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How to Spend Less on Gas

Just recently the price of gas made another huge jump in North America. This has many people concerned. They are already reducing spending in so many areas of their lives and now they have to worry about paying more each week to fill their vehicle with gas.

With summer just around the corner many people are thinking about summer vacations with their family. With the high cost of airfare many were thinking about driving somewhere. Maybe going camping, or going to a cabin near a lake.

But now that gas prices have climbed so high, is driving somewhere for a vacation still feasible?
What about the driving that we do on a daily basis? How much gas are we using to drive to work, to school, to the store, and so on?

Here are some tips on how you can deal with the high price of gas.

Stick to The Speed Limit

Sticking to the speed limit and becoming a more patient driver will help you to burn less gas each week. Also, for highway driving, use your cruise control as often as you can. This is perfect for those that do decide to drive somewhere for summer vacation.

Don’t Drive Erratically

Have you ever seen that insurance commercial where the female driver is constantly starting and stopping her car and driving like a crazy woman? People who speed up only to have to slam on the brakes at the next intersection, will definitely burn more gas. Also if the light changes to green and you are the one that speeds off into traffic you will burn more gas.

A good way to save money on gas and to burn less is to drive more cautiously. Stay in one lane whenever you can and come to smooth controlled stops.

Clean Out Your Vehicle

Making a few changes to your vehicle will help you save money on gas. Check your trunk and the inside of your vehicle to see what you are carrying around unnecessarily and move those items to the garage or into your home. Clean out any garbage as well. If you use a roof rack for luggage or skis, take it off when you are not using it.

As well, make sure that the maintenance on your vehicle is up-to-date and that your tires are balanced and have the correct tire pressure.

Walk Your Kids to School Whenever Possible

When I was young our neighborhood schools were close enough to walk to, or bike to. Nowadays it seems that many kids either take a school bus to school, or their parents drive them. Sometimes they do live close enough to walk to school, but their parents drive them for safety reasons.

If you are driving your kids to school every day, is it at all possible that you could walk them to school instead? Consider it.

Carpool

Taking transit to work is an obvious solution if the bus or the train goes to your office. But what if transit to your work location isn’t an option? Could you and some of your co-workers carpool instead? Carpooling takes some upfront organization, but after a few months you will appreciate the amount that you each save in gas.

Organize Your Errands

This is a big one. Instead of making multiple trips to go out and get groceries, go to doctor’s appointments, go to the mall, and so on, why not make a list of everywhere you need to go and plan out your route so that you are not crisscrossing around the city several times? Not only will you get more done in a shorter period of time, but you will feel less stressed because you will be driving less.

Don’t Let Your Car Idle

Years ago if you lived in a cold climate it was recommended that you let your car idle in your driveway right after you start it and prior to leaving. Cars needed a chance to warm up. Today, car manufacturers are saying that new cars no longer require that warm up time. This is great because even as you let your car idle it is burning gas. So why burn extra gas just to sit in your driveway?

You may already be following many of these tips when you drive because you do want to save money on gas. If you aren’t, consider implementing them, because who knows when the price of gas will drop again.

7 thoughts on “How to Spend Less on Gas”

  1. Great tips! I would also add, “Work from home” to the list. When gas prices spiked to their current level, I asked my boss if I could WFH 2 days p/week instead of just 1, and I have noticed a major difference in my monthly gas costs.

  2. John@MoneyPrinciple

    Hmm. Gas prices at $4 a (US) gallon. We wish! In Europe it is more like $9-10 a gallon which is why we generally grow smaller cars.

    The main thing we forget over here is that the US is such a big country so long distance travel is probably essential to you, as was the birth of air travel of course.

    A light foot, keep your distance from the guy in front and walk or cycle where possible is the best solution, as well as working from home as @Jefferson comments. Our car has done less than 10,000 miles in 2.5 years – it makes us wonder why we have one as we posted recently!

  3. @Jefferson – Yes working from home really helps save money on gas. While many companies in the US are starting to allow more of that, only some Canadian companies are allowing it for a variety of reasons.

    @Money Principle – I wasn’t aware that the price of gas in Europe had risen so much. I had a chance to live there 10 years ago and I know most people drove small efficient cars. I was actually surprised when I saw the odd mini-van or something of that size.

    @Pigzfly – Yes a Jetta is an amazing vehicle when it comes to saving on gas.

  4. We just had to buy a new car and ended up going with a new diesel Jetta, the mileage blew everything else out of the water! Sorry I use the metric, but for comparison the diesel jetta is 4.7L/100km and the hyundai sonata hybrid is 4.6! Plus, the Jetta cost less by a few thousand dollars.
    I really wasn’t expecting to be so blown away by a car when we were looking for a fuel efficient little car, but the Jetta ended up being the largest vehicle, with the peppiest engine AND the best fuel efficiency… that combination shouldn’t add up, but it did.

  5. Some great tips here Sicorra, thanks. With the prices of Petrol going up and up in Canada we need tips to deal with the increase.

    I wrote a similar post to help fellow Canadians to deal with the amount of money that will be draining their budget. A family with 2 vehicles filling up once a week can run a family upwards of $800 a month depending on size. That’s insane!

    I still wish I had me KA from the UK, but we still haven’t reached the highs here in Canada and the USA like in the UK.

    One tip we try to use most often now is Planning our shopping during one outting. We organize our errands and price match if that saves us from driving across town. Good for the environment and good for the wallet.

    Cheers,
    Another great post!
    Mr.CBB

  6. Julie @ Freedom 48

    Organizing errands is a big one for us. We shop once a week – that’s it. We commute (together) 10min to work and back each day, and on the weekends we usually head out to do something.

    In all, we fill up our Ford Escape about once every 3 weeks – and it now costs $70 to fill. If we spend less than $100 each month on gas.. I’m a happy camper!

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