Are other people doing if a bit tough at the moment?

Submitted: Friday, Feb 15, 2008 at 21:56
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With rising fuel prices, interest rates and all the other costs in life, I'm starting to find it a bit difficult to get away.

I've had to cancel a few trips over the last 18 months because of work.....but this money thing is starting to bite hard.

I was planning to head up to Weipa and the surrounding area in June 2008, but some mongrel put a ferret into the savings account.

Fuel alone would cost $2,300 (rough estimate).

This is becoming expensive Men's Business!




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Reply By: The Rambler( W.A.) - Friday, Feb 15, 2008 at 22:08

Friday, Feb 15, 2008 at 22:08
I know exactly how you feel because any travel now takes a lot more thought in my case regarding the total cost but I have decided go when you can as who knows what's around the corner health wise.
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Reply By: Wayne (NSW) - Friday, Feb 15, 2008 at 22:14

Friday, Feb 15, 2008 at 22:14

I was going to put on a post to say that I am off to the Vic High Country tomorrow for a week.

I don't think that it would be appropriate now. :-))

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Follow Up By: On Patrol (East Coast) - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 07:45

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 07:45
Yeah mate it is, but enjoy it while you can Wayne & have a good one.
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Follow Up By: Dave B (NSW) - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 21:25

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 21:25
Wayne, just come back from the Vic High Country today and was given some bum advice from the tourist centre at Traralgon as far as I know.
I wanted to go Traralgon - Licola - Jamieson and was told we wouldn't have any trouble.
A bit later we met a woman at the local market who told us the bridges to Licola had just been repaired after the floods, but we wouldn't get past Licola.
We took her advice and went another direction.
Didn't want to go all the way to Licola and have to come back again.

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Reply By: Gerhardp1 - Friday, Feb 15, 2008 at 22:26

Friday, Feb 15, 2008 at 22:26
It's expensive but who can put a value on "Men's Business" :)

As we men know, it just has to be done !!

I'm a bit luckier than many, 25 years ago a redundancy payout wiped out the mortgage - nearly wiped me out too, 2 little kids, wife not working, and me not working too. At the time, the interest rate was 13.5%.

The current interest rate situation therefore doesn't hurt at all - no mortgage, no cars on time payment, and no credit card debt.

I'd hate to be like many today - vast mortgage, cars on HP, credit card debts to the eyeballs, and an attitude that a first home should be 40 squares, fully air conditioned, fully landscaped, fully furnished. They'd need 4 redundancies to get out of debt.
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Follow Up By: Member - Vince B (NSW) - Friday, Feb 15, 2008 at 22:30

Friday, Feb 15, 2008 at 22:30
Your last paragraph sums it up in a nutshell.

I feel for my grandchildren in the years to come.

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Follow Up By: Davo_60 - Friday, Feb 15, 2008 at 22:46

Friday, Feb 15, 2008 at 22:46
I agree with you Gerhadp1. People need to take responsibility for their finances and keep the lifestyle realistic. Times have always been tough, attitudes have changed however.

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Follow Up By: Member - DAZA (QLD) - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 09:18

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 09:18
Hey Gerhardp1.

I did the same thing 13 years ago, I took a redundancy package
and paid the house off,interest rates were 17.5%,
We started our own plumbing business, struggled for a couple of
years, now my Cook reckons that I am to bloody greedy to retire,
but she knows our grand kids will be well provided for in the future.
I recently turned 60, so I will start taking short trips very soon, to get
the feel of things, you might say a bit of practice for retirement.

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Follow Up By: Gerhardp1 - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 09:53

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 09:53
Jeez, Daza, that's a bit spooky - I started my own computer business, struggled for a couple of years, and have been reluctant to stop 'cause it keeps coming :) Cook has not had a paid job for 27 years now, and doesn't seem too keen to get one......

