Vanlife on a Budget: How to Reduce Your Costs on the Road

November 30, 2022 in Tips for Travellers, Tips for Owners & Tips for the road

Life is getting more expensive; there's no denying it. And vanlife is no different. 

Fuel is more expensive, campsites are more expensive, and general day-to-day travel is more expensive. But despite this, it's more important than ever that we still take the time to travel, the space to rest and explore. 

There are some ways to reduce the cost of your motorhome trip, namely your fuel consumption during your trip. And these tips are not only budget-friendly, but environmentally friendly too! We spoke to Jake, the UK Country Manager, to hear more about this.

Goboony vanlife fuel costs lower h2

Jake, what type of motorhome would you recommend for those looking to save money on their fuel consumption?   

"If you want to reduce your fuel consumption, the best option is to go for a lighter motorhome. The lighter the motorhome, the less fuel it will use. But the engine is also an important factor. A motorhome with a newer engine will drive more fuel-efficiently. They're also less damaging to the environment."

On Goboony, you'll find that you can filter based on the date of first registration. This will allow you to find newer models for your trip. 

How can you make your fuel last longer on a trip?

"Destination plays a big role in this. People assume it's just about how far you're driving, but it's also the terrain you're driving over and how efficient your vehicle can be. The easier it is for your motorhome to drive ahead, the less fuel it will consume. A steady speed on a flat road is the best for fuel consumption. Driving up hills or mountains will require a lot more fuel. Rural roads are also more difficult than paved ones."

If you're looking for a budget-friendly trip, aim for easier routes. Avoid heading to the Highlands or up a mountain, and instead stay somewhere flat and well-paved. 

Jake, what should people consider before they leave for their holiday?

"There are two simple things that people seem to forget. Firstly, check your tyre pressure! Ensure your tyres are inflated properly, based on the specifications for your motorhome. This will reduce your fuel consumption on the road, and is important for your safety as well. Secondly, pack mindfully. It's far too easy to overpack when travelling by motorhome. Resist this urge and truly consider what you need. A lighter motorhome reduces your fuel consumption, so remember that you can do laundry during your trip and get groceries along the way."

You heard Jake, time to channel your inner minimalist! Pack light, and consider printing out our complete packing list for guidance. 

How can people save fuel while driving?

It's all about consistency. Keep a steady speed, preferably at a lower speed. There is no need to rush, you're on holiday, after all! Embrace the joys of slow travel and take your time. Also, opt for a higher gear whenever you can. If you're waiting for a bridge or stuck somewhere, switch off your engine. As much as possible, avoid using your air conditioning or heating. Instead, open your windows for glorious fresh air, or pull on a sweater."

Slow and steady not only wins the race, it saves fuel along the way. Road trips are about the journey as much as the destination.

Jake, what should people consider in getting fuel for the vehicle?

Firstly, get the right fuel for your vehicle. When in doubt, check with the owner. You don't want to risk filling the vehicle with diesel when it requires something else, or the other way around. Secondly, don't underestimate the variation in price across petrol stations. They won't differ too much in a close radius, but filling up on the highway as opposed to a village will certainly make a difference. It's worth a small detour for sure and always plan ahead so you're not left desperate."

Apps like Waze allow you to compare prices between petrol stations and find the cheapest option for your trip. 

Goboony vanlife fuel costs lower h2

What if someone wanted to take a holiday without diesel, petrol or gas?

Nowadays, that's possible! If you do not want to use any fuel, you can opt for an electric motorhome. There are some electric motorhomes available for hire on the platform. You'll have to reduce the distance of your trip, but it can be just as fun, if not more.

Check out the electric motorhomes for hire on Goboony.

Any last advice for our readers?

They key to saving pennies on a road is to limit your kilometres and stay for a longer period of time at the same place. During that time, get to know your surroundings by public transportation or bike. You do not have to go far for a beautiful holiday in nature. Instead of rushing abroad, get to know the beauty of the UK.

Indeed, there is so much to be explored on a staycation in the UK. Whether you're looking to explore cities, hike mountains, bike through forests or simply enjoy a cup of tea under your awning, there's something for everyone with a motorhome holiday. Check out more tips for saving fuel on a motorhome trip.