Vacationing at Cape Cod can be cheap depending on what time of year you decide to travel.
To explore Cape Codon a budget, you may want to consider traveling during early and mid-September, with flights 80-90% cheaper than in April. According to research by Budget Your Trip, you’d spend $130-150/day, but this can go down to $100/day if you forego entertainment costs, take public transport/your own car, opt for a vacation rental, and eat at home.
In this guide, we’ll talk about where you should stay when visiting Cape Cod on a budget, the cheapest time to visit, and some tips on how to save money on your trip there. Read on to find out more!
Where to Stay for a Cape Cod Vacation on a Budget
When traveling to Cape Cod on a budget, the cheapest accommodation option you have is RV camping, followed by vacation rentals, where you can also save by cooking at home some or all of your meals.
Hotel rooms are typically the most expensive option, but you may land some good deals if you stay vigilant and book in advance.
If you camp in your RV, your weekly costs would be as low as $75 if you opt to stay at Race Point Beach. If you need to rent one, your costs will be lower than renting a vacation rental.
Renting an RV or a vacation rental for four people starts at a low $100/night. But if you opt for a vacation rental, you’d still have to end up paying for transport which can cost up to $40/day renting a car on turo.com.
The RV will be cheaper since it can double as transport, and you can cook your meals and save up on money there too! At the same time, you can enjoy the beauty of the beaches right from your vehicle.
Cape Cod Budget Vacation Rentals
If you’re not a big fan of camping, you can opt for a rental home. These are much cheaper than hotel rooms and provide more space, privacy, and your own kitchen.
For example, a 2-bedroom rental at Hyannis could cost around $110-120/night, but the average price is $147/night if you opt for a hotel room.
With more amenities like your own kitchen, a lounge where you can relax, privacy, and a cheaper cost, vacation rentals are the better option than hotel living.
On top of this, rentals cater to people on all kinds of budgets, as can be seen in the graph below:
(Image source: Champion Traveler)
Cape Cod Budget Hotel Rooms
Hotel Rooms are the most expensive option.
However, low-rated hotels cost less than highly rated ones. For example, the average price of a single hotel room rated at 1-star is approximately $80/night.
4 and 5-star hotels can cost somewhere between $320-400/night and thus aren’t very budget-friendly. The graph below shows the average price of each hotel room vs. the number of stars it has:
(Image source: Champion Traveler)
On top of this, hotel rooms typically don’t have adjoined kitchens. This means you will need to spend money on food.
According to Budget Your Trip, the average cost per meal at a restaurant in Cape Cod is around $19.
If you’re spending this much on three meals/day for each person, this can drastically increase your costs. For this reason, if you are on a tight budget, we advise against booking hotel rooms and instead opting for an RV or a vacation rental.
What’s the Cheapest Month to Visit?
The cheapest time to visit Cape Cod is early to mid-September because flight costs are around 80% lower than in March/April. Other affordable times to visit are January 15-March 25, April 16-May 6, and August 13-November 18.
Early fall is an excellent time to visit the Cape because it’s the off-season, which means that accommodation prices go down.
On top of this, flights to Cape Cod in September are at the lowest cost, roughly 80% cheaper than in April and December.
How Much Does Cape Cod Cost for a Couple?
A couple at Cape Cod can expect to spend between $2500-$4700 per week, but around $1200-$2000 if you budget your time and resources.
According to Budget Your Trip, the average price of a hotel room for couples in Cape Cod is $147.
Flights can cost from $1000-$2400 roundtrip depending on where you come from and the season, and if you stay in a rental, you can rent them per night at $100-$120.
What’s the lowest you can expect to spend per day?
A budgeted couple’s trip can cost somewhere from $1200-$2000 per week and $185-$464 per day. For other expenses, couples can expect to pay a minimum of $58-$116 per day on food, travel, and sightseeing.
If you drive to Cape Cod instead of taking a flight, you would be saving up quite a bit. A drive from New York would cost around $80-100 compared to a $400 flight for two people.
Flights from LA, Colorado, and Florida cost roughly $1000 for two people while driving there would cost you $300-$500. Cheap Vacation Rental prices start at $700.
So, if you drive around Cape Cod, make your food, and live in a cheap rental, your costs could range from $1200-$2000. If you decide to eat out occasionally, you’d be spending around $40/meal.
Costs of sightseeing can account for $22/person/day. If you opt to go to places with little to no admission fee and no parking fees, you could bring these costs down too.
How much can you realistically spend in a week?
Realistically speaking, you may end up spending between $2590-$4798 when planning your couple’s trip. Food, travel, and sightseeing could amount to $114-$250 per day.
When looking at lodging, it could end up costing you $81-$143 per night at a hotel. Based on the expenses of other tourists, it has been found that they would spend a total of $88 for both food and transport.
A 1-bedroom rental may cost $115-$141 per night. It is recommended to book at least two months in advance to avail of these offers. If you delay it, there are chances these deals would finish since only 1% of rentals are available within the $0-$100 price range.
