Traveling Europe with RV and baby: our monthly expenses

Last year we traveled six months through Spain and Portugal in a camper trailer with our baby. This is not solely for the rich and famous (although I doubt rich and famous people would travel willingly in a trailer). We are a regular family and we could afford traveling for six months without worries. We didn’t win the lottery, we just had some savings and we were setting up our business so we could travel as digital nomads. Curious about our expenses? Here are our average monthly costs (calculated over a period of six months) for traveling Europe with RV and baby.

Big discount on campings with ACSI CampingCard

When you travel from campsite to campsite during the low season, you should definitely buy an ACSI CampingCard. It costs you approximately €15 (for a year, books are included) and you can stay at thousands of campsites in Europe for a very low rate. There are campsites for €11, €13, €15, €17 and €19 per night. On the website and app, you can easily search for campsites near your destination. Take an extra good look at the reviews. These will tell you if the campsite is OK or not worth visiting.

Kids are not always included, though.

icon kids included in the fee ACSI campingcardWhen you see this symbol, max 3 kids up to the age of 5 are included in the fee. If not included, you probably pay a couple of euros per night per child extra.

Discount for long stay

Some campsites give discounts for a long term stay. Check their websites for their fee. If you stay a longer period, the long stay fee can be cheaper than the ACSI fee. We were once at a beautiful campsite at the Costa del Sol in Spain. The ACSI fee was €15 per night, but we stayed there for two months and because of their long stay discount, we only paid €11 per night.

Curious which campsite this is? I have another website about family camping where you can read all my reviews. See my review about Camping Mar Azul near Balerma for more details about this very nice campsite.

Traveling Europe with trailer and baby, our monthly costs

On a campsite in the north of Spain near Haro.

Monthly costs of traveling Europe in an RV with baby

Campsites €450

We used the ACSI CampingCard or the long term fee if this was cheaper. On average, staying on campsites cost us €450 per month.

Groceries €570

Our groceries on the road are similar as when we stay in a house in the Netherlands. We even did most of it at the same supermarket (Lidl)! I must add that we almost never went out to dinner and that we had lots of expenses for diapers.

Travel expenses (gasoline and toll) €150

Your travel expenses depend on how much you travel. We traveled very slow, so we had relatively little travel expenses. We do drive a diesel, which is cheaper than gasoline, but we pay extra for road taxes. Also, towing a trailer behind your car will increase your gasoline cost.

And don’t forget toll for certain highways. Especially the famous Route du Soleil in France (all the way from Luxembourg via Dijon to Montpellier) is expensive. We paid (in low season) more than €100.

You can avoid the toll expenses by driving on smaller roads. For us this wasn’t option. We have a huge camper trailer and driving for hours over smaller roads was exhausting. We also got stuck in a small town, which was not something we wanted to repeat.

Oh and do mind the maximum speed. We got a fine of €50 which is absolutely a waste of money.

Insurances €310

In total, we paid €310 per month on insurances:

€190 health care insurance
€12 travel insurance
€18 RV insurance
€90 car insurance

Mobile phone €0

Yes, you read that correctly, a big zero! We both already had a smartphone and a sim only plan so we ended our subscriptions and bought two prepaid cards. We never used these cards, though, because we always had wifi on the campsite and we never used it for that old fashioned thing called calling.

Costs of our ‘home’ €320

We didn’t own a house anymore when we left, so we didn’t had any expenses for rent or mortgage, electricity and such. We did pay the following, though:

€140 road tax
€180 pay off student loans

RV

We bought a travel trailer second hand and it was a huge chump out of our savings: €9000. It was, however, a once only expense.

Maintenance and repair for car and RV

We already owned a car that could tow our RV, but we still had some maintenance for both. For example, after three months traveling with our trailer, we realized we didn’t have a spare tire. We bought one online for €126 and let it deliver on the campsite. These are the kind of expenses you need to be prepared for.

Excursions, devices, and clothes

This is very personal. We hiked and cycled a lot, never went out for dinner, and we only paid entrance a couple of times. When you like to go to theme parks, swimming pools, and musea, you need to take these costs into account.

As a digital nomad, you will have a lot of devices with you. Unfortunately, these sometimes need replacement or repairs. My husband laptop screen was shattered, for example.

Also very personal is the cost for clothes. We are no fanatic shoppers and we like to have a minimum of stuff. We only spend money on the essential items. My husbands walking shoes were almost in shreds, so he needed a new pair. And our baby started walking halfway our trip, so he needed shoes as well.

Summary of our monthly costs

€450 Campsites
€570 Groceries
€150 Travel expenses
€310 Insurances
€0 Mobile phone
€320 Cost of our ‘home’
€400 Maintenance car/RV, excursions, and other extras
€2200 Total monthly expenses

In the end, we had around €2200 monthly expenses while we were on the road. With more slow travel, you can decrease this amount even more.

So, do you think traveling with an RV and baby through Europe is expensive? Would you like to go on such an adventure with your family?

If you have any questions, leave a comment down here or send me an email digitalnomadwithkids [at] gmail [.] com.

I’m joining the linky #fearlessfamtrav with Wandermust Family 


Thank you! Go to your inbox to confirm your subscription. Then you'll receive a link to download your ebook. No mail in your inbox? Check your spam box!

Something went wrong.

Comments 18

  1. Katy October 29, 2016
    • Nanouk October 30, 2016
  2. Jonny (daisythebus) February 1, 2017
    • Nanouk February 2, 2017
  3. Wandermust mummy February 1, 2017
    • Nanouk February 2, 2017
    • Nanouk February 2, 2017
  4. Ian February 2, 2017
    • Nanouk February 5, 2017
    • Nanouk February 8, 2017
  5. Travelling With Our Kids February 5, 2017
    • Nanouk February 8, 2017
  6. Baby Loves Travel February 7, 2017
    • Nanouk February 8, 2017
  7. jo May 2, 2017
    • Nanouk May 7, 2017

Leave a Reply

Want to know how to become a digital nomad when you have kids?Get my free eBook!
+


Thank you! Go to your inbox to confirm your subscription. Then you'll receive a link to download your ebook. No mail in your inbox? Check your spam box!

Something went wrong.

Pin
Share
Tweet
+1