The nature of RVing itself. less of everything, makes it a cost effective lifestyle.
We find we eat less, have less clothes, buy fewer things, and have more fun. Due to the nature of the lifestyle we walk more and are healthier.
People often focus on the price of fuel and it is a significant expense, however when we do a loop of North America it amounts to about a 400 towing gallons and 400 exploring gallons, these days less than $200 a month. Equally important to mpg is vehicle reliability.
People who do weekend camping travel a lot more miles per day than someone doing a loop of N.A. Walking with a friend this morning he mentioned that when weekend camping he could easily tow 400 miles in a weekend with his diesel truck, more expensive fuel and lower mpg.
As to the cost of campsites there are a myriad of ways to save money, a clever person can average under $10 a night for camping fees, less than any apartment.
When we were traveling more extensively our biggest daily expenses was keeping our home, that cost us about $30 a day even though we only used it about 4 months a year. Now that we've sold our former family home in NH, our cost of home ownership is now about $10 a day.
Though cost is an issue in life, the good times we've had have been priceless. I would gladly have given up my prime earning years for 10 more years on the road. The reality is when we hit the road and retired early, we were at peak earnings, however if I had known the RV lifestyle earlier I would have quit at 48 when my kids finished college. Money is no replacement for time, particularly good times.