I've been beating the same drum going into my third year now, that Cruising Mexico doesn't have to be expensive and now that I've finished the tally on our 2010 cost of Cruising Numbers, it's time again to beat the drum a little bit louder. We had some "lost but now found" receipts for some food purchases that I added into some of the prior months for food purchases in the States, but according to our bank account the following summary is at the most missing $100 over the last year.
In 2009 we spent on average $1964 per month, which we knew we could improve as we learned to not just cruise cheaper but smarter and in 2010 the crew of THIRD DAY lived the life of dreams on only $1,071.23 per month and that's WITH boat insurance! There wasn't a single time in 2010 that I remember feeling cheated due to our budget and without a doubt we ate and lived better in 2010 than in any of our pre-cruise years ashore when more money than we comfortably live on each month now was sent to the tax man! I honestly think that the longer we cruise, the less we would end up spending. The long-term cruisers I speak to seem to give credence to this idea, as they live like relative kings on their fixed income pension. Without a pension, we get the question of "How we finance our cruise" all the time and the short answer is that when our renters pay their rent check each money on our paid off house, they are funding our cruise supplemented with a little savings to cover things like property taxes and miscellaneous expenditures that sometimes push our monthly expense over the monthly rent check.
2011 promises to be a great year for the crew of THIRD DAY with many adventures ahead, some planned and other yet to unfold. Will we hit the "mythical" $500/mo cruising number? No, probably not for a family of four, but then again if that was the only way we could pull things off, I'm confident we could not only do it, but have a great time in the process.
Here is the Link to our 2010 Year End Cost of Cruising Summary.
For another take on what it costs a family of four to cruise Mexico, take a look at the 2010 expenses of our friends on Hotspur. They also traded up for a larger boat in 2010, but they do a nice job of breaking down costs as well so you can see the nitty gritty of what it Costs to Go Cruising!
Link to SV hotspur's 2010 Cost of Cruising Summary