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RTW adventure via Campervan... is it possible?

A year on the road, living wild and being free... sounds tempting huh?
12 years ago, January 14th 2009 No: 1 Msg: #60215  
Hi all, I'm Miggz 17 and from Winchester Britain.
In 2011/12 I intend to leave England on a year and a half round the world trip (well sort of) through Europe, Asia and eventually Australia and then all the way back.

So I intend to drive via Campervan which I am yet to buy and will probs purchase and modify for 2011. I am intending to travel with 2-3 other companions and live for the majority of our travels in the camper, doing this will save us alot of money on accomodation and also allows us the freedom of not having to stick to any initial itinarary's or deadlines. This total freedom is what I've always wanted and believe the only true way of getting it is by driving.

I am not naive and realise that such an idea is going to come at a cost. I reckon £5-7k on an old camper, which ill modify for all terains as well as a refurb to maximise comfort. I reckon this will take me to about 12k. If I can get fellow travellers to pay 4k each towards this then ill be laughing. Do you think this is too steep... bearing in mind thats accomodation, 50% travel taken care of and the freedom of going wherever you want... somthing money can't buy.
If im driving from UK to AU and back pluss additional detours etc... how much should I plan for fuel... 4-5k? I realise the cost of this could be the maker or braker of the entire plan. I'm not made of money and although I plan to work for a year before going, if I'm going to be spending 5-10k on fuel then its probably, realisticly not going to happen.

Also... do you think I could get sponsored or anything? Maybe I could paint a big fat yellow M on the side of my camper and get Maccy D's to pay me for advertising for them? ... what do you think?

If you can think of any other problems and then come up with a sollution for me that also would be awsome.
Im a dreamer so maybe this is just too much...
That makes me sad 😞
Cheers xXx


Reply to this

12 years ago, February 20th 2009 No: 2 Msg: #63625  

I've always wondered about driving everywhere... My only concerns would be access to certain countries. i.e. are foreigners even allowed to drive there? I'm sure I did read on The Sun website... I think about some guy who bundled his family into a 12 year old £300 motor and drove to Singapore. I'll find the link


As for fuel costs... I know this guy apparently did it for £1400... but I think 4-5K would be a serious underestimate of what you'd need for a trip of this magnitude.

My wife and I drove from Perth in W. Australia to Sydney via the Top end, and with all the side trips we ended up driving nearly 17000 km (~10500miles) over 2.5 months... Our petrol cost for this was AU$4036.45 which at the time was about £1754.98. That doesn't even factor in maintenance and servicing costs. Not sure where Australia would come, in a league table on fuel costs, but it seemed really cheap to me, but then I do come from the U.K.

If this goes ahead I'll certainly be watching and getting ideas... Keep us informed!
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12 years ago, February 20th 2009 No: 3 Msg: #63626  
I think it is a very interesting Idea altho it might cost a lot in fuel and maintenance. Some pplz have done it before and it is feasable but did you consider getting there by bycicle? If you are able if you got time on your hand then this is a great way to experience every countries and realy take the time to see, touch and smell it all! It also dosnt cost much for maintenance, no fuel to put in and you still have that freedom to sleep and go wherever you want.
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12 years ago, February 21st 2009 No: 4 Msg: #63663  
I was once pretty impressed....was on the road out of Saigon, Vietnam....and a campervan with a belgium plate was driving right in front of the taxi. There was a sticker with internet web site....sadly, don't remember it, but when on it to check it at the time...and yes, they were right in the middle of a round the world! That was amazing!

Some countries may ask you to pay a tax to get a vehicule in....but I know you can drive from Europe to Singapore...than with a mix if boats in Indonesia...don't know if it works to Australia?

