How to Save Money on Gas as Prices Soar to a Record High
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Wondering how to get cheap gas with skyrocketing prices at the pump?
Looking to save money on gas? 🚗
We’ve been facing major spikes in gas prices since last March when the gas nationwide hit a whopping $4.17, making it the highest gas and oil price we’ve seen since the recession in 2008. 🤯 Currently, the nationwide average stands at $3.45, which is still super pricey. Because of this, we’re sharing some tips to snag some cheap gas!
We want to help you get the most bang for your buck at the pump so you can squeeze more miles out of every gallon for both practical and entertainment purposes! These simple yet effective tips will help you score some savings on cheap gas because let’s face it. At this point, every penny counts!
Here are some helpful ways to snag cheap gas:
1. Check your local grocery store promos first.
Watch for fuel promotions or even gift card deals at your local grocery store. Select grocers will sometimes team up with affiliated fuel stations to offer a gas discount whenever you shop at their store. Plus, some stores even offer double fuel rewards whenever you purchase gift cards!
Here are just a few stores that offer fuel perks with your store loyalty card:
- Albertsons: Earn one point for every $1 spent on groceries or pharmacy items and two points for every $1 spent on gift cards. Redeem points for up to $1 off per gallon.
- BJ’s Warehouse: BJ’s Gas has super-low gas prices every day! Plus, My BJ’s Perks MasterCard Members save an additional 10¢ off/gallon.
- Fred Meyer: Earn one fuel point for every $1 you spend on groceries and two fuel points for every $1 spent on gift cards; fill prescriptions and earn 50 points. Redeem 100 points for a 10¢ discount, for up to $1 off per gallon. Also, customers who have the Fred Meyer Rewards World MasterCard can save even more on gas purchases!
- Giant Eagle: Earn 10¢ off per gallon at GetGo for every 50 Perks, up to a free tank of gas.
- Hy-Vee: Earn special offers, digital deals, surprise savings, and the chance for random rewards including a kitchen makeover, vacation packages, or even a car loaded to your card.
- Kroger: Earn one fuel point for every $1 you spend and two fuel points for every $1 spent on gift cards. Fill prescriptions and earn 50 points. Earn 10¢ off per gallon when you spend $100.
- Murphy USA: Save 3¢ per gallon whenever you fill up at Murphy USA stations using a Walmart gift card (not valid at Murphy Express). Offer not valid in Alabama. Plus, use the Murphy USA mobile app and discover more savings in-store.
- Price Chopper: Earn 5¢ off per gallon at Sunoco when you spend $100 at Price Chopper.
- Sam’s Club: Readers claim you can save at least 15¢ – 30¢ less than competitors per gallon.
- Safeway: Earn one point for every $1 spent on groceries or pharmacy items and two points for every $1 spent on gift cards. Redeem points for up to $1 off per gallon.
- Shop ‘n Save: Earn 10¢ off per gallon at Sunoco when you spend $50 at Shop ‘n Save.
- Stop & Shop: Save up to $1.50 per gallon with Gas Rewards! Earn one point for every $1 you spend with your Stop & Shop Card. Save 10¢ per gallon for every 100 points you receive.
Don’t see your store listed above? Be sure to ask or check their website as many stores with fuel stations offer rewards programs or even credit cards with exclusive savings.
2. Watch for deals on gas gift cards.
Another way to save at the pump is to watch for gift card promotions at your local grocery store or even at drugstores like CVS, Walgreens, and Rite Aid, especially during the holidays. You can also find discounted gas gift cards at sites like Raise.com, Gift Card Granny, eBay, or Groupon.
Also, it’s important to note that some gas stations may offer a lower price if you pay with cash instead of a credit card – and this discount usually applies to gift cards, too (may vary)!
The difference between the cash and credit price usually ranges from around 10¢ – 15¢ per gallon.
Hip Tip: You can stay up to date on all of our latest gift card deals!
3. Save on Top Tier gas by filling up at Costco.
Are you a Costco member? Get the most out of your membership by filling up while you’re there as you’ll save money and get quality gas. Costco sells only TOP TIER detergent gasoline, the fuel recommended by dealerships and manufacturers, so it cleans your engine with every fill-up.
Plus, the average gas price at Costco is consistently lower than competitors!
4. Find the cheapest gas near you using gas apps.
Download free gas apps that find the cheapest gas near you (driving around town to find the cheapest gas kinda defeats the whole purpose).
Here are a few reputable apps we like:
Save 5¢ per gallon with GasBuddy when you link your banking information! You’ll receive a card in the mail that you scan at the pump.
Want to track and compare your gas mileage? Fuelly (iOS or Android) is a handy mobile app and website that helps you calculate your vehicle’s fuel economy. Tracking your usage over time can help you monitor changes to your driving habits and keep tabs on the health of your vehicle.
