Cost of living on the road.

Submitted: Friday, Apr 20, 2012 at 19:48
ThreadID: 95030 Views:2844 Replies:5 FollowUps:5
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Good evening all,

I know this question has alot of varibles thrown in but i am wondering if anyone has worked out a rough estimate of how much it cost to live on the road over a 12 month perod.We are thinking of taking the plunge and getting out and seeing this wonderful country of ours.Our situation would be roughly as follows without giving everything away.
We are both in our early 40s.
All kids grown up (we started our family very early)
We will own a good 4wd and a caravan that will be self sufficent in the way of power, shower, toilet, etc to take full advantage of free camps etc. Planning on staying in some areas for up to 1-4 weeks if regulations etc permit.
Will still have an investment property( that looks after itself financially) to go back to after what we a plan to be at least a 3 to 5 year venture.
We will also have approx 200 to 220k invested in something simple like a term deposit to help fund us along the way. We will also take advantage of working as we go when it suits as we are both quite multi skilled and still in good health to work.
Are we dreaming, or do you think we are in a good place to take this on? All coments good or bad welcome.

Cheers Gary and Jodie
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Reply By: Robert & Karen - Friday, Apr 20, 2012 at 20:06

Friday, Apr 20, 2012 at 20:06
We've spent 2 stints on the road, 3 and 2 month trips.

We roughly spent money as follows

Caravan Park per night ~$35
Free Camping Free
Petrol (driving days) per day $60
Food $20 - $100 (depending on your tastes)
Drink $???
Internet (per day) $5
Touristy outings $?

$200K investment @5-6% -> $$10-$12K per year ($1l per months/$250 per week)
Maintenance on fwd and caravan.

These are some of the items we looked at when we travel.

Whatever you do just do it!

Robert & Karen
AnswerID: 483694

Reply By: Motherhen - Friday, Apr 20, 2012 at 21:24

Friday, Apr 20, 2012 at 21:24
Gary and Jodie

There is no answer. It will be no more than you can afford and no less than you are willing to spend. So long as you have a readily available slice of funds in case of a major breakdown (say motor for tow vehicle), you can handle the rest according to your budget. If you are prepared to do anything, even cleaning toilets in caravan parks, work in season in key tourism locations is not hard to get. When travelling, fuel is the biggest cost - and you will be in total control of that. Enjoy the life.


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AnswerID: 483703

Follow Up By: Member - Peter R (QLD) - Friday, Apr 20, 2012 at 22:35

Friday, Apr 20, 2012 at 22:35
A rough guide is $1 per km and $140 p.d.

I read this some time ago and it seemed to work out for me on a couple of 3 month trips.

With what you propose you should do it for less as we stayed in parks all the time.

FollowupID: 758974

Follow Up By: equinox - Friday, Apr 20, 2012 at 23:46

Friday, Apr 20, 2012 at 23:46
Agree with earning money on the road.
When I worked at Kings Canyon for two years there were many people passing through who worked casually from 1 week to much longer periods.
Dish pigging, making beds and housekeeping, bar tending and glassys, cooks, chefs, sparkies, plumbers, maintenance officers, laundry attendants, front office attendants, grounds attendants etc...


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In whatever comes our way.

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Reply By: Member - John and Lynne - Saturday, Apr 21, 2012 at 08:53

Saturday, Apr 21, 2012 at 08:53
When travelling for about 6 months on several trips we found that it cost about the same to be on the road as it did to be at home! We did not work but obviously the ability and willingness to work at anything available is a big help for providing extras. We mostly cook our own meals but eat out sometimes as we do at home. We avoid the more blatant tourist rip offs but enjoy the special attractions like a flight over Lake Eyre. Yes you pay for fuel but we don't burn it up by trying to drive for hundreds of ks a day every day! We bush camp and use cheaper campgrounds when available as we prefer these and look for the smaller caravan parks rather than the big name chains when we need a CP.
If you are at home you are still using fuel and paying for gas and electricity and the other expenses involved in living and entertainment there. We find it balances out and, just as at home, you will spend what you can afford and be quite comfortable. Make sure you have some funds in reserve for emergencies and you will be fine. Just do it! Lynne
AnswerID: 483723

Follow Up By: Wayne david - Saturday, Apr 21, 2012 at 13:40

Saturday, Apr 21, 2012 at 13:40
John & Lynne, You sound like a carbon copy of the Missus & me in your approach to camping & what you will and won't spend $$'s on.

To be honest we live a pretty simple but comfortable life at home. Cooking 99% of your own meals & making your own lunch was a lesson I learnt the hard way when I was a single bloke without a clue. In fact my tutor must have thought me such a hopeless case that she took me in and here we are today happy as can be.

Last year as we travelled around Australia we found that it worked out pretty much the same being away as it did at home, provided you lived the same way. Of course that excludes higher fuel costs for long distance travel (naturally enough) and occasional luxury/fun things like a chopper flight over at Katherine Gorge or a river cruise at Kakadu.

We enjoy a mix of free camping & occasional paid camping. We also don't see the point in spending money & time getting somewhere and scrimping on something like a flight or a cruise that will show you so much in such a short time and bring you so much enjoyment.
FollowupID: 759011

Reply By: jodie0075 - Saturday, Apr 21, 2012 at 17:06

Saturday, Apr 21, 2012 at 17:06
Thankyou all for your comments. I think we will be giving it a shot but have alot of things to work out beforehand so hopefully by the end of the year we may be ready. Now the research and hunt begins for a good fwd and a suitable caravan that the 2 of us will be comfortable in and that will handle a little light off road use.Our budget for both is around $70k so i hope its acheivable. Any suggestions on either welcome.

Cheers Gary and Jodie
AnswerID: 483762

Follow Up By: Member - Old Girl - Saturday, Apr 21, 2012 at 20:07

Saturday, Apr 21, 2012 at 20:07
Narrow down a little bit. So many options.

1. Ute/dualcab/wagon
V8, 6 or 4 cyl
2. Full caravan/poptop
3. Shower/toilet or full ensuite or non at all
4. Size of the van your willing to lug around will determain your tug.
5. New or second hand

If this is your first time caravaning maybe worth a preloved van.

Have a great time shopping

FollowupID: 759058

Follow Up By: Member - John and Lynne - Sunday, Apr 22, 2012 at 12:23

Sunday, Apr 22, 2012 at 12:23
Shopping for a rig is a lot of fun and can become confusing! As many of us have found, to our cost, it is actually better to choose the van first and then choose a tug that will tow it with a decent payload and some weight to spare! Many (including us) have got caught by buying the tug first then finding it really is not up to the job! This is an expensive way to go! If you want a solidly built van that will handle average (or worse) dirt roads and be reasonably comfortable to live in, it will be fairly heavy, especially when loaded with water and gas etc sufficient for some camping and outback travel, so be careful to check all weights and restrictions for a tow vehicle and don't rush in, do your research. Do not just trust salesmen, they will tell you anything - we know! Good luck! Lynne
FollowupID: 759093

Reply By: SDG - Monday, Apr 23, 2012 at 23:36

Monday, Apr 23, 2012 at 23:36
Many people travell on just a pension. Fuel is the biggest weekly cost that I found
AnswerID: 483972

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