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Old 04-09-2014, 15:33   #16
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Re: Check my math? Family Cruising Finances

SailorBoy -- That's one part of my question, and so far, it seems the answer to that version is YES. That's a big help!

Now that we know it's possible, my job is to figure out how to trim the fat out while still having enough to live comfortably with my family of four. I agree that you spend what you budget, so I'd ultimately like to figure out where I can cram things down/adjust.

The feedback so far has been extremely helpful -- this forum is such a fantastic resource. I'm grateful for all of the help from such an experienced bunch!
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Old 04-09-2014, 15:37   #17
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Re: Check my math? Family Cruising Finances

There is a couple here that has a spread sheet for several years of every expenditure, they seem to be doing it first class, and in a very expensive boat and their numbers are around 5k a month if I remember right, and as I understand it, thats living "high off the hog" in the Med, traveling home, taking tours on land, shopping trips etc.
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Old 04-09-2014, 15:38   #18
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Re: Check my math? Family Cruising Finances

Thanks! Any idea where I can find them and their spreadsheet?
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Old 04-09-2014, 16:16   #19
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Re: Check my math? Family Cruising Finances

Also.. Scour the net.. A few of the blogs have actual numbers posted.. It definitely helped me.
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Old 04-09-2014, 16:43   #20
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Re: Check my math? Family Cruising Finances

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Originally Posted by sailorboy1 View Post
In the end the way I understand the question is:

If I buy a newer boat can I cruise on $60k/yr?

My answer is - I sure hope so since my planned budget is less and when I ask budget questions I get hammer by the "how can you spend that much" people.

Go for it!


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Yeah - $60k a year should be adequate for the described lifestyle. The budget categories might switch around a bit. But a family of 4 oughtta have a decent time on that budget.

Monte provides some real world advice from a cat perspective. The other member here that would have insight is ColeMJ. They've been out for a while as well.

For me the two wild cards are boat insurance and health insurance. I would not be providing properly for a family of 4 if I didn't have proper medical insurance. Unfortunately it is expensive. I think on can spend easily $600 base and a couple hundred per extra person. Make sure you understand the out of network coverage.

For the boat, I am a believer in self insurance for the hull. I'll pay liability but loss of the boat is on me. It's a safety net I would choose not to have.

$8,000 a year for pacific coverage? No thanks.
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Old 04-09-2014, 17:09   #21
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Re: Check my math? Family Cruising Finances

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Thanks! Any idea where I can find them and their spreadsheet?

I'm hoping they will pop up here, they have an Amel Super Maramu I think
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Old 04-09-2014, 17:13   #22
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Re: Check my math? Family Cruising Finances

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Nice to e-meet you, Travellerw! I hope our paths cross someday.

Re: insurance. We had an incident once (pre kids) where I was skippering a charter boat in Tonga when a family friend's young daughter was injured. Long story short, there was a 12 hour window where we were looking at evacuating her to Fiji because there was no adequate medical facility. In the end, we didn't go that route (thank God) but it really opened my eyes to how quickly things can go wrong, especially with young children. We just need to calibrate our own version of the calculated risk, which is likely different than yours.

As for maintenance, I am looking forward to learning and doing much of the work myself -- I'm planning to take marine diesel maintenance courses, for example -- but I've also got to be honest with myself that most of the work I've done with my hands lately has been typing into a computer, so I'll likely need to hire pros from time to time as I climb the learning curve. Which, I think, is part of the calculus on newer vs. older boat, too: I am assuming, based on personal experience, that the maintenance/repairs on a newer boat will be more in my wheelhouse than the major retrofit/repairs needed if we go with something older.
If you time it right, you might be able to find a boat where the previous owner has done all of the periodic replacement of sails/engines/rigging/thruhulls, batteries, etc. Or at least that's a dream of mine. LOL

There are some brands/models of catamarans that are markedly below average in terms of maintenance costs and haulouts. A lot of that appears to be related to shaft drive vs sail drive.
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Old 04-09-2014, 17:22   #23
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Re: Check my math? Family Cruising Finances

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Thanks! Any idea where I can find them and their spreadsheet?
Do a search for "Bumfuzzle" on the net. Despite a cavalier attitude towards sailing (What's a MOB pole? Why can't I paint it white? LOL ) they kept meticulous records of their expenses as they did their around the world tour. There was only 2 of them, but when they went ashore, they spent like a family of 4.

They did learn some hard lessons about major osmosis on both hulls, but considering their Gilliganesque approach to the sea, had a remarkably safe and fairly uneventful trip, especially considering the seas they ventured into at the supposedly wrong times of the year.
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Old 04-09-2014, 17:29   #24
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Re: Check my math? Family Cruising Finances

Hopefully Maxingout will chime in here. He's been cruising the world with his family aboard a 39' Privilege cat for 11 yrs, he's a wealth of info!
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Old 04-09-2014, 17:53   #25
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Re: Check my math? Family Cruising Finances

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SailorBoy -- That's one part of my question, and so far, it seems the answer to that version is YES. That's a big help!

Now that we know it's possible, my job is to figure out how to trim the fat out while still having enough to live comfortably with my family of four. I agree that you spend what you budget, so I'd ultimately like to figure out where I can cram things down/adjust.

