How much spending money do I need in Sydney?

Using real data from real travellers, we look at how many Australian dollars you need to budget per day, at which things are really worth doing and, of course, at how you can save some money and travel smart in Australia's most popular city.

Sydney is an awesome city with a wide-range of things to do. Make sure you devote some time to hanging out on Bondi Beach and we would recommend catching some live sport (they love it). But do not, under any circumstances, depart the great city without ticking these off – The Opera House, Royal Botanical Gardens, The Rocks, Darling Harbour and the Bridge Climb.

On Average WeSwapper’s spend a total of $126 (£79) per day in Sydney, Australia

This reflects what everyday travellers tend to spend in Sydney. Think mid-range – most of the major attractions, a few cab rides, maybe a big night out, and a bit of shopping on the side. It doesn’t include the cost of hotels or car hire as these are often booked in advance.

Entertainment - $73 average daily

Eating Out: $39 average transaction

Shopping - €82 average daily

Transport – $37 per day

Want to see where it all goes? Read on!

Entertainment costs in Sydney. This includes bars and pubs as well as attractions.

Real traveller, average daily spend: $73

You’ve got to remember that you're visiting one of the world's great modern cities. They've got the best of the beach life and a thriving metropolis. Aussies do love the outdoors and of course, sitting on the beach is free. But the cost of living is high. Here's how our travellers spend in Sydney.

  • “WeSwapper Favourite” Opera Bar - (€28, average transaction)
  • Sydney Harbour Bridge Climb -  ($158)
  • The Sydney Aquarium - ($42)
  • Sydney Tower Observatory - ($26.50)
  • Bondi Beach - (free)
  • "Staff pick" Blue Mountains Day Trip - ($207)

The most common expenditure amongst travellers was at the glorious Opera Bar next to, you guessed it, the iconic Sydney Opera House.

The Bridge climb is an amazing way to see Sydeny Harbour in all its glory. WeSwap tip - go at dusk. If you time it right, you will see the sunset on the way up and a night view on the way down. Remember the sun sets quickly in this part of the world so you have to time it well. Check the sunset times. It's easy.


See those borrowers to the top right? They're actually normal-sized people! It's big.

From ground/sea level, the best way to see the harbour and the Rocks is via the Manly Ferry rather than an organised boat tour. This will take you the same way but for about a quarter of the price. You also get to visit the lovely beach suburb of Manly at the same time.

Manly has an amazing surf beach on one side that everyone heads to after getting off the ferry. WeSwap tip - head to some of the quieter (non-surf) beaches on the harbour side. Equally awesome and much quieter.

Cost of Food and Drink in Sydney

Real Traveller Average Daily Spend: $60

  • “WeSwapper Favourite” The Bucket List (€48, average transaction)
  • Cocktail with a view - Sydney Tower Dining – (Cocktails around $20)
  • Glass of wine/glass of beer – ($7)
  • Cup of Coffee – ($3.80)
  • "Staff restaurant pick" The Glemore Hotel Rooftop - ($33, average transaction)


WeSwap travellers again showing great taste as the most popular place to eat is the Bucket List restaurant/bar situated right on Bondi Beach. This is a great place to enjoy a schooner (smallish beer) and watch the world go bye. It really is one for the bucket list (too easy).


The view from the Bucket List. One for the, er, bucket list

Sydney has got pricey over the last few years – so eating at the Opera House, or Sydney tower will cost you. As with every big city get slightly off the beaten track and there are bargains to be had. Here are a few...

Go to the Australian Hotel on the Rocks (head upstairs for the views) for cheap cold beer and great pizzas. Just around the corner, you’ll find the Glenmore Hotel tucked away. Again fab views of the harbour that won’t cost you the earth

For those on a budget look out for any Oporto outlet. This is good quality food that comes fast, but calling it "fast food" seems a little unfair somehow. Their world famous Bondi burger packs a punch and is not to be missed.

Doyle’s Fish Restaurant in Watsons Bay is ‘probably the best fish and chips and view in the world’ according. It’s not cheap but definitely worth a splash out; you can literally dine on the beach. Squint and you'll see the Harbour Bridge and opera house in the distance.

fish and chips

The view from Watson's Bay where you'll find the best fish and chips in town. See the city?


Okay, this one is definitely not for the faint hearted but if you like nice pubs, cheap beer and the odd game of pool head to the Pyrmont Bridge Hotel in Darling Harbour. It's open 24 hours a day. Gulp!

The Steyn in Manly is also something to behold. About 5 pubs in one with a big shared courtyard area. Sunday afternoon drink ups on the beach are a right of passage on any trip if the sun is out.

Cost of Transport in Sydney

Real Traveller Average Daily Spend

  • Taxi to the city from airport – $50
  • Shuttle bus into the city from airport  - $16
  • Bus into the city from the airport – $3.30
  • Train into city from airport - $18.50
  • General light rail and bus fares - $2.60 - $5.50

One of the best things about Sydney centre is its size. It really is small. It’s possible to do all the biggies by foot – Opera House, Bridge Climb, Darling Harbour.

In you need transport just jump on the train, very easy and cheap to use - the double decker trains are cool too. Taxis are expensive and not generally needed.

Cost of Shopping in Sydney

Real Traveller Average Daily Spend: $82 (although you wouldn't go shopping every single day)

WeSwapper's favourite: Queen Victoria Building

Of all the things to do in Sydeny, shopping wouldn't normally be high on the agenda. Clothes are cheaper over here and it's not like the US where you'll get more bang for your buck on clothes and say, make-up. If you're into your beach clobber then they do, of course, have all the newest stuff from the big brands.

Paddy’s Market is a must if you're a bargain-hunter blessed with patience; nic-nacs and bargains aplenty on a weekend.

If you want more mainstream clothing head to the QVB – Queen Victoria Building. It's a huge place with an old fashioned charm both inside and out. There are plenty of shops (obviously) and the interior is truly spectacular. There is also a piano player in the middle of the room to enjoy whilst you shop, or drink coffee.


Paddy's market is ripe for a bargain but Sydney isn't especailly known for shopping

Last checked and updated: 15.03.2017. All travel, accommodation and entertainment costs are taken from the provider’s official website – but don’t forget to double check yourself first before you head off.

If you’re planning a trip to Sydney, then you might consider WeSwap for your Aussie dollars. Our peer-to-peer platform makes travel money up to 90% cheaper for travellers. You’ll also join a 200,000+ community swapping travelling tips and wisdom as well as travel money.

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