Planning on taking a summer road trip? So are a lot of people. The economy is pretty good these days. So people are spending more, and that includes taking vacations and doing more traveling.
You should know that gas prices have inched up. In fact, due to an increased cost of crude oil, gas prices are the highest we’ve seen in a while.
The average gas price is $2.81 a gallon. If you’re planning on doing some traveling this summer, or have a long commute to work, the money you spend on gas could really add up.
But are things to do that could save you money on gas. If you make a few changes, you could potentially save thousands of dollars. Read on to learn more.
1. Slow Down
Driving the speed limit can save you nearly $500 a year. Erratic driving, like accelerating quickly and slamming on the brakes increases the amount of gas you use. That increase can amount to nearly 40% more spent on gas.
Instead, when the light turns green, gently speed up. When the light turns red, slowly coast until you have to step on the brake. If you want to know how to save money on gas, these small changes can make a big difference.
2. Shop Around
Although most gas prices in an area will be relatively the same, prices do fluctuate. In some places that difference can be as much as $1 a gallon, such as in big cities like Los Angeles.
Prices will be higher at a gas station right off the highway or at a major intersection, compared to a station in town or on a street with less traffic.
And prices in the city might be lower than prices in the suburbs. Gas stations are counting on drivers’ willingness to pay more out of convenience. Many gas station apps will tell you where to save money on gas.
3. Grocery Store Discounts
Some grocery stores offer significant discounts on gas. Many will save you as much 10 cents a gallon for every $100 you spend in their store. Over a month’s time buying groceries, you can a lot.
Memberships to discount stores like Costco or Sam’s Club means savings at the pump too.
Also, many gas stations offer different prices for gas when paying with cash over credit. It might mean taking a few steps into the station to pay, but again, a little inconvenience means big savings.
4. Keep Your Car Maintained
It’s important to keep your tires properly inflated. Not only can under-inflated tires cause them to wear out faster or wear unevenly, but it can mean using more gas.
Be sure to check your tire pressure periodically, especially as the temperature increases.
Also, do regularly scheduled maintenance, including tune-ups, filter checks, and oil changes. All of these can keep your car more fuel-efficient and save you money on gas.
5. Drive Less
Take the bus if you can. Driving solo back and forth to work is convenient, but if you can take public transportation, it will save you big bucks on gas, insurance, car maintenance and parking costs.
Now that the weather is nice, walking or riding a bike is a great way to save money, get exercise and enjoy the great outdoors. Many cities offer rent-a-bikes or bike sharing on street corners.
Plan your driving. If you find yourself running errands every other day, try to plan more efficiently by getting all of your errands done in fewer trips.
That’s How to Save Money on Gas
Now that you know how to save money on gas, you’ll soon be taking fewer trips to the gas station.
But if you’re ready to make some big changes, you could think about buying a car that’s fuel-efficient, such as a hybrid. This not only saves you money but helps save the environment.
Or, get a credit card that offers cash back on gas purchases.
Enjoy your summer travels with the family. But if it’s possible, walk or ride a bike. You’ll save money and enjoy the scenery a whole lot more.
For more great tips on frugal living, visit my blog.