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We’ve been living out our #VanLife fantasy for the past 12 months, and we’ve spent far less than we would if we owned a home


Jarryd Salem and Alesha Bradford are the cofounders of Van Life Theory, an online resource about living and traveling in a campervan.

My wife, Alesha, and I have been traveling the world together for a decade, sometimes in a van.
We were in our native Australia at the start of the pandemic, and decided to try #VanLife again once lockdowns lifted.
We bought a 2008 Mercedes Sprinter campervan, which we named Marlee, and set out on the road.
stories from Personal Finance Insider.

Our total average cost per month: $2,350 (USD $1,750)
The couple has spent the past 12 months on the road.

All costs are averages and listed in AUD.

Back in 2008, when Alesha and I first met as broke backpackers, we bought an old Chevy van and spent three years traveling around Canada; it was an experience we always looked back on fondly.

We have dabbled in van life since then in Western Australia, Ireland, Chile, and New Zealand, so once lockdowns lifted in Australia, we decided to pursue our old dreams once more, documenting our experiences along the way.

We paid $48,000 (USD $35,000) for the van, already fully converted, and we’ve been living and traveling full-time in Marlee for the past 12 months. We have averaged about $2,350 (USD $1,750) per month for all of our expenses.

Considering the average monthly mortgage payment in Australia now sits around $2,400, and that’s not including bills, food, car loans, transport to and from work, etc, we are actually saving money by living this lifestyle. 

While it is entirely possible to travel in a van for a lot cheaper than this, we are living very comfortably on this budget, and having the time of our lives while we do it.

Here is a breakdown of each expense we have while living full-time on the road.

Accommodation and campgrounds: $120 (USD $90)
Their campervan includes a king-size bed.

Our motorhome is kitted out with everything required to be self-sufficient — solar panels, lithium battery, large inverter, kitchenette, composting toilet, hot shower, and even a king-size bed.

Being fully off-grid means we don’t need to stay in caravan parks or hotels to make use of the facilities. We use the app WikiCamps to find free and low-cost campsites wherever we go, and try not to pay for accommodation unless we absolutely have to.

The few times we will pay for a campground are when it’s a fantastic location, such as a national park, beach, or popular town, or if we need to stay somewhere particular for work.

Fuel: $350 (USD $260)
The get about 19.5 miles per gallon in their van.

Being a large, heavy van means that our fuel consumption sits around 19.5 miles per gallon, which isn’t terrible, but not overly economical and can result …read more

Source:: Business Insider

      

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