No big ‘Woohee’ this month as we overspent our budget in a number of critical areas, sometimes with good reason. We continue to overspend on our diesel budget. In part this is due to long distances covered as we head south. Another reason is that diesel costs continue to rise, and France seems to come in at around €1.50 per litre. This month we also filled up on the 3rd and on the 30th, so timing wasn’t great. At over €120 a tank you can see the impact this has. November is not going to be any better as we rack up close to 2000km.
We also had some incidental costs with the van. We had our annual water tight testing done, compulsory under the warranty, which cost €150, but also included the addition of a taped ‘lip’ over the awning attachment on the side of the van. This area has a build-up of unsightly grime & moss, a consequence of water collection there. With some luck this will also reduce unsightly streaking down that side of the van. We also bought a more efficient 12V inverter. This is used to charge our computers and other chargeable items, rather than only charging in the cab through the cigarette lighter socket while driving. Other ongoing expenses include the annual water purification addition (€67), toilet cleaner and a new rubbish bin.
Eating out was well over budget, but we took the opportunity to eat out with friends, enjoy the coffee culture and indulge in a few beers. It can’t only be about the budget! Our joint supermarket / eating out budget has proven pretty accurate for Europe, and I’d hope to see savings when we get to Spain. Laundry has been a bit of a killer. We do try to reuse clothes, particularly trousers and warmer tops, but with the cooler weather and rain we have used laundromats more than usual. I think this area will be constantly over budget – and I’d rather be clean!
On the upside, we’ve had a great month avoiding campsites. Three nights in campsites is way better than expected, and I’d hope this can continue in the future. We have not felt insecure in any of the informal overnight stops, although I do always feel better when there are other campers close by.
So that’s the budget: Over the 4 months we are about €1000 in the black, even after very long distances and some of Europe’s most expensive countries. This might bode well for the future.