I'm only 56 so will keep up (part time) appearances till I'm 60. Because of the frugality of my nature (born of necessity when growing up) I reckon the kids will have to spend it all as well :)

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Follow Up By: Member - Julie P (VIC) - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 10:49

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 10:49
Dazza - your little entry is a bit scary - why are you worrying about providing for your grandkids - I know it is a nice thing to do - but as one contributor says - you never know what is around the corner - healthwise - and at 60 thats when the body starts to play up - though of course it can happen a lot earlier - my husband had his first heart attack one week after his 50th birthday - then another 5 years later - which was a doozy - so we do as much travelling as we can (work permitting) - we work to live - not live to work - and if there is anything left when we go - well that will be for the kids - but in the meantime - take the time - get out and see as much of this great country as you can - I listen to my mother-in-law say - I wish .....and vow never to be like that - and I won't.
Get out there - go SKIING - (Spending Kids Inheritence) its great fun - and you only have one life - so live it!!!
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Follow Up By: Member - DAZA (QLD) - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 11:25

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 11:25
Hey Julie P

You are so right, but hey I am a soft touch with my Grand Kids, the
way things are at the moment, re housing affordability, and the cost
of living in the future, We just want to give them a bit of security,
I have had Stent inplants and a major Melanoma taken away recently
and I know how short life is, we have done lots of travels re a few
week here and their,I contract to the Government and travel all over
South East Queensland, as a Plumbing Consutant, I even take the
Cook with me on some trips, and we stay in our caravan,which is
part of our business plant,and claim depreciation, lifes good.

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Follow Up By: Crackles - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 12:38

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 12:38
With job opportunity on a high & wages pretty reasonable these middle of the road interest rates should only be hurting those that couldn't afford & probably shouldn't have bought a house in the 1st place. I started out on 15% & borrowed an amount I could pay if it rose to 17. One would have to be pretty short sighted to get a loan starting at 7 or 8% and not be able to pay for it if it rose above 10.
Cheers Craig..........
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Follow Up By: fisho64 - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 15:16

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 15:16
While some will think you a bit harsh Cackles, I have to agree somewhat.
ACA etc always manage to find someone to say that they will lose everything with a .25% rise, but its hard not to think that if it was really that dire (.25% of $300 = $14 a week) wouldnt you offer to wash the neighbours car, or pick up aluminiun cans, or weed someones garden once a week instead lose everything?
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Follow Up By: Member - John (Vic) - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 16:55

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 16:55
The issue is that people today want to have the 5 bedroom 40 square McMansion which entails having the $400,000- mortgage also.
They borrowed with the view that
1. Interest rates are cheap.
2. That you will never lose on property in this country.

Both points heavily spruiked by the property industry for the obvious reason.
They then want the 50 inch Plasma and 3 cars in the driveway so that also gets dumped on the mortgage, "Cause interest rates are cheap" say the banks and property spruikers and the problem compounds.

As the market changes on both points lots of poor families now have a mortgage thats killing them and given that most will have borrowed 100 to 110 percent will also be facing a negative equity situation and will get killed if they try and sell out.

People want it all today and don't know how to save and live within their means.

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Reply By: Willem - Friday, Feb 15, 2008 at 22:42

Friday, Feb 15, 2008 at 22:42
On a pension high jinks in the bush needs careful planning.

Having absolutely no debt is a start.

Hmm..... I need 2 x new shockies =$300, Brakes sorted out=$300

320 litres diese fill up = $480 plus getting home $500 and driving to the destination and back again to the startoff point =$400 and some tucker for the next trip

=about $ if everyone here on the forum sends me a dollar...............................I might just make it....LOL

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Follow Up By: Footloose - Friday, Feb 15, 2008 at 22:50

Friday, Feb 15, 2008 at 22:50
Stand in line please LOL
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Follow Up By: Member - Kim M (VIC) - Friday, Feb 15, 2008 at 22:50

Friday, Feb 15, 2008 at 22:50
I rest my case



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Follow Up By: Footloose - Friday, Feb 15, 2008 at 23:16

Friday, Feb 15, 2008 at 23:16
Kim, I shouldn't whinge. When we bought our place we were paying 18% interest. We have fewer committments now than when the kids were younger. But I didn't count on retiring early.
I still think I'm better off than many in the bush. Especially those living in communities :)

I guess it depends on your financial position. If you're committed to making money for a living, and lots of it, then you're probably doing well. Especially if you're a tradie or in mining.

