Assuming you have a power yacht? - - Diesel
is averaging about US$4.50/gal and gasoline about the same in the Caribbean
with a + or - of about US$1. There is no cheap fuel
anywhere anymore except in Venezuela
- - Prices for food
is about double that found in USA super markets unless you only eat like the locals eat which is breadfruit, plantains, chickpeas, rice, and "hand grenade chicken*". Island customs/immigration varies from US$100 (D.R.) down to zero in the French Islands and averages about US$35. Boat parts
are 3x to 4x US (Florida) prices. Outside local labor to repair the boat
is averaging about US$75-100/hour for technical and US$10-25/hr for unskilled. It really makes a significant difference if you can do your own repairs
. Everything else is about the same as always.
- - The least expensive islands to live (on your boat) are the D.R. and Dominica
. What makes a significant different from years ago is your own expectations of what "comfortable" living is and how much it costs. As we age, we are not so eager to do the "dirty jobs" or hard labor jobs anymore and prefer to hire those out. We also develop a habit of eating food
we are used to back home (they are available in the islands for a price) and drinking beer/booze at US$3 to $10 per drink. Deprivation living is no longer fun.
- - So can you live on US$500/month - Yes and No. First of all it really depends upon what items you include in that phrase "live on." That is extremely variable all the way from only fuel
, food, and check-in/out all the way to "everything" you spend money
on including expenses maintaining your ties back in your home country (housing/car/storage/medical/taxes/etc.) and every nickel you spend on anything what-so-ever. So any discussion of $xx/month is fruitless because everybody has different definitions of what is included in "living on."
* - "Hand grenade chicken" is cubes of chicken with the splintered bones comprising most of the content. I figured out that they took a chicken and placed a hand grenade underneath it and then pulled the pin. The blast blows all the feather off and then they go around and pick up the splintered bones with meat still attached. - In actuality, what they do is flash freeze the whole cleaned chicken to -50 degrees and then use a bandsaw to cut the frozen chicken into 2" x 2" cubes which are bagged and sold
. The locals take one or two cubes and throw them into their Creole stew pot, roti's or whatever.