Monday, June 14, 2010
The cost of cruising... First steps
Some years ago while in the Canary islands we were talking to a couple with a great boat, a large budget, and all the toys, who could not wait to get back to the US of A and quit cruising because they could not find Hellman's mayo (and suchlike) ... REALLY! The fact was on Las Palmas there is really great (exceptional) shopping and any number of excellent mayo's available and all the fixings for making mayo from scratch but for them, life without their favorite brand was just not in the cards...
Which brings us to the bottom line of eating happily on boats is you will have to be able to adapt and if anything, you should look at it as a positive and enjoy it.
Since you will have to adapt, in the long run, it makes a lot of sense to adapt with a plan rather than simply react... Whether it is evolving a more frugal diet, a healthier one, or simply taking the opportunity to get involved with various ethnic foods and means of preparation, it is always easier with a plan! Since the subject at hand is the cost of cruising we will be talking more about the frugal side...
For most folks, meat is the first problem they run into. Meat has a limited shelf life, requires either refrigeration or preservation of some form (canning, drying, smoking), and when you get to far flung places it is often not at all like home in such things like the way cuts of meat are presented or aged. Face it, when a steak is not a steak for a lot of people it is serious culture shock.
Most people simply adapt by cutting back on meat which is no bad thing health or budget wise and some even cut out meat entirely... Both options you should consider or at least factor in to the equation as one of the easiest ways to cut down on the grocery and provisioning bill is to cut back on protein costs to a need rather than want level.
Which might be a good time to point you towards a couple of great links... 10 in 10 Diet is a great resource and makes it both easy and rather tasty to adapt towards a $150 per person per month food cost scenario and The Hummus Blog which I've recently found to be a finest-kind source of frugal and very tasty recipes for a meat light diet.