami, Chug’s Diner, and Versailles at the top of its list, and none of them are that expensive.
When is the best time to visit Miami?
Weather in Miami goes from cool and pleasant in November through April to Hot, Humid, Mosquito-Ridden Nightmare in the summer. (Not me speaking from annual childhood trips to the Everglades or anything, nope.)
Okay, kidding. Kind of. Miami isn’t that bad in summertime, especially if you want to be at the beach a lot. But you should prepare for frizzy hair, sweaty clothes, and the constant need for something – oh, god, anything – cold.
However, this is when you’ll see low prices, since most people want to come in winter.
If you’re looking to escape colder climes in the winter, you’ll find the city pleasant, with a warm springtime feel and highs in the 80s. You can ditch puffy coats and don shorts, all while bathing in ocean breezes and bougainvillea to your heart’s content.
Is it easy to get around?
Yes, Miami makes it very easy to get around. There’s no reason to spend out on taxis, ride shares, or even rental cars. Metrorail, Metromover, and Metrobus are excellent and affordable options that will get you anywhere you need to go in the city… and beyond.
Over to You — Book Your Trip Today!
|🛎️ Average Accommodation Cost||$100 per night|
|✈️ Average Flight Cost||$300 per person|
|🍽️ Food, Drink & Activities||$100 per person, per day|
|🚕 Transportation||$100 total|
|💲 Total Cost||$2,800|
The average cost of a one-week trip to Miami is around $2,800 for two people. Not only are the prices good… it’s such a vibrant city, with wonderful food, nature, and nightlife, that you basically can’t afford not to go. So what are you waiting for — book your trip to Miami today!