Cost Cost Cost

Submitted: Sunday, Jul 02, 2017 at 22:21
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Before going around Australia on our big trip, there was no mention of any costs for sights to see on the forum.
When we arrived at Ayres Rock, How much? and you don't even get a chance to touch it let alone walk over it, didn't matter anyway, I can't walk far and it was closed because of windy ?? conditions, no wind where we're standing.

Off we go to Kakadu National Park, how much? struth, we're bloody pensioners not tourists.

Arrrhhh Katherine Gorge, how much?

Off to Monkey Mia, where I first saw this town on Explore Oz and the ppl feeding the dolphins, made a note to see this at all costs, How much? and we missed the three sessions to feed them. Where's the beach, what's this Govt. building doing here selling tourist garbage, why can't I go to the ex-free beach?

It would seem, planning our trip ten years ago, let everybody jump on the bandwagon in charging everybody to do or see any Australiana.

When we got home and told my mum, she said I saw that for FREE, I saw Ayrers Rock for FREE, I drove through Kakadu for FREE, Well times have changed, everything costs a buck

All through the trip, you couldn't find fish n chips for less than $15 bucks, outrageous, a basic meal charged like a wounded bull. There was a take-away next to the motel, recommended by the motel until I saw the prices, my god, you've got to be rich to eat here, $15 for a plain hamburger, I'm outa here.

We had a budget we thought would get us to see ALL Australia, unfortunately the greedy B"sssds made sure we were broke before we started.

Honestly, it was a big disappointment, so many costs to see my own country, we had/forced to see the freebies, because our small budget did not accommodate such outlandish prices. We were both shocked at the high prices charged, some were good value, the Shark Aquarium in Shark Bay in WA.

The Elephant Rock Cider Company, biggest ice-cream cone in all of Australia, $8

Our next trip is Qld, hopefully the sharks haven't taken over the State

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Reply By: Paul E6 - Sunday, Jul 02, 2017 at 22:41

Sunday, Jul 02, 2017 at 22:41
You're doing all the touristy stuff. Nothing wrong with it, but personally I'm over it and take the back roads to nowheresville these days, and see the real Australia.
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Follow Up By: Shaker - Monday, Jul 03, 2017 at 08:36

Monday, Jul 03, 2017 at 08:36
Same here, avoid all the hot spots & National Parks, more about not liking crowds than the costs.
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Reply By: Member - Stephen L (Clare SA) - Sunday, Jul 02, 2017 at 23:36

Sunday, Jul 02, 2017 at 23:36
Hi Outback Wanderers

Yes it is so true, they treat everyone as if they have from overseas and have Money to throw around. We found the bigger the crowd, the bigger the fee.

Like above, go to the out of the way places where overseas people do not know and you will get good old fashion value for money.....with the exception of

There are still lots of great places to see out there that will cost you nothing.


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Reply By: Mick O - Monday, Jul 03, 2017 at 10:04

Monday, Jul 03, 2017 at 10:04
Strewth, at the risk of sounding negative, did you bother to do any research before you left? Surely you would have checked the internet sites for the attractions or at the very least picked up something from the state tourism offices or website. All of these things will outline the various costs of admission/accommodation/food etc.

Everything has a cost these days and if you want to go where the crowds go and see the ‘big ticket’ items, then expect to pay.

You are being extremely naive if you expect to travel to significant cultural and national tourist sites and expect there to not be a fee attached, regardless of any state or country you visit. If you’re thinking of travelling the coast of QLD for free or low cost next year, you’d better do a whole lot of research between now and then particularly if your vanning or camping (or to use your shark analogy, prepare to lose a leg!)

I spent 13 months on the road a few years back and kept a comprehensive expense record to gauge just what it costs to travel or ‘live’ on the road. The frightening thing was that it equated to the same, if not more than living in your own house. What I found was that the east coast is designed to funnel you into caravan parks and accommodation. If you want to free camp, you’ll need to research and even then you can bet you’ll be vying for real estate with a lot of others trying to do the same.

