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Old 01-29-2020, 06:00 PM   #1
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Full timers...what's your monthly spend?

Trying to decide whether we have enough funds to retire early and take off travelling at months at a time! My dream :-)

Wondered if any full timers or 'long termers' would care to share what their monthly spend is? Kinda how long is a piece of string I know. But trying to get a gauge on potential ballpark figures. I.e. everything.....camping costs, food, etc....

Thanks!
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Old 01-29-2020, 06:17 PM   #2
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It all depends. Will you be traveling every day or sitting in one place for months at a time? When we travel to the annual Osoyoos Rally and back we spend close to $2,000 for food, gas, camp fees for 15 days of fun. http://www.escapeforum.org/forums/f3...oos-11456.html
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Old 01-29-2020, 06:39 PM   #3
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It all depends.

Probably considerably less than $2,000 if you park your trailer at a Walmart and watch shoppers go in and out.
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Old 01-29-2020, 07:17 PM   #4
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Thanks.

I would envisage us setting up base camp somewhere for a month at a time, and then moving on,
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Old 01-29-2020, 07:43 PM   #5
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There is a road trip where campers keep the temperature at 70 year round by moving with the seasons....https://www.tripsavvy.com/70-degree-...d-trip-3967947
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Old 01-29-2020, 07:50 PM   #6
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We are not full timers by any measure. Our RV park in Mexico costs $500/mo and that includes all utilities. Add $300/mo or less for food, $15/mo for propane. RV insurance was $80/mo for Mexico for 6 mo. Getting here cost us about $75/day for diesel, parking along the way was $10-$25/night. Took us 5 days to get to Puerto Vallerta. When on the road in the US we spend less than $1000/mo. We tend to boondock in the US, not in Mexico. Eat more meals in than out. We travel 4-6 months a year, with AZ as our home base.
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Old 01-29-2020, 08:50 PM   #7
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I keep a spreadsheet of my camping expenses, so I can give you some info on camping fees. I've taken five trips that have lasted more than a month since picking up my trailer in April 2014. Here are the camping fees. Please excuse the formatting, or lack thereof:

Year nights total average

2014 53 $887.97 $16.75 / night

2015 163 $2472.13 $15.79 / night

2016 40 $819.70 $20.50 / night

2017 186 $3369.33 $18.11 / night

2018 90 $2081.73 $23.13 / night

Details:
- Almost all of my travel has been in the U.S.
- I stay mostly at national and state parks, COE campgrounds, etc., but no boondocking on BLM land that I remember.
- My trailer is equipped with solar panels so I frequently don't use hookups.
- My propane usage seems excessive compared to others, so I won't list it.
- Cooking while on the road should cost about as much as cooking at home, in theory. I eat out too much at home and on the road, so my food expenses aren't realistic, either.
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Old 01-29-2020, 09:27 PM   #8
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Most FT's report similar camping expenses as Mike's, Gary's and Jim's. The FT budget item that is generally reported as the largest is fuel if you're moving around so it can vary from moving across country with short stays to staying put for long stays and then moving to the next long stay.
Month stays are the best values at commercial campgrounds while using free options when traveling from point A to B help average out the campground cost. COE and National parks with the Senior Pass are very good deals, but also usually limited to 14 day stays.
NM has one of the best annual camping passes for $225 out of state and $180 in state with basically unlimited camping. There are always things out there like that to find.
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Old 01-30-2020, 01:22 AM   #9
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done 3 months at a time for 6 years, mostly state and federal parks, rarely a free night. A typical trip of about 8k miles averages out to $700 a week. That's for all travel costs, gas, food, lodging, play $, does not include insurance, rig payments, or maintenance costs. Not being full time, costs associated for the rest of life continue. The only reduction in other costs is heating the house.
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Old 01-30-2020, 06:42 AM   #10
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There was an article (that I can't find) in one of the trailer magazines that provided info on 19 full time couples. Monthly expenses averaged $2100, with a low of $1100 and a high of $3000. My wife and I spent the entire 2016 year full timing and we averaged just over $1500/month. Mostly boon docking but doing a lot of driving around exploring (which adds $ to the gas bill). Health insurance, gas, and food were the three biggest expenditures. Some months had high bumps (like having to replace all 4 tires on our tug), others were way lower.
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Old 01-30-2020, 08:03 AM   #11
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Questions like this always confuse me . In this case is the OP going to sell his home , all his possessions and live in his trailer or is he just talking about a taking a long vacation.?
When we go on a trip I don’t count food as a trip expense cause if I stayed home I’d still have to eat. I don’t count the cost of health insurance or clothing as a travel expense
To me these are living expenses not travel expenses .
Campground fees , additional fuel , cost of viewing attractions , cost of purchasing / maintaining a trailer are travel expenses
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Old 01-30-2020, 08:30 AM   #12
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....I donít count the cost of health insurance ... as a travel expense...
If you are a Canadian travelling in Canada, your healthcare costs are pretty much the same as if you are at home. However, if you travel outside of Canada, you will have to pay extra to have out of country healthcare coverage.
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Old 01-30-2020, 11:19 AM   #13
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If you are a Canadian travelling in Canada, your healthcare costs are pretty much the same as if you are at home. However, if you travel outside of Canada, you will have to pay extra to have out of country healthcare coverage.
And not only that the OP would have to be in BC for five months each year in order to keep healthcare coverage.

