Budget estimate

So - what will it cost us to travel across the US for six weeks?

Actually, we don’t know. But we ougt to find out before we get going, so here’s an estimate of sorts..

Air fare - $1000

We’ll travel by plane from Oslo, Norway to Seattle, Washington. After driving around, we’ll fly from Miami to NYC - and then from NYC back home to Oslo.

SAS is currently charging $2200 (14,600 Norwegian kroner) for a single one way ticket from Oslo to Seattle. We didn’t even bother to check the total fare for the entire round trip.

Through we’ve been able to find this round trip from approximately $1000 (6500 NoK). A test reservation at the American Airlines website gave us a price of approx. $800 per person. The prices vary from day to day, but we’ll obviously try to book the plane tickets on a day with low prices!! Based on our research, we’ll estimate a cost of $1000 per person on plane tickets. (Sweet!)

AmTrak - $400

We’re planning to take the AmTrak from the Crand Canyon area up to Boston, possibly with a few stop-overs.

The cheap and boring alternative

  • Grand Junction - Chicago, Coach, 2 adults : $226
  • Chicago - Albany - Boston, Coach, 2 adults: $150
  • $188 (approx 1200,- NOK) per person

The nicer alternative

  • Grand Junction - Chicago, Superliner Roomette, 2 adults : $616
  • Chicago - Albany - Boston, Viewliner Roomette/Business, 2 adults : $429
  • $540 (approx 3500,- NOK) per person

We’ll probably end up taking the Superliner Roomette from Grand Junction to Chicago, and ride on coach from Chicago to Boston, which would cost us approximately $400 each.

Car rental (and gas/insurance/etc.) - $3000

We’ve checked and compared rates for car rentals, and the estimates suggest:

Car rental
  • The boring alternative: $1240 (approx. 8000,- NOK) per person
  • The nicer alternative: $1340 (approx. 8500,- NOK) per person

Roughly estimated, we’ll drive 5600 miles (9000 km)..
If a car runs 22 miles pr. gallon (we’re planning for worst case scenarioes here), we’ll need 255 gallons of gas. With an average price hovering near $3 per gallon, we’ll spend near $800 on gas. At least.


We’ll have to pay for Liability Insurance Supplement, Loss Damage Waiver, Personal Accident Insurance / Personal Effects Coverage, a double-driver fee and an extra fee for delivering the car on a different location. This will probably be around $1000(!) per person.


Check automobile insurance at home to see if it will cover driving in the US, or use a credit card that provides free insurance when you rent a car

Housing - $1500

Prices on hotels and motels vary a lot, and we’ll hopefully save a little by getting hold of coupons along the road. But we’re likely to end up paying above average every now and then as well. If we calculate on spending $75 (for both) each night, we’ll end up using approximately $1500 each.

Dining and entertainment - $3000

It’s hard to estimate how much money we’ll spend on food, events, museum tickets, shopping - and useless stuff we just have to buy. I guess our spending money will be whatever we have left after paying for all the other stuff, but some brief calculations indicate that we ought to have at least $3000 of spending money each.

Total - $9000

All of this should indicate that we need to save up at least $9000 or 60,000 Norwegian kroner. Wooohah!

Got tips? Comments? Do tell!