By the way, a burger at any of my local pubs in the middle of Melbourne costs between $12-$18 so to get one out in the country for $15 is pretty good value I reckon. Even the mighty Tjuk burger out on the Great Central Road is $18, a price I consider very reasonable considering just how remote the location is (and it's a bloody top burger to boot :-)

The fees you pay at the rock and Kakadu go to maintaining the area and the lives of the local traditional owners (Accommodation costs are another matter but even those leasees pay royalties to local community organisations). How about you look at these expenses as investing in the local community and economy, particularly in the small rural towns you travel through. It might make things more palatable for you.

If the dollars are tight, a lot of small communities encourage travellers to stop a while in their towns by offering free or low cost sites at recreation reserves. You get to use the sports club amenities and the hope is that you’ll then perhaps buy some groceries at the local store or eat at the local community club or even have a refreshing beverage at the quaint local hotel. Perhaps consider this when planning your stops and avoid the big towns to stay over in.

Time spent planning is never wasted.


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trip would doubtless be attended with much hardship.''
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Follow Up By: Member - Bigfish - Monday, Jul 03, 2017 at 10:34

Monday, Jul 03, 2017 at 10:34
Totally agree. Sounds like lack of planning. Yes is expensive to do remoter regions. I knew that 20 years ago. Running expensive diesel generators, supplying workers accommodation, fuel costs, delivery costs, employees costs, refrigeration costs,...the list goes on. I wouldn,t be in business in remote areas for quids. I,ve paid $3.00 a litre for petrol 10 years ago in communities (out of 44 gallon drums) and some of the prices I,ve paid for food would make you faint. Such is life....many of these business,s only just survive. If people stop frequenting them...they will disappear. Then the whinging will really start because they cant get fuel or food. I suggest you google every place you wish to visit and even contact van parks, stores or business,s for cost and camping issues. Its not cheap to tour around but just accept that and enjoy the trip while you never know when its time to hang up your cue.

Happy travels.
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Follow Up By: Member -Pinko (NSW) - Monday, Jul 03, 2017 at 10:57

Monday, Jul 03, 2017 at 10:57
Jees Mick
I always click on your attached photo.
Today it brought a tear to my eyes
Living is a journey,it depends on where you go !
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Follow Up By: Member - ACD 1 - Monday, Jul 03, 2017 at 11:11

Monday, Jul 03, 2017 at 11:11
Like Mick , I kept a comprehensive spreadsheet on our eight month trip around Australia. KM's travelled, time, taken, fuel costs and litres used - I also kept a money diary - every cent spent was reconciled.

Outcome - very similar to what Mick found. Cost of eight months on the road was very similar to what we spent at home. The only difernce was a $20 000 debt when we got home.

$20 000 between 4 people over eight months works out to about $150 per week on spending money. That was what we spent each week to see the sights (Harbour Bridge Climb, helicopter/plane trips, theatre shows, footy games, theme parks etc etc).

I think that money was well spent.


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Follow Up By: Mick O - Monday, Jul 03, 2017 at 22:28

Monday, Jul 03, 2017 at 22:28
Cheers Stan. Bloke on the far right. I know what you mean. We miss him every day mate. A true legend of a bloke. A returned serviceman, a gentleman and a man I feel privileged beyond measure to have known, spent time with in the bush and above all, considered my mate. He's always riding at our side.

''We knew from the experience of well-known travelers that the
trip would doubtless be attended with much hardship.''
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Follow Up By: OutBack Wanderers - Friday, Jul 14, 2017 at 21:41

Friday, Jul 14, 2017 at 21:41
What part of planning for 10 yrs did you miss?

WE researched, my wife and I the roads we were to travel on, the distance of driving for 6 hours and seeing which town is at the end of the distance, we then researched the facilities of the area, we would get say on average 10 things to do an see, but could/would only pick one since we're on a budget, remember we are pensioners not tourists and we don't have thousands of dollars from any super fund, all monies saved for 10 yrs went to our Trip Fund.

Going into debt was not an option, running up a credit card debt on age pension is sheer lunacy.

