Campervan Farewell, Trip Expenses, A380 Flight Deck & Bloopers!

TheRVgeeks Australia Road Trip, Trip Tips 21 Comments

It’s a sad day… but it had to come, sooner or later. We’re returning our campervan in Sydney. It’s been an amazing experience that we’ll cherish forever… and we know we’ll be back.

Many of you have requested information about the costs of our trip, so we’ve included a short overview, both in the video and in the text below. We’ve also included some brief footage of our eye-popping visit to the flight deck of a massive Airbus A380.

After all the video we’ve shot on our trip, we knew that no final post would be complete without sharing some behind-the-scenes footage, outtakes and bloopers. You didn’t really think we shot video for three weeks without screwing up, did you? You did!? Awwww. wink

We hope our experiences in Oz have inspired some of you to take the plunge, and begin planning your own Australian road trip… or at least start considering it. The length of the flight is the most common obstacle we hear about, and frankly, it’s really not that bad. And we sat in coach both ways. The destination is so worth it!

In addition to the resources on our Australia page, we hope the following basic information about our expenses can help prepare you to head Down Under. We’ve converted the prices below into US Dollars (USD) at the average exchange rate at the time of our trip, which was $1.00 USD = $1.30 AUD (Australian Dollars).

  • Length of our trip:  20 days
  • Total distance driven:  2,060 miles (Cairns up to Port Douglas, then down to Sydney)
  • Total amount of diesel fuel used:  99 gallons
  • Average fuel economy: 20.8 mpg (oh, how we wish OUR motorhome could learn from that!)
  • Average cost of fuel:  $2.98/gallon (USD)
  • Total spent on fuel: $295.00 (USD)
  • Maui Ultima Plus Campervan Rental:  $3,138.00 (USD) That works out to about $157/night… far less than the cost of a nice hotel and rental car… and you only have to unpack once!
  • Average Caravan Park Rate: $24.00/night (USD) which generally includes power and access to water & a dump point (remember that full hookups are almost nonexistent in Australia). And don’t forget that Maui renters get 10% off at all Big4 Holiday Parks.
  • Average Food Costs: $50.00/day (USD) for two people (see the video for a little more detail about how and where we fed ourselves)
  • Communication Costs: $22.79 (USD) for a prepaid Vodafone Australia smartphone SIM card plan with 10GB of data/month, unlimited texts, and unlimited calls in Australia & to the U.S. (plus 90 minutes worth of calls to Canada)

Having a good Visa and/or Mastercard that doesn’t charge foreign transaction fees is a great plus, too. We travel internationally often enough that we always carry two of those (a Chase Visa and a Capital One Mastercard). And they both provide a far superior exchange rate than we can get anywhere else.

Thanks for coming along on our epic road trip. We appreciate all the interest, support and questions. If we’ve inspired just a few of you to visit this magnificent country at some point, we’re thrilled to have shared.

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Comments 21

  1. Hi I am planning a road trip similar to yours which looked great by the way and i loved the videos. My question did you have to do any motorway driving and if you did how did you pay the tolls and was they expensive. Thanks

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      Hi Paul! So glad to hear you’re doing a similar trip… we had a BLAST in Australia and really want to get back there! Our first suggestion re: motorways would be to double-check with whatever company you end up renting from. They will be the best source of information about how to handle any tolls. When we were there, we did drive on a couple of the motorways around Sydney… and if we recall correctly, we were just able to create a temporary account with the tolling authority(ies) to pay the tolls (based on license plate number) that we incurred. We don’t remember it being too difficult… since they WANT to get paid! ? Have a great trip!

  2. I LOVE the fact that you converted everything from Aussie to American…no quick task I’m sure. Plus I really appreciate the fact that you took the time to set up multiple cameras to shoot a scene. Well done guys. I’m ready to book my own campervan.

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  3. My hats off to ya both for always thinking of us, “the monkeys on your back” while trying to vacation….You did a way better job than I would have, mid way I would have told us, after this video, you on your own!…………………….:) good nite!

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  4. I found watching your video’s entertaining and informative as well. I especially like the products you have tested and recommend. I have more than one in our fifth wheel. We are just week end campers now , while the kids are growing. We do have plans to see more the country in about ten years. Our big trip this year is Yellow Stone ( no camping this trip ).
    Thank You for responding!

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      Great to hear, Rodney. We’re pretty particular about our gear, and know what we like, so it’s nice to hear that many of our choices work well for others, too. Weekend camper or full-time… it’s hard to beat Yellowstone! Have a great trip.

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  5. Welcome home guys. What a trip. Thanks for sharing. Having traveled to down-under on business in the 90’s, I finally saw what I had missed by watching your travel logs. Now I have to go back, and you have shown how affordable it can be. Great job.

    In this last video I see you are dry camping at the 7:04 minute point. Looks like a nice place in Southern Calif. Care to share the location and access route?

    Looking forward to your next video.

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  6. Welcome back !!!!!
    One Question. Please tell me the feeling, you guys had when you landed in the good ol USA.

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      First we were sad to have left Australia, then so tired we couldn’t wait to get home to Canada and take a break! All this traveling abroad is great, but ya gotta take it easy in between. ?

  7. Hard to believe that I’m the first to reply, but here goes.

    First – loved the bloopers. Thanks for the smiles; and the honesty.

    Second – when Kathy & I travel we plan on $250/day. If we stay in hotels or rent a mansion for a week (with our traveling friends) or even go on cruises it is always about the same. After this post it looks like your short time is Australia confirms that rough cost-per-day estimate works there as well.

    Third – when you talked to the Qantas pilots did they mention their new SOP after landing calls?
    Flying pilot: I’ll confirm auto lift dump activated.
    Non-flying pilot: I’ll confirm auto breaks green and grab the KitKat.
    Flying pilot: I’ll engage reverse as appropriate for conditions.

    Cheers and welcome home. Or at least to my time zone.

    P.S. what is the best email to use to send you a PM?

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      Yup… very manageable costs. We noticed the KiKat too… John’s favorite. We kept our hands off to avoid getting the TSA called on us. LOL Thanks for all the support and comments, John. Please use the form on the Contact page of our website to send us an email, and you’ll get our email address in our reply.

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