Being on the road for 14 months, it’s only natural that people want to know how we can afford it.
It’s really hard for people to comprehend just how cheap it is to live on the road. So here it is. Here is our budget.
Petrol etc: $100 a week.
This might not seem like much but lucky for us, Ned gives great mileage! $100 will actually get us about 750km! Which is waaaay more driving than we normally do. Generally we stay at every second place for 2 to 3 nights. Which means we usually only spend about $50 a week. The remainder of the money sits in it’s own keycard account and accrues. It has accrued so much over the last 14 months that we’ve capped it at $1000! It has not only paid for petrol, but also gas refills, repairs, new tyres, light bulbs etc. And there is still always $1000 in the account!
Food: $100 a week.
Again, this doesn’t sound like much, and actually it’s not. But it is more than enough if you eat wisely. Once a week Roh gets hot chips for lunch, but the biggest way we save on our food budget is that we make/bake every thing else ourselves. We bake our own bread. 2 loaves costs $1. I bake breakfast muffins. A dozen costs $2 and lasts 12 days. (keep leftover in the freezer and take one out each morning for the next day). We make blissballs (30 for about $2) or biscuits (20 for about $2), or eat nuts and dried fruit for snacks. We drink UHT milk and buy free-range eggs from farms we come across. We don’t eat meat, drink soft drinks or juices or alcohol. We travel with a sourdough culture and use it to make our own wraps and pizza bases. We get about 100 wraps per 1Kg of flour ($0.80). When we find cheap vegetables we cook it in bulk and store it. In our freezer we always have home made tomato sauce (which we use for pasta, pizza, pizza puffs etc), pumpkin soup, curry (which we can defrost for curry, or put in puff pastry to make samosa), veg nuggets (mash a heap of veg together, coat in egg, flour and panko, fry then freeze and you have veg nuggets! Gypsy LOVES them) and more. We also eat a lot of staples such as rice, lentils, chickpeas, beans and the occasional pasta. These are all cheap and really help to bulk out a meal. The bulk of our weekly shop is in fresh fruit (5 bananas, 3 apples, grapes, plums, peaches etc) and vegetables. We probably spent $10-15 on fruit, and $15 on vegetables a week? On top of that we probably spend maybe $10-15 a week restocking staples. Some weeks are more expensive than others, but we are flexible with what we buy. This week for example we needed to buy a new bottle of olive oil as well as soy sauce so it was quite an expensive shop at $60. We decided this week we couldn't justify buying tomatoes at $9 a kilogram. Sundried will have to do.
Accomodation: $50 a week
We have only stayed at 5 caravan parks in the last 14 months. 99% of the time we freecamp. Investing in our solar setup and getting a portable toilet and water tank have been such great investments. So even though it is called the accomodation budget, for the most part it is spent on laundry and showers. In SA we had a National Parks pass ($88) which entitled us to enter and camp in almost every national/state park in the state for free! We loved that pass so much. It let us explore so many beautiful places that we would not have gone otherwise. Here in WA, we also have the parks pass, but for $85, you only get entry into the parks. Accommodation is extra. And so far at least, there seems to be a distinct lack of freecamps in this corner of the state. I think I’m actually going to have to upgrade our allowance to $100 a week. It’s dire. (lol)
Misc: $50 a fortnight
There are always little extras that we need to buy. Pegs, or a new jumper for gypsy, soap, toothpaste etc. These come out of this budget. Mostly it accrues until we change seasons again or find an awesome op shop in a gorgeous little town.
So there you have it, for $275 a week we not only survive, we thrive. We see so much, we experience so much, we eat healthily and we certainly don’t deprive ourselves. And all for much less than most people pay for rent alone.