Why are we naive if my mother saw these things for free, but now we are expected to pay for upkeep of these treasures, isn't that what Govts are for? As for royalties, one would think the less you charge the more visitors you get, instead of grabbing as much as you can. I can fly to Bali have a great holiday for two weeks, see another country, taste their foods, enjoy their culture cheaper than riding on the Ghan for one journey.

These outback journey's in the NRMA mag. showing the Canning Stock Route for 16 days $10,995 per person, come-on.

WE tried camping at Bourke for one night, at 65, no more camping, cabins from now on, I can't bend down or get on the ground without it being a major disaster, trouble getting back up again as my surgeon said, don't fall down, and it pains me to see my wife doing things that I as a husband should do, so the tent stayed on the roof racks for the entire journey

Because of my legs my maxium distance for walking each day is 500 mtrs, so when we visited the sites along the WA coast, if the sign said, distance 750 mtrs, I stayed by the car and Cathy walked the distance, note, I am a disable pensioner.

I would pour over the maps noting distances and hours driven, where we ended up each night, we both Reaserched the whole 19,176 klms

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Reply By: Member - Odog - Monday, Jul 03, 2017 at 14:48

Monday, Jul 03, 2017 at 14:48
Wife and I did 8 week trip to Perth from Queanbeyan NSW, via Eyre Peninsula and also SW WA, kept a ledger of every cent we spent.. we got parks pass in SA and WA, bush camped 2/3 days, then caravan park for a night or two to charge batteries and replenish water supply in the camp trailer..
Including fuel (prado diesel) and food, everything we purchased from souvenirs to a coffee went in the book.. worked out at $1000 per week... we never went without, and did eat out a few times.. could have done it cheaper.. but it was a holiday... no regrets... had a ball, and that's the thing, created great memories..
couple of things we didn't go into due to the cost, thought not worth it, but that was our choice... cheers Odog
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Follow Up By: Member - J&A&KK - Monday, Jul 03, 2017 at 20:10

Monday, Jul 03, 2017 at 20:10
The amount of $1,000 /week agrees closely with the records I keep for caravanning in Australia. Last big trip was from WA to QLD, the Cape, the Gulf, the red centre and GCR and goldfields back to Perth. Prado towing an off road van. 50/50 between bush camps and caravan parks, 18,000km and 14 weeks for a bill of around $15k ignoring tyre wear etc.

In comparison we just came back from ~ 5 weeks in Europe. Mostly major cities but also included 3 weeks of hire car touring some of the non tourist trap locations. Budget accommodation (not back packers ~ 3 star stuff) and plenty of lunches and breakfasts made from supermarket purchases. Cost $14k and we used frequent flyer points so no airfares - $440/day.

Yes, it's not an " apples for apples" comparison. Both very different tours but for what it's worth the Aussie trip will result in the longer lasting memories.

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Reply By: mountainman - Monday, Jul 03, 2017 at 21:37

Monday, Jul 03, 2017 at 21:37
You honestly expect everything for free ?
You know that facilities like clean amenities like toilets and associated things that get tourist crowds in do actually cost money..
not to mention roads that make that area accessible to you and others.
you expect this for free ?
Not to mention the staff the place needs to keep the bad human habits of leaving rubbish lying around..
who is going to pay for that ?
Honestly.. if your going to whinge about costs, sit at home and watch your bank balance dwindle anyway...
than spend a few bucks of which we live in the greatest country, which some made the biggest sacrifices so we have what we have now.
the select few get to see the real australia and I dont hear them whinging about the costs.
yet the overseas tourists come here and spend their hard earned money to see our own backyard.
Appreciate what you have been given , and the sacrifices made for us all to get to where we are now.

In the end, you die with no money.
why not have memories that do cost than sit at home and dwindle your last years to be boring and have money in the bank account
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Follow Up By: Member - David M (SA) - Monday, Jul 03, 2017 at 23:07

Monday, Jul 03, 2017 at 23:07
Here endeth the lesson.
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Reply By: Ron N - Monday, Jul 03, 2017 at 23:40

Monday, Jul 03, 2017 at 23:40
If you're touring Australia, you're tourists, not pensioners. Yes, there are "tourist traps", but they can be avoided.

You have choices, you're not forced to pay top dollar for everything.

