Travelling on a budget!

Submitted: Wednesday, May 24, 2006 at 16:58
ThreadID: 34215 Views:2825 Replies:5 FollowUps:8
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Hi folks!
Well, always nice to hear a good-feel story.
Met a couple at the local RSL the other evening. Conversation got around to travel and caravanning, and I told them that I planned to hit the road soon and described my rig. Turned out they had just returned from a caravan trip up north to Darwin, and had returned down the east coast, stopping at all those nice, warm places we all dream about! I asked the obvious questions in regards to thier particular rig setup, and was informed that neither had ever towed, owned, or in fact knew anything about caravanning before thier trip. Hubby bought a $3000 poptop caravan, which needed some TLC, and so, he repacked the bearings, fitted new tyres, checked the mechanical brakes, got the undercarriage checked out, registered it, and after fitting out the interior to thier liking, went looking for a suitable vehicle to tow it! He apparently bought a secondhand Toyota 4x4 petrol( $5000), got it RACV checked, and bought some tools and fitted it out with a second battery setup. So, having decided what they really needed for the trip, they eventually hit the road north.
They were away for around four months, and had an absolute ball, apparently!
The vehicle and van ran without any trouble, and they met some great people along the way! They still own the rig, and indeed, are planning another trip soon. (Although now that they have been bitten by the travelling bug, will tradeup on a better van, but happy to retain the vehicle!) So, doing the sums, $8,000 for vehicle and van, probably another $2000 for upgrades(tyres, mechanical checks, battery etc) , I guess they did it cheaply! Of course, added to that would be running costs, which are gonna be there anyway, but it was nice to hear that one doesn't have to be a millionaire to do it! Good on ém!
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Reply By: Footloose - Wednesday, May 24, 2006 at 17:06

Wednesday, May 24, 2006 at 17:06
Good story Ray.
Years ago I met a couple of young blokes in a 2wd in Birdsville. They'd been up the Gulf and back through Alice Springs. Lived in the car, not even a tent ! Smashed the windscreen so got a s/h one from a wrecker and put it in themselves etc etc etc. They had a flat tyre, and I offered them an air pump instead of their foot pump. "No thanks" they said. "We've been sitting on our bums for the last 3 months, we can use the exercise."

Also met a retired couple in a van park years ago who were saving the fuel money to get to the next stop. They told me heaps of retired people did that.

$70-$100K to go travelling ? No way !
AnswerID: 174481

Reply By: Member - Oldplodder (QLD) - Wednesday, May 24, 2006 at 17:12

Wednesday, May 24, 2006 at 17:12
Have come across a few retired and semi-retired couples doing the same thing.

Quite a few seem to budget for about $100.00, for everything, fuel, fees, food the lot.

AnswerID: 174482

Follow Up By: Alloy c/t - Wednesday, May 24, 2006 at 17:27

Wednesday, May 24, 2006 at 17:27
$100.00 for everything, fuel ,food ,fees the lot .. fair enough ,but you fogot to mention per what ?? day ? week ?? my minister for finance tells me that we average $100 per day for every day that we are on a trip/holiday.
FollowupID: 430588

Follow Up By: Footloose - Wednesday, May 24, 2006 at 17:49

Wednesday, May 24, 2006 at 17:49
I seem to remember them also showing me a newsletter from a group that told them where to camp for free, where to catch and cook a feed, which roadhouses didn't mind you just using their facilities etc.
So travelling on a budget isn't new for a lot of people.
Come to think of it, I can't ever remember travelling while not on a budget !
I wonder what the poor people are doing tonight ? :)))))))
FollowupID: 430595

Follow Up By: Member - Bware (Tweed Valley) - Wednesday, May 24, 2006 at 19:44

Wednesday, May 24, 2006 at 19:44
'Us poor people' are reading this forum 'cause it's free......well except for the monthly broadbrand fee, the electricity to run the computer, the 10 L's of fuel for a round trip to work to pay those bills......LOL
FollowupID: 430618

Follow Up By: Footloose - Wednesday, May 24, 2006 at 19:54

Wednesday, May 24, 2006 at 19:54
Bware, I know what you mean. One mob told me I had to come in and pay a deposit if I wanted something ordered. I told em that was Ok, but I'd deduct $5 for diesel from the total. I told em I wanted a delivery date also. Thats when they decided that I could pay for it when I came in to collect.
I was so nasty that I shocked myself, never been that hard to deal with before. But geez did it get results. With the price of fuel for running around just to convenience them, when you're the customer, is obviously starting to get up my nose.
The fact that I'd been ripped off by another mob the day before might have had something to do with it also.
FollowupID: 430621

Follow Up By: Member - Oldplodder (QLD) - Wednesday, May 24, 2006 at 20:08

Wednesday, May 24, 2006 at 20:08
Yes, I did miss that didn't I!

