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Home Forums Riding Where to ride Riding Overseas RTW – How much does it REALLY cost?

This topic contains 9 replies, has 4 voices, and was last updated by  Eddieb 5 months, 2 weeks ago.

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  • #8210

    Eddieb
    Keymaster
    • Location: Hamilton
    • Bike: Suzuki DR650 ADV
    • Rank: 1200cc Rider

    This is a question that’s hard to answer as often people won’t share how much money they have spent on their trip.
    One couple has now though for their trip from Germany to Thailand, the figures below are person, and each of them were on their own bike.

    From Laura Pattara on the Horizons Unlimited Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/thehubb/

    If you recall, when we left Germany 12 September 2012, they estimated that they could do this trip ‘comfortably’ for about €500 a month each, or €6,000 a year. Naturally, ‘comfortable’ is an extremely relative term, and although my posts of the last few months may have led you to believe we are leading an opulent overlanding life, do keep in mind that for almost two years before that, we kept tight reigns on our comforts. Mostly, this had to do with our ever-impending BIG expense of crossing China. We dropped €2000 each in the pot in august 2014, just for that privilege. BTW, it was worth every 2-minute noodle pack we were forced to consume wink emoticon

    After almost 3 years on the road, we’ve managed a budget of €5933 a year. Go figure! Couldn’t have planned it even if we tried!

    We are often asked how on earth we can manage to travel (and well at that) with such a tight budget. Have a look at the pie chart below (because as if my German accountant would be happy just to give me a list?) The chart makes it plainly obvious that a whole third of expenses, when overlanding with one’s own vehicle, are related to movement. Food and accommodation can almost be entirely discarded. No matter where you are, where you travel or where you live, you gotta eat and you gotta sleep.
    Petrol, visas, border crossings and ferry crossings are the only expenses that you can seriously play around with. When we exited China in October last year, our stats were looking quite pathetic indeed. The solution, to even them out, was simple.

    We slowed down. This is the #1 tactic for drastically reducing costs. Need to make the money last? Then best you spread out those expenses.
    We’ve barely covered 4,500kms in the last SIX months and the beneficial effects of that, on our budget, have been obvious.

    Unfortunately, this doesn’t mean that we are now free to splurge ad infinitum. The end of this year will bring another hefty expense. Puck and Pixie, to continue on their mighty adventure, will need to get a Carnet de Passage, a kind of passport for vehicles. That will cost ’em €1500 each. Bugger.
    As you can see…life on the road is not much different to a lovely, comfortable, stable life at home. You take two steps forward…and one step back.

    All prices are in Euro, and personal insurance is not included which has been about 700 Euro per year.

    #8212

    Brian Bosch
    Participant
    • Location: Wairarapa
    • Bike: BMW R1200 GSA. XR400
    • Rank: 50cc Rider

    My wife and I have done 2 trips. First was 4 months in OZ. we did 35000 km and ended up off the bike for 3 weeks. Airfares, shipping ,fuel, food, accomodation etc was around $20,000NZD. Our second trip was to the states. We did 70,000km over there in 6 months. Same as above all included cost us $50,000NZD. We took tents both times but didn’t use as much as thought we would. Both trips included all servicing and tyres etc on bike

    Hope this helps some planners out there. We are planning our next trip at moment. Hope to head to Eroupe so any body with tips and pointers any advice welcomed

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    #11833

    Eddieb
    Keymaster
    • Location: Hamilton
    • Bike: Suzuki DR650 ADV
    • Rank: 1200cc Rider

    Lyndon Poskit was in NZ recently and did a presentation. As part of that he stated he had used $80,000US to fund 23 months of traveling.

    #11834

    Addo007
    Participant
    • Location: Taradise
    • Bike: Dr650se
    • Rank: 400cc Rider

    Is it generally better to get your own bike crated and shipped to where you are going, or buy over there and sell once finished. I have previously looked at shipping a bike to both Canada and Australia but the costs were quite high (around $4000 to ausie and back). And renting is definitely not the most efficient way by a long shot. Thanks.

