If you’ve been following our blog, you would have read the earlier budget post, where we discussed our costs when we traveled from Florida North up the East coast of the US to Canada (April – July 2017). In this post, we’ll discuss the costs for the second section of our year-long RV trip: crossing Canada – July, August & September 2017.
From the previous post on costs:
The Big 3
These are the 3 main expenses of being on the road (camping, fuel, food) so, if you can control those costs, you can somewhat control your destiny when it comes to how long you might be able to sustain your adventure and stretch your hard-earned & saved dollars.
- If you pay to camp overnight or if you choose to boondock can make a substantial difference in your monthly expenses (camping)
- If you decide to travel much and cover big distances – having covered over 26,000 miles on our year-long road trip, certainly added up to some serious diesel dollars (fuel)
- If you choose to cook for yourself when traveling or decide to eat out more often – most people are going to have a mix of both (food)
And don’t forget, other expenses – from your regular home life – are going to continue, such as paying for a cell phone, perhaps paying for medical insurance, continuing with online subscriptions such as Spotify, Amazon (Try Amazon Prime 30-Day Free Trial) or Netflix and of course, your vehicle (if using a car/truck/RV/boat etc.) will need to be registered & insured for any adventure. Speaking of expenses like cell phone, check out Project Fi for great coverage anywhere & everywhere (use the referral code below & we both save some $):
Finally, the miscellaneous costs can’t be forgotten. Things like laundry costs when you are on the road, vehicle repairs (rule of thumb here is 10% of the purchase price annually for maintenance), haircuts, tolls, park entries, activities (seeing a movie or renting a kayak) and any clothing or footwear that might need to be replaced if you are going to be on the road for an extended period of time.
The breakdown on costs from US East Coast Trip; April – July 2017:
- Total – All expenses (every single dollar spent) – for our first 75 days on the road, traveling up the East coast of the US, from Florida to the Canadian border: $6,906 ($92/day average).
- Total – Big 3 only (camping, food, diesel) – for our first 75 days on the road, traveling up the East coast of the US, from Florida to the Canadian border: $5,090 ($68/day average).See this post from May 3rd for more detail on those US East coast costs.
The breakdown on costs from crossing Canada; July – September 2017:
What follows are our costs for this Canadian portion of our trip, from leaving Maine on July 5th 2017 until taking the ferry (from Vancouver Island) back into the US on September 27th (84 nights). These are OUR costs, they will not be the same as your costs; everyone’s adventure will be different. These are just meant as a guideline (all numbers are rounded up for ease of reading & costs given are in USD).
- Camping $762 ($9/day average) – we actually only paid for 35 nights of camping in Canada, which would mean an average of ~$22/night camping for those nights paid for. We boondocked for 40 nights in Canada and stayed with friends for 9 nights
- Groceries $1,738 ($21/day average)
- Eating out $709 ($8/day average)
- Combined food spend $2,437 ($29/day average)
- Diesel $1,622 ($19/day average)
- Miscellaneous; will vary hugely between different travelers, different locations and between different periods within one’s own trip $2,362 ($28/day) – includes items such as $52 in laundry costs, $84 in propane fills, over $1,300 in RV supplies & maintenance (including a visit to the Mercedes dealership in Quebec City) and extra items such as $57 to visit the 3 hot springs in the Canadian Rockies and $262 in tolls and ferries during this section of our adventure.
Total – All expenses (every single dollar spent) – for our 84 days traveling across Canada: $7,183 / $85 day average).
Total – Big 3 only (camping, food, diesel) – for our 84 days traveling across Canada: $4,821 / $57 day average).
FYI: Both of these average daily totals are less than they were during the first section of our RV road-trip, where we traveled from Florida North up the East coast of the US to the Canadian border. The big difference is that we found it much easier to boondock in Canada, than we had done on the East coast of the US (which is so much more built up).
During our 75 night trip from Florida to Maine, we spent an average of $29 per day on camping and as you can see from the above data, we spent an average of only $9 per day on camping when we traveled across Canada (84 nights).
The addition of boondocking to your RV road-trip can make a substantial difference to your overall spending! Join us next time when we continue our travels in the US, including Washington, Oregon & California (30 more free days of boondocking!).
If you would like any further specifics on boondocking locations etc., please comment on this post and we’ll respond with details on some of the great spots we found along the way.
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