Hey! Thanks for the kind words and for keeping up with us. This is a question we get asked a lot and to be honest, its not just about having the cash but how you spend it.
We each had about $5-6,000 in our accounts, money we had saved throughout the years for a trip like this, while reserving some funds for emergencies. The grand total ended up coming to around $10,000 each for 6 months total — this including graduation money and support from family and friends. We booked our first set of flights at least 6 months in advance to aid our budget. The bulk of our expenses went towards transportation (plane & train tickets), and we each had a daily budget for food that we tried to keep to. We got by on ~10€ for many days. We usually walked around the cities instead of taking public transportation, and packed our lunches instead of buying them. For accommodation, we CouchSurfed our way through Europe and New Zealand while staying in hostels/with family through Asia. Along the way, we met people who could even do it for less.
CouchSurfing was a huge part of our experience and we highly recommend it. You get to immerse yourself in a culture and learn from individuals so willing to share it. While it’s not for everyone, it was definitely for us and we’ve formed friendships with so many amazing people around the world.
In our opinion, it’s all about you and how you travel. Our priorities were to explore the city and just take it all in, and we just weren’t as interested in the attractions. Granted, there were some days where we treated ourselves and that’s okay! Find your balance and know your limits — your health and safety come first and foremost.
Best of luck! :)
We stopped by the side of the road multiple times to capture the setting sun on our way back to Nelson. Renting a car was a great idea for the South Island portion of our trip — we could go anywhere as well as stop anytime we wanted to. Such freedom let us really embrace the landscape and the lifestyle, and everyday was a new adventure.
Exploring around Nelson and Motueka
- Andrew Zimmern
Te Waikoropupū Springs, the largest freshwater springs in New Zealand. The springs contain some of the clearest water ever measured, and are closed to all forms of human contact to protect the water quality. In Māori tradition the Springs are waiora, the purest form of water which is the wairua (spiritual) and the physical source of life. The Springs provide water for healing, and in the past were a place of ceremonial blessings at times of birth and death and the leaving and returning of travelers.