If not making over 100K a year...well as a friend of mine once made some poor choices in your youth (boy, did I ever!)
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Follow Up By: Bonz (Vic) - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 12:04

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 12:04
Whats the divvy up for a one way trip Willem? :0)
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Follow Up By: Trevor R (QLD) - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 15:07

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 15:07
ROFLMAO Bonz, even I would chuck in for that trip hehehehehhee

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Follow Up By: Richard Kovac - Sunday, Feb 17, 2008 at 21:58

Sunday, Feb 17, 2008 at 21:58
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Follow Up By: Richard Kovac - Sunday, Feb 17, 2008 at 21:59

Sunday, Feb 17, 2008 at 21:59
I really can't see how this will help.. LOL
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Follow Up By: Bonz (Vic) - Monday, Feb 18, 2008 at 17:15

Monday, Feb 18, 2008 at 17:15
Richard if the one way trip was to your place it would help almost everyone hehehe I do jest tho.

Willem I know an excellent shockie supplier
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Follow Up By: Footloose - Monday, Feb 18, 2008 at 17:47

Monday, Feb 18, 2008 at 17:47
Bonz, Willem is away at the moment so it will take him a while to catch up on this thread :)
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Reply By: Hairy (NT) - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 00:32

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 00:32
Gday Kim,
Know were you are coming from mate...
The Mrs reckons we spent more on fuel going West at Christmas than I did on Bourbon! ( about $35000)
Good news is,..Bank says we're good for another loan...Lookout Sandgropers we're on our way!!!!

The lucky country.....Bloody lucky if you can afford to get there!!!

Unless of course your on the dole!!!!

AnswerID: 287713

Follow Up By: Member - extfilm (NSW) - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 01:39

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 01:39
Bloody hell..... $35 grand on Bourbon just over xmas........ I thought I drank a few but that is a lot..... How are the kidneys....... If u spent more on fuel over xmas u musta had a few drivers to keep the truck going 24hrs and numerous holes in the tank, or did u have a convoy you were supplying fuel to..... $35 grand of fuel would last me almost 3 years at last July's prices....... LOL
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Follow Up By: Hairy (NT) - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 08:05

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 08:05
Whoops one to many Bourbons and one too many 0's
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Reply By: Smudger - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 00:57

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 00:57
Thank god for cleanskins!
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Reply By: Member - Davoe (Yalgoo) - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 00:59

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 00:59
Taking this thread and running
- where is 4wding going?
I cant see fuel going on any kind of a donward trend. Ask yourself this how much deaer does it have to get before 4wd trips become an unafordable luxury? that day is probably fast approaching.
Its all very well saying new 4bs are getting fuel efficient - great if you an afford 80k+ to buy and fit one out.
It late and Emu draft was on special I guess my point is (and I reeeely should take my own advice)
you would do well to stop putting the big trips off coz in 5 years it may well be impracticle
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Follow Up By: Geepeem - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 09:56

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 09:56

You raise an interesting point and one that I have been reading about. In the 1950's not every family (in working class suburbas at least) owned a car - fuel was dirt cheap but the cost of buying a car was high compared to wages and they were unreliable and expensive to repair. Some sociologists are predicting a future where only the well off will own vehicles (not because they are dear to buy but because of fuel costs). The cost of fuel is likely to increase in price at a faster rate post the peak oil period (2010-2015). Refer to my post 54513 on this topic. John Howard said once he expected to see fuel at $5/litre in his lifetime. Experts have already coined one new word for the reaction of families to this trend - "cocooning". This means families are tending to stay home more than ever because of better home entertainment (plasma/LCD, surround sound, inground pool, larger homes etc), and high fuel costs to go out. As fuel costs increase further coooning will probably increase. What they are saying is that societal structural changes will occur in the near future partly because of high fuel costs. Already property prices along public transport routes carry a price premium.
What is the future of 4x4ing. I expect that it will be the domain of the wealthy class only eventually. Unfortunate but probably likely.
My opinion is that after about 100 years of relatively cheap fuel we are probably living in the period of the last 5 to 10 years of "cheap" fuel.
Enjoy while we can
Interesting times
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Reply By: Member - extfilm (NSW) - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 01:49

