Holy moly, just like that we are four months into our round the world adventure. The biggest questions we get asked is: how’s the money tracking? have you bought anything? and what’s been your favourite place so far? So I’ve compiled it all in one, happy reading! Wondering where we are now? Follow the day to day updates on Instagram and read on for a complete update on our budget, packing and places.
As you know, we’re travelling with carry-on luggage only. Our packs weigh in at about nine kilograms each at the moment (thankfully, the limit is ten, not seven, like we originally thought.) I know you are all dying to know whether we’ve bought anything new since we’ve been travelling and the answer is YES. I’ve updated my packing list if you’re keen to check it out.
Only just this week did we both succumb to buying a piece of clothing. After arriving in South Africa (in Autumn), we quickly realised our clothes weren’t quite warm enough. We’ve needed to purchase a down jacket each. Thankfully, we found a factory outlet center and bought some KWAY jackets at half price (normally around $200 Aud each). They fold up nice and neat into their pocket so we’re feeling pretty confident that we’ll still have room for them. Plus, we’ve been wearing them everyday, so there’s no strain on our bags as yet.
Wow, I knew Europe was going to be expensive, but it completely exceeded what I thought we’d be spending each day. Activities were always double what we would expect to pay, food was crazy expensive (albeit, delicious) and transport, whether it be ferry, train or scooter/car hire was way more than we’d expected. The cheapest place we stayed was: $58 Aud a night in Milos, Greece and the most expensive was $442 Aud (OUCH!!) in the UK to be near the reception of our friend’s wedding.
We were “over budget” 10 weeks out of 15 weeks – this was largely due to transport, the waning Aussie dollar, and indulging with friends. Would we do anything differently? Only a few things here and there, for example: we’ve imposed a three night minimum wherever we go. This completely affects where we go and why. It allows us to unwind once we arrive in a new place and not feel like we’re always packing/unpacking or rushing from place to place.
So far 30% of what we’ve spent has gone to accommodation, 32% on food and drink and 23.7% on transport. With our hefty food bills, we find the most is spent on dinner (36%) compared to self catering (15%). It is our goal to level these out further in South Africa, particularly when we do our first international house sit in September. Plenty to work on… but hey! We were in Italy, can you blame us?
Anything else we’d change?
In hindsight we’d probably skip the Amalfi coast in Italy and Santorini in Greece, but then again, that’s only in hindsight. We’re slowly learning what destinations we like and what we don’t (based on popularity and season).
We’re not planning on working while we’re away, so keeping a tight grip on our expenses is the only thing we can do to keep travelling for longer. I’m already thinking May 2020 is too soon to go home (we can hardly go home in time for winter, can we?)
Sadly, the truth is, the budget, packing and places are all linked so tight, they all so deeply affect the other.
In the past four months we’ve travelled to the Greek islands of Sifnos, Milos, Santorini and Crete. I walked from Hungary to Italy, where we ended up spending six weeks (flying back to the UK twice for weddings) from Umbria, to Rome, the Amalfi and Sicily, including the Aeolian islands. Our favourite places so far have been Sifnos in Greece and Umbria in Italy.
That’s not to say we’re not enjoying South Africa, we’ve been here for two weeks already and we like it so much that we’ve cancelled our plans in Botswana and/or Namibia – there’s just SO much to do here!! We’ve based ourselves here on the west cape where we’ll spend the next month exploring the garden route (along the south coast.)
How do you rate our budget, packing and places so far?
Fingers crossed we can get the budget back on track for our upcoming travels and keep this good thing going!
Until next time xo