FRIDAY FEATURE – AMY & LYNDON

THE LOWDOWN

Who: We are Amy & Lyndon. Two gypsies (not the slippery kind) who realised they really don’t suit the 9-5 life.

We have spent the last 6 years dodging, ducking and weaving away from ‘normality’.

What: The workhorse of a van we call our home (and ‘Chase’) is a ‘96 Hi-top Toyota Hiace. We chose her because neither of us have a mechanical bone in our body and needed something that’s super reliable. So far she’s done us proud over 30,000km’s. Here’s to the next 30,000km Chasey🍺

When: We started travelling in 2014 and have never really stopped since. Our van trip started February of this year and at this point we don’t have an end date (how we like it).

Where: It seems like we have done Australia in the weirdest, most indirect route possible. We both started our journey in our home state of Victoria. Travelled south to Tasmania, back to Victoria, over to South Australia, up through Central Australia and into the Northern Territory. From there we made our way across to Western Australia and have spent a considerable amount of time trekking down the west coast. We plan on heading back to Victoria for a few months before setting off to do it all again on the east coast.

Why: We were living and working up on Hamilton Island and were constantly coming across people saying how beautiful and amazing our country is. They kept on telling us how lucky we were. That’s when we realised that we had seen sweet FA of our home country and after a bit of researching, realised that driving around was the best and really only option for travelling this mammoth of landmass. That’s when we decided to knuckle down, save some dosh and buy a van.  Also, we both absolutely love the ocean so we were super keen to check out some of the best beaches in the world along our beautiful coastline. 

THAT ONE TRAVEL STORY

We are lucky enough to have a few stories to tell these days. Our go to story – because of the experience and uniqueness of it all – would have to be when we bought a little sail boat with a couple of friends. We travelled through the canals of France and out into the Mediterranean Sea with pretty much no knowledge of sailing or boating. We got the knack of it pretty quickly which was nice but the little stories along that journey we’d have to tell you over a campfire 😉

WHAT ARE 3 THINGS YOU COULD NOT LIVE WITHOUT?

1) Camera – Our new favourite hobby is to  document our adventures – wish we started it years ago. 

2) Internet – Lame, we know, but we use it for more than just updating social media. Google maps, Wikicamps, weather and wind apps, petrol maps, online banking. We can go without it for a while if need be, but as much as we hate to admit it, we’d be pretty screwed without it. 

3) Snacks – We are food lovers through and through (chippies for him, choccies for her)

WORST THING SPILT INSIDE THE VAN

Chia seeds. 
It doesn’t sound too bad but let us tell you its a bloody nightmare. We spilt them before we even left Victoria and we are still finding those tiny little bastards in and around the cupboards to this day. They’re expensive too. Rice and Sugar come a close second and third. And Amy’s purple shampoo.

BUDGET. WE ALL HAVE A LOVE HATE RELATIONSHIP WITH THE BUGGER. WHAT IS YOUR AVERAGE WEEKLY SPENDINGS? DO YOU HAVE ANY HOT TIPS ON KEEPING THE COSTS DOWN?

We are both terrible at budgeting and writing anything down. Luckily, we are both great at being tight asses and still manage to prolong our savings.

For a weekly spend which includes driving every day as well as the necessities like eating and cooking gas, it is usually around $400-$500 per week. If we are parked somewhere for a while it can dip as low as like $100 for shopping and that’s it. 

The #1 tip you should take into consideration when trying to budget/save is look at your eating habits. It is INSANE how much you spend on food, especially these days with so many good ‘cheap eat’ options. Unfortunately, the easy healthy option meals are usually the most expensive as well. Fortunately, its super cheap to buy the rations in bulk and make healthy meals out of them. Learn some tasty, basic recipes that include rice, pasta, lentils and anything tinned and you’ll be winning at the food budgeting life. Also, really look at those supermarket ‘special’ tags – is that 20c off worth it when you could be buying the cheaper brand and getting 2 x the amount of food? Don’t let the bright colours attract you! 

Oh, and never go food shopping on an empty stomach. You will want to buy EVERYTHING!

HOW WOULD YOU SPEND YOUR LAST $10.00?

Easy. $5 on a lottery ticket. $5 on pre-celebratory snacks (to consume while waiting to hear of our victory with the lottery). 

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