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 01:49
Hey Kim,
I did my figures on my last trip from Sydney to Steep point and back doing a figure 8 in this country. I really only count fuel as a cost because I eat better and cheaper in the bush than I do at home, and u gotta eat no matter where u are.
It cost me $2500 to do just over 20 000 kms in 2 and a half months.
My camping costs were $171 I know this as I claimed them back in tax.
So in my opinion $2671 for a 2 and a half month adventure is incredibly cheap. $267 a week.
To go over seas the airfare alone would be $2000 depending on where you are going.
My attitude is continue travelling in Oz until it really does become unafordable. Then start on the countries where the airfare does cost $2000 and then only $10 a day to live
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Reply By: time waster - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 08:34

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 08:34
Prepare your self for 09/10 it won't be a recession but a depression.

We are so far in debt and inflation problem predicted till 2010 rates will carry on up for at least another two years, great for retiree's and property investors in two years.

Just my own evaluation and can't believe our food bill alone with two adults and a 2y and 4y never under $300 just for food let alone all the other bills.

Planning a 3monther from Adelaide and down the East coast this year and working out the fuel needed is scary.

AnswerID: 287730

Follow Up By: Geepeem - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 14:01

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 14:01
Most Australians are currently enjoying the greatest prosperity the country has ever seen and most have borrowed to the max to take advantage of their position. there is nothing wrong with that but the easy money times can't last for ever. As kevin Rudd said this week inflation is public enemy No1 as it is now trening up. My opinion is rates will keep rising until inflation starts to trend down again. That could take awhile and double digit interest rates are a strong possibility. I do not believe there will be a depression in 09/10 as stated on this post but nevertheless the times ahead are probably going to be tougher financially for many. At least in Australia at present jobs are plentiful(if you are prepared to travel to them). It just means some people may have to "downsize" their house and mortgage if they have overcommitted themselves. Australians are priviliged to be able to withstand future higher fuel prices and higher interest rates than most western countires. So all is not bad.

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Reply By: Trevor R (QLD) - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 09:36

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 09:36
Hi Kim,

A grey nomad once told me, he just travelled as far as half his fuel budget would take him, then turn around and try to get home on the other half. He didn't give a rats were he got to as it was still better than being at home wishing he was somewhere else.

Like evrything in life, make your budget, stick to it and get out there and enjoy what little time we have on this planet. It is a very short time, in the scheme of things, you are dead for a very long time.

Happy trials,
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Reply By: Smudger - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 13:11

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 13:11
Can't tell you how many people we've met camping at freebies who've told us they're sitting still until pension day, when they can fuel up and hit the wallaby again, until the tank gets low again.
Maybe the day of the swaggy is back, he's just doing it with the missus in a forbie.
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Reply By: Member - Rotord - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 13:16

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 13:16
Lots of gloom and doom here so lets hear it for the other side . The wealth of the nation has vastly increased and so has individual wealth . Sure some people have worked themselves into a bit of a corner . The 'Macmansion ' phenomenon is going to be a burden for those who over committed themselves in the expectation of low rates , increasing house values , security of employment and avoidance of marriage break up . But then this applied years ago when similar committment was in a cramped fibro shacks . At least now we have large areas of this country in boom conditions which means that if the financial crunch comes , families and individuals have the option of starting over in an environment where they can rebuild their fortunes [ literally ] . Compare this to a few generations ago when a new family often had to spend years living with parents . We hear a lot about how high rates cause hardship , but then high rates are terrific for large numbers of retiries who rely on returns from fixed interest , and this applies to all those who have such small savings that they can't risk other higher performing investments . For those who are having trouble financing their 4WD adventures almost all of them have options . For those still employed , upping stakes and seeking higher payed employment in the boom areas can be considered . If you are in a Macmansion and work in the car manufacturing business and have just become redundant you will at least have an appreciation that employment prospects are shifting from some industries and some areas to others . Time to reasses priorities .For those retired , casual work while travelling is possible for many . A kitchen hand in the north west can pocket a $I,OOO /week . A boat deckhand can make $100,000/yr working 5 weeks on / 5 off .Every enterprise up here is desperate for workers , and if you are dragging your own accommodation you are doubly welcome . Lastly , for all those wondering where fuel is going to come from , and at what price , brief yourself on the Canadian shale deposits that come on line at $110/barrel , and this is just one option .
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Follow Up By: fisho64 - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 15:23

