Money Matters

A lot of people tend to shy away from talking about money. That’s understandable, I suppose, given the emphasis we place on money and what we think having it (or not) means about other people. Personally, though, I’ve never quite understood this discomfort when it comes to discussing finances. Money makes the world go ’round. Some of us have more than others, and we all spend it in different ways. But we all make it and spend it somehow.

On that note, now that my last big purchase, a netbook, has arrived, below is a general outline of my pre-trip expenses by category. There may be a few more incidental purchases such as toiletries and a book or two, but in general this should be it. Keep in mind, of course, that what I spent is in no way reflective of what you should or need to spend to travel. You could do this with your everyday clothes and a Jansport if you wanted – or outfit yourself in nothing but Arc’teryx. I chose somewhere in the middle.

Clothes:   $444.21
Backpack:    $65.17
Insurance:    $224
Vaccines:    $75.71
Other misc:    $315.09
TOTAL    $1,124

Note that this list does not include flights. Since no one travels at the same time or to the same places, it didn’t seem relevant to include. The list similarly does not include the camera, netbook, or ipod that I bought since most people probably already have those items and/or the costs for buying them vary WIDELY depending on what kind of quality you’re looking for.

I also know that “Other Miscellaneous” is a rather large and somewhat meaningless category, and that in terms of $$ it’s the second biggest item on my list, but it really is just an accumulation of the assorted odds and ends that I found myself wanting/needing for the trip. It does include things that many people may already own, such as a watch and a small bag that I bought to use as a day pack, but I left those items in for simplicity’s sake.

In a few days I’ll put up a picture and complete list of my travel gear. That way you can see what “Other Miscellaneous” really means, and where all this money actually went.