The feedback so far has been extremely helpful -- this forum is such a fantastic resource. I'm grateful for all of the help from such an experienced bunch!
I've been thinking about this as well. I don't have any insight into insurance costs or entrance fees, but I have saved a good chunk of money by buying in bulk, freezing a 1/4 side of beef, spicing up Ramen with eggs and deli ham and chives to make Saimin, for example, and I'm hoping to catch a good portion of my diet, I could eat seafood and rice 5 days a week if I caught enough.

I'm planning on installing an 8 -10 cuft chest type freezer in the cockpit area and attaching the table top to it. With a ton of solar panels to power that and the ice maker, I could convert the factory installed top opening freezer/fridge into 2 fridges. Between that and a lot of freeze dried bulk foods purchased while still in the US, I could bake my own bread/rolls/buns and have the occasional burger or hot dog for 50 cents ea, basically cook all of the same foods that I cook at home. Currently my monthly food budget for 2 is $250/mo. and that includes rib eye steaks at least 3x/mo., some form of beef 5 nights a week.

I grew up on a huge variety of foods - Japanese, Italian, Filipino, Chinese, Indian, Mexican in addition to American staples. A lot of these dishes (chicken curry with rice, or shrimp curry with cheap locally bought shrimp for example) probably only costs $8 or less to feed a family of 4. I'm cooking all of those dishes from my childhood, and it's pretty cheap to cook from scratch.

They even sell kits to make mozzarella cheese from scratch (with powdered milk, no less) so one could make pizza 500 mi offshore!

The part that I can't get around is fresh salads on long passages, just not going to happen after the first 2 weeks or so.
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Old 04-09-2014, 18:10   #26
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Re: Check my math? Family Cruising Finances

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Do a search for "Bumfuzzle" on the net. Despite a cavalier attitude towards sailing (What's a MOB pole? Why can't I paint it white? LOL ) they kept meticulous records of their expenses as they did their around the world tour. There was only 2 of them, but when they went ashore, they spent like a family of 4.

They did learn some hard lessons about major osmosis on both hulls, but considering their Gilliganesque approach to the sea, had a remarkably safe and fairly uneventful trip, especially considering the seas they ventured into at the supposedly wrong times of the year.
Although I love Pat and Ali (Bumfuzzle), their trip was not only 10 years ago, but a completely different kind of trip. It was 2 young people with a fair amount of money going around the world in a fairly short time frame. Not sure their numbers are all that helpful anymore.

P.S. You got both facts wrong.. They had de-lamination, not osmosis and it was a result of poor manufacturing techniques(not their fault in any way). They painted the MOB pole black, not white.
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Old 04-09-2014, 19:44   #27
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Re: Check my math? Family Cruising Finances

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$1,000 a month isn't enough for two adults and two kids to eat on, with once a week out to eat and socializing at the local watering holes?
If not, I guess I need to work on my budget.

Currently according to the wife we spend $600 a month, including cleaning / laundry supplies a month and feed seven.
What.....this family of 4 cruised for 4yrs on a total monthly budget ranging from $700 to $2000. We could eat like Kings in Mexico on far less than $1000/mo!

Here is a detailed accounting of every dollar we spent on our 4yrs cruise:
http://www.svthirdday.com/PDF/expenses.pdf
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Old 04-09-2014, 20:16   #28
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Re: Check my math? Family Cruising Finances

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Although I love Pat and Ali (Bumfuzzle), their trip was not only 10 years ago, but a completely different kind of trip. It was 2 young people with a fair amount of money going around the world in a fairly short time frame. Not sure their numbers are all that helpful anymore.

P.S. You got both facts wrong.. They had de-lamination, not osmosis and it was a result of poor manufacturing techniques(not their fault in any way). They painted the MOB pole black, not white.
My bad. My memory isn't perfect. I do recall the mfr insisted it was osmosis, caused by a lightning strike. I think delamination is more probable. Does it really make much difference?

They concluded their trip 7 yrs ago. Perhaps things have changed a lot in 7 yrs. It would be interesting to compare budgets with cruisers who have done it more recently. They spent an average of $3,100/mo. over a 44 month period. Is that really a lot of money and a short time frame?
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Old 04-09-2014, 20:48   #29
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Re: Check my math? Family Cruising Finances

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Thanks! Any idea where I can find them and their spreadsheet?
Some of the sites I've used (sorry they aren't all links) include:

LifeAfloat - $2400/yr

Sailbillabong - $3000/yr

PacificSailors - $1500/yr

svHelloworld - ?

Viking Star - mv.VikingStar: Costs

The problem tends to be the wide variance in people's attitude and experiences which drives a bigger variance in budget.

The Bumfuzzles earlier sailing experience is probably not the best to go on if you are sailing with your family, but their newer ship (which he just sold) has more pertinent information, although it is mexico not the med so take it with a grain of salt.

hope that helps your search some
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Old 04-09-2014, 22:23   #30
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Re: Check my Math? Family Cruising Finances

During our circumnavigation, our family of four lived on between $500 and $1000 per month. We had a new boat, and if we didn't break things, it was cheap to run. We ate the same stuff the "natives" ate in the countries we visited, and we took inexpensive tours. We did not eat out very much. We did not stay in marinas except in cheap locations. From Turkey to Trinidad, we never stayed in a Marina. Doing it on the cheap is possible. You have to accept a little more risk, and give up the shoreside lifestyle and amenities if you want to spend less money.

I can say that there was not any correlation between the amount of money we spent and the amount of fun that we had. And I had no desire to replicate a shoreside lifestyle.
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