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 15:23
your right in what you say Rotord, there are stacks of high paying jobs around in Northern WA, and some people are going to have to bite the bullet and come to where the demand is. I imagine you are in Karratha/Dampier from the sound of it. I work up there also but live on the west coast so have best of both worlds luckily.
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Follow Up By: Gerhardp1 - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 17:30

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 17:30
I agree with what you say Rotord, but with a bit of a brake on the individual wealth part - Yes, each individual is wealthier (we're talking macro, of course) , but most of that wealth measurement is represented by the increased value of the home.

That's one of the areas where little Johnnie made a big mistake - telling my pensioner mum that she's never been better off because her net worth quadrupled in the last 3 years doesn't help her pay the increased council rates that have resulted from the increased market value of her home.

There is no real easy way to eat the increased home valuation, either, so you can't use it to pay the skyrocketing Government/Utility/Local Govt bills let alone the food. It's just as well older people don't need to eat as much.

I think the "McMansion" syndrome will also prevent those in desperate need from "emigrating" to where the jobs are begging - those people by and large would rather appear on Today Tonight and blame anyone else they can, rather than do what it takes.
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Follow Up By: Member - Rotord - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 18:15

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 18:15
We generally agree . When I say that individual Australians have more wealth , I certainly don't include the family home . A better description of real wealth is the ownership of assets , and by that I mean something that produces income . The home is necessary , but it isn't an asset because it costs rather than provides you with income . People are confused when the bank says the home is an asset and you can borrow money on it to invest , but of course they really mean that it is collateral , and that is something very different . Many are falling into the trap of the 'poor dad' in the book Rich Dad, Poor Dad . He kept buying the biggest house his increasing salary could repay and he kept thinking his net worth was increasing , until he retired with a mansion and no assets to live on .Thank heavens that at least super is now removed first so that the aspiring mansion owners can't blow it all on the home .
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Follow Up By: Austravel - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 19:01

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 19:01
Probably depends on were you live. I'm in a regional town close to a mining boom. Those in the mines or linked to them are doing quite well and good on them. If you not linked to the mines then real growth in wages has been pretty poor. Compare that to the growth in house prices. I sold up around 5 years ago, average home was then about $120-150k. Nice homes in nice areas etc, etc. The same home now ranges between $400-450k. Certainly no mansion, if you want views or at the beach you can easily x2 or x3. How on earth the bulk of people on standard wages can afford them I don't know. Build in a couple of kids and one wage and you've got a home loan for life.

As you say it's not all doom and gloom but depends on location and age group. If you a first home owner on standard wages it's gonna be tough. In reality your far better off renting so long as you put the difference in investments. I'm counting on home prices coming down or at least stabilising over the med term. If you look at long term property averages the peaks we've seen are looking very unstable. Even it only stabilises you then try and get your investments to do better.
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Follow Up By: Member - Rotord - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 20:25

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 20:25
Hello Austravel

Good to see someone who has got the big picture . Another option to renting is to join the enemy , get a job with a miner who provides accommodation . Investing is now easy , simply salary sacrifice into a good super fund . But remember that you can't have the money until you are 55 . If you need money before 55 , then managed trust funds would suit most . For people who wish to index to real estate , managed trust funds in real estate are available .
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Reply By: Member - barbara M (NSW) - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 14:48

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 14:48
Hi Everybody,
Yes it is a bit scary but in reality you can travel close to home and camp somewhere. It is much cheaper to go out west than to go to the caravan parks up here on the northern rivers who charge 500 dollars for a site over Christmas. Our holiday over the Christmas period consisted of $100 bucks for fuel and nothing else except fuel. We talked a family with 4 kids into comming with us and now they are so keen to take their kids camping which is great.
Dont know if this would interest anyone else but we pay all our bills with mastercard and then redeem the points for fuel cards which helps with the cost of touring. They dont push the fact that you can redeem your points for fuel cards but you can.
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Follow Up By: Member - Davoe (Yalgoo) - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 15:01

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 15:01
yep plenty of very nice spots ust 1/2 hour from perth with never ending bush and hilltop views with waterfalls etc
- Unfortunatly it s al locked out
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Follow Up By: PeterInSa - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 15:39

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 15:39
We have Coles/Shell Master Card, can we get a Shell Fuel Card with our points.

