The RTW trip we are currently on can be done for less money but we are choosing to take the middle road. We offer these expense reports as a baseline for others to plan with.
We spent a total of $4,848.02 on living expenses and $10,036.41 on one-time expenses. We spent 109-nights in Indonesia and drove 2,231 miles. We spent 63% of our time in hotels (69-nights), 36% with friends (39-nights), and 1% of our time camping (1-night).
|Total – US$||Daily Average*||Percent of total|
|Fuel price per gallon||$3.08|
|*Camping and hotel average is per night based on number of nights camping or hotel.|
The average exchange rate we received was 13,303.62 Indonesian Rupiah per US Dollar. We use ATMs to retrieve our funds and we do not have ATM fees as they are reimbursed to us (Charles Schwab checking account).
Indonesia was not our usual pattern of travel through a country trip. The first five weeks, while on Sumatra, was normal with a basic ride, eat, sleep, ride again format. The final two weeks on Sumatra, Shannon’s bike Zippy had major mechanical problems (low compression due to worn rings) but we plugged along and made it to Jakarta on the island of Java. Because the bike was getting a top-end rebuild in Jakarta, and we weren’t exactly sure of the timing, we left the bikes behind and flew to the Horizons Unlimited meeting on Sumbawa Island. We had originally planned to drive all the way there. On the way to the meeting we first flew to Bali to organize visa extensions. After our time on Sumbawa (four nights) we returned to Jakarta where we planned to do some riding on Java but that was not to be, Shannon took a wrong step and broke her leg. Due to poor medical care in Indonesia we flew to Bangkok for three nights to get a second opinion. The broken leg changed the rest of our driving plans so we weren’t able to tour around Java as anticipated but stayed in Jakarta where we arranged sea freight for the motorcycles to Canada. Rather than spend the “waiting” time of 5-6 weeks for the motorcycles in Canada we instead flew to Bali and rented a small house in the Ubud area for a month.
Our total spend is a bit skewed because we stayed with friends in Jakarta for a total of 35-nights (a few of these nights were spent at their house on Bali). This saved us a lot of money for accommodation plus it gave us a home to be in while in Jakarta.
The average daily spend was $44.48 ($22.24 per person) that was below our $55 ($27.50 per person) daily budget.
As usual our food and sundries compromise the largest portion of our budget at 45% of spending while hotel/house rental was 20%. Communications averaged very low at just 1%. We had excellent wifi at our house rental in Bali so we didn’t need much data on our pre-pay phone plan.
Incidentals were higher than average at 30% of spending and included: trekking in the Sumatra jungle for two people for two days ($142.82), scooter rental for one month ($38), ferries, snorkeling gear rental, wedding gift for our hosts in Jakarta, postcards, postage, haircuts, Uber and taxi, movies, shopping for small things (shorts, yoga mats), etc.
Our one-time expenses
Border: We spent $427.68 in visa fees. This number includes a couple taxi rides as well. Unfortunately we spent $150.34 for two rush extensions that we were then unable to use because of Shannon’s broken leg (we left to Thailand). We first purchased two, two-month social visas in Malaysia ($109.62 including taxi ride). These types of visas you can extend monthly for up to four months. We then purchased two rushed one-month extensions ($150.34). We left for Thailand and on our return purchased two, one-month visas ($70) that you can extend only one time for thirty days. Finally we extended our visa for an additional thirty days ($97.72). Indonesian visas are complicated.
Repairs/maintenance/parts: We purchased a lot of oil for Zippy (she started using almost a liter per day while driving in Sumatra), parts for the top-end engine rebuild including gaskets, rings, seals, spark plugs, and lubricants. The Suzuki Sunter shop in Jakarta charged us $40.55 for all the work including a truck to pick us up at the port. We gave an additional tip to our main mechanic. We purchased three new tires ($428.45).
Shipping: We shipped twice during this period of time. First, Malaysia to Indonesia with Mr. Lim (see border crossing report for detailed instructions and information) for a total of $605.99. We sent our motorcycles by sea freight from Jakarta, Indonesia to Vancouver, Canada (charges in Indonesia $1,583.90). Full report on traveling by sea is available. Our flights from Indonesia to Canada cost $1,956.50 (we had some additional change fee costs). And, we spent $63.89 on cheap luggage for the flights.
Other: This is high during this period primarily due to medical insurance for one year for two people ($2,462.00) and costs related to Shannon’s broken leg including Jakarta hospital and flights ($1,034.85 that does not include $377.60 paid to the Bangkok hospital that is listed under Thailand expense report). We had other flights (Jakarta to Bali to Sumbawa with return to Jakarta and then Jakarta to Bali) for $393.13. The other spending is a combination of postage to send items to Seattle, books, NY Times and Washington Post subscriptions, website work, motorcycle insurance (in the US), tickets to Shannon’s 30th high school reunion, and a new 2TB backup drive.
Fuel consumption: These numbers are estimates, as we don’t track per motorcycle but a mixture of both and not every fuel purchase did we have full information on mileage/liters purchased though we always had amount spent. We received an average of 44.67 miles per gallon per bike. Average cost was $3.01/gallon or $0.80/liter.
Miles driven: this is based on Zippy’s odometer and not the total miles of both bikes. Occasionally we ride two-up or Mike may take Donkey to do some errands and these additional miles are not accounted for. When providing miles per gallon averages this is an important caveat as we are not tracking both motorcycles odometers.
Fuel: petrol for two motorcycles and minor use of gas for our MSR camp stove
Grocery: food and incidentals purchased at grocery stores/markets/butcher that may include batteries, toiletries, etc. as well as food.
Prepared Food: anything that we haven’t made ourselves such as meals purchased at restaurants, food stalls, or prepared food from local stores.
Camp: camp ground fees
Hotel: hotel fee
Communications: local SIM cards, Skype credit, USB modems, recharging for minutes and data, internet cafes, etc.
Incidental: anything that doesn’t fit into other categories with notes made as to the actual expenses but anticipated as park fees, other fees, postcards, shopping, etc.
Border: border fees for people, motorcycles, and pet as well as insurance required, and any other border expenses.
Parts/maintenance: anything purchased for the maintenance or repair of the motorcycles.
Shipping: expenses for moving ourselves and motorcycles between continents
Other: gear replacement, excursions, and other one-time expenses.