$100.00 per day, over about 6 to 12 months travelling aorund oz.

As usual fuel is the expensive item.
FollowupID: 430627

Reply By: Willem - Wednesday, May 24, 2006 at 18:04

Wednesday, May 24, 2006 at 18:04
We bought a FJ55 Landcruiser for $2000 and later a 27ft Viscount caravan shell for $2000. I fitted the van out myself(Willembilt) and after some years of living in it we hit the road. Spent close on 5 years on the road and travelled 260,000km in that time. The Landcruiser died along the way(old age and rust) and I managed to buy a G60 Nissan for $3000 which saw us out till we settled down again.

My current rig and trailer and including all the 'toys' costs $25,000. It does around 20,000km a year of travelling though I can see that figure dropping soon unless fuel prices come down or the pension goes
AnswerID: 174502

Reply By: Atomnaki - Wednesday, May 24, 2006 at 18:16

Wednesday, May 24, 2006 at 18:16
We met up with a couple from Bendigo about 2 years ago when we were in Katherine. They had an old 18'-20' Viscount van and were towing it with an early 80's model Ford. I know it's not a 4x4 but he was saying that he had been travelling every winter for quite a few years and had hit a few dirt roads along the way. Car and van were still going strong.
AnswerID: 174507

Follow Up By: Atomnaki - Wednesday, May 24, 2006 at 18:21

Wednesday, May 24, 2006 at 18:21
Just adding to my last reply, same year in Broome we met another couple who ran their bus on oil from fish and chip shops. Had been on the road for a few years doing quite well "thank you very much" . There are some amazing stories and interesting people you meet along your travels hey. LOL
FollowupID: 430601

Reply By: Member - Bware (Tweed Valley) - Wednesday, May 24, 2006 at 20:24

Wednesday, May 24, 2006 at 20:24
Hi Ray,
I remember your other post about affording all the accessories that others seem to post about all the time. We live on a shoestring budget let alone travel on one. It makes you prioritise very well though! If you can't go out and buy a whole bunch of gear you need to decide what is important, relevant to the individual. If you use your 4wd to go camping then camping gear is just as important. We recently invested in a large ice-box(fridge too expensive), larger tent(addition to the family), replaced the old gas cooker and camp chairs. That all went on the now maxed out credit card. The point is I could have bought a vehicle accessory but what would be the point of a new whatever if we can't go away because we don't have the camping gear? The only vehicle accessory I bought was a cargo barrier and that was 2nd hand and fitted all for $155 as opposed to a new one fitted by a well-known after-market company who quoted me $580. The barrier I considered essential for the safety of my kids and so I can fit all our gear in the cargo area up to the roof and not have to spend more money on a large roofrack or trailer! Needless to say, our vehicle is pretty basic but if I had money I would definitely invest in a few accessories. One of the things that isn't at the top of the list is a bull bar; this may get up a few peoples' noses but I think they are a bit of a fashion accessory. Sure, if you travel outback or live rural, but many 4wd owners live in metro areas and travel to coastal camping grounds yet it is one of the first accessories purchased; it's almost obligitory. Even before the recovery gear, first aid kit. Methinks marketing is alive and well-fed.
AnswerID: 174535

Follow Up By: disco driver - Wednesday, May 24, 2006 at 23:24

Wednesday, May 24, 2006 at 23:24
Re Fitting a Bullbar;
At the risk of offending you know who, the best thing about a large bullbar fitted vehicle is that it tends to guarantee one right of way at round-abouts. (Works even better if the said vehicle is covered in mud). Only time it doesn't work is when other vehicles on the round-about are Mack or KW with even bigger bull bars.

Besides that they come in handy to hold fishing rods (when fitted with appropriate gear) so that one can hold stubbie or can while fishing

Written with tongue firmly in cheek


FollowupID: 430662

Follow Up By: Wizard1 - Thursday, May 25, 2006 at 08:46

Thursday, May 25, 2006 at 08:46
I am always amused at those posts that need a lotto win to get the "perfect" setup that takes us all years, procrastination and budgeting.

When bought a lot of our expensive items a few years ago, we did so at the time because we knew we could afford it and knew they were a good investment. Waeco fridge, GPS, CB, etc. etc. But the thing we have noticed is the prices on most of these things hasn't changed that much over the years and in some cases have come down.

Since then a mortgage has calmed the spending down, but we still camp/caravan in comfort as we already have the gear.

The last big purchase was Coleman hot water on demand. We've wanted one for years and didn't get it until it was on sale. So if you wait long enough.

If you don't need it. like a protection bar, then don't get one. But whatever you do, spend the extra and get quality as it will last as opposed to cheap and nasty which will bite you later.

Gold Coast

FollowupID: 430687

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