UK to Australia barebones costs
Hi, what I'm looking for is what it would cost one person with one bike to travel to Australia via Iran, India, SE Asia (flexible though). Not per day costs but what it would be if you only added up fuel, borders and shipping the final oversea stretch to Oz. Don't factor in food, drink, accommodation etc. I've searched already but all I can see are all approximate per day costs. I camp a lot, couchsurf in cities, and plan on WWOOFing and spending time working with some organisations on the way so including food & accommodation costs aren't helping my calculations. Thanks!
edit: bike is a 34L Tenere
My experience is almost 4 years old, so may be not so accurate any more... (and we were 2 persons on 1 bike, but regarding prices of fuel and freighting, it probably doesn´t matter so much.)
If I compare prices to Europe, where petrol was ~1,20-1,30 at that time, it was very expensive in Turkey (in fact at about 1,70 euros per litre was probably the most expensive petrol on the whole planet at that time!)... but then in Iran it was cheap, even though it had become 5-6 times more expensive than what it used to be, after they had moved to petrol cards earlier that year – before this change, bottled water had been more expensive than petrol! In Pakistan it wasn´t so cheap, but still cost less than in Europe. In India, maybe around 70-80 eurocents a litre, not so different in Thailand, and less than 50 eurocents a litre in Malaysia and Indonesia (which was probably the cheapest of all). In Australia, petrol was again expensive, only a bit less than in Europe, and the price was higher in some more remote areas.
I think most travellers have to freight their bikes on this route at least a couple of times, too. We sent from Chennai to Bangkok by air (via Kuala Lumpur), and we paid some 600 euros total for the bike, plus 200 per head for our own flights. Airfreight from Kathmandu to Bangkok also seems like a popular route, and might be easier than sending from India.
There weren´t any ferries at the time, so we also had to send the bike from Penang (Malaysia) to Belawan (Indonesia) on a small cargo boat, and took a passenger boat ourselves – so crossing the Straight of Malacca was maybe 200-300 euros total (includes us & the bike).
And later on there was a time of chaos in East Timor, so we decided to stay out, and because of this, ended up sending the bike to Perth from Bali, again by air, and this was expensive at 1200 euros (mostly because was not possible to send direct, so it made a "small" detour via Melbourne!)... the Perkins cargo boat from East Timor to Darwin would´ve only been around 20% of that money (but I still think it was okay to pay more, and not get shot at or something!!) And again we payed some 200 per head for our own flights (Bali to Perth).
Costs at the borders were not so much, and in fact most crossings went more smoothly than we thought beforehand. We had the carnet, which you´re also gonna need for this route, if you want to get the bike to Pakistan, India, Indonesia or Australia (in Oz, your vehicle also needs to pass the quarantine inspection, and roadworthiness tests, and you need to get it insured, so budget a few hundred euros for these – and make sure it is very clean, and that you have received the Oz customs approval, before you send it over!)
In Asia, we only had 3rd party insurance for Thailand, and in the rest of the countries our bike was totally uninsured, but I cannot recommend doing likewise. If you have a serious accident, then without any insurance you are guaranteed to be in deep trouble. (But also remember, that having some cheap border insurance does not really guarantee anything, either!)
In general, Europe was the most expensive area, followed closely by Oz, but then all countries between them were variably cheap. The difference was actually quite dramatic, I remember thinking that we could stay almost a week in some places in India or Indonesia, for the same money that we´d spend in ONE DAY in Europe! But of course the accommodations, food, etc., are not fully comparable either. Still, if I was trying to save money, I´d go fast across Europe & Oz, and spend more time in those cheaper countries.
May be not relevant to you, but all in all we spent (in six months) some 15-16 thousand euros total, and that includes everything, for two people: food, accommodations (we had no tent), petrol, all freightings and even our own flights back home.
Hope these are of any help. But keep in mind some things may have changed already.
Something more here:
MOTO1 - Matkalla
Did Aus to uk 4years back and i rough camped and cooked for myself in all but the cheapest countries.
I managed on 20 euros a day, mostly gas.
Its cheaper to fly calcutta bangkok than any other route
Spend longer in Indonesia if you have time it was super
Here's my 2 bobs worth... It all depends on how barebones you are talking. Assuming:
I would estimate Euro 20-30k everything included.
If you work it the other way then:
20,000/356 = 56 Euros per day
30,000/356 = 84 Euros per day
Generally speaking, the faster you travel the more expensive and the higher you need to budget. Also you need to consider things like will you buy souvenirs and do tourism. Do you need hotels or can you sleep by the roadside? Will you be travelling in a group? Will you drink lots of Beer?
