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Old 26-07-2012, 06:24   #16
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Re: How much does it cost to live aboard while cruising the Caribbean Islands?

Based in St John, USVI, which is probably the most expensive island to live on apart from Mustique, my budget (one person, eating out sometimes) is around $1200/1300 per month BUT I have also just spent $5000 on my two-yearly haulout and am the moment doing without instruments apart from chart-plotter as I can't afford to get them replaced and I am finding that I can do without them. It has also given me more respect for the old-timers who did not have any of the electronics we take for granted these days!

There are cheap places to visit and stay for a while (Bahamas def not one of them!) and anchoring out is always my preference.

The east coast of the USA was a surprise and a delight on a recent ICW delivery trip - look out for the local 'diners' where they offer heaps of food at a price less than you could make it on board! Another tip: share 'sundowners' with other cruisers on their boats, or yours, when you can rather than go to the bar....it's more friendly and when the collective booze gets low or runs out you go home rather than buy more!

So many more tips possible, but don't want to write a novel here. PM if you wish and good luck with all your plans - just do it and if you run low on money there is usually something you can work at to keep the wolf from the door!
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Old 08-08-2012, 04:22   #17
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Re: How much does it cost to live aboard while cruising the Caribbean Islands?

As a ball-park figure use the cost of a bare boat charter for a similar size boat. These costs are readily available from the Moorings' website, among others. They reflect "wear and tear/depreciation", rental, food provisions and a "fudge factor" for boat emergencies. If you want an actual dollar figure: Use $150/day per person, as a guide; deduct 30% for each additional person (i.e. $105/each additional person per day). Sail away!
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Old 12-08-2012, 20:38   #18
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Re: How much does it cost to live aboard while cruising the Caribbean Islands?

Lets see, $150 for me, $105 for my GF... $255/Day X 30 days, $7650 per month. You've got to be kidding. I run two cars, pay for a house, support two people, and save money at $3600/month. Justify $7650.
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Old 13-08-2012, 02:00   #19
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Re: How much does it cost to live aboard while cruising the Caribbean Islands?

Depreciation, replacement cost, insurance, emergencies and such must be factored in the total monthly cost/cost of living.
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Old 13-08-2012, 04:50   #20
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Re: How much does it cost to live aboard while cruising the Caribbean Islands?

Lets see, My boat is 33 years old. I don't have to fear depreciation, it's worthless now.
OK, liability is about $700 / year. $4000 / year operational expenses, repairs, diesel and so forth. I won't have to replace it. If something happens to it, it's gone. I'll go home. Food / entertainment, $900 / month.
For every person, there is a budget. It's not so much, what does it cost, as what kind of expenses can one expect. Back to how long is a piece of string ? Your budget is a good one as it allows complete replacement of a $165,000 boat every ten years. However, $84,000 / year is not in the picture for 90% of the folks out there.
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Old 13-08-2012, 05:14   #21
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Re: How much does it cost to live aboard while cruising the Caribbean Islands?

I think the real answer to the cost of cruising is "everything you've got" (and probably a few dollars more). You're better off sitting down and starting your own budget; you'll know whether $7,000/year for yacht insurance is a luxury or an essential expense. Food will be roughly the same as at home, running no cars saves some cash but then multiply the figure you came up with as a worst case scenario for boat maintenance by 10 and you're getting there. Just do it and find a way to survive. Good Luck.
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Old 13-08-2012, 08:32   #22
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Re: How much does it cost to live aboard while cruising the Caribbean Islands?

For some it may take $5000+/month to cruise while others (and I met them on our recent cruise) do it on a shoestring budget. I feel confident in saying it can be done on $500/month, but........ (and that is a big "but...").

When something breaks, can you fix it yourself?
If not, can you live without it?
Do you require fancy or modest food? Alcohol? Cigarettes?
Will you fly home twice a year to see family and friends?
Do you need insurance for every contingency?
Do you have health issues?
What do you want out of the experience?

In other words, the cost of cruising will depend on your needs and desires, your experience, planning and a host of other factors.

While our recent Bahamian shakedown cruise offered only a slight glimpse into costs of long term cruising, our costs averaged slightly under $1,000 a month and we neither skimped nor splurged.

Everyone differs and there is actually no way to tell you what your budget requires until you actually do it. That said, our experience leads us to believe a good starting point would be a solid, carefully prepared boat and $1000 a month for a couple accustomed to modest comforts.
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Old 11-12-2012, 22:04   #23
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Re: How much does it cost to live aboard while cruising the Caribbean Islands ?

I know this thread is old but a lot of people (myself included) mine old threads for info before asking our own questions. So, here is a list of real world numbers I've collected on the topic:

SV Estrellita 5.10b: The Cost of Cruising
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Old 12-12-2012, 05:37   #24
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Re: How much does it cost to live aboard while cruising the Caribbean Islands ?

I don't have the answer to the OP question, but read the thread to see if any answers were given. In 23 posts only 2 had an answer and the rest were the normal budget answers of "it depends, as much as you have" etc.

So far in all my years of CF, Livia's provided the best info on this topic!

SV Estrellita 5.10b: The Cost of Cruising
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Old 14-12-2012, 16:34   #25
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Re: How much does it cost to live aboard while cruising the Caribbean Islands ?

I don't have the answer either, but I know that I spend more than I need to spend and I spend less than I make. This should be everyone's target, right? I did want to comment about a couple of posts above where it was said that the cost of groceries is about double the cost for the US. This is only true if you continue to buy the same products and brands that you might be accustomed to in the US. Also, it's verry important to know what day of the week to choose for shopping in the islands. It's common for the grocery stores to be stocked from shipments once a week or less and if you are looking for fresh produce on day six or seven, you will likely be very disappointed.
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Old 14-12-2012, 17:07   #26
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Re: How much does it cost to live aboard while cruising the Caribbean Islands ?

You will spend all that you have. So, cruising costs whatever you have in your pocket.
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Old 14-12-2012, 17:14   #27
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Re: How much does it cost to live aboard while cruising the Caribbean Islands ?

All you got.
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Old 14-12-2012, 17:48   #28
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Re: How much does it cost to live aboard while cruising the Caribbean Islands ?

All good info here, which reminds me of a saying a few years ago from "two years before the mast" The captain of the Brig tried to hire a few sandwich islanders....."But you'll spend all your money in this way," said the captain. "Aye! me know that. By-'em-by money pau-all gone, then I work plenty !
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Old 14-12-2012, 18:06   #29
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Re: How much does it cost to live aboard while cruising the Caribbean Islands ?

Hi Livia, where are you these days?
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Old 14-12-2012, 18:28   #30
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Re: How much does it cost to live aboard while cruising the Caribbean Islands ?

In Hawaii we were so poor we had to eat lobster, fish, and crab. Basically our afterschool play was diving (when not sailing or surfing). We traded quite a bit with the ranchers for milk, eggs, pork and beef, etc. There is absolutely no reason to not be able to replicate that today.

Anyway, posts like the OP's can be summarized as; I will ask a vague question but want specific answers.

I have read Livia's various contributions and I must say she nails it. I am quite appreciative of the time she devotes to the subject.

Stonefloat, 3 cheers for a quote from Dana. As a side note, in a past life I was quite involved in the restoration of the family home of his brother George. By then it was passed down to one of his grand nephews.
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