Fueling up at the gas station is getting more and more costly and eating into fixed budgets like never before. But what can you do to defray the costs? You can start by finding other ways to save, so you’ll have more money to spend on gas. For instance, check out your monthly bills and see where you can cut costs. Finding car insurance quotes that keep you covered without breaking the bank is one good example.
You can see if the station offers different prices for cash and credit, avoid a fill-up right before a holiday, and use a gas price app to make certain you are getting the best price. Here are some other simple tips for saving money at the pump.
Watch For The Best Prices In Your Area
There are a couple of ways to do this. As you do your regular driving around town, take note of which stations offer the cheapest gas. The other way you can do this is to install a cheap gas finder app on your phone and when you need a fill-up, check out who’s offering it for less.
Of course, traipsing across town for gas that is 4 cents cheaper than the station down the street may prove futile because you’ll be using just as much gas getting there and back as you would save at the pump.
Find Rewards Programs
Just like grocery and department stores, gas stations want repeat customers, too! Many offer rewards programs for filling up consistently at their location. You might be looking at savings of between 5 and 10 cents per gallon. Check to see if there are grocery stores in the area that offer points that work to save you money at pumps located in their parking lots.
Many credit card companies offer fuel rewards programs. Check to see if yours does and sign yourself up. You’ll be looking at accumulating credits and points that you can use in a variety of ways.
Buy Gas At The Coolest Time Of The Day
Whether it’s 95 or 45, when the hot afternoon sun beats down on the pumps, the gas will expand. When you pump it into your car, you’ll be getting less than at the cooler times of the day when gas is denser. Get into the habit of filling up in the morning or the evening and you’ll save a little bit of money every time.
It stands to reason that the less you drive your vehicle, the more gas you will save. Think about your plans for the week and consider what trips you can combine. If the grocery store is near the post office and you must hit both, combine the trip instead of going on two separate occasions.
Use Your Vehicle Less Often
For 70% of Americans, most of the year offers weather that is conducive to walking or bike riding. If you’re able to keep the car keys hanging and get to your location by walking or bicycling, you’ll not only be saving money, but you’ll also be getting additional exercise.
For future vacations, consider driving somewhere within a 60-mile radius to save on fuel costs. You probably aren’t aware of the number of hidden gems and attractions nearby. With gas at $5 a gallon, now is the perfect time to explore close to home!
Fill Up Your Tank
If you’ve been lucky enough to find a gas station offering a great price, fill your tank up. Anything less is likely to cost you money because you’ll need gas sooner, and by that time the prices will already have gone up.
Pay With Cash
Most gas stations offer a cash price and a credit price. It costs them more when you pay by credit, so it makes sense that they can make their cash price lower. Much of the time you’ll be looking at a 10-cent reduction so it’s a win for everyone.
The reasonable rules of the road also translate into smart driving and fuel efficiency. Here are some ways you can drive smart and pay less in gas:
- Don’t speed: It’s not only dangerous it drains your fuel.
- Don’t sit idle in your car with the air conditioner blasting – this will also drain your fuel. Instead, find a store or somewhere else for shelter.
- Don’t brake hard. This will waste fuel and wear down your brakes more quickly than necessary.
- Don’t accelerate quickly. Being first off the line is fun but it’s also costing you money in lower fuel economy.
There’s likely to be a little bit of relief from the high gas prices after Labor Day but given that prices are already astronomical, the relief won’t be much. Follow these simple and easy rules for the road and tips for finding cheap gas to lessen that pain at the pump.