5. Don’t pay for premium gas unless…
Does filling up your car with premium gas give you the sense like you’re filling your car with liquid gold? Well, some cars require premium gas, but others simply carry a recommendation that owners use it. This means you may be dumping money down the drain every time you fill-up.
Consumer Reports tested the fuel economy and acceleration of cars on different grades of gasoline used in two different sedans and found that both cars achieved the same fuel economy and felt/sounded the same when tested with regular fuel as they did with premium.
That means it’s probably okay to use regular gas even if the manufacturer recommends using premium gas, but be sure to check the inside of your fuel-filler door or the owner’s manual before making the switch.
6. Know the best times to fill up.
Fill up your tank when it is coolest outside (early in the morning or late at night) and avoid the heat of the day as much as possible. Why? The fuel is denser at those times, so you’ll get more gas for the same amount of money.
It’s also best to avoid filling up an empty tank during a holiday or on the weekend when people are doing more driving (that’s when gas stations are likely to raise their prices).
Hip Tip: Have a hard time remembering which side of the car your gas tank is on? If you’re driving a newer car, look for the arrow by the gas gauge on your dashboard.
This is a directional indicator that identifies which side of the car the gas tank is located. If the arrow points to the left, the gas cap is located on the left side, so the car should be parked to the right of the gas pump.
7. Leave extra items at home.
Been toting around items for Goodwill in the back of your trunk for a few months – or carry sports equipment in your car? 🙋🏼♀️ Even an additional 100 pounds in your car can reduce gas mileage by up to two percent.
Note that the reduction is relative to the vehicle’s weight, so smaller vehicles are more affected by increased weight than larger ones. Still, for every 100 pounds in extra weight, you can plan on spending up to 6¢ more per gallon. Yikes! Ditch the stuff you don’t need – especially the heavy items!
8. Waiting? Turn off the car.
If you live in a mild climate, this tip may work for you! The California Energy Commission (CEC) advises that vehicles should be turned off if your expected wait time will be longer than 10 seconds since an idling vehicle can burn as much as one gallon of gas each hour. Turning the car off can save about 5¢ per minute. Every little bit adds up!
9. Don’t always take the car.
This tip might seem a little silly, but hey! Before jumping in the car to drop your kids off at a friend’s house or head to the corner store, consider walking or hopping on a bike instead to help save gas. You’ll burn calories, enjoy the great outdoors, and reduce emissions, too! 😉
Hip Tip: Speaking of burning calories, these fitness apps pay you to work out!
10. Don’t drive like a race car driver.
You may aspire to be Danica Patrick or Dale Earnhardt Jr., but unless you’re racing in the Indy 500, avoid that kind of driving to save money on gas.
You don’t ride your bike and slam on the brake pedal right when you get to each stop sign, right? You slow down nice and steady a little ways before the stop sign to ensure a smooth stop. Then you start again at a slow, steady pace. The same should be true for driving!
Speeding, braking, and rapid acceleration can waste gas, and gas mileage decreases at above 60 miles per hour. Keep this in mind next time you’re in a rush!
11. Keep your tires inflated & wheels aligned.
A little vehicle maintenance can go a long way in improving your car’s gas mileage! Because tires may naturally lose air over time, it’s important to check tire the pressure on ALL tires, including your spare, at least once a month.
According to the U.S. Department of Energy, you can improve your gas mileage by 0.6% on average—up to three percent in some cases—by keeping your tires inflated to the proper pressure.
Properly inflated tires are safer and last longer, so you’ll definitely want to make sure you have a tire gauge in your glove box and know how to use it. And, if you don’t have a tire gauge and need air fast, you can actually fill up your tires using a bike pump if you have one!
Also, be sure to check that your wheels are properly aligned and tires are balanced! Wheels out of alignment can reduce fuel efficiency by as much as 10% (around 31¢ per gallon). Tires that are out of balance can cause uneven tire wear, which can result in lower gas mileage.
*The proper tire pressure for your vehicle is usually found on a sticker in the driver’s side door jamb or the glove box and in your owner’s manual. Do not use the maximum pressure printed on the tire’s sidewall.
12. Check your air filter & spark plugs.
In addition to checking your tire pressure and alignment/balance, make sure your car has clean air filters so the airflow stays at the proper level to mix with the gasoline.
It has been estimated that replacing your dirty air filter will increase miles per gallon on the car up to 10%. It also generates a fuel savings of close 15¢ per gallon at the fuel pump!
13. If you have T-Mobile, check those T-Mobile Tuesday offers – sometimes it’s discounted gas!
We’ve spoken about T-Mobile Tuesdays plenty of times in the past, but keep an eye out as sometimes they have gas discounts! Recently, one of the T-Mobile Tuesday offers was discounted gas. Many people who have T-Mobile forget to check, but sometimes there are some seriously awesome offers to score!
How do YOU buy cheap gas? We’d love to hear!