Budget travel tips

Caravan World Editorial Team — 28 August 2017


THRIFTY TIPS WINNER

 Food planning and preparation is important, and it’s a good idea to buy meat when it is on special. I use a wok for most of the cooking, as stir fry meals are quick and easy. I prep the chicken, beef, or pork with different Asian sauces. I vacuum pack them and then freeze them. I have a supply of rice vermicelli, hokkein noodles, and either fresh or frozen Asian vegetables. This also ensures you get your daily serving of vegetables and it’s easy to clean up as well. Naturally, I pre-cook other meals to add variety.

Jan and Ian Goddard, via email

Jan and Ian's tip has won them a Hema HX-1 Navigator valued at $699.



KITCHEN COOKING

 Our budget isn’t that tight because the reason for our travel is to see as much as possible of our magnificent country. However, we rarely eat out. 

We love cooking and much prefer to experiment with the Weber.

Jenny Foster, via Facebook

PLAN YOUR BUDGET

 During the weeks before you go, plan your budget and prepare frozen meals to take with you. After a long day travelling, your evening meal is thawed and takes no time to warm in a microwave, which saves you money buying expensive takeaway.

Richard Morse, via Facebook

SAVING WATER

My top tip for budget touring is installing a water tank at the back of the vehicle to access the source conveniently for showering, drinking filtered water, and bringing a bucket that can be measured and filled with the water necessary to wash dishes instead of the inefficient use of running water instead.

Dee Susan, via Facebook

COOKING 

In the weeks leading up to going away, I cook a bit extra for dinner each night. I vacuum pack and then freeze it. When we travel, we then have ready made meals we just have to heat up which is especially good for the long days of travel. We find it stops us from buying takeaway because we can’t be bothered cooking after we’ve set up.

Alison Edwards, via Facebook

FREE CAMPSITES

 I like to find free or cheap camps to keep the cost of travelling down. If we do this half the time, it cuts costs down considerably. Also, a lot of these camps are in awesome or remote spots. I’ve found you can find some interesting and friendly people with great ideas and stories in these camps. It makes for memorable and affordable travel.

Mandy Collins, via Facebook

PACKING LUNCHES

 We boil the thermos and cut our lunches most days we are on the road.

Kaye Bock, via Facebook

PAPER INSTEAD OF PLASTIC

 Paper plates and cups (biodegradable of course) and disinfectant wipes are great! There’s no need to wash dishes (I could usually go with just a little cup of water to wash the cutlery) and wipe down benches and it saves lots of water when your trying to not waste it. Please don’t use plastic though!

Leanne Horn, via Facebook

CARAVAN COFFEE

For coffee, Delonghi make a small device that’s great for a caravan. The coffee only works out to cost 50c a coffee. That is a big saving compared to buying coffee in cafes.

Heath Atkinson, via Facebook

WEIGH UP THE COSTS

Save the money and have a realistic budget plus 20 per cent. Alcohol and outings do cost and takeaway is a killer. Always ask yourself, is this a need or want? Buy quality stuff with a low running cost, compared to items that are cheap to buy and expensive to run. Free camping is good, but remember, safety comes first.

Alexander Jim, via Facebook

PLAN AHEAD

Research is the key to finding free and cheap camps. WikiCamps is a great app and has a trip planner. Use Fuel Buddy or a similar app for cheap fuel. Stop in a roadside stop for morning and afternoon teas, and just take the snacks with you. Two drinks and a snack and you will have little change out of $20. 

Brian Trengove, via Facebook

FREE CAMPS SAVE MONEY

Free camp as many nights as possible and save between $20-$40 a night. We drove from north of Perth to Adelaide and had one night in a park out of nine. We found water at service stations and visitor centres.

Pamela Collette, via Facebook

LARGE TRUCK STOPS

 Don’t stop at large truck stops, they’re full of impulse buys you think you can’t live without. Also, keep all electronic devices charged. Once they run out of battery, everyone suddenly remembers they are hungry, thirsty, and in need of a restroom. 

Antoinette Lalonde, via Facebook

TRAVEL LIGHT

 My top tip for budget travelling is to spread the load. Try to travel as light as possible. If you’re sharing vehicles, try not to double up on your camping equipment. If you are travelling in a group, make a plan about who brings what to spread the load across several vehicles. The trick around this is to keep some flexibility just in case the groups separate for whatever reason. 

Antoinette Ciancio, via Facebook

The full feature appeared in Caravan World #566. Subscribe today for the latest caravan reviews and news every month!

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