Is it Worth the Extra Miles To Save on Gas? [POLL/AUDIO]
Folks have been pinching pennies any way they can lately, but more pennies may be going out than in if consumers aren't smart about their approach.
A recent survey from the National Association of Convenience Stores found that a solid number of drivers would travel out of their way or make a left-hand turn across a busy street to save a few cents on gasoline.
Patrick DeHaan, Senior Petroleum Analyst at GasBuddy.com, said saving the extra dough can certainly add up over time. However, he suggested drivers don't go so far out of the way that they're actually spending more than they'd save.
"There's kind of a rule of thumb that for each mile you drive, you have to save at least a penny-per-gallon," DeHaan said.
The suggested savings-per-mile, he added, is probably a bit more for bigger vehicles.
GasBuddy.com features a number of tools for drivers looking to save at the pump. A user can type in their zip code before heading out to the store and see which gas station is offering the cheapest fuel. For the bigger trips, a user can see the lowest prices along their whole route and how much the whole trip would cost in terms of gasoline.
DeHaan said drivers can, for the most part, trust the lesser-known gas stations that offer cheaper prices.
"Every gallon of gasoline is tested at the refinery before it gets shipped out," he explained.
He said there are a lot of protections in place for consumers, so the 15-cent difference can really be seen as a big savings and nothing more.
TIPS TO SAVE ON GAS FROM GASBUDDY.COM
- Avoid high speeds
- Do not accelerate or brake hard
- Keep tires properly maintained
- Use A/C sparingly
- Keep windows closed
- Service vehicle regularly
- Use cruise control
- Avoid heavy loads
- Avoid long idles
- Purchase a fuel-efficient vehicle