Additionally, they may be located in less favorable places, which may end up with you not opting for it. Instead, 1-star hotel rooms may be available starting from $69.
On top of this, flight rates fluctuate and may end up ranging from $772-$1972.
How Much Does Cape Cod Cost for a Family of 4?
Cape Cod costs for a family of 4 can average at $5000-$9000 per week and $700-$1200 per day. Expenses for travel, food, and sightseeing can amount to up to $500, while lodging, at the cheapest, can go from $220 per night for a 2-bedroom rental.
If you’re considering going for more than a week, you can get cheaper accommodation deals. This is because property owners would rather have the property occupied and pay some rent than empty for 3-4 days between bookings.
What’s the lowest you can expect to spend per day
The lowest price of a week-long trip at Cape Cod for a family of four is around $4200-$4700. Roughly, the price of a round-trip flight to Cape Cod can range between $400-600. For four people, this costs around $2000.
Vacation rentals cost around $1500/week. If you cook at home, you could be spending around $200/week. And when you rent a car, the minimum it would cost is $500/week (including gas).
If you decide to eat out at restaurants, e.g., three times a week, the total could amount to around $5000.
However, you can take this cost down to $2000-$2500 for a budgeted trip.
This is possible if you choose to drive instead of buying plane tickets. Where plane tickets could cost you around $2000, you could instead save about $1500-$1700 by opting to drive there.
For example, a plane ticket from New York to Hyannis for four people would cost around $1000. Instead, if you drove there, you would only spend about $100 on the two-way trip.
Additionally, having your car would lower car rental costs dramatically.
Living in a vacation rental can cost around $1500/week. Having your vehicle and cooking your food could bring costs down to about $2000/week.
Eating out a few times may take costs to around $2300-2500.
How much can you realistically spend in a week?
Ideally, you should budget $57-$125 per person per day to account for transportation costs, accommodation, and food.
The average family vacation to Cape Cod costs around $4112-$9160, with food & travel expenses amounting to $228-$500 per day.
Flights from Colorado or Los Angeles can cost around $600 roundtrip, depending on the time of the year.
If you opt for a 2-bed rental, you can cover nightly costs at $173-$226. The chances of you getting a cheaper rental will all depend on if you’re able to book it before they run out.
The trick is to start booking a month or two in advance so that you can take advantage of these low prices.
7 Money saving tips for Cape Cod
When going on a vacation, every little bit that you save counts.
A few ways you can save money include opting for a vacation rental instead of hotel rooms. This way, you can also cook at home and save money from dining out.
Additionally, you could use coupons and look for free activities or cost little to do, like visiting art galleries or biking, hiking, and going to free concerts.
1. Pick a Vacation Rental over a Hotel
You can rent a 3-bedroom vacation home for approximately $2000/week. That’s $286/night for six people.
Vacation homes also give you the advantage of having an entire home–along with a kitchen to cook meals–to yourself, as well as more privacy.
2. Share costs
You can rent out a vacation home with another family and split the costs. That will also help you save money.
3. Visit During Shoulder Months
The shoulder season is the months of June and September.
House rates are lower during these months, towns are less crowded, and the weather is still as lovely as summertime.
4. Cook your meals
A vacation rental allows you to have access to your kitchen, where you can make your meals and save a lot of money from eating out.
The average amount of money you’d be spending per meal if you solely ate out would be $15-$20/person. For a family of four having three meals/day, this would amount to around $1400-$1600/week.
Instead, by opting for a vacation rental equipped with its own kitchen, you could cook your meals. According to a USDA food report, a family of 4 will spend around $568-651/month on groceries.
This means, for a week, your max grocery spending could amount to just around $250 or less–which is a small fraction of what you would spend if you ate out!
5. Coupons are your Friend
Cape and Islands Chamber of Commerce provides many shopping coupons so you can save on your trip.
6. Free Fun
Look for activities that cost little to no money. Going hiking, biking, or checking out art galleries are low cost.
You could also attend an outdoor concert on the beaches.
Do some window shopping in the quaint little markets on the Cape.
7. Bring your Bikes
Instead of spending money to rent a bike, just bring your own. And save that gas money by choosing to cycle to places instead of driving.
Not only will you save money, but it’s also a healthier option and helps protect the environment.
Cape Cod caters to people traveling on all kinds of budgets. If you travel in the early fall months, like September or October, you can end up saving more on lodging than if you traveled during peak times.
If you want to save on money, you should book early as possible to avail the cheapest offers. On top of this, taking your own transport could save you around $250/week for the car rental.
Additionally, vacation rentals are a cheaper option compared to hotel rooms. They’re also equipped with kitchens so you can save up on eating out costs.
And if you want to earn the #1 budget price award, you can also use coupons to save up on food costs!
Entertainment expenses can also be decreased by preferring places with no/small admission fees, parking fees, etc.
We hope this article helps you plan a budget-friendly trip to Cape Cod. Let us know if you have any questions!