Well, Boston was our first budget buster location. Though we knew that going in. It came in at a whopping $426 Canadian per day. And that is hacked.
Admittedly it was for a family of five. But if we continue our around the world travel at this pace we’d tap in at a total trip budget of just under $156,000! Let’s add some more exclamation marks there!!! That’s just not an option.
Those numbers are okay (and completely normal) for a one or two-week vacation, but it’ s not sustainable for a year-long trip. But, no worries. It’ll be offset in no time. And it was only three days after all.
The Importance of Geographic Arbitrage
I can see why many people think long-term travel is unaffordable. When we only have short trips to gauge costs, a trip around the world appears as clearly too expensive. But many people, including larger families than ours, have done round the world travel before us. And many have done it for much less than our target.
So I’m fairly confident the average daily cost of our world trip will come in much lower than what we just did in Boston. And even though I just said ‘we’, it’s really just ‘I’ who have budgeted for it. Nobody else really has a clue or a care.
You probably noticed that our RTW Itinerary includes mostly inexpensive countries. And it’s for good reason. Our travels in South East Asia and South and Central America will help offset the cost of more expensive destinations like Japan, Italy and South Africa. This is the magic of geographic arbitrage which I’ll be writing a lot about.
Our RTW Trip Budget
$70,000 Canadian. What is that…. $50,000 US….?!
The official foreign currency exchange rate today is $55,174 USD. Everything is priced in USD. Including trip estimates I found in the blogosphere for round the world travel. So, years ago when we started saving for this world trip, I had pegged $50,000 USD as our target. With the recent bottom of the Canadian dollar, that was about $70,000 pesos. Um, I mean Canadian dollars.
It would be sweet if the Canadian dollar stayed as strong as it was seven years ago, but … well, we know what happened. So, now I’ve got a target of $70,000 Canadian. Even so, I’m pretty confident we can keep it well under that.
That’s $192 CDN per day (or about $151 USD).
What Kind of Travellers Are We Anyway? Comfortable.
We’ll be posting all our trip costs so you can see how we’re doing.
But let’s be clear here. We’re not backpacking (I’m a sorry sack and it’s all my fault). And we’re going to do must see’s and must do’s. And we’re going to stay in some pretty nice places. I’m too old and unadventurous for anything else. We’re still staying in a lot of chain hotels (gotta travel hack). And we need two rooms almost everywhere we go.
Europe, South East Asia and South and Central America don’t have the same room regulations as North America. As much as I’d like (but still hate) to cram all five of us into one room for an entire year,
unfortunately most countries simply don’t allow it. So, aside from sneaking the kids into the hotel, our only option is to book two rooms for the five of us.
See how we do. Our budget and daily spending are yours to see. But don’t tell us how we could have saved money somewhere after the fact. That’s too painful. And sometimes it’s easier to take the path of least resistance because our sanity is more important than our dollars. And we’re just learning.
So follow along as we make mistakes around the world.