Hi, Me and 5 friends are all booking to go round the world in our gap year. we are at the stage where we are just about ready to book our flights, but before we do i would just like to ask what people think about our budget.
Firstly, where we are going. We are starting in Perth and then renting a wicked camper van and travellin up the west coast to broome, should take about a month. From there we will get a flight to darwin. Using a Greyhound bus pass (for the rest of Au) we will travel down to Alice Springs and spend a few days exploring there. Next we will get a flight to Adelaide, and continue our travels round there, possibly doing bit of camping/hiking. Following the coast, using the busses we will be ending up in Sydney.
From Sydney, we are going to fly to Santiago. We werent 100% sure on what parts of south america to miss out at this point, because the information has been a lot harder to obtain. The general plan has been to travel up to quito by bus/plane, mainly staying near the coast, except to see the salt flats in bolivia. In Quito we will do a volunteer program for 1 month. Finishing that we are going to travel down to cusco, again bus/plane? and do the inca trail. From there we will begin our massive overland journey into the unknown across bolivia, Paraguay, see Iguazu, Sao Paolo ending up in Rio to get our flight home.
All in all spending just over 3 months in Australia, and about 3 and a half in South America
Now for the budget.
Main flights £1500 through STA all flights included except for internal South America Flights
camper van £300 each (900 total/van)
scuba diving £350 (on west coast-learn to dive+extra dives)
Greyhound bus £450 *8000km pass
internal South America flights £300 *i have no idea about prices at all.
inca trail £300
salt flats £100
nazca lines £50 *again no idea about these two
30/day in au * 95days £2850
should be cheaper??? due to
~camper van (no accomodation)
~travel already budgeted for
15/day in SA * 60days £900
(no living costs in volunteer reserve)
I work this out to us needing about £7650 each
I understand its a lot to do in the time we have, and i would appreciate any views on wheather or not you think it is possible. So far i have been told it is by STA staff.
Im not sure how trips to the salt flats or nazca lines are arranged or priced, ive not been able to find any.
Any suggestions for budget airlines for internal flights in South America?
I would also like to know what you think of our budget. Too little? Too much? or about right?
I think it is doable. With your Australia budget whether or not this is right or too little will depend on what you do when in Australia in the way of expensive activities if you have any except the scuba diving you mention. I don't know if you have looked in to Campervan hire closely, but last time I saw camperhire in Western Australia was very expensive when it came to driving one way and dropping it off a long way from where you picked it up. The relocation fee which is paid to allow them to relocate the campervan back to its original depot was huge for such a long distance it was over $1000AUD for that fee when I saw a while ago, but that may have changed. Maybe if you have it for a certain period of time this fee may be reduced or waived totally. Also the campervans I have seen were charged on a per person basis not on a van basis, but this may vary between companies.
Budget is not a word that is applicable to flights within South America. I didn't see one flight no matter how small the distance was that was actually remotedly cheap. If it is possible for you to get South America flights on your RTW ticket, it would possibly be cheaper to include some of these flights if they are available. I think a Oneworld RTW ticket is the only one that currently has any flights in South America, but I may be wrong about that.
Your trip sounds great, wish it was me!
Have a great trip.
Have you booked your internal flights in Australia yet? If you haven't, I would reconsider your plans. Why did you choose to rent a van only for the West Coast. Personally, I think your trip will be far far better if you have a your own wheels for the whole trip. There are several reasons I say this.
First of all, it will almost surely work out cheaper. For the price that three of you will pay for those flights plus a bus pass, you will easily be able to buy your own car. With your own wheels you will also be able to stay in campgrounds for cheap (as aposed to hostels which will be much more), many times on the road you can stay for free if you have your own wheels, and you can carry your own food which will save you heaps.
Secondly, the freedom that you'll have with your own car will be worth it. With just a bus pass you will miss out on alot of things that you should definetly check out. I'm not sure how you will visit places like Kakadu, Katherine Gorge, or the Great Ocean Road by just taking the Greyhound. I think many times you will be forced to take organized tours to see things which will cost you way more. And besides, the beauty of a trip to Australia with some buddies is to be able to cruise along at leisure and stop at random beaches and camp at road stops in the middle of nowhere.
With the flights that you mention you are also missing out of a few things, particularly between Alice and Adelaide. You can't miss Coober Pedy nor the Barossa Valley in between.
Some options for getting wheels for the whole trip are obviously to rent for the whole time which would be the most expensive. You could also buy a car on your own, which would be the cheapest, though you risk not being able to sell it before you leave. There is also options like the Auto Barn which sells you a car and gauranteed to buy it back from you for a certain price when you are done. You don't get the full value back for it, but you don't have to worry about it, and in the end it will be cheaper than renting. They also have offices in Perth and Sydney, so you dont have to worry about paying dropoff fees and stuff.
If you don't go to Queensland or Tasmania, you are missing the best of Australia