How to Save $234 a Year on Gasoline

Lower gas prices mean more travel and more hotel nights being used! Good times at the gas pumps roll on with prices slipping to their lowest in more than two years. Start saving today! Break those old habits and learn how to find the best deals in your area by reading Uncommon Wisdom Daily.Brad Hoppmann’s article below for money saving tips on gasoline.

 

$1.99 gas sign

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Crude oil prices resumed their decline today and we’re starting to feel the impact at neighborhood gas pumps. Prices are falling fast across the nation.

Shockingly, this picture below shows the price at one American service station in the last 24 hours. Can you remember the last time gas prices were this low in the U.S.? It’s been a while. Will the price in your area drop below $2 soon?

It just might — but I have a way you can save money even if it doesn’t. Read on.

The Wall Street Journal reported that Saudi Arabia now expects oil prices to stabalize around $60 a barrel. That’s news, because just one month ago, OPEC officials were saying $70 was their lower target.

Of course, it isn’t clear that OPEC controls the oil price anymore. They would certainly prefer it to go higher, but now they face competition from U.S. and Canadian shale oil production.

As I said earlier this week, oil prices won’t go back up until something changes in the supply/demand outlook. However, today, we see early signs of a change. Reuters reported that the number of new well permits issued in the U.S. dropped almost 40% in November.

These are new wells; and oil producers say their existing wells are still pumping, but eventually they will run dry. Shale field wells tend to have short life spans. If new wells don’t replace that production, supplies will fall and prices will go back up.

This process could take months or even years to unfold. Other factors could change the equation as well. For now, though, Americans can enjoy significantly cheaper gas.

So, how do you find the best deal?

As of yesterday, you could find it at the OnCue gas station on Shields Boulevard in Oklahoma City. That’s their sign in the photo above.

OnCue dropped the price below $2 on Wednesday. Within hours, other stations nearby were matching or even beating this price.

You can find similar deals wherever you live. Here’s how …

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If you’ve never visited GasBuddy.com, now is an excellent time to check it out. This free web site compiles price data from just about every service station in the country. Just enter your ZIP code and see results for your area.

What strikes me about the Gas Buddy data is the huge variation in gasoline prices, even within the same city. For my zip code here in Florida, the price of regular unleaded gasoline ranged from $2.73 up to $3.19 today. That’s a 46-cent per gallon spread from lowest to highest.

I think most people get into a habit of buying gasoline the same place all the time, simply because it is on the way to work or at a store where you shop often. That’s fine — but your habit may be costing you a bundle.

Let’s walk through the math here. Suppose you buy 30 gallons of gasoline each week. That’s easy to do for a working couple who live in the suburbs. (You might buy a lot more if you have a gas-guzzling SUV and a long commute.)

At that pace, you will burn 1,560 gallons of gas per year — and spend $4,680 over 12 months if the price is $3 per gallon!

Even at $2 per gallon, your gas will cost $3,120 a year. That’s a significant expense for all but the wealthiest Americans.

You can drive fewer miles or get a more fuel-efficient car of course, but those aren’t realistic options for many people.

However, if your neighborhood is anything like mine, you can use GasBuddy.com and easily cut your gas price by 15 cents a gallon and possibly more, without going far out of your way.

At the 30-gallon per week pace I mentioned above, 15 cents per gallon adds up to $234 a year. That’s real money — and I’m sure you can find better things to do with it!

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