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  #1  
Old 7 Oct 2012
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So, costs of indefinite travelling

I'm in a rather fortunate position. My house will rent for a good chunk more than my monthly mortgage payment is. With all investments, minus all costs, I should clear circa £1,000 (GBP) a month (could be more if I switched to interest only, but would like to keep paying off the capital). Indefinitely. I also will have some savings to work from also.

At some point in the future, I'd really like to take some time out, indefinitely to ride around the world.

In short, my question is whether £1,000 a month is enough?

Obviously I realise the actual question is more complicated than that - taking into account factors such as where I go, where I stay in those places, what bike I ride, how many miles a month I cover etc.

I plan to ride a BMW 1200GS (2011/2012 bike) which supposedly does 40mpg

I want to see a lot of the world (who here doesn't!!), and I understand that if I'm in Africa camping, I'll spend less ££ than if I'm in 5* hotels in Europe. I don't plan to stay in luxurious accommodation, some nights camping, others in b&bs, motels, hostels etc. I would have thought on average, 200 miles a day, 3 days a week, so lets say 2.5k miles a month just riding about. So, about 60 gallons a month, or 250 litres a month. I estimate this to be £400 (worst case scenario) a month. This leaves me with £600 or £20 a day. To me, that doesn't sound like enough taking into account repairs, tyres, food etc.

However, I've seen people talk about travelling on £500 a month, but it seems too cheap to me!

I would plan on starting in Europe and seeing lots of that in the summer and then heading into the Southern Hemisphere, probably Africa around September, following the sun! So, if some savings are spent in first part of trip, not the end of the world.

I would always have a contingency budget of £2k to get me out of a bind, and £10k minimum of credit card space if relly needed.

Am I mental?!
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Old 7 Oct 2012
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I'm betting we are going out of the recession, and that property prices will rise. As the UK, as Norway, has its own currency, and government borrowing is mostly in their own currency, they have been able to keep interest rates low. My bet is that the growth in the property market, rematal prices, and salaries, will be greater than the interest growth.

If I was to go on a trip, I would go for interest only and live a bit more comfortable now. If my bet is correct, then 5, 10, 20 years from now, the relative size of your loan compared to the rent you get, is ever smaller... even if you havent paid down on the loan wit a single pound.
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Old 7 Oct 2012
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Originally Posted by Wheelie View Post
I'm betting we are going out of the recession, and that property prices will rise. As the UK, as Norway, has its own currency, and government borrowing is mostly in their own currency, they have been able to keep interest rates low. My bet is that the growth in the property market, rematal prices, and salaries, will be greater than the interest growth.

If I was to go on a trip, I would go for interest only and live a bit more comfortable now. If my bet is correct, then 5, 10, 20 years from now, the relative size of your loan compared to the rent you get, is ever smaller... even if you havent paid down on the loan wit a single pound.
That's all well and good, if you're right. If you're wrong however...

Also, interest rates can't be kept this artificially low forever and when they go up, people will default. People will lose their houses. House prices will drop. If I can afford it, I'd rather have more of the mortgage paid off. It's also only a £200 a month difference or so either way anyway. No big deal.

In the last 10 months, house has increased a fair chunk anyway.
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Old 7 Oct 2012
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Short and sweet, that's not enough!
Our trips (Asia and currenty South America average out at £70 per day for 2 people and 2 bikes (BMW 650's) that's everything included in that figure from the time you walk out the front door.

Cheers
Pete
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Old 7 Oct 2012
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Originally Posted by mcgiggle View Post
Short and sweet, that's not enough!
Our trips (Asia and currenty South America average out at £70 per day for 2 people and 2 bikes (BMW 650's) that's everything included in that figure from the time you walk out the front door.

Cheers
Pete
Fair enough. So £2100 for 2 people, 2 bikes. I imagine its not halved for 1 person, 1 bike! £1500 a month?
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Old 7 Oct 2012
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Originally Posted by TheMoose View Post
I would plan on starting in Europe and seeing lots of that in the summer and then heading into the Southern Hemisphere, probably Africa around September, following the sun! So, if some savings are spent in first part of trip, not the end of the world.

I would always have a contingency budget of £2k to get me out of a bind, and £10k minimum of credit card space if relly needed.

Am I mental?!
Of course you're mental! I like you already and we haven't even met.;-)

Everyone is different. The only way to find out if YOU can travel around the world on 1000 pounds a month is to give it a go and see for yourself. I know I could do it easily.

Worst case scenario you find out after a few months that the sacrifices necessary to travel on your alloted budget aren't to your liking and you head home or try plan B.

Best luck!
John Downs
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Old 8 Oct 2012
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Fair enough. So £2100 for 2 people, 2 bikes. I imagine its not halved for 1 person, 1 bike! £1500 a month?
So 50% more than you have!
If you find somewhere cheap to sleep and stay there a long while, don't put any fuel in the bike, eat from supermarket out of date shelves you can do it for that but if that's the case why not throw the towel in and live on the streets all together!
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Old 8 Oct 2012
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My personal experience:
petrol - about 20 euros a day when on the move, 5 when just riding around
accomodation - 0-20 euros a day
food - 0-10 euros a day with a few exceptions when I had a massive dinner in Italy and France
service - about 1000 euros for the 80k kilometres, so around 20-30 euros a day

All in 5-80 euros a day on a GS500, staying mostly in helpx places in Europe. Africa can be cheaper in some places but much more expensive in others. Visas and other documents cost a lot, too. I would assume that the beemer will have higher service costs, carnet de passage will cost a fortune and be a bit of an overkill if you only want to do 200 miles a day for 3 days a week.

If I were you, I would fly to some place South-Asia, rent or buy a small bike and live on that grand nicely.
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Old 8 Oct 2012
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I think you could do it on £1k but you'll have a better chance if you go for a smaller bike, give up , and develop a taste for rice & lentils.

Like others have said, give it a go and if you eat too much into your safety net then switch tactics. Personally, if I were in your shoes (you lucky sod!) I'd use a bicycle instead. But that's just me.
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Old 8 Oct 2012
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I think your £1000 per month should be sufficient under certain constraints such as where in the world you head and relying on you living a fairly modest lifestyle particularly when in developed countries and spending less time in these countries and more in cheaper, probably Asian countries, even Africa can be surprisingly expensive.

The other thing will be living on less than your £33 a day that you have so you are saving up for those big expenses such as shipping, renewing travel insurance which can be £700-800 a year, servicing bike especially if there is a major repair or a pair of tyres especially if you are not capable of working on your own bike.

Using a GS 1200 rather than a 250- 500cc single could be the real fly in the ointment. The extra running cost will require you to make such serious savings in other areas such as choice of accommodation, you will have to camp a lot, no in the evening, entering places of interest, adventure sport and side trips will be unaffordable, this for me anyway would take the joy out of the trip. Aim for a bike which does 70 mpg, weighs 150kg or less and packs down to 1.5 cubic metres.

You have a great opportunity and good luck with it but I think you will have to change your choice of bike to make the trip last beyond your savings.
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Last edited by mark manley; 8 Oct 2012 at 09:21. Reason: correction
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