The common questions that we receive about our RV trip around America are “How are you going to do this with kids?” and “How much is it going to cost?”.
We’ve still got a lot to figure out about how we are going to do this with two small children, but we have a pretty solid grasp of the financials (…queue the sudden financial surprise…)
As part of our burgeoning concept on how to live a life of adventure, we dive deeply into financial matters surrounding adventure travel, including household spending analysis, cost cutting, budgets, savings, and earnings.
Right now, we of course don’t know exactly how much we will spend, but we have created a thoughtful monthly budget that I wanted to share with you.
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We’re sharing our expenses while RVing around America
Every month, I will be tracking our expenses to the dollar. I will post the monthly expenses on this page, along with the deviation from the budget, and we’ll have a solid financial picture of what it costs to RV around America.
The table below gives a snapshot of our monthly adventure travel budget for RV’ing around America for a year, below that you will find links to the monthly expenses published so far.
We’re expect to spend $4,454 per month on daily living expenses and activities, which means we expect to spend $53,448 for travel on top of the costs to buy and outfit the Airstream.
A few important things to note about this table.
- I have not included any of our mortgage financials or ongoing investments in this table. There is a more detailed analysis and links to other articles on the page about Creating an Adventure Travel Budget. This table just reflects our daily spending habits.
- We will be staying in the RV most of the time, camping primarily in state and national parks.
- We are cutting way back on restaurants, but we’re keeping some fun money in the budget for attraction fees and splurges.
- My responsive tables need a little work, so this table view will be easier to read on mobile phones in the future.
We’re happy to answer cost related questions. If you’ve got them, others will, so ask away in the comments section below.
|Spending Category||6 Mos Average Monthly Spend||Adventure Travel Budget||% Change from average||Comments|
|Auto & Fuel||$413||$1,300||215%||Including gas, insurance, repairs|
|Bills & Utilities||$571||$200||-65%||Covers 2 cell phones + hot spot|
|Business Services||$31||$29||-5%||UPS shipping and such|
|Entertainment||$318||$380||20%||For fun activities|
|Financial||$-||$-||0%||No investment reflected here|
|Food & Dining||$1,811||$1,000||-45%||Groceries, restaurants, treats|
|Gifts & Donations||$145||$40||-72%||Monthly church contribution will continue|
|Health & Fitness||$106||$100||-6%||Doctor visit and meds|
|Home||$-||$-||0%||No mortgages reflected here|
|Kids||$2,344||$-||-100%||No child care|
|Personal Care||$140||$75||-46%||Haircuts and other treatment|
|Services Fees & Charges||$93||$100||8%||For random fees and charges|
|Shopping||$1,167||$300||-74%||Splurges and such|
|Travel & Lodging||$470||$930||98%||Average $30/night stay for 31 night
|Total||$7,608||$4,454||-41%||This reduction seems reasonable|
Cost to RV America in Total
Well, we didn’t make it quite a year. However, we made it over nine months on the road. As we wrote in one of our last posts from this adventure, here’s why we ended our year of adventure after nine months.
In total, however, we spent $80,842 on our RV adventure around America, including Airstream travel trailer, car and trailer enhancements, daily living and traveling expenses, and our $5,000 mistake.
Between the months of March and October, our full months living on the road, we spent an average of $5,611 traveling by RV. In our budget described above, we had projected to spend $4,454 per month. We overshot our average monthly spend by about 20%. The monthly expenses, described below, will give you a crystal clear sense about where we blew our budget (hint: food).
For a complete breakdown of our monthly expenses, including the replacement of our stolen generators, follow the links in the next section.
RV Travel Expenses by Month
Click on the links below to be taken to a page where we have broken down our monthly expenses while RVing around America.