Gas prices are rising at a rate much, much faster than overall inflation. That means that the costs of fueling your car have probably started eating away at your monthly budget. How does one protect themselves from these costs? There are several solutions that you can look into, but the overall most important thing you need to do is to become less dependent on gas.
Personally, we are trying to sell our car that gets 18/26 mpg and find a hybrid camry or some other car that can get good mileage. The problem here is that no one is paying much for trade ins and the prices of hybrids have gone up dramatically with the rise in gas costs. After all, it doesn’t make sense to lose $5,000 to upgrade to a hybrid if it is only going to save you $3,000 over the life of the car, right?
Other attempts to save money on gas include carpooling or taking public transportation. While these are great ideas and I highly recommend them, they are just not possible for many families that don’t live near bus lines or that live in rural areas.
While looking around the web, we ran across a post by frugaldad.com that discusses his approach to saving money on gas:
What I have considered doing is purchasing an older small car for my short, daily commute, and for running errands, etc. I would drive my truck a couple days a week to work and make any stops by the home improvement store on one of those days in case I needed to haul something home.
But what amount of “smaller, older car” makes sense for this purpose? After all, I still want it to be somewhat reliable since I need it to get to work and back. But I don’t want anything too fancy or the increased costs to insure it, maintain it and keep the tag current will eat into any fuel savings. You can see why this is such a dilemma.
For now, I’ve decided to look for ways to consolidate trips and improve fuel efficiency by changing my driving habits. I’m much more conscious of long periods of idling and rarely do I ever “take off” from a red light. I’d rather ride with the windows down than the AC blasting (unless it is the dead of summer, in which case I make an exception).
Sadly, I don’t see much easing in gas prices in our near future. In fact, I think it will continue to get much worse with prices easily reaching $5.00 this summer. Better to be proactive by making changes now rather than waiting for prices to go up another 30% and being forced into painful changes….
Read more of this article at How Are Gas Prices Affecting You?
We like the approach that he took to save money on gas. In fact, it’s one that most of us could utilize in the short term to help negate the effects of rising fuel costs. In addition to this approach, start thinking long term so that when you buy your next car or plan your next home purchase, that you can help optimize both your mpg and your miles driven.