I love to ski, so it seemed like a great idea to head out to Colorado for a couple of months this winter so I could do more, and better, skiing than I have ever done in a single season in my life. Calling myself a “ski bum” is probably a bit of an exaggeration, considering that I have still been working my butt off while I’m here, but it has been an interesting experience to work on keeping my expenses somewhat low in a country that is not typically cheap to travel around.

My goal was to keep my costs under $1,700 per month, though my benchmark for being able to do this again next year was more like $2,000 per month. Note that the expenses listed below do not include any ongoing expenses at home (like rent). This was meant to be an experiment in how much it would cost to truly live out in Colorado for a season while not having to worry about anything elsewhere.

Totals 2319.73 Diff From Average
Transport 457.72 204.3
Food/Drink 733.03 375.34
Activities 530.16
Misc 93.82
Lodging $ 205.00
Lodging Points 60000

Overall, I was over my benchmark for being able to do this again next year, granted, I did purchase a snowboard and snowboard boots to test out something different when a friend came out to visit. Without that purchase I would have been right about at my benchmark.

I was able to keep my lodging costs extremely low this month, partially made possible by an IHG PointBreaks hotel just outside Park City in Utah that only cost 5,000 points per night. I did redeem some more IHG Points at other hotels during my drive out to Colorado. Throughout the course of the month, I spent 15 nights in hotels, 11 nights with friends, four nights couchsurfing, and one night at an airbnb.

I spent almost twice as much as I normally do on food in a month, which to some extent isn’t a surprise considering I didn’t have access to a kitchen for more than half of the month. And Colorado has a lot of good beer, too – that definitely didn’t help my food/drink expenses category. While I’m not surprised that my expenses were somewhat higher, I was a little bit surprised at just how high they were. That is definitely something that I intend to keep more in check during the month of April.

I also spent about $200 more on transportation than I normally do in a month, but I’ve been driving a lot! I was expecting that number to be higher that it is, in all honesty, though inexpensive gas really does help!

Overall, I’m pretty happy with my expenses for the month. Considering that I didn’t know where I was going to be staying very much while I was out here or really what I was going to be doing, I think I did a reasonable job keeping my expenses in check. I think that during the month of April I will be able to keep them lower than they were for March.