Yes, just about all the parks and "sites of significance" have fees attached.
But 50 years ago, there was nothing there, at those sites, you had to take EVERYTHING with you.
The roads were absolutely bloody shockers, you rattled the fillings out of your teeth - and that was on the "highways"!

I can remember when the NW Coastal Hwy was little more than a dusty, corrugated track across the plains.
On top of that, you had to watch out for the massive holes in the middle of the "highway", where some poor truckie had bogged his semi to the makers name, hauled it out with a borrowed station grader - and left the hole for you to dive into!
Now we have terrific sealed highways all around the country, that are the envy of a lot of other countries.

Roads, facilities for camping, setting up toilets and keeping them clean, fencing, parking, rubbish removal (because of the sheer number of tourists), communication and power - all costs.
Try running a 100Kva genset for a month, and see what the fuel bill is! You need a 100Kva genset for a roadhouse/motel setup.

We all have to make our contribution towards these things, to get todays comforts.
In the "good ole days" phones were something you only found in red boxes in bigger towns.
Now we get cheesed off when the mobile signal strength is down to 2 bars.
Electricity was unknown, you carried Tilley/Aladdin lanterns, and used wood for heating and cooking.
Today, everyone expects power on tap to runs fridges, microwaves, chargers, hotplates, you name it.

Going on holiday costs, there's no way around it. Going around Australia on holiday costs a lot more.
Just be thankful you still have the faculties to drive around and see and enjoy the sights - and you don't have to work, either.

As for the food costs, I've found there are only pockets where food prices are too high. There are plenty of places in the cities that charge like wounded bulls, too!
We avoid the high-cost places, and seek out the better-value places.

I don't know where you get fish/n/chips for $15 - unless its some indigestible, lousy-tasting, imported Asian fish, bred in the polluted Mekong River.

I'm quite happy to pay the asking price for excellent local fish - when I can find it, which is not often.
Fishing blokes have to run bloody expensive boats, they have big diesels and they fairly chew through fuel.
Then the truckies have to transport the fish, so that adds to cost.
If you're so inclined (I'm not), you can go fish yourself, and catch your own and know its fresh.

The simple fact remains that Australia is a massive size, and distance is our constant enemy, and a major cost burden - on travellers, and on those businesses trying to survive profitably in the more remote areas.

I'm quite happy to pay the going rate where it's requested, and avoid the spots where "rorting" is rather obvious.
It's the price you pay for holidaying, enjoy it while you can.

Cheers, Ron.
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Follow Up By: Ron N - Monday, Jul 03, 2017 at 23:49

Monday, Jul 03, 2017 at 23:49
I forgot to add - be thankful we, as a nation have not started that expensive practice known as "tipping".

You go to Europe or the USA and you suddenly find "extra costs" tacked onto everything.
Go on a bus tour, and they hand around an envelope for to contribute substantial extra dollars or euros for the tour guide AND the bus driver.
Go to eateries and the "service charge" is tacked on, whether you like it or not. In many places it's 10% - 20% for the Govt and 10% - 20% for the business!

Go to "sites of significance" in those countries, and the additional hidden costs in those countries, makes touring Australia look pretty cheap.

Cheers, Ron.
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Follow Up By: 9900Eagle - Tuesday, Jul 04, 2017 at 04:52

Tuesday, Jul 04, 2017 at 04:52
Ron, large piece of Barra with enough chips for two people, $12.50 at Debbies fish cafe Slade Point, Mackay. They are also one of the local fish markets.
Just ring from WA, you never know they might deliver.

Barra and chips link

Or cooked small coral prawns from Mackay fish market at $8 a kilo on line or $9 in the shop.

Coral prawns link
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Follow Up By: OutBack Wanderers - Friday, Jul 14, 2017 at 21:46

Friday, Jul 14, 2017 at 21:46
Right, I've entered your recommendations for our Qld trip, many thanx

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Reply By: Baz - The Landy - Tuesday, Jul 04, 2017 at 02:01

Tuesday, Jul 04, 2017 at 02:01
For sure, lots of things have a fee attached these days for a variety of reasons, but hey some of my best moments in the bush; the Australian Outback, have been around a camp fire, the night sky ablaze with stars, in the company of great friends and mates and it hasn't cost a cent for a seat...

