GETTING GONE FOR THE LONG HAUL
Plan and conquer your next big adventure with our exclusive expert tips, tricks and advice
There’s simply nothing better than hitching up the camper trailer and hitting the black top for an epic adventure. But let’s face it, the lead up to the trip can get a little hectic at times and if you’ve never visited a particular region it’s hard to know what you’re going to need. With that in mind, we thought we’d pick the brains of a few of our resident camping experts, to get their exclusive advice and hard-earned tips straight from the horse’s mouth. Get ready – there’s a few tips in here that could quite literally save you thousands!
Determining how much money you’re going to need to complete a big trip can be a bit daunting, especially for those lengthier multi-month adventures. The trick is to break it all down into simple terms, and applying a daily budget is the easiest way to do it. How do you do that? Simple. Start by categorising the trips expenses into groups like fuel, activities and entertainment, camping fees and food. Then, work out how much money you’ll need to safely cover those expenses each day.
FUEL FOR THOUGHT
You just never know what you’ll be paying at the pump, which makes calculating a budget for fuel tricky. Now, if you’ve got a specific destination or route in mind you can work out how many kilometres you’ll need to travel and take an educated guess as to your estimated fuel usage to calculate your total fuel budget for the trip.
For long term touring purposes, working with a “rule of averages” approach may be your best option. You can do this by working out the maximum kilometres you want to travel per day between destinations and calculate how often you will be actually travelling per week/month compared to staying at a camp. It’s not perfect, buts it will give you an idea as too how long the budget will last.
VEHICLE PREPARATION TIPS
1. Don’t leave your vehicles pre-trip check-up and maintenance service until the last minute. There’s nothing worse than rushing your vehicles maintenance, and it’s always wise to allow enough time to order in unexpected replacement parts and enough time for the mechanic to carry out any repairs.
2. Replacing your vehicles fuel filter before a big trip is very wise, even if it’s not quite due for replacement according to the maintenance schedule. Sure, you could wait. But what happens if your fuel filter is already 60-70% blocked and you cop a bad load of fuel?
3. Keep old replacement parts like radiator hoses and fan belts as spare parts. At least that way you know they will actually fit!
TUCKER FOR THE ROAD
with 4WD Leash!
- Pre-cooked Meals: Before a big trip, I like to pre-cook a bunch of meals to keep in the freezer. They come in super handy if you arrive into camp late and don’t have the time or energy to prepare a whole meal from scratch.
- Re-package Food into Portions: To ensure your meat stays fresher for longer, vacuum sealing is a great option. It saves plenty of freezer space and can be split into meal-sized portions to help reduce food wastage. It’s also a brilliant way to save on extra rubbish too!
- No Glass, Use Cans Instead: Glass is fragile, takes up heaps of space in the trash and is a nightmare to travel with. Instead, opt for food and drink stored in cans, which can be crushed and placed in the bin.
Food that is hardier, longer lasting and has multiple uses rule supreme in the world of 4WD touring, and simple choices at the supermarket can make a big difference in the long run. For example, a packet of tortilla wraps sure beats finding an old stale loaf of bread squished up in the corner. They make a darn good bush pizza base too! The same goes for using powdered milk instead of finding the carton of milk has gone off and has leaked right through your fridge!