Currently we use the Coles Fuel Docket to get 4c off a Lt, (spend $30+ at Coles) then when the Master Card statement comes we get a another docket/voucher for another 4c ie 8c in total. Can we buy say a $100 Shell Fuel card with redeemed points for say $95 for additional discount or are the Fuel cards for other brands.

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Follow Up By: Member - barbara M (NSW) - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 16:13

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 16:13
Hi Peter,
Our card is a Commonwealth Mastercard and we redeem our points for Caltex fuel they come in$25 value and you just use them to pay for your fuel when I can I use them in conjunction with 4c off dockets from Woolies.
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Reply By: Member - Mark E (VIC) - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 15:20

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 15:20
I read somewhere that in terms of the cost of fuel versus the average wages earned at the time, we are actually getting fuel quite cheaply.

Can someone here who is older than me (45 ouch) comment if they remember their wages v cost of fuel? I figure that we spend about $120 per week to feed two cars at the moment which equates (if my maths is correct) to about 15% of my wage...not allowing for long trips.

In reference to the above who mentioned that if you earn under $100k/year that you did something wrong in your youth........well, 3 university degrees must have been time poorly spent I reckon. Given the way things are going at the moment with the inequality of salaries between various occupations, I will certainly try to encourage my son to do something that he enjoys, but also to choose something that is well paid. The 'joy' of doing something that you love, ALWAYS wears off when there are those around you earning buckets of cash without having similar or greater educational or work demands. The old days of those with higher education earn more are gone. I feel the time I spent at university largely wasted....I could have been out earning a crust.



AnswerID: 287786

Follow Up By: fisho64 - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 15:38

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 15:38
personally I think that has been a bit of a problem (not referring directly to you Mark as I dont know your circumstance).
In the old days when people had free(ish) uni education and people who seemed to become serial students-but at the end with a degree in (say) History, Arts, and whatever else, graduate then find "who is going to pay me lots of money to use this?

Some people are better at creating with their hands, and some with their minds.
To me it is sweet that tradespeople are now (like several hundred years back also) valued high up the ladder again.
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Follow Up By: Footloose - Monday, Feb 18, 2008 at 18:12

Monday, Feb 18, 2008 at 18:12
Mark, there is no doubt that education has been devalued to the nth degree, so to speak. The rise and rise of the wages of the poorly educated (in many cases) simply means that neither of my children wanted to go to Uni. This was for a couple of reasons.
They'd seen mum and dad go through the education mill and the rewards on offer.(ha bloody ha)
And why would they want to graduate with a huge debt around their necks, when the kids next door can do an apprenticeship, have heaps of time to enjoy life and no HECS debt?

Where are tomorrows teachers, nurses, firemen etc going to come from if everyone works in the mining industry?
India? :))

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Follow Up By: Member - Mark E (VIC) - Monday, Feb 18, 2008 at 20:34

Monday, Feb 18, 2008 at 20:34

Glad someone agrees with me. I can guarantee that I have never been a "...serial student..." and I would argue that these types would have been in the minority to the extreme. Good on those who are earning the big bucks without much in the way of education, but don't deny those who have sacrificed much to educate themselves.

Having been in the teaching industry for 12 years, I can empathise with the current teaching EBA ads that we see on the TV. There are a whole range of trades that earn heaps more than teachers. Whilst I do not want to devalue the 'worth' of tradesman and other similar occupations who are now reaping the benefits, I agree with you that these other 'core' community professions are going to suffer badly in the future, in terms of not being able to attract suitable candidates. I worry about who is going to teach my children....standards will simply fall to attract the 'lesser' educated and/or interested.

I look at my own industry, which I have been in for 10 years now and wonder where things are going to end up. 30 odd years ago, there were ambulance drivers, who's job was to attend various 'medical' and 'trauma' situations, chuck someone on their stretcher and race them to hospital. Compare that with the responsibilities today, where intensive care paramedics, particularly, can, under specific circumstances perform anaesthetic procedures, normally considered within the realm of a surgical theatre, such as Rapid Sequence Induction for Intubation, Tension Pneumothorax decompression, cricothyroidotomy, and a number of other procedures which can be lifesaving in the correct circumstances. All this is done without direct medical supervision...... I can attest to the fact that Intensive Care Paramedics are underpaid for this level of responsibility.