And here's the thing, there have been times I would have paid a 'million bucks' for that seat...!

Each to their own and whilst I understand the sentiment of your post very few things in life are free...

(Ps: currently in the UK and even a pee will set you back 20p a squirt)

Cheers, Baz - The Landy
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Follow Up By: Member - ACD 1 - Tuesday, Jul 04, 2017 at 10:55

Tuesday, Jul 04, 2017 at 10:55
Couldn't agree more Baz... be quick, with BREXIT looming you won't be able to Euronate for much longer...'ll be back to spending a penny!

Enjoy the lesser offerings of another country LOL (just remember, the bricks in their road are older than our country)


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Follow Up By: OutBack Wanderers - Friday, Jul 14, 2017 at 21:51

Friday, Jul 14, 2017 at 21:51
Unbelievable Baz, I was really getting excited about looking at the heavens away from the city lights, just me and the night sky, but, gee'ses, every bloody night there was a moon for the entire trip through every State, it would seem the moon followed me just to make sure I wouldn't see the millions of stars out there,
that was one of my big disappointments

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Reply By: Member - DOZER - Tuesday, Jul 04, 2017 at 08:07

Tuesday, Jul 04, 2017 at 08:07
Balli sounds good for you, $750 for a week with free breaky and flights.....but dont drink the water, dont eat anything, dont get sick over there....really, in the NT, the national parks provide a camp site, gas cookers and a long drop for $3.50 per person per good is that ! Cheaper than rent :)
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Reply By: Alloy c/t - Tuesday, Jul 04, 2017 at 10:00

Tuesday, Jul 04, 2017 at 10:00
Nothing ,absolutely Nothing is 'free' except perhaps the air you breath , ... that track you want to drive down to that lovely 'free' camping spot by the river ? Some one paid to put that track in , ... one of the greatest laughs is on the UHF listening to a smallish convoy of tourists / grey nomads [whatever] discussing the price of fuel coming into a town like Longreach or Barcaldine ..driving round and round to each servo to 'save' that 1 tenth of a cent per litre or asking for a 'pensioner' discount on a $5 bottle of wine at the bottle shop 'because we get it for $4.59 at Dan Murphy's' " the nearest of which is 500km away ..... The story is quite simple , if you can't afford the prices involved in travel , don't go , stay home !
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Follow Up By: OutBack Wanderers - Friday, Jul 14, 2017 at 21:57

Friday, Jul 14, 2017 at 21:57
We had a CB installed, what a waste that was, not one grey nomad talked on the CB, we passed hundreds of 4WD's with CB aerials, caravanners, camper vans,

Absolute SILENCE, we just spoke to the road trains for conditions, all those others were just "show ponies" and wanna-be's, NSW, SA,NT,WA,SA,Vic, NSW,
wife wasn't impressed after me badgering her for one, as an ex-truckie, I couldn't believe the silence through the whole trip, I would be calling all and sundry whilst I was the passenger, but all I got back was silence

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Reply By: rocco2010 - Tuesday, Jul 04, 2017 at 13:00

Tuesday, Jul 04, 2017 at 13:00

I guess everybody is different with different interests and different needs and big budgets and small.

I am just back from a month in the Pilbara and apart from fuel (I record purchases for trip planning) I would have no idea of the total cost. I suppose I could go through the bank statements and work it out but can't see the point.

I do tend to remember the good service at a reasonable price and the poor which may be overpriced.

As for the "specials", I was in Africa a few years ago and some companions were balking at the $400-odd for a helicopter flight over Victoria Falls.

Our wise old guide offered the view that it was a once in a lifetime thing and $400 over the course of a lifetime didn't amount to much.

I am looking at heading overseas next year and the headline price seemed a bit more than I wanted to pay so I checked out the invoice for flights and tours for month in Europe in 2014. That much? The great memories had made the cost almost irrelevant.

