How to Save Money on Gas: 9 Budgeting Tricks

Fuel costs are still significantly higher than a year ago, even though they are slightly lower than when the average price for a gallon of ordinary petrol hit the $5.00 mark in the second week of June 2022. Finding strategies to reduce our petrol costs is crucial for many of us. That is especially true given how inflation keeps increasing the price of other products and services. Fortunately, there are a few easy strategies to reduce your petrol costs. You can save some extra money in your wallet and stay on track with your budget using the nine suggestions listed below.

1. Use Fuel Apps to Your Advantage

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Fuel apps provide a quick way to locate the most affordable petrol stations along routes you frequently drive, or on road trips you intend to take. Even if your tank isn’t empty, you can benefit from decreased rates when a cheap petrol station is close by checking a fuel app frequently. Using the app often to find reasonable prices is worthwhile because the difference may only be a penny or two per gallon in certain regions, but it might be $0.10 or more in others.

2. Do Your Road Trip Research

Of course, gas-saving applications can be helpful if you’re traveling a long distance. You should conduct more research to plan your fill-ups strategically.

Sometimes, due to changes in tax rates, there are significant price discrepancies in petrol prices between states, making it considerably more cost-effective to fill up on one side. Additionally, petrol stations near motorways are frequently more expensive than those farther away. Petrol stations in larger cities and smaller villages might be compared similarly. In light of this, you should search for petrol stations a bit off your path to find a better offer.

3. Research fuel loyalty programs

Numerous gasoline rewards programs are available to help you save money at the pump. There are many different alternatives for petrol station chains. Additionally, supermarket stores frequently provide rewards points that can be converted into savings at the pump.

Every program has different guidelines and accrual rates. Therefore it’s crucial to investigate them thoroughly. To make using the rewards easier, investigate if there are compatible petrol stations along your usual route. Additionally, each option often only functions at specific chains.

4. Handle Cash

Petrol stations may impose two separate pricing for a gallon of fuel. Both using a credit or debit card and paying with Cash have associated costs. Some businesses raise their pricing for card transactions to cover the costs of the station’s processing fees, which are related to using a card. As a result, purchasing with Cash saves you money—typically about $0.10 per gallon.

Additionally, if you pay with a card, a petrol station may put a hold of up to $175 on your account. That may dramatically reduce the amount of money you can access until the charge clears, depending on the card. You can avoid the annoyance of that hold by paying in Cash or stepping inside and prepaying for a specific dollar amount on a card.

5. Continue Using Lower Grades of Fuel

Stick usually to save money at the pump unless your vehicle explicitly calls for mid-grade or premium fuel. Regular unleaded fuel had an average price of $4.88 per gallon as of late June 2022. Premium averaged $5.60, while mid-grade was $5.30 on average. Therefore, if you had filled up with mid-grade or premium fuel, you would have spent $0.42 or $0.72 more per gallon.

It adds up quickly, even if it doesn’t seem like a big difference. A 12-gallon petrol tank would cost an additional $5.04 to $8.64 for every fill-up. The difference is closer to $6.72 to $11.52 for each fill-up if you drive a larger vehicle with a 16-gallon fuel tank. Fuel quality and petrol tank size add up to an additional $262.08 to $599.04 per year if you fill up once a week.

Try a rewards credit card, please.
Some credit cards allow you to earn points or Cashback on petrol purchases, allowing you to spend less or accumulate points you can redeem for gift cards to shops you already frequent. This choice, though, is only wise if you can make total monthly payments on your credit card amount. Otherwise, any earnings might be reduced by the interest.

7. When possible, carpool

A tried-and-true method of lowering fuel expenditures is carpooling. Ask a coworker with a similar work schedule and who lives nearby if they’d be interested in carpooling if you want to save money on gas. Depending on which option is more convenient, you can split the petrol cost or switch off driving days.

You could set up a carpool there if you typically drive your kids to school and other parents in the neighborhood do the same. When you go shopping, it could be beneficial to team up with your neighbors because any chance to split the expense of petrol will improve your finances.

8. Maintain Proper Tyre Pressure

The fuel economy is negatively impacted by incorrect tire pressure. The average increase in gas mileage when checking that your tires are adequately inflated is 0.6%. But the difference might be as much as 3% in some circumstances. Furthermore, compared to tires that are over- or under-inflated, adequately inflated tires perform better and last longer. As a result, you also save money on maintenance expenses.

9. Purchase More on Monday or Tuesday

The cheapest days to fill up are often Mondays and Tuesdays, though fuel costs might change during the week. Again, the savings per gallon may be minimal. However, the savings increase over time if you routinely select cheaper days.

Avoid filling up on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays if Mondays and Tuesdays aren’t convenient. It is better to avoid certain days because petrol costs are frequently higher.

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