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New Plan

Posted by on September 14, 2012

Rich and Linda Morris, proud owners of a new Airstream Interstate Class B motorhome, are taking their first steps into the RV lifestyle. When Rich asked us where we were headed next, I shrugged. He grinned and said, “How great to be so free!” I smiled inwardly, knowing it had nothing to do with being a free spirit. Stuff happens, and plans change. Why plan an itinerary today when everything can change tomorrow?

Bronte Provincial Park Campsite

Bronte Provincial Park Campsite

The original plan had been to visit Karin—a high school friend of Manny’s—in Toronto, then to continue up the coast of Ontario on the way to Quebec, our ultimate destination. However, our first night in a Provincial Park gave us quite a shock: $42.00 a night! We rarely pay more than $30.00 in U.S. State Parks, and often much less. The Canadian park sites were ample, with similar amenities. But the bathrooms were filthy. We were shocked and disappointed.

We are not prone to rush to judgment, so we tried a County Park. Here we found more permanent residents than temporary campers. It was a desolate, end-of-the-line kind of place, where people live when they have no where else to go. And yet, it was still $42.00 a night.

We were flabbergasted when we realized that the $1.31 advertised on the Canadian Petrol marquee meant “per liter”, about $5.00 a gallon!

Petro Canada's Price

Petro Canada's Price

So we decided that after visiting Karin, we would hightail it back to the United States and travel along the southern coast of Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence River in New York to arrive in Quebec for the “Europeanesque” experience we desired.

I had always wondered why Marianne and Randy, Ontario residents and authors of the popular website www.frugal-rv-travel.com, always seem to travel in the United States.

I checked their site, and noticed that Marianne commented, “Although Randy and I are Canadians, we know it’s cheaper to travel through almost any of the 48 continental United States than to travel through our own province of Ontario.”

Now I understand why.

5 Responses to New Plan

  1. Manny & Roz

    Email from Linda Morris:

    Hey, loved your posts. And thanks for including us, kinda means we have to get back out on the road soon. If you’re observing, Happy New Year, even if you’re not, to both of you.
    Linda

  2. Manny & Roz

    Email from Nancy Beadle:

    Roz, Manny, what fun to get your email with the wonderful posts telling and showing of your travels! Thanks so much. It was especially fun to see the photos of the 2011 Leisure Van rally. Seems like a very long time ago, but it was just a year ago. Time flies, doesn’t it? Where are you now? You certainly have some great pictures of the European trip! The flower market shots are spectacular! Keep them coming! Do be safe and enjoy your travels, wherever you might be.

    Nancy and Ron

  3. Manny & Roz

    Email from Brenda Brisch:

    Where is Bronte Provincial Park? In what state? Interesting discovery you had there. Thanks for these fun trip notes, Bren

  4. Manny & Roz

    Email from Carlos Bolbrugge:

    Re: Canadian traveling costs, the money for our universal healthcare system has to be paid somehow.
    All Canadians must have provincial health.

    My personal experience, based on an approximate calculation, Canadians have laid out roughly $500,000 or more for me over 27 years to take care of my health problems, including 2 cancers, one of which I fought for 6 years. This includes visits to doctors offices, chemotherapy, radiotherapy all type of exams, subsidized medication, surgeries, etc.

    Below a certain income level, you do not have to pay any premiums (100% subsidy). So, we might bitch a bit now and then, but overall we are taken good care of.

    Carlos

  5. Manny & Roz

    Email from Gene Holcomb:

    Hi you guys, just read with interest your latest blog. I am getting them more regular now or you are just posting more. Wish we could travel a few days with you.

    What you are saying about prices in Canada does not surprise me a bit. When we were planning our trip to Alaska, I kept checking prices of fuel in Anchorage and Fairbanks, did not seem too bad to me. I just did not check prices in BC or the Yukon. Oh my gosh, we were always paying over $5.00 gal. And several times over $6.00 per gallon. We were astounded by all pricing. Food in restaurants, food in groceries and almost anything purchased. I am almost ashamed to tell you I paid $42.00 for a case of 24 beers. When we left Calgary we dropped down into USA to get our sanity back from sticker shock. Even was charged $60.00 for an oil change on our Honda. Shame on me did not ask price. Mileage on the Chevy has been great and we are pulling a car loaded with stuff.

    When we left it was our goal to do a lot of dry camping (boon docking), something we love to do anyway. Actually ended up doing that and a lot more BBQ and eating in, which we also like to do. Tried to be as frugal as we could on camp sites, staying in provincial parks mostly with out hook ups but nice settings. We have been gone 121 days today and have only payed for 29 days of camping. Pretty good huh?

    We have been having a ball the last few days; staying at casinos across Minnesota, Wisconsin, and the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. We get cards when we go in and since it is my b’day month, I have been getting extra free plays and food coupons. We have made out well everywhere we stopped.

    We have had a great time but have agreed that we are so happy to have made this trip to Alaska and the north country, as it has been high on our bucket list. However we agree we have now done it and need not do it again. You know how some things you want to repeat, Alaska is not one of them. We have driven over 11,000 miles and have put another 2,500 on the Honda just sight seeing. We have just had the greatest time.

    Now to Indiana to see kids, grandkids and great grandkids. Several more things to see and do. Getting back to our home in Arizona sometime in December.

    Keep us posted. We think of you guys often and many times say; we wonder what Roz and Manny would do.

    Gene & Cheri

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