Happy travels

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Follow Up By: Ron N - Tuesday, Jul 04, 2017 at 22:06

Tuesday, Jul 04, 2017 at 22:06
Spot on, rocco2010! We paid $300 each for a 20 minute chopper ride over the Bungles (and heard other campers grizzle about the cost, and refuse to pay it) - but it was the best $600 we've spent whilst on holiday!

There's little point in being on holiday, and not enjoying it because you can only think of the cost of everything!

There's an old saying that goes, "Holidays are 2 weeks on the sands - followed by 50 weeks on the rocks!" [;-)

Cheers, Ron.
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Follow Up By: rocco2010 - Tuesday, Jul 04, 2017 at 22:25

Tuesday, Jul 04, 2017 at 22:25

The chopper flight over the Bungles is a "once in a lifetime" thing I would happily do again!

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Follow Up By: Member - David M (SA) - Tuesday, Jul 04, 2017 at 23:45

Tuesday, Jul 04, 2017 at 23:45
"There's little point in being on holiday, and not enjoying it because you can only think of the cost of everything"
Be a lot of people out there not quite as flush as you Ron but still enjoying it.
Cheers, Dave.
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Reply By: Member - RUK42 (QLD) - Tuesday, Jul 04, 2017 at 14:36

Tuesday, Jul 04, 2017 at 14:36
At least you've got enough $$ left to do a "next trip to Qld".
Prado SX and a little van

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Reply By: Member - John and Lynne - Monday, Jul 10, 2017 at 10:34

Monday, Jul 10, 2017 at 10:34
As others have said - if you want to visit all the popular tourist destinations you must expect to pay for the facilities and services provided and they cost more in isolated areas. It is a fantasy to think that the situation will be different along the Queensland coast. Rather than constantly worrying about the cost it is better to just enjoy the trip. If you are necessarily on a tight budget then the simplest approach is to modify your trip plans by going shorter distances (fuel is a major expense after all), avoiding take away meals and by passing some of the more obvious tourist areas. You would still find lots to see and do with less worry about costs. Remember to be glad you can travel instead of being stuck at home watching day time TV! John and Lynne
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Reply By: rlhydn - Tuesday, Jul 11, 2017 at 09:45

Tuesday, Jul 11, 2017 at 09:45
Just returned from an unplanned NT trip.

I was able to do a circuit of Uluru, touch, feel and explore (without climbing it like a wanker) and then take in the sunset. Next day I walked the Valley of Winds and the shorter Gorge walk. Last day (3) of access we visited the Cultural centre for $25

Palm Valley, day walk for free, camping including hot showers and gas cookers $6.60

Chambers Pillar, free
Birthday Waterhole, free
Standley Chasm walk, $12
Omiston Gorge walks free, camping with hot showers $10
Kings Canyon, free
Herhmannsburg $11

Food and services costs power and people, power and people cost money....
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Follow Up By: Member - PhilD_NT - Tuesday, Jul 11, 2017 at 10:03

Tuesday, Jul 11, 2017 at 10:03
Why the need to insult people who want to climb it? They haven't yet banned it so if people choose to climb it then it's their business.
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Follow Up By: Michael H9 - Tuesday, Jul 11, 2017 at 19:00

Tuesday, Jul 11, 2017 at 19:00
I don't even know how wankers climb...
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Follow Up By: Member - David M (SA) - Tuesday, Jul 11, 2017 at 20:30

Tuesday, Jul 11, 2017 at 20:30
With one hand. :)
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Follow Up By: Banjo (WA) - Wednesday, Jul 12, 2017 at 08:46

Wednesday, Jul 12, 2017 at 08:46
There are a lot of unfit or overweight people, or just lazy ones who use another peoples culture as an excuse not to climb.

I know, it's not politically correct to say things like this but Stalin died years ago and we are still supposed to have free speech in Australia.

PS The view from up there is tremendous.
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Follow Up By: rlhydn - Wednesday, Jul 12, 2017 at 11:03

Wednesday, Jul 12, 2017 at 11:03
I'll apologise for the wanker reference now. My opinion is that of, out of respect; (rather than lack of fitness) I personally chose not to climb Uluru and found it a little affronting (first time visitor on an unplanned visit without research) that others ignored the signed request. I instead completed the full circuit and took in its splendour from the ground.