Peter Reply to this

12 years ago, February 21st 2009 No: 5 Msg: #63688  
When we were camping in NZ, we met a lovely retired couple from Germany who were undertaking a round the world trip in their camper which was an ex Italian military police vehicle which they had converted. It looked amazing and like it could tackle anything. I think we have a photo of it somewhere, we'll see if we can dig it out and post it for you. They said that although it had been extremely reliable and that they had only had to replace a few parts through wear and tear, when work was needing done, they had to wait until parts were shipped out as it was such a unique vehicle so prior to purchasing a vehicle it's probably worth doing some research on whether parts will be readily available in other countries or work out who could supply them to you from the UK.

The other big tip they gave was that if you are looking to have to ship the vehicle anywhere (eg from Singapore to Australia) then to make sure that it can fit into a container comfortably for security as they had friends who used vehicles which couldn't fit into a container and when they picked the vehicle up at the other end, it had been stripped of all it's innards.

They also said it was a bit of a nightmare organising the shipping - plus it meant that they were essentially homeless while the vehicle was on the water. They used the spare time as an opportunity to fly home and visit friends and family as they had been on the road for so long.

Good luck with your planning - it's a fantastic ambition and I'm sure you will have an amazing time if you can pull it all together... as ever, money and time will probably be your biggest challenges. I would give yourself more than a year's travel time, especially if you have any thoughts that you'd like to stop for a couple of days here and there to relax and enjoy where you are.

We went overland to NZ mainly using trains and the odd bus and boat so if you have any questions that you think we might be able to help with, just give us a shout. Reply to this

12 years ago, February 21st 2009 No: 6 Msg: #63713  
Fuel costs will depend a lot on the kind of vehicle that you use.

When we were in NZ we had a van with a V8 engine that was literally drinking petrol and it was very expensive, but now we have a diesel Ford Transit and just went from England to Germany (and back) for a couple of hundred euros...

We are actually thinking of doing something like that with the Transit, so I'm looking forward to know what you find out and how it goes for you!!!

Good luck Reply to this

12 years ago, February 22nd 2009 No: 7 Msg: #63726  
B Posts: 287
Hey! I smiled when I read your question. I too come up with dreamy ideas, but luckily at my age (40) logistics and reason quickly follow!

I just spend 6 weeks in a "brand new" campervan in Australia. I totally think this is an amazing way to travel. You see things tour groups and resort dwellers never even come close to! My friend and I were good companions and did not feel the close quarters were a problem, nor did we ever get sick of each other. We did stay in campsites, only because we really missed showering, but other than that we didn't have too many other expenses - food, tourist sites, etc.

First thing first, if you do buy a campervan for the price you mentioned, you are in for a whole lots of headache. Unless you are some amazing mechanic, expect to break down constantly. The costs of being stranded, getting things fixed, and wear and tear on any vehicle are really high. What about some of the places in Asia who might not have parts? Or what about being stranded somewhere for endless days?

Cost of fuel is crazy. A campervan is a gas guzzler! I spent more money each day on gas than it would have cost me for a nice hostel room, but didn't care...at my age hostels are too crazy.

What about the costs of ferrying your campervan to Australia or around southern Asia? I would assume there will have to be some costs behind this.

I have also driven all over Central America and Mexico for months at a time in a camper and this has given me some worldly experience. Australia was a cakewalk compared to driving in these places. There are people who prey on foreigners...especially in obvious campervans! When I was in mexico they laid a strap of tire puncturers across the road and when our vehicle rumbled to a stop a few kms later in the middle of nowhere, their friends were waiting and robbed us by gunpoint. I lost my laptop and camera and all my money..but got out with my life. They were talking to each other by walkietalkie so very organized criminals!

These are all just expected warnings. When you dream, dream big, but be open enough to make some changes and expect the unexpected. You will have a great adventure! Reply to this

12 years ago, March 9th 2009 No: 8 Msg: #65377  
Have you thought about alternative fuels for your camper? Something like solar power? I'm not really sure about the logistics or price, but you should look into it. In the end it may be less expensive than petrol. Reply to this

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