Skip Navigation

Australia - What's Cheaper?!

Travel Forums Australia / New Zealand & The Pacific Australia - What's Cheaper?!

1. Posted by markp90 (Budding Member 16 posts) 5y

Cant help but toss and turn at the thought of working out which of these options is cheaper...

Basically been looking at the price of a lot of hostels in Australia and especially with my travels lasting over xmas and new year its slightly more expensive than i thought. I've also considered on numerous occasions to buy a second hand camper and live out of that for the duration of my trip.

Essentially, there is 5 of us. Starting in Cairns with the intention of following the coast to Melbourne 3-4 months later where all the group except myself will be flying back to the UK. Obviously this could all change but id expect my stay to last around 6 months or so.

With that in mind would it be cheaper at this moment in time to buy a second hand camper and live in that with the cost of fuel etc (i dont know how much it is right now in Oz) or to live in hostels and rely on public transport between cities?

Thanks.

Mark:)

2. Posted by Dodger (Inactive 875 posts) 5y

Quoting markp90

Cant help but toss and turn at the thought of working out which of these options is cheaper...

Basically been looking at the price of a lot of hostels in Australia and especially with my travels lasting over xmas and new year its slightly more expensive than i thought. I've also considered on numerous occasions to buy a second hand camper and live out of that for the duration of my trip.

Essentially, there is 5 of us. Starting in Cairns with the intention of following the coast to Melbourne 3-4 months later where all the group except myself will be flying back to the UK. Obviously this could all change but id expect my stay to last around 6 months or so.

With that in mind would it be cheaper at this moment in time to buy a second hand camper and live in that with the cost of fuel etc (i dont know how much it is right now in Oz) or to live in hostels and rely on public transport between cities?

Thanks.

Mark:)

I'd say with 5 of you and staying as long as you are, it would definitely be cheaper to buy a camper. A few things to keep in mind though.

Look for a camper with LP (liquid petroleum) conversion. You'll get much cheaper fuel costs with this conversion.

Secondly, Cairns isn't a great place to buy. Not so much choice up there, that's not to say you can't get a good deal, but just less chance than say down in Byron Bay.

Lastly keep in mind with 5 people, legally you are supposed to have 5 seats with seat belts. You might get lucky and get away with it, but something to keep in mind when you are looking for a van. Checkout Gumtree for used vehicles.

When do you arrive in Cairns?

3. Posted by markp90 (Budding Member 16 posts) 5y

Thanks for the swift reply D. I had considered that Cairns is a lot smaller and remote than obviously Sydney, where i'd expect more vans are available. We actually intended on getting two if it was financially feasible rather than hiding in the back on just the one but of course it's all new to us at the minute.

We arrive in Cairns on the 30th November.

4. Posted by Dodger (Inactive 875 posts) 5y

Quoting markp90

Thanks for the swift reply D. I had considered that Cairns is a lot smaller and remote than obviously Sydney, where i'd expect more vans are available. We actually intended on getting two if it was financially feasible rather than hiding in the back on just the one but of course it's all new to us at the minute.

We arrive in Cairns on the 30th November.

Ok well I'll be there then. Give me a shout on here if you like, I can keep an eye out for a van.

5. Posted by timtravels (Respected Member 350 posts) 5y

Don't discount a station wagon like a Ford Falcon, they have plenty of room for your gear and you can camp in tents. There are a number of these that used to be taxis and so are already fitted with LPG that you can pick up quite cheap. As Dodger said Cairns isn't the best place to buy a vehicle, generally you'll find better, cheaper vehicles in Melbourne and Sydney.

You can get two different LPG conversions, one where they replace the petrol tank with an LPG tank and so it only runs on LPG and the other with the LPG tank in the boot so you can run the vehicle on LPG or petrol. If you choose the straight LPG option make sure you never run out, you can't carry a can of LPG to the petrol station and you'll need to be towed.

6. Posted by james (Travel Guru 4136 posts) 5y

It's hard to determine what would be cheaper until you did it, as there are so many variable involved. for instance, all you'd need is for the car you purchased to pack it in and you could be up for a lot of money.

Plus, 5 people in a camper can get pretty tiresome after a while.