I agree, the view from the top would be priceless.

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Follow Up By: Ron N - Friday, Jul 14, 2017 at 00:37

Friday, Jul 14, 2017 at 00:37
I climbed Uluru in 1969, when it was still called Ayers Rock, and I had the youthful energy to do so!
No-one complained about it being climbed then! Funny how things change!
Yes, the view from the top is amazing, particularly on a clear day.

I think if I tried to climb it again today, it would probably kill me!
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Follow Up By: OutBack Wanderers - Friday, Jul 14, 2017 at 22:14

Friday, Jul 14, 2017 at 22:14
Lucky you rlhydn, to able to walk, I'm only allowed to "walk" 500 mtrs a day anymore and the pain starts, I take the strongest pain relief 20mg Targin that needs Govt approval, nothing like screaming your head off because I walked 600 mtrs just to see that rock in the ocean

No need to insult ppl who you know nothing about their medical history, bully for you that you can walk, I can't, thats why I park in disable zones, less walking

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Reply By: Steve in Kakadu - Tuesday, Jul 11, 2017 at 17:31

Tuesday, Jul 11, 2017 at 17:31
I have spent about $60K in the last 10 years traveling this fine country, the way I see it. It was $60K in support to small town economies and keeping people employed.

My trips have worked out to be about $1 dollar per km, be it free camping, national park camping caravan parks and the occasional motel room fuel food tours etc and I haven't even started to travel yet.

I am more than happy to pay camping fees permit fees and entry fees,

Just to give you an idea, Kakadu is two thirds the size of Belgium. It take over 70 staff to look after it and the budget is approx 18 million a year for up keep, now either we have a user pays system or the tax payer picks up all the bill.

Which would you prefer given that 40% of the tourist revenue is from overseas.

Would you like to pay a small amount to Keep Kakadu a World Heritage National Park?

Or would you prefer the Australia tax payer pay the lot?

I recon you would have had a much better time if you had travel to all those places and enjoyed them as apposed to worrying about how much you just spent.

The only waste of money here is, oh and the irony! You didn't enjoy it because of the cost.

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Reply By: Michael H9 - Friday, Jul 14, 2017 at 23:36

Friday, Jul 14, 2017 at 23:36
There's actually one big thing wrong with your assessment of this situation, and that is you called them all greedy. If you are trying to run a small business these days, it's really tough, the expenses just kill you. You may think that prices are dear, but believe me, everyone running a business will tell you they aren't dear enough. It's an unfortunate fact of life. I think the big boys are doing it ok, everyone else is struggling, even the government.
I'm in business, and I can't afford to travel around Australia buying take away food. I reckon caravan parks are too dear as well. I can't imagine trying to do it on a pension that's for sure. But I understand why the prices are what they are.
AnswerID: 612524

Follow Up By: OutBack Wanderers - Saturday, Jul 15, 2017 at 00:28

Saturday, Jul 15, 2017 at 00:28
There is greedy and then there are those who give good value for your dollar. How can you explain the Caravan park at Carnarvon who wanted $216 for a single cabin they suggested the motel in town where we stayed for $75.00, now pick the greedy one and the good value business.

When we pulled into Coral Bay Caravan Park, $300 per night for a powered camping site, $6.50 for a loaf of bread, you've got to be kidding, we're bloody pensioners not tourists, we hot tailed it outta this rather expensive establishment for cheaper lodgings @ Minilya Roadhouse.

Believe me, no-one struggles at tourist hot-spots, the charter boats for coral watching, they just hire two Swedish girls who learn what to say for as cheap as the Company can pay, most of what we saw wasn't even coloured, just a greyish-brown coral with coloured fish swimming around unlike Cairns.

