Are you in the midst of planning some big caravan trips? Unless you're lucky enough to have your last name ending in Branson, chances are you won't have a bottomless pit of money to dip into on your adventure. But fear not, this doesn't mean you can't have the holiday you've always dreamed about, it just means you have to do a spot of forward planning. Caravan trips can even be done on a budget- it doesn't sounds exciting or glamorous, but with a bit of a plan and some creative thinking, you can still have an amazing time, without breaking the bank.
You can approach caravan trips within your budget in two ways:
1. What is my ultimate, dream adventure? List out everything you ever hoped and dreamed of doing in a big caravan holiday and cost it out item by item.
2. What is my absolute finite budget for my trip? Then work out your itinerary based on this.
Sometimes it helps to start with a total budget, and plan out your trip from there, rather than working out your ideal trip and trying desperately to find the funds to fit the fun, and feeling disappointed that you can't stretch quite as far as you hoped.
Here's a bit of a checklist so you can start asking yourself the right questions to create your budget for your big adventure:
How much can you afford to spend on petrol, on average, per day? And over a whole trip?
How many kms does a tank of fuel take you, when towing a caravan? Might need to do a bit of a test run on this.
How much will you pack or need to buy when on the road?
What are your staples, your dietary requirements, and the little treats? Definitely allow for the occasional splurge!
- What level of mod cons do you need in a campsite (showers, pool etc)?
- What are the paid sites that fit your criteria, and what is the nightly rate?
- How many nights will you stay in a paid site?
Will you visit any museums, festivals, galleries etc. along the way?
Will you visit any national park areas that need a permit to travel through?
Will you eat out every night, only cook in your caravan, or do a bit of both?
What are the other things you may need to purchase along the way?
Do you need any extra budget for replacing things (tyres etc.) along the way?
Once you've worked out an itinerary that fits with your dollars, then you can relax and know that you wont have any nasty 'insufficient funds' surprises along the way. Of course, it pays to plan for emergencies and keep a bit extra aside in case you have unplanned costs, because these things definitely happen.
Budgeting for your holiday might seem a bit of a mundane task, but it can really get you on the right headspace to make the most of your adventure. Caravan travel on a budget is smart, resourceful - and can be a whole lot of fun!