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 $1,595.18 on living expenses and $2,096.31 for one-time expenses. We spent 27-nights in Uruguay and drove 930 miles. We camped 85% (23-nights) and stayed in hotels 15% (4-nights) of the time.
|Total – US$||Daily Average*||Percent of total|
|Fuel price per gallon||$5.43|
|*Camping and hotel average is per night based on number of nights camping or hotel.|
The average exchange rate we received was 30.07 Uruguayan pesos 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 $59.08 ($29.54 per person) that was above our goal of $55 ($27.50 per person). 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. We weren’t as far over budget as Chile or Argentina but Uruguay is expensive. The fuel was the most expensive of the Americas trip and our stay in Montevideo was expensive. Our dorm beds were US$20 per person per night and that was not “expensive” for Montevideo in the summer season. Camping in Uruguay was relatively inexpensive however.
Our food and sundries expenses comprise about 45% of our spending and housing whether hotel room or tent was 28%. We purchased a SIM card for Uruguay so that we would have a local phone number and didn’t need to worry about internet access at campgrounds. This was important as we needed to stay connected with the local Grimaldi agent and we were tracking our cargo ship online. Our leaving dates changed multiple times.
Our one-time expenses
Border: Motorcycle insurance for two motorcycles was $64.48. We purchased insurance in Bolivia for the remainder of our time in South America and it includes Bolivia, Chile, Argentina, and Uruguay. We figured the cost per day for our time in South America and allocated it to each country based on time in that country.
Repairs/maintenance/parts: Locally we purchased synthetic oil, chain lube, filter oil, and one rear tire. We also ordered online front and rear sprockets and seals for sprocket shaft. These last items will meet us in Belgium.
Other: After sixteen months on the road we have equipment that is wearing out (primarily items that were already well used when we started this trip) so we took advantage of inexpensive shipping (relatively) between the US and Belgium to order the following replacement gear: cocoons for sleeping bags, new Sidi boot soles for Mike, bike covers, bike gloves for Mike, boot wax, tenacious tape for fixing our tent, USB charger (yes, we could buy this on the road but we actually wanted a US-style plug so that it would work with our entire charging set up). We also renewed our Horizons Unlimited membership (2-year), purchased a marine tracker app for our phone, annual charges on two credit cards, postage for our package from the US to Belgium, a Pixel transitions application for Final Cut, and a 500gb external hard-drive.
Fuel consumption: These numbers are estimates, as we don’t track per motorcycle but combined information from both and not every fuel purchase did we have full information on mileage/liters purchased though we always had amount spent. We had an average of 42.42 miles per gallon per bike. Average cost was $5.43/gallon or $1.43/liter. We purchased the lower grade “super” gasoline.
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.