    #11835

    Addo007
    Participant
    • Location: Taradise
    • Bike: Dr650se
    • Rank: 400cc Rider

    <cite>@brian Bosch said:</cite>
    My wife and I have done 2 trips. First was 4 months in OZ. we did 35000 km and ended up off the bike for 3 weeks. Airfares, shipping ,fuel, food, accomodation etc was around $20,000NZD. Our second trip was to the states. We did 70,000km over there in 6 months. Same as above all included cost us $50,000NZD. We took tents both times but didn’t use as much as thought we would. Both trips included all servicing and tyres etc on bike

    Hope this helps some planners out there. We are planning our next trip at moment. Hope to head to Eroupe so any body with tips and pointers any

    Is it generally better to get your own bike crated and shipped to where you are going, or buy over there and sell once finished. I have previously looked at shipping a bike to both Canada and Australia but the costs were quite high (around $4000 to ausie and back). And renting is definitely not the most efficient way by a long shot. Thanks.

    #11842

    octopusenvy
    Participant
    • Location: Te Tai Tokerau, Aotearoa
    • Bike: 2102 Husaberg FE570 Rally Australia Bike, 2007 BMW 650 x-Challenge, 2009 Buell XP Ulysses Police Duty (1 of 137)
    • Rank: 650cc Rider

    no no no. well maybe. just depends how you want to travel and how much work and effort you are willing to put in to save costs. what is your time worth? I spent very little on the 2big trips I’ve done, and will continue to work this way. I did a ‘bike swap’ for my 8wk europe trip which ended up costing me around 3500nzd in total with airfares and everthing. How? Airfare was super cheap at 1400nzd return to France (crazy 2for1 deal, my mate Mau came with for part of the trip), the bike was free, and I spent maybe 2000nzd in total on fuel, food, and camping. I rarely used hotels, the occasional hostel in the cities, and several camping grounds. That was 17 countries and 16000kms, including Norway which is said to be very expensive but I found it fine when camping.

    The other trip was the Himalaya, which are obviously less costly. 1200nzd return airfare, 325nzd using a guys bike who i met online and am now good friends with, and maybe 1000nzd for 8wks of touring. 2500nzd!!!

    What I’m saying is that it is possible to do big trips on a budget and still enjoy them. I was eating basic but good, and not spending up on every tourist trap out there. You meet a lot of people and they share things like their homes, meals, time etc, which is the best part along with the scenery.

    So if you want it on the cheap…go get it!

    #13180

    octopusenvy
    Participant
    • Location: Te Tai Tokerau, Aotearoa
    • Bike: 2102 Husaberg FE570 Rally Australia Bike, 2007 BMW 650 x-Challenge, 2009 Buell XP Ulysses Police Duty (1 of 137)
    • Rank: 650cc Rider

    Just an update to this thread, I will be keeping track of my spending for this USA/Canada trip, primarily because it is likely to be a more expensive trip due to the USD. Our rate of exchange has plenty to do with it all, but right now we are roughly .70cents US to the NZD. I’ve allocated 2000USD for spending (2850NZD) and I purchased a very good bike for 3000usd used and spent around 1000usd in farkling and gear (new helmet, 2nd hand KLIM jacket, 2nd hand sidi goretex boots, diagnostic tool, passenger pegs, auxiliary fuel tank, spares, etc). So that’s 6000USD…but I expect I will easily be able to sell the bike when finished for either 3000usd as I paid, or 2500usd and some extras will sell easily separate like the diagnostic tool (200usd) and the passenger pegs (rare for the bike, easily 150usd).

    This will give me 6-8wks riding, and I’ll be tenting in most places to save money and because I’ll be in the backcountry much of the time. Hopefully in the cities I’ll stay with friends or riders willing to put me up. Couchsurfing also possible.

    Wish me luck!

    #14097

    Eddieb
    Keymaster
    • Location: Hamilton
    • Bike: Suzuki DR650 ADV
    • Rank: 1200cc Rider

    Here’s another writeup on costs for a RTW trip from http://www.smboilerworks.com/expense-report-year-2/

    For 2 riders on 2 DR’s they spent $40,000US for 19,500 miles per motorcycle in 1 year, quite a chunk of that was shipping them and the bikes between countries.

    Click through to the link and there’s a detailed breakdown of what they spent the money on.

    #16362

    Eddieb
    Keymaster
    • Location: Hamilton
    • Bike: Suzuki DR650 ADV
    • Rank: 1200cc Rider

    RTW Paul has also written a post about what it costs to ride Round The World.

    You can read it on his blog at: https://rtwpaul.com/2017/01/06/the-question-everyone-wants-an-answer-about-money-how-much-does-a-rtw-cost/

    #20439

    Eddieb
    Keymaster
    • Location: Hamilton
    • Bike: Suzuki DR650 ADV
    • Rank: 1200cc Rider

    Another article on the costs of RTW, with some specific examples.

    http://www.advpulse.com/adv-prepping/cost-to-travel-the-world/

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