10 Hacks to Save Money on Gas
Gas prices remain volatile, like a rollercoaster, climbing up, darting down, and then right back up again. It creates quite the thrill for your finances every time you pull up to the pump to fill your tank, wondering if you’ll have any money left.
It’s easy to think you don’t have options to control what you pay at the pump, but you do.
But, did you know you have options to lower the sticker price? While you can’t influence the price of fuel gas stations charge, you absolutely can do something about what you pay.
Here are nine ways to create your own fuel perks.
1. Get Upside, Get Gas Discounts
One of the easiest ways to pay less for gas is a free app you can download right now, whether you are getting ready to leave for the gas station or you have just pulled up to the pump.
Upside, formerly GetUpside, is a cash-back app that focuses on local businesses, but it really shines when it comes to getting discounts on gas.
You will start earning cash-back rewards with just a few taps at the gas station.
Download the free Upside app, sign up, look for fuel offers around you.
When you see a discount you like, claim it with a tap on the app.
Visit the establishment to purchase your gas, with a linked debit or credit card. When done, just check in on the app.
It’s that easy.
When I signed up, Upside gave me 20 cents off a gallon.
When I entered the promo code AFF20, I received another 20 cents per gallon off as a sign-up bonus.
Do you want 40 cents in cash-back rewards when you fill up?
2. Cash Just Might be King at the Pump
Fuel centers sometimes offer customers an incentive to pay with cash because they, and other businesses, pay bank fees to accept credit and debit cards.
The fees range around 2 cents for every dollar spent.
To avoid those fees, gas stations might discount a gallon of gas by 5 cents. You save money, and the business lowers its bank fees.
Sometimes, you might receive a discount when using a debit card.
For example, Circle K has an Easy Pay program that links your checking account to a loyalty card. When you pay at the pump, the money is transferred out of your checking account, much like a debit card.
You will save around 10 cents a gallon on this program.
When filling up, look to see if the business charges different prices for cash, debit, or cash so you will save the most money.
Free Workshop – Join our free Simplify Money Workshop
The *only* way to save money is to spend less than you earn. That means you need to decrease your expenses or increase your income.
We want to help you do both.
Join our FREE Simplify Money Workshop to learn the fundamentals of growing wealth. Because when you can spend less than you earn, your money has no choice but to grow. You will build your savings and pay down debt.
What’s more? We’ve got a bunch of free money-hacks to share with you:
- Hacks to lower your monthly bills
- Hacks to spend less on debt
- Hacks to start investing
- Hacks to increase your income by $20/month (with no extra effort)
This workshop has everything you need to accomplish the cardinal rule of personal finance: keep your income over your expenses.
Join our free 5-day Simplify Money Workshop, and start growing your wealth today.
3. A Rewards Credit Card Can Lower the Price of Gas
You can knock down the price for a gallon of gas when you pay with a rewards credit card that offers cash back at gas stations.
When you use a rewards card at the pump, you want to make sure you maximize your discount.
If a gas station is offering you 3 cents a gallon off if you pay with cash, then a rewards card offering 1% back on fuel purchases isn’t the best option.
Major oil companies and credit card issuers offer various rewards cards where you can earn rewards, like cash back. It can be confusing trying to figure out the best one.
However, Credit Land makes it easy to find the right rewards card for you.
Credit Land does all the research for you so you can compare rewards cards.
Do you want a cash-back rewards card? A gas rewards card? A travel rewards card? One with a good sign-up bonus?
No matter what kind of rewards card you are looking for, Credit Land’s ratings will help you make an informed decision.
Check out Credit Land to find a rewards credit card that will earn you cash back.
4. Join a Membership Club
“Membership has its privileges.” That was the marketing slogan of a well-known financial services company.
The statement is also true when it comes to saving gas at club memberships like Costco, Sam’s Club, BJ’s Wholesale, and Walmart Plus.
Members will receive discounts when they fill up at the respective gas stations.
BJ’s has a fuel saver program that will give you 10 cents off for every item you purchase on the current list (up to $99 off per fill-up for a maximum of 30 gallons).
Costco offers member-exclusive prices, and Walmart Plus will save you up to 10 cents off at Mobil, Exxon, Walmart, and Murphy gas stations. Sam’s Club fuel centers offer members 5 cents off per gallon.
5. Check the Air Pressure in Your Tires to Improve Fuel Efficiency
How often do you check the air pressure in your tires?
If you ignore your tires, you might be purchasing more gas for your vehicle than you need to due to poor fuel efficiency.
