During our anticipated three weeks on the road, we won’t be working, and we certainly will be eating and exploring. And of course, that sort of thing costs money.
So, knowing that we enjoy really good food and niceties like hot showers, how much is enough to save up for cycling across Germany and France in three weeks on two wheels?
The folks at Traveling Two have done budget breakdowns for a number of locations, and for their around-the-world bike tour, they put the average daily spend at $23, including flights. Of course, they’re factoring in countries where the cost of living is a bit cheaper than in Europe.
We do plan to camp, cooking breakfast and dinner at the campsite. Lunches might be picnic-style, or we might be wooed by the siren song of a cafe or bistro along the path.
I expect we’ll also want to stop off along the way to enjoy historical sites, museums, breweries, hot springs and a range of other attractive distractions we encounter in our rambles.
We also tend to buy organic produce and grass-fed meat/dairy, and so I imagine we’ll probably spend more on food than average bike tourists.
Based on what we normally spend here in Berlin, here are a few example prices and estimates for what I think we’ll probably spend on our bike tour.
Example Breakfast for Four Hungry Cyclists:
Omelette with Goat Cheese & Tomatoes; Coffee; Dried Nuts & Fruit
- € 2.50 8 Bio Eggs
- €1.50 Organic Cherry Tomatoes
- € 2.90 Goat Cheese
- € 1.80 Goat Milk, .5 Liter
- € 2.00 Walnuts, 150 grams
- € 2.50 Apples, 4 pieces
- Ground Coffee (€ 5 per 250 grams)
About €13.50 (€3.30 each)
Example Dinner for Four Hungry Cyclists:
Pork Chops with Mushrooms, Green Salad, Red Wine
- € 26.00 Free-Range Pork Chops, 4 pieces
- € 5.00 Red Wine, 750 mL
- € 4.00 Chanterelle Mushrooms
- € 2.00 Bio Salad Greens
- € 1.00 Bio Red Peppers
About €38.00 (€9.50 each)
Clearly, my imagination is living it up with these example meals. I think we could also get away with a cheap ‘n simple camp chili for €2-3 per person and be perfectly happy.
But, taking the gourmet approach into account, I think we can assume lunch has a cost between breakfast and dinner, so that’s roughly €6.50 each, putting us at about €19.30 per person, per day for four exceedingly well-fed cyclists.
As for lodging, I expect we will mostly camp and sometimes (perhaps when it’s raining?) choose to stay in an inexpensive B&B or guest house.
Campsites range from €5 for a two-person tent to €25.
I’m seeing most B&B rooms ranging between €50 and €85 per night, depending on the location.
Over three weeks, I imagine we’ll average a lodging cost of about €35 per night, per couple.
And then there’s the miscellany. Why wouldn’t we want to stop along the roadside for an attractive wine tasting or exploring a dripping cave or enjoying the simple purity of human nudity in the baths of Baden-Baden?
So, why not throw €15 into the daily “whatever” budget?
For those playing along at home, that brings us to €51.80 per person, per day for the 21-day trip. That’s €1,087 and change.
Of course, that doesn’t include the cost of gear, the train ride back from Paris to Berlin, any necessary bike repairs or that spooky category known as “the unexpected,” but I think it does give us a ballpark idea of what riding in style costs.
Just three weeks before the big ride!