One of the most famous cities in the world, San Francisco is known for being expensive. Here you will find the cheapest travel time and other budget tips.
- When is the cheapest time to visit San Francisco?
- More budget tips in San Francisco
San Francisco is one of the most famous cities in the world. The city is known for its rich, diverse culture, incredible neighborhoods, iconic architecture, cable cars and stunning cities. There’s a lot to do in this fun city, but being an affordable destination is definitely not one of them. Travelers need not worry, however, as there are numerous ways to plan an affordable tour to San Francisco, starting with visiting at the most favorable time of the year. You just have to plan to get everything out on time. Here’s the cheapest time to visit San Francisco and other budget tips.
When is the cheapest time to visit San Francisco?
Booking flights to San Francisco
Let’s start with booking flights because this is the most important part of a trip to San Francisco. When is the cheapest time to book flights? Well, January is the cheapest month of the year to book flights or fly to San Francisco. Of course, very few visitors travel in January because by the time the month kicks off, most tourists have already overcome post-holiday travel fatigue. While booking at the right time is important, getting great deals and how far in advance you book is more important. When travelers book, they typically buy tickets three months in advance. This means that those booking flights to San Francisco in January will likely arrive in March or April, which are among the cheapest months to explore the city.
How to lower airfare when visiting San Francisco?
- Use the days of the week. Most tourists visiting Francisco for business travel on Mondays and Fridays, making midweek a cheaper time to enjoy great flight deals.
- Use Oakland Airport (OAK) instead of San Francisco International Airport (SFO). In addition to being as close to downtown San Francisco as SFO, flights to the airport are cheaper than flights to SFO and arrive faster.
- Find out about flight offers from different airlines online before you book a flight. It is advisable to visit these websites directly and do a price search to find those that offer cheaper deals.
When is San Francisco accommodation cheap?
The off-season is the best to visit San Francisco for cheap hotels. While hotel prices vary depending on certain factors, May and December are the best months to find cheaper accommodation in the city. Visitors who get there by Wednesday are likely to get better deals than any other day of the week. Sundays that fall on a weekend are the most expensive to try and get accommodation in the city.
Travelers should book their accommodation at least 90 days in advance of their visit to the city to get the best hotel deals for their stay.
- The cost of a 3-star hotel in San Francisco: is $88 to $444
- The cost of a 3-star hotel in San Francisco for the weekend: Starting at $99
- The cost of a 4-star hotel: Starting at $185
- Average number of days to stay in San Francisco: 3 days
Where to find cheap hotels in San Francisco
San Francisco has some of the highest hotel rates in the US, averaging around $200 per night at the city’s best hotels. Most of these luxury hotels add park and resort fees to their final hotel cost, which of course makes matters worse.
Although this city is known for being expensive, travelers can find affordable hotels. Hotels near the city center, for example in the Union Square area, offer the best deals. Tourists staying in the Lower Nob area can start with the Herbert Hotel, a perfect choice for visitors planning to stay in town on a budget. The hotel is within walking distance from Union Square. There are other cheaper accommodation options near the Marina District and Cow Hollow.
More affordable family-friendly hotels are located in the Marina District, near Fisherman’s Wharf, one of San Francisco’s most popular neighborhoods.
More budget tips in San Francisco
- Sightseeing on foot: Wandering around the city to explore some of the most beautiful views isn’t something travelers can spend a lot of money on. San Francisco is among the top five most walkable cities in the country, and visitors can easily walk around and explore some of the city’s most famous attractions.
- Getting around by public transport: Buying the multi-day public transport pass is the cheapest way to get around the city and saves visitors a lot of money. This is an excellent option, especially for travelers who want to stay a few days but have plenty of places on their bucket list to explore.
- Eat cheap: Tourists do not need to spend money in restaurants to eat well. Head to places like La Taqueria and Mission Chinese Food to enjoy great meals for less. Street food is also a good option to save more money.
Travelers should practice the norm of planning to save their money when visiting San Francisco. Flights and accommodation are cheaper if you book one to three months in advance.