Monthly budget and review of Sabinillas

San Luis de Sabinillas/Puerto de la Duquesa.

As we prepare to up sticks and hit the road to head for Portugal, it’s time to take a look at the budgets and put together thoughts on our month in Sabinillas, Spain.

Looking at the financial side we think it’s definitely possible to keep the budget in the green here assuming you visit out of regular tourist season, retain a slow travel mentality and resist the temptation to join the general heavy-spend tourist mindset. Instead of eating out regularly we prepared our own food at home after shopping at Lidl and Mercadona rather than eating out at the restaurants. When in doubt live like a local definitely rings true here. It’s a fact that the majority of people who work on Gibraltar live locally in Manilva and commute in for the exact same low cost reason that make this area so appealing financially. For accommodation we paid more than we usually would because we booked the apartment last year while still in the USA and didn’t really have the opportunity to shop around so it was oversized for our needs. Even though we loved the veranda and view of the mediterranean, on return we would definitely be able to reduce that cost by shopping around for smaller places well in advance.

So without further ado here is the monthly budget for Sabinillas:-

  • Rent = 828.50 Euros
  • Utilities = 0 Euros (included with rent)
  • Internet = 0 Euros (included with rent)
  • *Transportation = 90.72 Euros
  • **Groceries = 292.20 Euros
  • Happy hour drinks x 3 = 30.00 Euro
  • Total budget = 1241.42 Euro = $1536.00

Income used for the month:- rental+interest income+p2p = $1035+236+287 = $1558

Remaining income from dividends were not required and so were available for re-investment or accumulation.

*Transportation includes bus from the airport, locally to and from Estapona, Marbella, Gibraltar and Cable car journey on Gibraltar.

**The grocery budget is for two people eating a vegetarian diet, preparing food at the apartment.

Extra non-budget item – Mrs Dividend Nomad had her hair colored for 40 Euros, covered by Pretty Things Fund.

Disclosure: Travel Insurance was purchased in 2017 while in the USA using Allianz = $158.00 for 6 months of coverage for two people. Your experience may vary so it is good to shop around for travel insurance as much as possible.

Typical meals look like:-


Muesli with skim milk + boiled egg on toast + coffee/camomile


Wheat baguette with cheese and onion and almonds/Cheese baked potato with beans.


Baked potato, Seitan/Veggie burgers, green beans/sprouts/brocolli


Carrots or celery with hummus/Sliced apple with low fat greek yoghurt/Cheese pizza.


White wine (1.38 Euro per bottle) or San Miguel beer (0.50 Euro per can)

Eating and drinking regularly at local bars and restaurants would incur additional costs to this budget not factored into our particular calculations, we tended to restrict ourselves to happy hour once a week.


From an exercise perspective the weather has been perfect, sticking in the range of 59 to 70F degrees and about 95% sunny for the month which has been perfect for running. Below is a snapshot of average mileage including walks for off days, this type of mileage just isn’t achievable in places with hotter climates so we’ve been more than happy with the progress.


The are also opportunities for leisure cycling locally with convenient bike lanes but we just stuck to running for our stay. The local cycle race teams tend to use the main freeway through the town without too much trouble and the motorists do seem to respect their presence, that would be subject to individual risk tolerance though.


As a first location for the passive income era Sabinillas fits the bill for the frugal slow traveler. The potential opportunity to bring costs down further exists on the accommodation side since we stayed in an apartment that sleeps 6 with sea view. An apartment this size is definitely not necessary for two people and shopping around could potentially bring down the total overhead expenditure. All in all an exciting start, hopefully it can continue moving forward as we head for Portugal.

Thanks for reading,