With the government shutdown currently and gas prices fluctuating like crazy it are not easy to sometimes find the best gas station with the lowest prices per gallon when trying to save. I remember when gas prices used to be $1.18/gallon in the 1990’s and those days are over. Now they are hovering between $1.94 if you are in the southern area of the United States and around $2.20 if you are in the northern side of the United States. To make matters more challenging if you are driving an SUV or van those vehicles do not give the most miles per gallon so the need to find the lowest price per gallon is even more crucial.
AAA estimates that consumers will pay the highest gas prices around the Memorial Day holiday. But this probably will still not deter folks from taking vacation or hitting the road on those cross country trips.
So here are some tips to save money on gas, even as pump prices jump to three-year highs:
- You can use a mobile app while driving
With popular smartphone apps like GasBuddy or Waze you can always be armed with just a push of a button to find the lowest price per gallon in your vicinity. With GasBuddy users can also report prices round the clock so that the freshest prices are accurate.
Waze is also great and I use that app everyday for GPS purposes but they also have a feature where you can find the nearest gas station in your vicinity and shows the price per gallon as well.
- Pay with a credit card when you can
If you buy gas and you have a credit card try and use it as you can earn rewards for doing so In addition, you can earn additional rewards on top of the basic rewards. There are some credit cards that offers cash back when purchasing gas.
- Try to get gas during the week
Gas stations raise the prices of the pumps on the weekend more than during the week. Try to fill up Monday through Friday if you can and don’t forget to use an app while doing so. It is said by experts that the best time to get is on hump day (Wednesday).
- Pay cash, not credit
On the flip side some gas stations give you a discount when you pay by cash instead of paying with a credit card. Even though credit cards do give you cash back and rewards when purchasing gas if you do not own a credit card or do not want to take advantage of the cash back and want instant savings then definitely use cash. The instant savings can be as high as 5-12 cents a gallon saved by using cash.
- Easy on the gas pedal
It is not an urban legend that if you have a heavy foot or accelerate to fast from a stop that you burn more gas. This is actually true in that quick acceleration, braking and speeding can cut gas mileage by 10% to 40% in stop-and-go traffic. So if you want to save gas try to gradually accelerate from a stop as this will not only conserve gas but prevent you from hitting the car in front of you or the car behind you slamming into you.
Another way to save gas on the highway is to use cruise control. This past week I took a trip to South Carolina and I was using cruise control on I-85 and it felt really good watching the gauge tell me how many MPG I was using in my Nissan. It was a very big difference then when I was constantly accelerating and braking.
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