You’ve got your caravan. You’ve packed the car and you’re ready to take off. And then comes the extra expenses. Fuel. Accommodation. Insurance. It all quickly adds up. Caravanning is a brilliant, once in a lifetime experience but if you’re not careful costs can quickly get out of control. Before long you’ve spent all your cash at the museum gift shop and have nothing to eat for dinner.

Don’t despair! We have rounded up the best tips and tricks to make sure your holiday doesn’t break the bank. And you’ll have enough leftover for a pub schnitty for dinner. Before you set off on any trip ask yourself these questions:

How much am I willing to spend?

It’s probably the most boring part of any trip — budgeting.

But when it comes to caravanning, especially if you want to caravan long term, you need to have a budget. There’s nothing worse than blowing through your savings and your trip is only halfway over.

Figure out just how long you’ll be going for. If you’re doing the Big Trip then it’s really time to buckle down and plan out your finances. If you’re just getting started caravanning and are doing short trips it’s a lot easier to put aside a lump sum.

What is important to me?

Do you want to save on necessities and splurge on experiences? Make sure you have a balance between necessities and making memories. There’s no point saving that extra $20 if it means missing out on a great experience!

Keep a budget but remember to be flexible. There are heaps of ways to save some extra splurge cash. Join a RV group, use apps like WikiCamps and make sure to drop in at any local visitors centre to make sure you get the best deals.

The other biggest way to save? Travel in the off peak! Just imagine all the amazing camping spots you’ll be able to nab!

Do you have money put away for any surprise expenses?

No matter how well you prepared, Murphy’s law will strike you down. Anything that could go wrong — will.

From tyres popping to broken awnings, we have experienced it all. Other than maintaining a regular maintenance schedule, there’s not a lot you can do to prepare. But do keep some money aside for when these issues arise. The other biggest surprise expense? Accessories. From jockey wheels, fridges, and bike racks — they’re all pretty essential. Don’t go buying low quality accessories that will need replacing every year and instead invest money in front into making your trip as homely as possible.

How can I save on fuel?

Fuel economy is one of the biggest expenses that you’ll encounter when travelling. There’s an easy way to save here — vehicles use up to 25% more fuel travelling at 110km/h than 90km/h.

Make sure to avoid days where there is high speed winds or bad weather — it’ll quickly eat through your fuel!

General tips and tricks
  • Take advantage of any freebies on offer. Drop into the local visitors centre to get the best deals and knowledge. You don't have to spend all your money on day tours and museum tickets, there’s plenty of low cost activities to be found.
  • Try free camping if you have the right set-up. Use memberships to get discounts at caravan parks.
  • Buy local but stock up at big supermarkets when you can. Have meals and snacks ready to go to stop you from buying takeout.

Remember to enjoy your holiday first. Don’t let yourself become bound to budgets at the expense of enjoyment. Caravanning should always be fun.

If you’re setting off for your big trip or simply learning the caravanning ropes Camechas everything you need. Any questions? Drop us a line.