Cost of RV Living Full Time: September 2022 Expenses

What exactly is the cost of living in an RV full time? That’s usually one of the first questions people have when considering making the jump to full time RVing. 

If you follow us on Instagram, you know that we are very transparent with our monthly expenses and share them all regularly. 

Below, you’ll find a breakdown of every single penny we spent in September 2022 while living and traveling in our RV full time. This includes all of our costs, the RV-related ones and regular life costs (like our Netflix subscription). 

The cost of RVing varies greatly depending on your individual lifestyle and bills. This is just one example of RV living. 

Cost of RVing: September 2022 Monthly Totals

Total spent: $4,557

  • Fixed Expenses Total: $1,660
  • Fluid Expenses Total: $2,897

September 2022 Fixed Expenses

Line ItemAmount
Truck Payment$768.00
Auto Insurance$174.00
Adobe Lightroom$10.00
Life Insurance$30.11
Health Insurance$260.00
Storage Facility$83.46
Note: We own our RV and do not have a payment on it

September 2022 Fluid Expenses

Line ItemBudgetedActual
Campground Fees$115.00$111.78
Eating out$325.00$364.73
Household/Personal Care$165.00$201.72
“I want it” Items$0.00$0.00
Pet Food/Supplies$50.00$99.00
Dump/water fees$10.00$5.00
Total Fluid Expenses$2,355.00$2,897.36

Our RV Budget Goal vs. Our Actual RV Monthly Expenses

September Goal: Spend less than $2,355 on fluid expenses

We did not meet our goal for September! Originally, we had set a goal of spending less than $2,550, but halfway through the month we lowered our goal when we thought that we were doing really good with keeping our expenses low. 

However, we traveled about 1,000 miles in the second half of the month and it had a major impact on our budget, mostly in these two categories: 

  • Fuel: We went over budget by more than $200 on fuel. It ended up taking a lot more fuel to get us all the way to our final location than we originally anticipated and fuel prices didn’t trend down as much as we were hoping as we traveled east. 
  • Groceries & Eating Out: We spent $180+ more on food than we planned and it was strongly correlated with how often we were moving. Because we traveled at least once a week and sometimes two days in a row, we ended up buying more travel day snacks or eating out because we were tired from the long travel days. 

September 2022 Travel Route

Towing Miles Traveled in September 

We towed the RV 1,335 miles in September from eastern Washington to northeast North Dakota!

Locations Visited

  • From Cusick, WA to Eureka, MT: We visited Eureka to do some rock climbing in the Stone Hill Climbing area along Lake Koocanusa. The lake, which looked more like a river had some beautiful views and we got to do some really fun climbing here. 
  • From Eureka, MT to West Glacier, MT: West Glacier is home to the west entrance to Glacier National Park. We spent almost 2 weeks here and did one of my favorite hikes to date: Grinnell Glacier Trail
  • From West Glacier, MT to Medora, ND: We spent a week in Medora boondocking in some beautiful plains and visiting Theodore Roosevelt National Park.  
  • From Medora, ND to Drayton, ND: After traveling over 1,300 miles, we finally arrived in northeast North Dakota for Craig to work the Sugar Beet Harvest

Campgrounds and Boondocking Spots

Here are all of the places we stayed in September and how much it cost us!

  • Silverado Motel & RV Park (Eureka, MT): $112 for only 2 nights. It was not worth this high price in my opinion, but the weather was very hot and we needed A/C and wanted to be able to climb in the area. Options were very limited in Eureka, MT!
  • North Fork Road Dispersed Camping (West Glacier, MT): FREE! This was a crowded, but still nice, dispersed camping area only about 25 minutes from Glacier National Park’s west entrance. We did get our first mouse EVER here, however, so beware! Cell service was spotty and we used our friend’s starlink connection. 
  • Scoria Pit Dispersed Camping: FREE! If you want to camp near Theodore Roosevelt National Park, this is the best place to go. It’s beautiful and just 10 minutes from the park. 
  • Drayton Campground: FREE! Since Craig is working the Sugar Beet Harvest, we were provided with a free full hookup site while he is working. 

Summary of Our RV Life Costs For September

Overall, we went way over our planned budget in September and it was largely due to traveling a far distance. If you’re looking for cheap RV living, my biggest tip is to travel shorter distances and stay in places longer. It’s the best way to keep RV living costs down. 

In October, we will be sitting in one place for most of the month during the Sugar Beet Harvest and our goal is to spend less than $1,350 on fluid expenses – less than half of what we spent in September on fluid expenses. 

Want to track your own monthly expenses? 

You can use our monthly budget template to keep track of your own expenses to reach your financial goals!

Interested in what a FULL YEAR of RV living costs are like? Check out our post on total cost of full time RV living.

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