As summer approaches, families all across the country will be taking more trips to unwind from the hectic school year. With the price of gas steadily increasing, it can be costly to hit the road and travel with your loved ones. So, I've devised this list of creative ways to help you save at the gas pumps this summer.
Here are some useful tips to help you fill up the tank without breaking the bank.
1. Get a store loyalty card.Stores such as BI-LO, Winn-Dixie and even Home Depot offer fuel perks for their loyal shoppers. You can save as much as 65 cents per gallon simply by joining their free programs and shopping there. Think of all the savings you could be racking up.
2. Fill up your tank in the a.m.Did you know that when gasoline is cool, it's a bit more dense? At the pumps there are devices that ensure accuracy to make sure cold volume is accurate, but as it gets hotter and the temp rises, the density of gasoline falls, and you actually get less. Ha, and they said I would never use anything I learned in College Chem class!
3. Roll up those window and crank the AC.I'm sure at one point we've all heard that turning the air conditioner on in your car uses more energy and burns more gas in the process. This, my dears, is an urban myth (probably started by the gas companies, but I'm not pointing finger--BP, Shell, Kangaroo). Did you know that driving with the windows down increases the drag on your car and actually burns more fuel than your AC? If not, then now you do! Enjoy the breeze from your AC and save gas at the same time.
4. Fill up close to state lines.Because different states have different taxes, they want to remain competitive, so they'll drop their prices closer to state boarders. If you're searching for affordable gas, be sure to fill up near state lines.
5. Travel light.Or as light as you can. I know ladies, this is tough. It's hard for me to imagine being on vacay without my all the essentials-- you know, the 25 lb makeup bag, 15 pair of backup shoes, and at least 25 matching outfits with coordinating jewelry. You may not think it's that heavy, but those things add up quickly. And so do the numbers at the gas tank. Do your wallet a favor and lighten the load this summer on the road. It will pay off (pardon the pun).
6. This isn't NASCAR.
I'm not going to lie and tell you guys that I never speed--unless you're a cop in which case, * Hi officer, I dutifully abide every traffic law, help nuns cross the road and bake cupcakes at the local senior citizen community-- just sayin'* We all have a little inner speed demon. But putting the pedal to the metal sucks up your gas faster than a toddler gulping down chocolate milk. So next time your Steve McQueen alter ego begins to make an appearance, tell him to cool it and save yourself some money.
Since I've started following some of these tips, I have noticed a change in my monthly gas bill. Although you may not notice a huge change right away, if you continue to actively work to save money at the pumps, it will add up.
How do you save at the pumps? Are there any tips that you'd like to share? Feel free to comment in the comment section below.
Until next time,