The Cost of Living on the Road

So often I hear people talk of how lucky we are to be caravanning. From a health perspective yes, we are lucky, very lucky. But from the financial perspective, well that is altogether different. From personal experience we’ve found that once you have the rig (van and tow vehicle) that suits your budget and needs, then life is cheaper on the road. “What about the fuel?”  I hear you say.

Keep your hair on! We all bemoan the price of fuel at some time or another but if you travel a little slower you will spread out your fuel costs. There is an added advantage to travelling slower and that is that you will get the opportunity to explore the smaller towns and their outlying areas. Those places that you used to race through when you were workers on holidays, well you’re not on holidays now, you’re retired and that means that you’ve got all the time in the world.

“And what about those expensive caravan parks?”

Well they’re a helluva lot cheaper than a hotel, a motel or even a caravan park cabin. The most that we’ve paid for a caravan park is $50 per night and before you have conniptions, it was at The Bungle Bungles and considering the fact that we were 2845kms from Perth, 1190kms from Darwin and heaven knows how far we were from Sydney, then I don’t blame them for charging a little more. In fact I thought it was good value for the invigorating open air showers alone.

We tend to mix our trips up a bit and stay at caravan parks, free camps, National Parks, Farm Stays and Showgrounds whichever has the most appeal in an area. With all of that in mind I did a tally of our travel costs since we’ve been caravanning and come up with:

440 nights, 65700kms

Average fuel per km $0.198

Average fuel per day $30.40

Average accommodation per night $20.12

Don’t forget, with a caravan you don’t have air fares, hotels, taxis or car hire and most importantly eating out is an option not a necessity.

Saving on clothes dryers

13 thoughts on “The Cost of Living on the Road

  1. Yes, we find the costs associated with travel to be OK…you still have to eat/cook at home so these costs remain the same and I can tell you we eat very well when on the road. Depending on how much exploring you do when you arrive at a destination is where the extra fuel costs add up but….that is what we are caravanning for – so we can take our time and explore all we want.
    Having said all that, our biggest travelling costs are across the Nullabor every time we want to head east……can’t you move a little closer to the west for us !!!!


  2. Well I’m still waiting for the day when we can hit the road and just drive and drive … and not have to come home for the start of school or Monday work! Definitely sounds like a good life, one that we’re both looking forward to one day. Great post.


  3. The things that would worry me are…. can you carry enough kitchen basics to make real cooking an option? And what cooking appliances can you realistically have? Also, do you have to be really tidy? As in ‘a place for everything, and everything in its place? And … being with the same person 24/7. The travelling part, and the open air would be wonderful!


    1. We carry an espresso machine. On board is a microwave and a regular oven and 4 burners. Outside there is a pullout pair of gas burners with a hot plate on top. We often carry a Weber Baby Q gas bbq that had a hood which is also good for roasting. A friend of ours carries an ice cream maker and picks wild berries. I bake bread. You do have to be tidy when you are in the move but it is so quick and easy to clean. I’ve found that all the couples we’ve met are very compatible. The lifestyle doesn’t suit folks who bicker. Thanks for giving me some new post ideas. 😉


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