We try to minimise all our expenses. And one of the most obvious way is the accommodation set-up: camping is always the cheaper option compared to a room. But there are many other little things that we are trying to do on a daily basis, depending on the place we are.
Internet is one expense that we do juggle with for cost. Some countries are more expensive than others and we look at the different options and adapt to them.
One thing that this exercise has taught us (or at least really showed us…) is that we use more and more data. As soon as you connect your phone, tablet, computer, there are background checks etc that start using your data. Then pictures, website browsing, maintenance of the websites, posting for the blog and websites – all small things that do add up. In many places we have unlimited (or at least high cap) internet at home and then another contract on the cellphone. For me here, everything is through the cellphone and I juggle with expenses in general anyway, so I am more careful with everything.
I have learned to save the pages I want to read so that I do not spend too long online. I have learned to only go to check what I need to check. And I have learned to check my data usage and “centralise” internet connection.
In some place, you can get free wifi, such as Mc Donalds, KFC, coffee shop…. I do sometimes go, but you can’t really sit there for the whole day so you learn faster and more efficient ways to surf the net. And I do see the difference when I can sit the whole day: I then get lost in looking at pages after pages – spending more time, but not necessarily getting more for my needs. The needs because leisure, nice to have. So sometimes, not having full internet saves us money and time 🙂
On a practical example: in Zimbabwe, 1 Go of data cost $35 for 1 month. We use that just to post the newsletters… But we can buy 2 Go, valid for 1 day, for $3…. so we just make sure that during that day we make the most of our connection. We use it post the newsletters, blog post, check information online, save articles for offline reading, etc… And then we can use the rest for more leisurely browsing, Facebook, You Tube, etc…
Sometimes, there are also internet shops. And it is “cheap”: generally $1 per hour. But I tell you… when you are not online all the time, 1 hour goes really fast… and for example, posting the newsletters (it is 2 of them each time, French and English) takes 6-7 hours because a lot of the formatting can only be done online and links can only be added once everything is done online… and internet is not so fast… – so the cost of posting would be too high to use internet shops…