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 $470.30 on living expenses and $3,019.90 on one-time expenses. We spent 13-nights in Myanmar and drove 1,390 miles. We didn’t spend any nights camping so 100% in hotel rooms.
|Total – US$||Daily Average*||Percent of total|
|Fuel price per gallon||$2.30|
|*Camping and hotel average is per night based on number of nights camping or hotel.|
The average exchange rate we received was 1,332.96 Burmese Kyat 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).
The average daily spend was $36.18 ($18.09 per person) that was below our $55 ($27.50 per person) daily budget. We lowered our goal budget as we entered our second year of travel without any additional research but realizing that we want to spend less so that our funds go further.
This is skewed because it does not include hotel, breakfast, or tourist activities. All those costs were part of our fee paid to the tour company. It is not allowed to drive your own vehicle in Myanmar unless you are with a guide and procure the required permits. To defray costs most people cross as a group. Our group consisted of seven people and six motorcycles. We were accompanied by a van that included a driver, our primary guide, our government minder, and sometimes by the company’s operations person. We used Burma Senses and the cost was $1,315 per person. The fee included: hotel room, breakfast, permits/licenses, tourist activities (all entry fees, e-bike rental in Bagan, day-long boat ride on Inle Lake, van rental to drive us around tourist sites in Mandalay, and a sunset boat ride on the Irrawaddy River), guide along with van and driver. All of us in our group felt it was very good value for the money. All our hotels were exceedingly nice (three or four star with hot water, good internet, very clean, etc) and the breakfast buffets were often very elaborate.
Our food and sundries expenses comprise about 37% of our spending which is on the normal range. Communications was once again normal amount for a SIM card and data. Incidental spending was higher than normal because this is where we accounted for the tip that we paid to our guide and driver, totaling $101.28. We also bought a few souvenirs. The food in Myanmar was inexpensive.
Our one-time expenses
Border: Visas and associated costs (photocopies, taxi to embassy, etc). Details are in the border crossing report.
Repairs/maintenance/parts: We purchased oil.
Shipping: This was the amount paid to Burma Senses. It was based on $1,315 per person but as we paid by credit card so there was an additional fee and then some exchange rate differences as the bill was paid in Vietnamese Dong.
Other: Shannon’s bike broke down and had to be trucked to where we had a two-night scheduled stop and Mike would have time to diagnose the problem. The truck cost was $150.
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 53.09 miles per gallon per bike. Average cost was $2.30/gallon or $.61/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.