Besides the obvious ways to save on fuel – don’t run the air conditioning and don’t drive around aimlessly – there are many other ways to save a buck or two at the pump. It doesn’t look like gas is going to get any cheaper anytime soon, so finding creative ways to conserve fuel and keep money in your wallet should be a top priority. Here are ten easy ways to save money on gas this summer.
1. Drive Responsibly
Driving like you’re about to win the Indy 500 will cost you big. Accelerating rapidly from a stop light or braking at the last minute uses more fuel, not to mention is hard on the vehicle, than if you take your time. You may cut fuel consumption by as much as 35% if you simply accelerate slowly and brake gradually when behind the wheel.
2. Shop for Discount Gas Cards
There are many online websites that sell discount gas cards. Check out Gift Card Granny – you may get a $100 gas card for only $95. That’s a $5 savings!
3. Time your Trips to the Pump
There’s no hard and fast rule, but many gas stations raise their prices just before the weekend in anticipation of increased travel. It’s best to fill up early in the week before 10 a.m. Why 10 a.m.? That’s usually about the time that station owners change their prices. Avoid fueling up on Friday, Saturday or Sunday if you can help it.
4. Take Advantage of Gas Reward Cards
Many grocery stores offer gas reward points now for buying in their stores. If you buy certain items marked with gas reward points, you’ll save a specified number of cents per gallon. Check your grocery shopping needs against the gas reward items and start collecting your points. This program is pretty awesome in my book. Last year I save all my gas reward points at our local Piggly Wiggly store and got 15 gallons of gas free!
5. Use your Smartphone to Save on Gas
Your smartphone can be quite the helpful tool, especially when you have the GasBuddy app. This app helps you find the cheapest gas prices in your area before you leave the house so you always know where to go to get the cheapest fuel.
6. Don’t sit at an Idle for too Long
I was always taught that starting a car takes more gas than letting it idle, but I recently learned that if the car idles for more than a minute, it actually wastes more gas than shutting it off and restarting.
When it comes to saving money, every little bit helps. In today’s world, there’s no way to get around needing to drive everywhere, but if you’re smart about the way you drive and know some tricks to save a few pennies here and there, doing so doesn’t have to be so expensive.
Photo Credit: Thinkstock