We once considered full time but would make our residence ON as we'd have no trouble spending five months there since we've lots of family in ON
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Old 01-30-2020, 11:25 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by BritCanuck View Post
Trying to decide whether we have enough funds to retire early and take off travelling at months at a time! My dream :-)

Wondered if any full timers or 'long termers' would care to share what their monthly spend is? Kinda how long is a piece of string I know. But trying to get a gauge on potential ballpark figures. I.e. everything.....camping costs, food, etc....

Thanks!
There are a quite a few RV and VanLife folks full timing in various size rigs who've produced informative YouTube videos covering this topic. Check them out if you haven't already.

We're planning on going full time for a year beginning Fall 2020 and have found the YouTube videos to be entertaining and beneficial. Like other's have pointed our here, there are so many individual variables to consider. We've got our budget planned and built in a cushion for the unexpected.
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Old 01-30-2020, 12:09 PM   #15
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Thanks, which Youtubers would you recommend?



Quote:
Originally Posted by jadams View Post
There are a quite a few RV and VanLife folks full timing in various size rigs who've produced informative YouTube videos covering this topic. Check them out if you haven't already.

We're planning on going full time for a year beginning Fall 2020 and have found the YouTube videos to be entertaining and beneficial. Like other's have pointed our here, there are so many individual variables to consider. We've got our budget planned and built in a cushion for the unexpected.
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Old 01-30-2020, 12:13 PM   #16
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Well weíre looking at the cost of maintaining a semi vacant home whilst also doing extended travel.

Insurance costs would be additional if we visit the US.

Thanks for all the replies folks!

Quote:
Originally Posted by steve dunham View Post
Questions like this always confuse me . In this case is the OP going to sell his home , all his possessions and live in his trailer or is he just talking about a taking a long vacation.?
When we go on a trip I donít count food as a trip expense cause if I stayed home Iíd still have to eat. I donít count the cost of health insurance or clothing as a travel expense
To me these are living expenses not travel expenses .
Campground fees , additional fuel , cost of viewing attractions , cost of purchasing / maintaining a trailer are travel expenses
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Old 01-30-2020, 12:22 PM   #17
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Thanks, which Youtubers would you recommend?
I'll get back to you tonight when I'm at home and have more free time.
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Old 01-30-2020, 12:43 PM   #18
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While I don't full time & I keep a house in Oswego, NY, I do travel 6 - 8 months of the year. I usually do a wrap up of expenses at the end of each trip. All I usually include is fuel, propane & campground costs, but that might be helpful. In recent years, I have spent considerable time at the Long Term Visitor Areas in AZ & CA, greatly reducing campground costs ($40.00/2 weeks or $180.00 for 7 months))

2012 Trip - Spreadsheet
2014 Campground Averages - Spreadsheet
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2019 (Not Finished, but as of 1/30/20, 101 days, $13.72 Campground, $986.11 Fuel & $68.73 Propane.)
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Old 01-30-2020, 12:53 PM   #19
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Insurance costs would be additional if we visit the US.

Depending on your age and health, travel medical insurance can kill you. If you travel outside of BC, inside Canada, you still need travel medical but the price is not bad. You can travel Canada and the world with reasonable premiums, but if you add U.S. to your coverage, it can more than double.

You can check out travel medical costs by going to BCAA ( online or in person ) and get a quote, after filling out a medical history.
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Old 01-30-2020, 03:40 PM   #20
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Depending on your age and health, travel medical insurance can kill you. If you travel outside of BC, inside Canada, you still need travel medical but the price is not bad. You can travel Canada and the world with reasonable premiums, but if you add U.S. to your coverage, it can more than double.

You can check out travel medical costs by going to BCAA ( online or in person ) and get a quote, after filling out a medical history.
We use Medipac which is recommended by the Cdn. Snowbird Assoc. it's likely cheaper than BCAA especially Glenn when you've posted about how much it would be for you to travel south.
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