Making little changes to your habits can save you a packet when travelling Australia by 4WD
Four top tips to help you save money on the road
Living on the road doesn’t have to be expensive. I’ve learned heaps of little money-saving tips that when used collectively, can add up to big savings when living on the road.
We have turned the whole process into a game. The aim, try to come in under budget (by as much as possible) every week. It’s all about saving money where you can, this allows you to travel for longer without having to stop and work.
I reckon, I’m not the only person who enjoys a cold beer around the campfire after a long days drive.
Now bear with me here, I know a lot of people are pretty loyal to their beverage of choice, but alcohol costs can easily add up if you aren’t willing to try new things. We now only buy beer that’s on special, this week it’s Great Northern in my fridge, last week it was XXXX Gold (can you guess I’m writing this article in Far North Queensland?).
At the bottle-o there was a $14 difference between a slab of the above beers. What I’m saying is, don’t be fussy, save money where you can and try some new things in the process.
As an extra tip, avoid glass bottles at all costs; tinnies are far better for camping. Crush them when empty and they won’t take up as much space (or weigh as much) in the bin.
Fuel up on the cheap
As I’m sure you all notice, fuel prices fluctuate hugely between servo’s, they also vary depending on the day of the week.
I’ve seen fuel at $1.44 on one side of a town and $1.59 on the other. When your filling the tanks it pays to save every cent you can. A 15 cents saving per litre adds up quickly when you’re filling a couple of long-range tanks (220L, Ouch!).
Whenever possible we fill up at a servo that offers discounted fuel with a shopping receipt from a partnered supermarket. Most offer a 4 Cents saving (per litre) just for presenting your grocery receipt. You can usually double the saving to 8 Cents if you spend around $5 in store.
We take this opportunity to purchase something we would need regardless, usually windscreen cleaner additive. (The windscreen cops a lot of bugs traveling the open road full-time).
Coles Flybys, Woolies Rewards, credit cards that earn Velocity points or RAC (or similar) membership cards are a great way to save money and even get something for nothing.
From extra discounts off your grocery bill, to cheap gift cards or free flights you can score some pretty cool rewards using these programs. And the best thing about it, you’re spending the money already!
I use my velocity credit card to purchase everything. I earn points on every dollar spent, which can later be redeemed for anything from Coles shopping vouchers to free flights. Great if we ever need to fly home in a hurry for any unforeseen reason.
It’s also worth collecting club cards for retailers you may visit frequently. Such as Anaconda, BCF, Super Cheap Auto etc. These membership programs entitle you to the companies best deals and sometimes offer extra discounts on sale prices.
Make your own luxury
Buying treats from a bakery or supermarket gets expensive. We used to spend a fair chunk of cash on baked goods, muffins, cakes, wraps etc. But quickly realised that we could make our own for a fraction of the cost.
For example, buying a couple of muffins from a café usually costs around $8-$10.
For just $9 we bought ingredients to make 18 “camp made” raspberry and white chocolate muffins that kept us snacking for a fraction of the price and tasted a hell of a lot better! All you need is a camp over or a Weber to bake your muffins and your sorted.
Another example is wraps. These usually set you back $5 for eight wraps if they aren’t on special. We now make our own for a fraction of the price. Five bucks can buy enough ingredients (mostly flour) to make around 50 wraps.
The added bonus is your homemade wraps will taste heaps better and contain no unnecessary chemicals or preservatives.
Sure, it takes slightly longer to make your own rather than throwing money at a supermarket, but remember your living the touring dream, you have the time. Why not use it wisely, save some coin and cook up a storm at your favourite camp site.
Get out there and Live Drive Explore.