Low Cost Living with Jess and Andy

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Jess and Andy are part of the emerging trend of people ditching the 9-5 for an adventurous life of travelling, trading and living on the road. Here, they share some of their best tips for low cost living on the road.

Low Cost Living

The couple founded their micro business Round & Round Travelling Coffee in April, 2017. They spent 9 months developing a good business plan, saving, getting advice, purchasing equipment, choosing the best suppliers, finding the perfect coffee chariot and building relationships before hitting the road in January 2018. They have now been travelling for nine months and have never looked back!

Save on Food

  • Go to Aldi! The savings here compared to mainstream supermarkets are phenomenal. These stores are popping up more and more around the country, however we’ve not found too many away from major towns so stock up when you see one.
  • Cook up big batches of meals and freeze for another day. We love to make a bulk spaghetti bolognese or curry, then portion up and freeze in a camp kitchen freezer or Waeco. This is great to reheat on those nights when you can’t be bothered cooking. We also take advantage of caravan parks that have an oven. Andy loves making pies. This sorts us for dinner and lunch the following day. Also roasting up meat for sandwiches is another good way to save money.
  • Buy in bulk and portion up, especially if you are a meat eater. You will save buying bulk packs of chicken, mince, steaks etc, and these are so versatile to convert into yummy dishes throughout the week.
  • Eat all your food before replenishing it. Get creative! Remember the show “Ready, Steady, Cook?” Look at what you have left and make a meal. I love doing this and you’d be surprised on what you can come up with. This is fun for kids too if you turn it into a game.
  • Cook on a fire, save on gas. We love a good campfire cook up, and this saves us gas. Alternatively, use camp kitchen stoves or BBQs in caravan parks. It’s also a good way to meet people and exchange travel tips.

DIY When You Can

Learn new skills and save money. On this trip we have been plumbers, electricians, carpenters and mechanics. Working out how to fix things that break can save you a lot of money. There is so much information on Youtube. Chances are the same thing has happened to someone else and they’ve made a video. Or just ask around. Caravan parks are a great place to find people with different skills that can teach you a few tips and help out a fellow traveller.

Drive Economically and Save on Fuel

  • Fuel is our number one expense on the road. To save in this area we save fuel dockets from Woolworths and Coles to gain 4c off per litre.
  • Use the fuel finder apps. There are some great apps out there that update the price and location of fuel. The one we use most is “Fuel Map Australia” for IOS or “Fuelio” for Andriod.
  • Save fuel by driving smooth. We choose to sit on 90-100 km p/h on the highway and whilst towing we find this is the best for fuel economy. We have an old car so it doe chew the juice a bit. We usually only get around 300km to a tank of petrol, hence why we want to save money doing the above where possible.

Appreciate the free stuff

Go for a hike, check out a waterfall, walk on the beach, go snorkeling, play frisbee, go for a bike ride, these things don’t cost money! There’s some amazing places in Australia to check out that won’t cost you a cent. Explore national parks. Go to information centres and ask about free activities. Talk to other travellers. Find out what they did and get advice on where to go. The best adventures we’ve had have been recommended and totally free!

Internet and Phone Usage

  • Go to libraries. I’m currently sitting in one right now writing this in Byron Bay. You don’t need to be a member to use the internet on your own devices. Each library will differ in what they offer. For example we’ve just got ourselves 2 hours of free Wi-Fi. We do all of our updates on devices here to save on data. Libraries are great entertainment for kids too. Especially on those rainy days. Book and toys galore, with some even offering story time and activities.
  • Go prepaid on your phones/devices. Best thing I ever did. We now use Boost mobile and get great data inclusions. It means I can keep my bills under control and only use what I have. Before I was paying about $200 per month (2 devices) on a postpaid contract, always going over my usage and being charged extra for data. On prepaid that’s down to $40 per month, a massive saving. Boost also works off Telstra towers and we’ve found the service to be quite good in areas we visit.

Jess and Andy

What’s Next?

For more great long-term travel tips, visit our website.

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