Our Maritimes Trip Costs Reveal a Pleasant Surprise
As with all our extended RV trips, I kept close track of every expense on last summer’s trip around the Maritimes. Thinking the figures would produce no bragging rights about low-cost RVing, I avoided actually tallying the columns. Surely our average daily/monthly expense would be a lot higher than on any previous trip.
We Expected Costs to be Higher than Usual
- For one thing, we’re traveling in Canada, where fuel prices (gas, propane) and campground costs are consistently higher than in The States.
- Although gas prices are low in Ontario, they’re always higher in the Maritime Provinces.
- This was a short trip (5 weeks compared to 5 months on most of our US trips). We put on a lot of extra miles by following the scenic coastal route almost constantly. We routinely tell people that we travel for extended periods to spread the distance over more time. This lowers our average daily cost.
- We’re used to traveling in the southwest where there’s an abundance of boondocking on public land. We couldn’t count on that in the Maritimes.
What I Didn’t Take into Account
- We saved the cost of extended health insurance; that’s usually quite an expense for us. (Note: I recommend all Canadians do your own research before making a similar decision. It’s still a recommended expense in many cases when traveling anywhere outside your home province.)
- We have quite a few friends (and friends of friends) on route; visiting them came with the added bonus of free overnight parking.
- Boondocking spots, in the traditional sense, are few and far between but we have Boondockers Welcome Hosts on most parts of the route. We needed to do a bit more planning but, as a result, were able to keep campground costs down. We only paid for 3 nights of camping.
- Unlike in other provinces, provincial parks in P.E.I and Nova Scotia (where we spent most of our time) have no day-use entry fees.
- In Canada, our cell phone is not subject to roaming fees. Our regular low-cost base plan with Koodo Mobile works just fine. I just added a $30 non-expiring data booster and that was our only connectivity expense of the trip.
In fact, our average monthly expenses came to only $34 above that of our last trip to the southwest (in 2015). Calculated in US dollars, it was substantially less. With the current Canadian dollar exchange rate, I’m sure we can expect to spend quite a bit more on our upcoming trip to California.
Will we be Traveling in Canada More Often?
Although we are committed to go back to California this year, I think you will see us traveling more in our own country in the near future – especially if the US/Canadian dollar exchange rate remains unchanged.
You can see our Maritimes trip expenses and distance traveled here. It’s broken down by category and compared to our other trips.