Breakdown: How much does a vacation in Bozeman actually cost?
We tried to add together just about every cost you'd accrue while vacationing over a week in Bozeman. It's quite a chunk of change.
This was a very simple task: add together the cost of all the basics, and avoid the most expensive weekends and holidays (Sweet Pea Festival, Thanksgiving, etc.). What would an 'average' vacation in Bozeman cost? You'll see below that it's easy to subtract certain costs if they wouldn't apply to you or your friends.
We were able to find surprisingly decent deals on airfares and hotels in Bozeman, as long as we allowed for lots of date flexibility. Obviously, if you must travel during certain dates, you're unlikely to find hotel rooms at the prices we found. In addition, there are VAST differences in airfare prices depending on what days you're able to travel. All of the airfares were quoted based on a 5 day roundtrip.
- Airfare from Boston to Bozeman: $270—$558 per person, roundtrip
- Airfare from Phoenix to Bozeman: $170—$496 per person, roundtrip
- Airfare from Omaha to Bozeman: $268—$496 per person, roundtrip
- Airfare from Albany to Bozeman: $352—$592 per person, roundtrip
We looked at a variety of hotel accommodations and Airbnb options. Of course there are vast differences in price, depending upon location and amenities. We simply picked a few different options from budget to higher end. Don't forget, some hotels can actually end up being a good bargain if they offer an airport shuttle and/or free breakfast. Per Hotels.com, here's what we found for a random Monday through Friday stay...and yeah, the total math is a few dollars off? Not sure why.
- HOTEL: Motel 6 Bozeman, MT - $148/night for 4 nights = $649
- HOTEL: Quality Inn & Suites, Bozeman - $209/night for 4 nights = $911
- HOTEL: The Outpost, Belgrade - $223/night for 4 nights = $969
- HOTEL: The Sapphire Motel, Bozeman - $245/night for 4 nights = $1,067
- HOTEL: Days Inn & Suites, Bozeman - $271/night for 4 nights = $1,179
- HOTEL: C'mon Inn, Bozeman - $300/night for 4 nights = $1,304
- HOTEL: Murray Hotel, Livingston - $359/night for 4 nights = $1,559
- HOTEL: Hilton Garden Inn, Bozeman - $470/night for 4 nights = $2,038
- HOTEL: Element, Bozeman - $509/night for 4 nights = $2,207
- HOTEL: Montage Big Sky - $1,170/night for 4 nights = $5,442
We also checked a few Airbnbs around Bozeman for the same Monday through Friday, 4 night stay to see if there was any cost savings. In our experience, there isn't a cost savings especially with all the extra fees but understandably, sometimes getting an Airbnb makes more sense. It all depends on how you prefer to travel, obviously. (The nightly rates quoted below do NOT reflect all those extra fees tacked on, BTW.)
- Airbnb: 2 bedroom, 1 bath Townhouse, Bozeman - $248/night
- Airbnb: 2 bedroom, 1 bath apartment, Bozeman - $275/night
- Airbnb: 3 bedroom, 3 bath condo, Bozeman - $644/night
- Airbnb: 1 bedroom, 1 bath room in condo, Bozeman - $123/night
- Airbnb: 3 bedroom, 1.5 bath apartment, Bozeman - $369/night
How much do popular activities cost in the Bozeman area? Everybody wants to have a little fun while on vacation, so we checked the current rates for some of the typical 'tourist type' stuff you'd need to budget for. (It's easy to keep activities on the cheap if you're looking to just do some hiking and check out the area. In addition, we didn't list every single price point for all activities...usually kids are cheaper or even free.)
- Museum of the Rockies: $18 per adult ("Museum of the Rockies admission provides unlimited access to the museum for one day. All exhibits and planetarium shows are included in the price of admission.")
- Lewis & Clark Caverns: $15 per adult (Classic Cave Tour RESERVATIONS REQUIRED and are difficult to get this summer, FYI. Very popular.)
- Geyser Whitewater Rafting Trip: $99 per rafter (Half Day Lower Whitewater (III-IV) Don't forget to tip your guide! They work hard to make sure you have fun and keep you safe.
- Big Sky Resort Nature Zip Line Tour: $45 per adult (Approximately 1 hour. Walk up, 2 zip lines down)
What about meals and food costs in the Bozeman area? Well, that's certainly a flexible area when it comes to how much you want to spend. Stick to a budget by going to the grocery store or enjoy all the great restaurants the Bozeman area has to offer. We did a little math on some typical meals.
- Pickle Barrel Sandwiches: $16.40 for a whole turkey sandwich (enough for 2 people) Add some chips, a soda and head to the park for a quintessential Bozeman lunch or dinner.
- The Bay Bar & Grill: $14.95 Shrimp Wontons (a favorite appetizer for 2 people) $31.50 for Maple Glazed Salmon entrée. $17.95 for the Western Burger.
- Copper Whiskey: $16 shareable Crispy Brussel Sprouts. $16 for Bacon & Blue Cheese Wedge Salad. $42 for Montana Trout.
Moral of the story? The cost of a Bozeman vacation can cost you as much as you want to spend. If you're eating out, staying in decent hotels and going on lots of adventures...just two people could easily spend $5,000+ during a 4 night stay. However, it's reassuring to know that if you're budget conscious and thrifty with your dollars, spending nearly a week in Bozeman is still doable.