The village of Ducaj near Boge, Albania.
Where are Kevin and Ruth now? Tirana Airport, Albania.

Where are Kevin and Ruth going next? Porto, Portugal on June 25th!

Tuesday, August 1, 2023

July expenses, not a bad month...

At the end of last month, I had said that our planned budget for the month of July was $2,045 CAD ($1,545 USD). While we came in at $2,823 CAD ($2,134 USD), the extra was all related to my laser eye surgery treatment.

So without the cost of the treatment, we were pretty much on budget, although some of the categories were a bit out of whack . Here's how it all broke down...

Note, the following figures are in Canadian dollars...

Fuel: During the month of July, we drove from northwest Ireland to Giant's Causeway, down through Belfast to Dublin, across on the ferry to Wales, south to St. Davids, and across into England. We spent $396 on fuel for Max, plus the cost of the ferry ride listed next.

Here is an approximate map of our route during the month of July...


Ferries and Toll Roads: The ferry from Dublin to Holyhead, Wales was $305, and there was a toll tunnel to get to the ferry port in Dublin that was around $5, so a total of $310 in this category.

Propane (LPG): We filled both of Max's tanks through the month for a total of $52.

Groceries: Including the splurge on some juicy rib eye steaks towards the end of the month, we still only spent $471 on groceries for the month. I checked back in our records and that's the same as what we were spending ten years ago in Canada!

Meals out: We ate out twice during the month, for a total of $107.

Alcohol: A little over budget in this category, and I should have known better since we were spending time with Helen and Tony and we like to have our beer and wine when together. But booze has definitely gone up in price compared to the last time we were here. For example, a beer that Tony likes used to be £0.99, and it's gone up to £1.29 each. Wine is also noticeable higher. We used to be able to get a bottle of wine here for around £3 each, but you can't find anything for under £4 now. We spent $241 on alcohol. Going to have to revert back to weekends only for the month of August!

Miscellaneous: We spent $940 in this category, but most of it was related to my laser eye treatment at $765. The rest of course is split between laundry, cellular access, a few clothing items, etc.

Entertainment: A total of $49, mostly for castle visits, and one night out at the pub.

Overnight: Zero. We did not pay for camping at all during the month of July.

Motorhome: We include here a $235 monthly fee for our motorhome registration, insurance, and roadside assistance. We paid this in advance last year, but include it as a monthly fee to more accurately reflect our expenses of living and traveling by motorhome. Plus $10 for some material to repair the cracked mirror episode from earlier this month. Total of $245.

Travel: Nothing for the month of July, but we'll make up for that in the month of August!

So, a total of $2,823 CAD ($2,134 USD) for the month of July.

August will be an expensive month though. Difficult to judge an accurate budget though. We've got grandson Cameron coming, and we paid for his flights. And we'll be in London for a couple of days and it's an expensive city and of course we'll have to keep Cameron entertained. And then we'll be taking the ferry to France. And at the end of the month we'll be going to Paris for a couple of days, and then we've got a flight to Ottawa at the end of the month.

So, we've budgeted $4,500 CAD ($3,400 USD) towards the month of August, but it's a real wildcard depending on how much we spend in the expensive cities of London and Paris.

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And in Canada...

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