Chicago is sometimes overlooked, but in spite of that it’s one of the world’s great cities and very worth a visit. It’s classic America combined with an amazing combination of recent foreign influences.
This city can definitely be expensive on tourists, though it doesn’t have to be. Hotels in Chicago’s central downtown area can be priced almost as high as New York City or San Francisco, so staying a bit farther out can help cut costs. Your transportation costs are low or non-existent if you do stay central, so that can balance out.
There are plenty of cheap and free attractions, so those on tight budget can be entertained, though some of the more famous sights and museums are not cheap at all. If you plan on hitting several of the major museums and tours, then have a look at our review of the Go Chicago Card for possible savings.
Chicago is also a classic restaurant city, with ethnic neighborhoods clustered just near the city center, plus plenty of great choices in the tourist district. Again, getting a bit out of the center can save some money, though budget choices are always available if you don’t mind sandwiches and fast food.