4 Tips for Sailing the World on a Budget

More and more recreational sailors are turning to exploration. Whether you’re thinking about sailing down the coast or across an ocean, you’ll likely bump up against some budgetary constraints. However, if you choose your cruising grounds carefully and are willing to adapt, sailing around the world can be significantly cheaper than simply living on land. With careful planning, most people can do this type of adventuring long-term. In the meantime, here are a few tips for cutting costs.


Get a simple boat. Don’t fall for the luxuries of huge, modern sailboats. Instead, buy a simple little boat that is easy to maintain. The fewer things that can break, the easier and cheaper it will be to live aboard. Simple systems, such as manual foot pumps for water and a composting toilet, take much less effort and money to look after. Smaller vessels are also less expensive to store, paint, and heat.


Anchor as much as possible. Anchor out as much as you can. This will save you a lot of money on mooring costs, which are often relatively high in popular cruising areas. What’s the point of living on a boat if you have to pay $100 per night to moor? However, you’ll want to keep some extra mooring money on-hand in case of storms or high winds.


Research ahead of time. There’s nothing worse than unforeseen costs—especially when you’re out on the water. If you’re planning to visit certain areas, research the countries and ports you want to visit before dropping anchor. This will allow you to account for most expenses in advance. Make sure you check the cost of living in the area, too, because you’ll need to stock up on supplies.


Cook as much as possible. Eating on shore is a great way to blow through your savings within the first couple of weeks. Instead, eat on the boat as much as you can. Additionally, consider swapping expensive habits for cheaper alternatives—swap your wine for canned beer, or consume less meat. Save onshore dinners for special occasions.