“Maintaining proper tire pressure is one of the most important — but often overlooked — maintenance tasks for vehicle owners,” according to the U.S. Department of Energy [source].
When you inflate your tires based on the manufacturer’s recommendations, you can save up to 10 cents per gallon of gasoline, per the Department of Energy.
Make sure you have a tire gauge in each of your vehicles, and when you fill up your tank, grab the gauge and check your tire pressure.
6. Your Driving Habits Might Be Hurting Your Gas Mileage
When you drive, do family and friends accuse you of having a lead foot? If you are a speed demon on the road, you might be driving up your fuel costs unnecessarily, according to the Department of Energy [source].
- Slow down to save on fuel costs: When you drive fast, your car consumes more gas, which increases your fuel costs. Generally, gas efficiency declines when you drive more than 50 mph. Based on Energy Department estimates, you might be paying up to 18 cents more for every 5 mph you drive beyond 50 mph.
- Combine trips to use fewer gallons of gas: Starting and stopping your vehicle for short trips use more gas because your engine doesn’t reach a fuel-efficient temperature. So, if you can combine your trips, your vehicle will not use as many gallons of gas, saving you money.
- Eliminate bad driving habits: Just as slowing down is good for fuel efficiency, so is eliminating aggressive driving, like accelerating quicking and stopping abruptly. These jack-rabbit starts and stops not only hurt fuel consumption but also increase the wear and tear on your vehicle. Don’t do it.
7. Carpool With Others to Reduce Fuel Costs
One of the best ways to reduce what you spend on gas is to share rides with others through carpooling.
When you and others agree to share driving responsibilities, you will spend less on gas and vehicle maintenance, reduce the number of cars on the road, and lessen traffic congestion.
How can you find carpools to join? Ask coworkers if they want to carpool to save money.
Do you have neighbors who you can share rides with? Maybe you don’t work at the same place, but you do work in the same area.
You can also use a web service like Waze Carpool. You can enter your route in the service, see who is driving where, and then ask to join the carpool.
Your state or city might offer rideshare programs, so check out programs in your areas.
Plus, you can also use a different kind of carpooling – public transportation.
Generally reserved for larger metropolitan areas, you might be able to take a bus or train to save on fuel costs.
If You Have Others in Your Vehicle, Make Sure You Have Insurance
While we are not insurance agents, if you have others in your vehicle, you will want proper coverage at the best price.
Insurify makes it easy to compare insurance quotes. Simply share your policy details, and Insurify can find a better price for the same level of coverage.
They’ll compare the top auto insurance and home insurance providers to find coverage that is perfect for you at a better price.
Most people who use Insurify score a better rate on insurance. The average savings for its customers is $489 a year.
Insurify is free, so you have nothing to lose and hundreds of dollars in savings to gain.
8. You Can Always Use Personal or Pedal Power
Depending on where you live, you might be able to walk to work or to the store. If so, you can dramatically reduce how much you are spending on gasoline.
If you work in an office, you might want to keep a change of clothes in your desk just in case it’s hot on your walk to work or you get rained on (you can always carry an umbrella).
If you are walking to the store to pick up some groceries or other items, a shopping cart (that you can use for other purposes, like laundry) will make the trip easier on you.
If you don’t want to walk, then hop on a bike.
It costs more than 20 cents a mile, on average, to cover just the fuel and maintenance costs for a vehicle, according to AAA [source].
If your commute is 10 miles, then you can save around $20 a week, which is more than $1,000 per year.
Earn as You Move With Sweatcoin
Do you need a little extra motivation to get off the couch and get moving to improve your health? Well, there’s an app for that for real.
You can earn rewards by exercising with the Sweatcoin app. It is a step counter app that converts your steps into Sweatcoins, a digital currency.
In other words, you get paid to walk! You can use Sweatcoins, a digital currency, to buy a number of goods and services in the Sweatcoin marketplace – even iPhones and Apple watches – through the app.
9. Fill up at a certain time of day?
Some suggest filling up your tank in the morning or at night when it is cooler because fuel expands as it heats up. Consumer Reports does not think so because gas tanks are stored underground [source].
While GasBuddy doesn’t have a recommendation based on temperatures, it recommends filling up on Monday mornings.
Based on its study, consumers seem to get the best prices per gallon on Monday mornings.
10. Use a Gas Comparison App
While we are talking about GasBuddy, it is an app you can download on your phone that will show you gas prices in your area.
You can quickly see which station is offering the best deal.
Want to save these tips for later? Click here to pin this post!
Be sure to follow us on Pinterest for more money-saving life hacks!