Alicia’s Tips on Budgeting for your big Lap

For anyone thinking of doing a lap we cannot recommend it enough. It is the best decision we have made, and we are so glad we decided to do it before our kids were too old.

Each person will have a different lap and expenses, but we have put ours together to help others estimate their cost.

After 12months on the road we have completed our first full lap of Oz travelling 42,113km at an average cost of $875.55 per week. With the old saying it will cost $1 per KM to travel Australia we weren’t too far off it, coming in at $1.08 per KM. We are a family of 4 travelling in a 2018 Y62 Patrol with a full offroad 2018 Sunseeker Desert Storm.

FUEL – $264.84/wk

Our biggest expense. We found anyone on the road with a full-size caravan, no matter what the vehicle, was using around the same amount of fuel, within 2L/100. Yes, we had a petrol Patrol and no we never found it hard to get fuel anywhere. If anything, we found in remote towns they would sell out of diesel and still have petrol available.

GROCERIES – $187.72/wk

Our second biggest expense. This is an expense you can’t avoid whether you are at home or on the road. We continued to eat the same meals as if we were at home, even in remote areas.

SITE FEES – $124.53/wk

We tried to free camp as much as possible, but this wasn’t always an option. We also did not want to miss places just because there were no free/low cost camps, so we did stay at caravan parks as well.

TAKE AWAY / ALCOHOL – $47.30/wk

We didn’t eat out much as there either wasn’t any take away shops nearby or we just wanted to spend time at the van and take in the scenery at a new place.

MAINTENANCE – $113.85/wk

We started out with a 2003 F250 and spent quite a lot of money on it. After 3 months we got a new car and having a new car and caravan meant we didn’t have a lot of maintenance costs. This cost includes all of our services, new tyres for the car and extras, like camp chairs we bought along the way.


The last things were minor and included activities ($38.51), phones ($41.08), Health ($32.10), Presents/clothes ($22.10), Gas ($2.75) and Washing ($0.77). Having a washing machine is definitely a must, it cut our costs massively and our clothes always came out clean. You never know what has been in a laundromat before you.

For us, this meant, to have a year off and enjoy our country it only cost $45,528.60. We didn’t try to cut our costs or didn’t have a budget to stick to but saved where possible. You could do it a bit cheaper, but we did what we wanted and it was worth every cent. This may seem like a lot of money but we look at it as a once in a lifetime opportunity to spend time as a family and make memories we will never forget. Hopefully it has helped shape our kids and installed a spirit of adventure in them too.