Sunday, August 5, 2012

Cost to Cruise – July

Starting our 2nd ‘year’ of detailed cost tracking and reporting.  Despite taking a week to travel to Portland for my job, we managed to post a below-average month!  In fact, had we NOT needed that trip we WOULD have been under our ‘goal’ of $2,000 / month – Health insurance included!   Wow, maybe there is some hope :-)

Communications again was high due to heavy usage of the Sprint/Nextel phone – the one that works practically everywhere but is on a per-minute rate.   It is our Go To phone that we needed to Go To while in the South Sound.  (Verizon, sorry you all did not cut it).  We will see some changes in this area this fall as my consulting contract will likely have run its course; and Sprint is taking off-line the last of the old Nextel/iDEN towers to repurpose that fabulous frequency (which is one reason the phone works as well as it does) for their deployment of 4G LTE.  Oh Well.

Click on image for larger view

Dining out up a bit (reflecting the week in Portland).  Groceries perhaps down a bit?  - again that week in Portland.

Looking forward we will again be traveling down to Portland in August, and are preparing for a Haul Out in September.  Am interested to see how Viking Star behaves in these cooler sea waters vs. the river waters she has been in for the past several years.

Solar continues to work well and the results are within 3% of predicted modelling.  In fact, since installing the panels, aside from the first couple of weeks when we were still learning about them, we have neither run the generator nor purchased power while at a dock.  Even while doing Laundry.   With these long days we have even used excess power to heat shower water a couple of times!  (A bonus I had not anticipated in the ROI modeling).  I continue to be very pleased with them.

Speaking of generator.  We have also not needed to run the Water maker this summer.  Being out of the Islands (where water gets precious during the summer months) there has been lots of access on public docks to city water.  Plus with our trips to Portland we have been able to top up at the marinas.  Looking forward I suspect we may not run the water maker at all this year, though am sure that will change once we start heading North for the summers next year.

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