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How Much Does It Really Cost to Cruise? Look...

What does it cost to cruise for more than a year?

Everyone is different. Every place is different. Every boat project is different.  I believe our costs are probably moderate for a family of four. We know other families that cruise for less and some families that spend much more. What is important for you is what to consider when you are planning your budget. 

When you take a look at our 2009 numbers, keep in mind that we began calculating our expenses after provisioning and outfitting the boat fully for our first year. Our boat was a 35' Cal Cruiser. In 2009, we spent $17,611 USD, including a haul in/out, bottom paint job, new Engle freezer, and three road trips to the USA. To get a full overview of the year, you can go to:

In 2010, we realized we outgrew our 35' Cal and so sold her and bought a 41' Tartan TOCK in Mazatlan... 'fixer upper' is a mild way of putting it. We purchased her for a good price, but spent 5 months in a marina repairing her. Therefore, our numbers for 2010 are a bit whacked. But it goes to show you what buying a boat and outfitting it for cruising can cost you. Keep in mind that we're cheapo, pinch penny, "do-it-yourself-if-you-can" kinds of cruisers. We would rather spend our money enjoying the beautiful places we visit and cruise longer.

For 2010, our expenses ran $41,942 USD. (This number does not include the purchase of HOTSPUR or the sale of WINDFALL) Our rebuild cost alone was $10,341 USD. Boat equipment was $8,131. In addition, we were living aboard her for the entire time. Had we not the equipment costs and the re-build costs, our year-end for 2010 aboard the bigger boat HOTSPUR would have been substantially less: $23,471. To see a full breakdown of 2010 expenses, go to:

Our 12 month year begins December - November, as we cast off on Thanksgiving Day 2008.

                    200920102011 (1st 7 mos.)
Groceries             5,925 6,7493,294
Boat Hardware            6511,25080
Transportation              2841,051302
Dining Out/Tips               1,1371,7751,734
Internet/Phone            260169267
Tourism                         353397595
Laundry                         215199249
Mail                            19821079
Clothing                      270224220
Extra Tips                      86 10089
Fishing/Snorkel          294 3120
Marina/Mooring                 7523,4121,814
Education                    238127452
Insurance/Tax             606478381
Computer Hosting            181 312422
Booze              490 (July-Dec)    1,333783
Medical                      391 3002,278
Gifts                       409      574453
Boat Repair/Maint.    1,487     2,0201,586
Boat Fuel                  885 822595
Propane                      705128
Boat Equipment              1,7948,1311,638
Fabric/Crafts                      14826
MISC                        121,0901,619
Car                         631
Hotspur Boat Rebuild10,341
TOTAL:     $17,611$41,942$19,022