This post is part of an ongoing series about how much my digital nomad lifestyle costs. For a full list of budget posts and a detailed breakdown on how I budget for a life of full-time travel, visit this detailed article.
This June, this trio of full-time travelers spent our lives based in Rennes, France.
We took day trips to Mont-Saint-Michel, Dinan, Vitre, and Clisson. We spent Saturday mornings browsing the second largest fresh market in France. We meandered through city parks and spent long lunches lingering in the city center.
And, of course, we worked. Chad on his coding projects and me on my writing ones.
As usual, I tracked my spending. Both because it’s important to me to keep detailed financial records for myself and because I like sharing my budgets here with you. Because I want you to know what digital nomad life really costs.
Before we dive into the numbers, remember that I’m a mid-range budget traveler. I’m working while I’m traveling, which means someone spending all their time exploring, taking day trips, and eating out is likely to spend more. And I’m not young or adventurous enough to couch surf or hostel my way through this lifestyle, so you could also definitely spend less.
And now, onto the numbers:
|Entertainment & activities
|Luna (vet bills, supplies)
|Health & wellness
Keep in mind that these days, I’m traveling with my partner. The above expenses are my spending and do not include his expenses. We split the rent 50-50 and lunch and dinner groceries 60-40 (while purchasing our own breakfast stuff and sometimes our own snack stuff separately). Luna is my responsibility, so these are her full bills and our health insurance and healthcare costs are totally separate as well.
For accommodation, we turned to Airbnb. There were a few options in our price range, but our favorite was one a little way outside the center with a huge, beautiful garden area. We booked it and were really glad we did (review coming on the blog later this month).
Local transportation includes several day trips. Our friends came to visit and ended up footing the bill for a rental car, so no transport costs to get to Mont-Saint-Michel, but I did buy train tickets for trips to Dinan, Clisson, and Vitre.
The eating out budget reflects about two meals out per week, sometimes three. Mostly, for us, this means ordering one meal (and perhaps one dessert) to share. We find that fills us up nicely and means we can eat out more often.
Our grocery bill mostly reflects spending at the big fresh market. We bought as much of our food there as we could and then supplemented throughout the week with grocery store milk and greens and teas. We also purchased a lot of baguettes from our local bakery.
Supplies are things like toilet paper, soap, and band-aids.
Entertainment and activities included a cooking class, but I also had an Airbnb credit for $20, so that line item is a bit less than someone else would pay for the same thing.
Luna the traveling pooch’s line item reflects a vet visit and some meds for major allergies, as well as replacing some of her old, worn-out things (her harness) and buying her a toy for her birthday.
Health and wellness was just travel insurance.
One thing I didn’t include above, because the cost is sooo variable based on where you’re coming from, what time of year you’re traveling, and how many comforts you’re willing to give up, is international transportation. If you’re curious, below is what it cost me to get from NYC to Rennes, including plane, train, and taxi. It’s actually wildly cheap for all that travel because we found great deals through XL Airways and Ouigo.
As a final note: the above budget is our day-to-day living and exploring costs and does not include my business expenses and certain personal expenses like books, movie rentals, and replacing water bottles and clothes. I figure those things are too personal and variable to be helpful if you’re using these budgets to figure out your own trip costs, so I generally pull them out.
Want to see more nomad budgets? Check out this extensive post with links to all my published budgets from the last five years.