Our MOST Expensive Week of Bus Life
For the last week we have been vlogging our adventures around the Grand Tetons & Yellowstone area to create a transparent vlog of our expenses doing full time travels and living bus life. We had a blast filming and editing the vlog but also learned A LOT about our expense habits and how we can continue to maximize our budgets to be smart about our finances. We also ended up having the most expensive week of our journey since hitting the road in June. It goes to show how much bus life changes every day and how it can truly be what you want it to be.
If you are more into visuals you can check out the vlog here: https://youtu.be/v5k7L1UxJaY
It was without a doubt a week of spending much more than the ordinary as we were driving around 80 miles a day and found ourselves in one if not the most removed and countryside area we have ever been to before. Not only did we notice a significant increase in the price of diesel (usually we can get it for $2.07 the gallon and we paid up to $2.99 the gallon in the area) but groceries in general had a higher price tag than we are used to.
Things that helped us save LOTS of money was being able to bondock aka park overnight in amazing places FOR FREE! Our go to app to find these spots is iOverlander. Another win was our America the Beautiful pass which gets us unlimited access to National Parks for a year. This pass is $80 but considering a normal entrance fee is $35 you make the most of it pretty quickly. We enjoy spending our time in these areas doing hikes, swimming and just exploring the great outdoors which help keep our adventure costs low as we don’t usually go for additional expenses like tours, rentals or others.
Although we did end up spending much more in groceries than we usually do, cooking all our meals at home does help keep this expense area low. Specially considering that the few restaurants in the area had a significant price surge.
So lets get to a summary of expenses!
We run a refresh of veggies and staples every 10 days or so. In this case we spent $50 in a local grocery store. We did splurge a bit and bought a few extra items like vegan cheese which was $8 instead of the more normal $5 to give some reference.
We did run again to grab snacks for an adventure we couldn’t end up doing due to the heavy smoke of the fires in the area. This run added up to $35 and consisted of protein bars and all the ingredients to make some loaded adventure sandwiches.
Two out of the ordinary expenses were a small snack run in the convenience store in Grand Tetons adding to $14 and a last minute dinner special of pizza, vegan nuggets and ice cream from Walmart on our last night to celebrate our anniversary totaling $20. This two expenses are out of the ordinary for us as we do try to limit these small runs as they add up quickly.
Adding all these numbers together and dividing them through the week give us $17 a day for the both of us for all meals which is still pretty good! On a more normal week we try to keep our daily food in $10 a day for the both of us.
Like we mentioned before diesel was significant higher priced in the area which created a big expense. These parks are very spread out so there was TONS of driving each day. Total adding up to $171 which to be honest is the most we’ve spent in diesel in a week since we moved into the bus.
Other small expenses $16
This week we had a small additional expense of $14 for two propane cylinders to keep us warm in the unexpected snow storm plus a $2 belt Zach got from Goodwill. We monitor this area very close so we don’t add up tons of little expenses. Pretty happy with how we did in this area for the week!
The total for the week comes to $306
Considering the amount of driving we did and the many snacks we still have in our pantry we call this week the most expensive but totally worth it! You can absolutely spend much less, or much more, in one week of traveling through the Grand Tetons and Yellowstone area. Keep in mind again the surge prices and the type of traveling you like to do!
Let us know if you like these kind of blogs and if you have any questions!