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Old 09-20-2012, 04:45 PM
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Me and my Best friend are saving to Travel to Australia for a few months in the summer. We are looking for good tips of things to do. some 'MUST' sees' and dos'. we want to do allot and understand it is expensive, that is why we want to start making a general plan so we can determine how much to save plus some.

thank you

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Old 09-20-2012, 06:47 PM
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Hello there,

This is not so much about the things to see but I would count it as things to do (before you leave) to give you an idea of how to budget for your trip.

Hope it helps, ozzy

The Backpacker's Budget for Australia

What's the cost of living in Australia?

When you are about to set out on your grand adventure, research and planning are two major factors which need to be focused upon. Budgeting for your holiday means getting the most out of your trip with the funds you have (or will have) available. To do this you need to know exactly what you want to experience, where you want to go, how much time you wish to spend in each place and how much it will all cost.

The amount of planning you put into your trip will also depend on your total length of stay and visa type. These can be split into two main categories, the short stay holiday tourist/sightseer (up to 3 months with a non-working visa) and the long stay working backpacker (up to 12 months or more with a visa which allows you to earn money to supplement your trip).

This section outlines the planning potential for these types of travellers and follows up with a look at the budgeting process. It's unlikely that anybody will fit these profiles exactly, but, the idea is to consider the options and apply what you need to your personal situation.

Remember! This section is primarily concerned with calculating the outlay or costs of your trip and how to utilise it for your budget. If there is more information available about a given subject (other than the budgeting information) a link will be provided with the relative topic.

The savvy traveller begins the budgeting at home, this means planning, researching and calculating the costs of everything you can before you go. This way, as long as you stick to the plan and allow enough for each venture, you will be able to do all the things you want to in confidence without missing out on any experiences due to lack of funds. Be smart, stay ahead of the game! Start your budgeting now...

Tip - Do you know how to convert currencies yet? There is information on how to do the actual maths for when you are on the road and need to compare the costs. It's easy to learn and will help out a lot with budgeting (see section Calculating Currency Conversion).

The holiday tourist/sightseer

If you are going for anything up to 3 months on a non working visa (maybe together with other people) you may wish to plan the whole trip from start to finish. This type of traveller needs to be fairly disciplined with their budget and calculating as closely as possible to the exact total is vital to steering clear of unnecessary debt.

Consider calculating the costs of everything, accommodation, transport, food and all the activities/experiences you want while allowing a decent amount for spending/recreation.

The prices of these (and all) ventures can and do vary quite a lot, so you may wish to think about reserving placements (where possible) in hostels, on tours, with companies supplying activities, etc... or at the very least check availability to ensure your budget will be correct.

To make this point more clear, take for example if you were interested in scuba diving on the great barrier reef. After researching the options, you find a charter package which suits the experiences you want at a price which is reasonable to your budget.

If you could reserve a placement on that charter and provided you get there on time (remember your Personal Organiser) you can enjoy your experience with the confidence that you have set aside enough funds to accommodate it.

If not however, you may have allowed for it in your budget only to get there and find that there are no places available and may end up missing out or getting into debt because you have had to use a more expensive charter.

Tip - If you are able to plan most of your trip and create an itinerary, you may wish to leave a copy with your Appointed Person. This way if you loose any details or references to your activities they can be quickly recovered avoiding any further problems. Doing this also has an added bonus with regards to safety and means you can be found if there is an emergency.

The Basics

The basics for travelling are going to be all the day to day necessities that are required to sustain yourself while you are on your trip. This means, accommodation, food, transport and all the little things you need to keep yourself going.

You could start by writing down a list of the basics which will apply to you and researching the equivalent costs if you were to purchase them in Australia. You could include, a weeks worth of the food you usually eat, the toiletry products you use and all the other items you will need on a regular basis.

Accommodation will be next along with transportation (more in a moment). This way you can calculate how much you will need on a weekly basis and add it to your budget.

Food and other shopping

It might be an idea to establish exactly how much food you eat at home on a weekly basis by monitoring your expenditure. The same goes for your toiletries and any other small day to day necessities.

Keeping any shopping receipts for reference will help, each day writing down what you have gone through and if you need any more before the end of the week. The closer you can narrow down this list the more realistic your budgeting becomes and better organised you will be.

Once you have made your list and are confident that it contains everything you require for a week without needing anything else, it's time to compare the costs. You can do this by finding one of the major supermarkets in Australia and comparing your list to their online shopping service.

Two of the largest supermarkets in Australia are Coles and Woolworths (both are nationwide) which can be used to calculate the price (in Australian dollars) of your shopping for a week.

Go through each item in turn, making notes of the prices as you go along until you have compiled a realistic comparison of your shopping list. When you have done this, calculate the total cost and keep a note of your findings to be added to your budget.

Often these supermarket websites will ask you for a post code, this is just to make sure they delivery service covers a particular area. Of course for research purposes this is not necessary because the prices are all that matter at this stage.

Entering the postcode of a suburb (in a major city) with one of these stores in it's proximity will do the trick. Try 4106 (postcode for Brisbane Market) and select Rocklea as your suburb (both Coles and Woolworths have supermarkets in this area).

Laundry Services

In most instances you will have to pay to use washers and dryers, you can find them dotted around the suburbs and in hostels themselves. Generally to use a washing machine it will cost around $4AUD and the same for a dryer.

Don't forget you will also have to buy your own washing powder (sometimes provided in vending machines), so if you set aside $10AUD per person, per week it should be ample.


If you are only going for a short while (staying in hotels) or have friends/family to stay with you are very fortunate, however for most people the accommodation of choice is going to be the hostels with the possibility of a road trip along the way (campervan or car and tent arrangement).


Hostels are reasonably priced dormitory style locations which will provide a temporary base for you when you set out to explore the surrounding area (see section Hostel Life). The quality is generally reflected in the price and can vary quite a bit. Which hostel you choose is up to you and must be tailored to your needs, just remember though, budgeting is about making the most effective use of your funds.

To get an idea of the going rates for hostel accommodation you can use the internet to research which hostels are available in each of the areas you intend to visit and make a note of the prices for the budget.

If you are the holiday tourist style traveller you may wish to reserve placements in each location to enable you to calculate the costs more specifically. If you are the working backpacker type you may wish to establish the average cost by comparing the difference in price range and using that average as a guide. You can use Hostel World to check on the various hostel prices to be found in Australia.

Remember! Although you may need to pay a small deposit to reserve a placement (usually the cost of one nights stay) it's not advisable to pay the full amount until you get there for obvious reasons. If you are asked to pay in full you may wish to look elsewhere for another hostel.

Read more : OzUltra - The Backpacker's Budget for Australia

Last edited by ozzy john; 03-22-2013 at 11:52 AM.

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Old 09-20-2012, 09:32 PM
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wow thank you, this is an awesome tip

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Old 10-11-2012, 11:02 AM
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Thanks dear these tips are really great and very useful.

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