How to Budget for a Road Trip

Road Trips are the best way to explore a country or city, no matter how big or small. Here is how you need to budget for your upcoming road trip.  Road Trips are fun. If you’re not having fun, you’re missing the point. Do and see all you can along the way. Fortunately, road trip entertainment is usually pretty cheap. Natural sites and roadside attractions generally won’t cripple your finances. The best advice we can offer is create a plan, but make sure that plan leaves room for improvisation. You should have a list of things to do along the way, and you should know exactly how much each will cost. But you should also set aside a little time and money for unpredictable opportunities. You don’t want to be out of cash anyways.

Time of the Year

The very first thing, you need to do is decide the destination and then research if its the perfect time of the year to visit the place. If yes, then of course need to plan early and visit early. Getting your bookings done immediately would end up costing a lot. Also, every destination has a peak and low season. See, if you are in a budget, then you may do it during its low season too. Your overall expense will highly depend on what time of the year you are planning to visit.


Flights, the most expensive part of the travel. You need to get your tickets done really early. Try to choose the airlines who donot have hidden terms like baggage inclusion, allowed weight, etc. Choose the airlines carefully always, who has the checkin baggage included and hand baggage included for a good allowed weight. I prefer Emirates, Cathay Pacific, Qantas, Qatar, Lufthansa, Etihad only and I highly recommend them. I do not recommend Jet Air, Air Asia, Air New Zealand, Delta Air, etc.


Hotels and accomodation pricing can differ every hour or every day even. There is no rocket science to its pricing. You just have to book it if you like one, and worried about its getting sold out. Many people prefer to stay in Hostels and AirBNBs to save costs, but I feel unsafe with those options, as I carry a lot of camera gear which costs a fortune and I cannot afford getting any bit of it lost or stolen. I always book my own private rooms in hotels or motels, which of course is always expensive, but no compromise with safety and goods security. Again, you need to get this bookings done really early. The key is research and vigilance. Digging deep can save you a good deal of cash.

Car Rental

Car Rental is the most haunted part of a road trip. It can sometimes be dirt cheap and then can be crazy expensive. I have got cars for 300$ for a week and then I have also got cars for 900$ for a week. Car rental pricing swings very fast. You need to follow my car rental hacks in my video to save cash and get a good deal.


There is a lot of room for creativity when putting together the food portion of your budget. It’s not hard to survive on less than $10 a day. You can save significant moolah by grocery shopping in advance rather than eating at restaurants three times a day. How much you spend is determined entirely by preference. For some people, food and travel go hand-in-hand. Others couldn’t care less. But no matter how you plan on eating, decide in advance how much you want to spend and where you’d like to spend it. In moments of hungry indecision, it’s easy to succumb to cravings. Avoid spontaneous splurging by sticking to a plan. I normally look for Indian restaurants, and it costs a bomb for each meal. I end up spending a lot on food. I guess, I have space to improve here.


When creating a road trip budget, step one is to estimate the cost of gas. It can be beneficial to slightly overestimate the price per gallon so that you don’t encounter any nasty surprises. Keep in mind the price of gas varies from region to region. The price of gas in your hometown won’t be identical to the price of gas halfway across the country. Do some research to get an idea of what kind of variation to expect. While you can’t eliminate the cost of gas, there are a lot of little things you can do to help alleviate the cost. You may choose a fuel efficient vehicle. And try to fill the fuel away from the cities.


Internet is an expensive affair, in almost all of the countries. No matter where you go, you will be needing internet access, be its on your phone as 3G/4G or in your hotel/motel as free or paid Wi-Fi. I always choose hotels which has Free in Room Wi-Fi included and also make sure, there are no limitations to it. But many countries, have hotels and motels with limited data usage, so you need to put that in your costs too. I tend to spend a lot of money on internet while on my road trips, as I have to keep on uploading my huge 4K videos to my YouTube Channel.


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