I would like to know more details TNT, how long did you travel, how many kms and through which countries? 20Euros/day is an underestimate in my opinion, but if you don't stay any length of time in Europe or Australia, then it maybe possible when living off pasta and baked beans x3 meals per day.
@Pecha72 Thanks, very informative post. Just out of interest why did you fly Chennai to Bangkok and not go round overland?
Whether or not China is an option, first and foremost depends on the thickness of your wallet. Going from Nepal to Laos would cost you _very_serious_ money (serious enough, that very few actually do it!), and you´d travel with a guide, something you´d need to arrange months in advance with the other paperwork. And Tibet is a sensitive area, which brings the costs up rather than down. During some political unrest it has been closed for foreigners, too.
We never considered Tibet/China as a real option because of money, and also because our time for the trip was limited, and we were in India in midwinter, so crossing the Himalayas, and the high Tibetan Plateau would´ve probably been impossible on a bike anyway.
And sad as it is (considering that in fact a land route, that stays south of the Himalayas, actually exists) you can probably easily count with your fingers the number of people, who have succesfully crossed from India to Burma and on to Thailand with their own vehicles since 1962. I´ve understood that it is a problem to even approach the Burmese border (in the eastern states of India), and you´ll need special permits for that.
Regards China, it may be worth pointing out, that going from the Stans via westernmost bit of China to the Karakoram Highway and Pakistan seems like a feasible option. More or less the same things will be required to enter China, but it does not necessitate you to stay several weeks inside China, so the costs should be more bearable. And especially now, when Iran is becoming more difficult for certain passport holders, that route may become more popular and you may be able to join a group of overlanders and split the costs of a guide.
same route next year.
Im going this way next year and have allowed for $30,000 Australian so far, around £20,000. I have limited time so intend to go fairly quickly 16-18 Weeks. I will miss Indonesia this time but do it at later date.
I was origonally going via China but this has fell through so Iran-Pakstan-India then fly to Bangkok is the current plan.
I was thinking of leaving UK in late august arriving Singapore around November. Fly to Darwin and complete my last couple of weeks in Aus.
My main concern is heat in middle east to Asia, leaving in summer means too hot, perhaps too wet etc.
When would be the best time to leave UK do you think?
Travelling quickly and not doing the Himalayas then you could leave the UK either early, like Feb and hope you arrive not too late in Iran, Pakistan. Or you could leave towards the end of summer in Europe.
2nd option is probably better as you'd be less likely to need cold weather gear.
Regarding what Pesha said, he is absolutely right. Flying over Burma is the quickest and cheapest option, but, Burma may be changing politically, so keep you're eyes and ears open, you never know if you could be the first to cross it... now that would be a big thrill.
cost/best time to go
Turkey-Iran-Pakistan-India, I think there are three major factors regarding climate:
- Severe winter especially in eastern Turkey, but depending on year could also affect in northern/central Iran (and of course cold can occasionally give you trouble even in southern Europe as well); could be chilly anywhere between October to April, but the 2-3 midwinter months in eastern Turkey, because of altitude, are just too cold, at least for bikers.
- Heat in the desert areas, on the well worn path particularly Dasht-e Lut in Iran, and Baluchistan in Pakistan. Can be among the hottest places on Earth, that kind of heat is enough to become a real danger, and I would stay out during those months, or take the necessary precautions.
- Monsoon rains, and you´ll be in that area, when you descend to the Indus valley in Pakistan. June to September should usually be wettest, but can continue until the end of November. Before the rains those plains (extending to north India) are often very hot.
We are in the process of doing it at the moment, Europe is not cheap so be prepared for that, but camping is easy, however expect to pay between 5 - 12 euros in a camp site and in some countires now you cannot wild camp, you will be woken up in the night and told to move on. Asia is very cheap 2 of us are getting by on 300 quid a week and thats including everything, you could do it for less but we have been enjoying oursleves eating out, staying in hostels or hotels that are clean and we have done jungle tours etc.
Iran was DIRT cheap we where getting by on 12 dollars a day fuel included, i think the whole trip will set us back about 30k total (we are 2 up on 1 bike so you can prob take 25k for 1 person) but we had an extra couple saved for emergencies like the one im suffering at the moment as we have blown a rear tyre India.
Flying the bike from Nepal is easy, we haven't done it yet but have met plenty of others who have and we have met the guy from Eagle eyes cargo and we know its about 600 dollars. We could not get visa'a for pakistan so we had to get the ferry to Dubai and then fly from Duabi to Nepal which set us back another 1000 dollars.
We looked at getting through tibet and china, but you need 3 other bikes and a 4X4 and you looking abutt 3,000 dollars each for about 1 month, not including fuel, food, or accomdation. You have time so if you want to organise this then you can but its a lengthy process, shame as it would be excellent to do.
Hope this helps,
PM me if u have any questions.
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