Gasoline costs can be frustrating. Just when you think that you have a handle on your monthly budget, a spike in fuel prices can turn everything upside down. While many families tighten up on spending in the wake of rising gasoline prices, some are completely undone with just a little change in their spending. It’s important to use every means available to cut your gasoline costs in such a shaky scenario, and there are some creative ways to do this.
One of the most important ways to save money on gas is to use less gas. The cost of filling your gas tank may still take a bite out of your budget, but if you are driving less then you are refueling less. Regardless of whether gasoline prices climb or fall, this technique is suitable for anyone needing a little wiggle room in the budget. Assess your driving habits. Keep a log of your driving for the month. Examine the necessity of each trip, and use a colored highlighter to produce a visual understanding of your gasoline usage. Highlight non-essential driving in pink and essential driving in yellow. The image doesn’t save you money, but the visual understanding may impact your driving habits. That may lead to savings.
Use geometry to plan your driving. Take a good look at a map of your major paths of travel. Explore alternate roads that lead to the same destination. Think about geometry. The shortest distance between two points is a straight line. The straighter your path to your destination, the shorter the distance you will drive. Use the hypotenuse principle. The two legs of a right triangle are greater in length than the hypotenuse. Look for hypotenuse-like options for getting to work or other destinations by finding triangular areas on your local map. In some cases, you may greatly reduce your driving distances. In other cases the reduction may not be huge. Any time you reduce your driving, though, you save money.
Make the most of loyalty programs that offer gasoline discounts. Some drugstores provide gas cards when a certain amount of money is spent on designated goods. Others provide fuel points for each prescription purchase. As points accrue, it’s possible to save a per gallon amount on your gasoline purchase. Don’t blindly use those reward points, though. Your Chevy truck holds far less fuel than your gas guzzling Ford van. Use those rewards on your greatest fuel holders, and make sure that you are using those points when you have plenty of room in your tank. There is a big difference in saving 30 cents per gallon when your tank holds nearly 30 gallons rather than 17 gallons.
Gas prices are always in flux. When you think you’ve reached a point of being able to relax about refueling, beware. A spike is probably on its way. With some unique fuel saving and money saving tips, though, you will be ready.