If you want to drown this is the boat to do it on, unlike Cairns where the boat lowers the platform into the water, theirs are fixed to the stern, just above the water, getting back on the boat was a nightmare, one aluminium step, for one foot only, an alum. hand rail on the left fixed to the boat, when you loose your grip with your left hand you plunge backwards into the water, I needed 3 ppl to help me back on board, another swimmer saw my predictament and knew I needed help fast

Who said we bought take-away food, all food consumed was bought at the supermarkets and frozen in our WACO fridge

From the days my mother saw heaps of stuff for free and today we have to pay to see the same stuff, I reckon, yes, there are greedy ppl who are cashing in on the Grey Nomads, last year was the day of reckoning for the Govt, my generation retired, we are the grey nomads they talk about, we are those who fought in Vietnam, we are those who paid 18% for our homes, we are those who struggled with high rates and high rates of our troops killed, wounded and suicide. We are the generation that the Govt fears, for we have the power to change Govts.

In my trucking days, I would walk into a servo and look for the cheapest sandwich, a vegemite sandwich, a $ sandwich I'll buy, anything over a $, I walk out, bake beans, Vegemite, peanut butter all one $1, what I hated most were the servo's and cake shops with NO PRICES, depending on how you dressed, they made up the prices as they went along

I bought a Oak carton of milk for $2, sat down eating my $ sandwich and the next tourist who walked in was charged $3 for the same, go figure

Your right there some caravan parks were more expensive than a motel, always go to the information shops with the yellow flag, they'll direct you to whatever you can afford, from cheapest to most expensive, the Govt pays them to do this, we probably stayed in more motels than cabins

I feel more "little shops" will go under if the Govt, Fed & State don't control electricity prices, we keep hearing more competition prices go down, we have never ever seen prices go down, 5 price rises in 14 months, Thanx for your comments

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Follow Up By: Michael H9 - Saturday, Jul 15, 2017 at 08:21

Saturday, Jul 15, 2017 at 08:21
When you are in business, you never know how much you are going to earn tomorrow. Nothing is guaranteed and it fluctuates quite a lot so you have to put your nuts away for the winter. The people in business aren't doing it as a charity, they will charge whatever the market allows them to. The caravan park charging over $200 is doing so because enough people will pay it rather than the cheaper motel. Why would they charge less if they don't have to, they aren't a non profit benevolent society? It seems like a choice of them being called either greedy if they do, or stupid if they don't.
Charging prices that people are overly happy with can be a quick trip to bankruptcy and everyone will love you for it during the journey. I know where you are coming from and fully sympathise, but reality is what it is.
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Reply By: Member -Pinko (NSW) - Saturday, Jul 15, 2017 at 07:41

Saturday, Jul 15, 2017 at 07:41
Well Outback Wanderer
A wanderer you are.
I'm sorry you are are an invalid pensioner.
I'm sorry you have become so unfit at 65 years of age.
I am 76 years old and can still tie my shoelaces up.
But, pensions were never meant to sustain the lifestyle you expect.
Most of us were at at your age were in charge of thier own destinies after leaving school with the intermediate certificate.
I can remember 17.5% interest rates and all the other things you mention but I can also remember having up to four jobs to make ends meet.
I retired at 62.
You say you were into trucking, where did the dollars go.
I was self employed 50% of my working life until waking up and retraining myself for better employment .
Superanuation is not given to you, you contribute to it.
Vegemite sandwitches are not that bad.
By the time you were 30 if you did not look like having funds in your bank you should have done something about it, like getting a loan and buying a caravan park.
You have become very bitter because you compare yourself with others and what they can afford.
But you will survive.
I can remember the road to Ayers Rock when it was two wheel tracks with grass growing down the middle and yes it was free.
We could go on but it won't achieve anything.
Living is a journey,it depends on where you go !
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Follow Up By: Alloy c/t - Saturday, Jul 15, 2017 at 08:38

Saturday, Jul 15, 2017 at 08:38
And when Ayers Rock was 'free' some paid a very heavy price to camp in its shadow.......
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Reply By: Member -Pinko (NSW) - Saturday, Jul 15, 2017 at 08:47

Saturday, Jul 15, 2017 at 08:47
Yes your correct.
In those little white 'tourist tents'
Bill Harney was in charge of camping.
He transported bore water in a Kombi with the roof cut out and 44 gallon drums inside.
There was a long bench with a plastic dish for a wash. No shower block then eh. HaHa
I was sixteen then.
Living is a journey,it depends on where you go !
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