Look up Wikepedia and you will find the following information regarding MICA Paramedics in Australia:
"MICA Paramedics

Mica Paramedics are extremely highly trained and experienced medical professionals.As with all paramedics they hold a bachelor degree in emergency health such as the B.Emerg Health (pmed) from Monash University.
Mica Paramedics must also complete a graduate diploma in emergency health. This requires concurrent employment with ambulance services in a clinical role and at least two years experience as a paramedic in the service. While also working as a paramedic the student must complete a year’s worth of course work on advance emergency health. Paramedics may also choose to complete a Masters in Emergency Health (Paramedic). However, this focuses more on research, emergency services management and community health rather clinical care.
Working as a MICA paramedic can be extremely emotionally taxing. Currently due to poor pay and excessive workload many MICA officers are resigning from the industry altogether or returning to work on the regular non MICA ambulances....."


I can vouch for the last comment as HALF of my current branch have either left the job or 'downgraded' their qualifications to go back to non-MICA ambulances, due to the poor remuneration versus the accountability and responsibility.

Currently the service deny there is a shortage of MICA Paramedics, claiming "..normal attrition..". This of course is utter cr@p, as very few of the more senior Ambulance Paramedics want to undertake the MICA training, due to the obvious lack of rewards for doing so. Management's answer to this is to 'lower-the-bar', by reducing the entrance requirements for the MICA course, thus attracting those who may be less suited to the job or have the wrong motivation. The outlook for the continuation of the world class MICA system that we enjoy in Melbourne may be short lived, I fear.

All we ask for is adequate remuneration for what we do. Unfortunately, being a 'government department' our only recourse is to industrial action, which I detest. The State government is very poor at coming to the table to negotiate on things like this and continually waffle on about "Government wages Policy....3% etc...)

Whoa, must have been on the heavy beer tonight.....that's my rant, though somewhat OT to the original post, though I'm sure all the travellers on this forum would want a competent, well educated MICA Paramedic to give them their best chance of survival should the unmentionable happen to them, whether in the city or in a remote area.


FollowupID: 553470

Reply By: Brian Purdue - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 15:30

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 15:30
It is all relevant. My wife was saying just the other day that shortly after we were married we paid off a BLACK & WHITE TV costing 480 quid. I was being paid 30 quid a week. The only difference is that electronics have become cheaper and everything else has a fairly constant ratio. The house we sold just 3 1/2 years ago has just been re-sold for twice what we got for it. If you stay out of debt and plan your trips the cost of touring the best country in the world is cheap. For me to leave Perth go to Pt Augusta to Alice and back downthrough the Kimberley over 7 weeks is cheaper than 27 days on the boat from Hong Kong to Singapore.
Brian Purdue
AnswerID: 287787

Follow Up By: Member - Rotord - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 18:45

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 18:45
Aggreed . An indication of our increased wealth is the ability to spend on what we want to do . In the 1950's people couldn't 4WD because they didn't have a car . If you scuba dived you couldn't afford to skydive or play golf . Now , at least if our house is modest , we can spend , or invest and accrue income producing assets . In Japan if you total a householders possessions he is ' wealthy ' , but he can't play golf because it costs $400,000 to join a club and $250,000 a year membership .One American was close to the truth when he said that national wealth was having rainfall and land .
FollowupID: 553098

Reply By: rumpig - Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 22:15

Saturday, Feb 16, 2008 at 22:15
this thread reminds me of our 5 week trip up the cape and back. when we got home we had $1500 worth of bills in the mail on the kitchen bench, pity we only had $400 left in the bank account. all i can say is, thank god we were miles in front on our mortgage repayments and were able to redraw money back out of the account. only redrew enough to pay the bills, the bank person was saying why don't you redraw more. this gave me an incentive to get back to work and earn some money, problem with being self employed and taking 5 weeks off is you don't have an income.
AnswerID: 287850

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