The experience of going on a road trip is often just as exciting as the final destination. Lucky for us, the long holiday weekend ahead invites the opportunity to hit the road and head someplace fun. Before you put your car into drive, check out my money saving tips for your road trip.
Hitting the open road this Summer to avoid a pricey vacation? The truth is, if you're not careful, road trips can end up costing way more than you'd expect. All those food breaks and hotel stops add up before you know it. We've already brought you specific money-saving tips for your road trip, and here are five more to apply no matter what your destination. Follow them and you'll soon be bragging that you took the cheapest road trip ever.
- Rethink lodging: Remember that old co-worker who lives along your road trip route? If you've managed to keep in touch, it's perfectly acceptable to ask if you can crash for a night or two. Think of it as an opportunity to catch up! If that's not possible, research hostels or Airbnb availabilities — all are much cheaper options compared to hotels.
- Take advantage of tech: All kinds of apps are designed to keep your road trip costs down. Download these money savers and you can search the best gas prices in your area, save on fuel costs while idling in traffic, and more.
- Make a trip to Costco: Not stopping every time you feel hungry will both cut your time on the road and save you cash in the long run. Before you take off, pop into a place like Costco where you can buy in bulk; pick foods with a later expiration date, and even consider bringing a cooler to store more perishable items.
- Go with a group: A road trip with a party of one will be costly no matter what. The more people you have for the ride, the better. You can split gas, lodging, and food costs and pool your resources together so that each person contributes road trip essentials like audiobooks or an emergency kit.
- Follow the free: Seek out freebies while you're on the road and once you get to your destination. City websites like FunCheap usually list free events around town that'll provide plenty of entertainment. And don't forget about other not-so-obvious opportunities, like bars that offer free food at happy hour.
There's nothing like a last-minute road trip to celebrate the start of Summer. Of course, the Fourth of July weekend will have much more sparkle if you can find some cheap gas. While you might save major bucks driving instead of flying, gas prices aren't exactly a bargain. If changing your ride to a fuel-efficient electric-hybrid car isn't an option, then check out these websites, apps, and tips to help you save at the pump.
Source: Flickr user TheodoreWLee
When faced with rising airline ticket prices, hitting the road often seems like a more budget-friendly option. But refueling your car (and yourself), paying for lodging, and dealing with inconvenient roadside repairs can quickly burst your savings bubble and make you want to catch the next flight out of town. If your Labor Day driving plans are already set in stone, we've tracked down a few free apps that can help you keep those costs manageable, all at the touch of a button.
Unrest in the Middle East and the closing of American refineries have gas prices going up, up, and away for US consumers. Analysts are predicting that the prices may continue to rise.
But don't worry, there are a number of methods to save on refueling your car. Here are some tips:
- Spend to Save: Look for deals around you that will help you save on your gas. For example, you can choose to frequent wholesale stores like Costco, which will give you a little bit of cash back on Costco gas. If you're a real gas guzzler, check out this full list of gas rebate cards on CreditCards.com.
- Don't Top It Off: Topping off your gas may result in a higher gas bill, because you might be paying for gas that goes back into the station's tanks after your gas tank is full, says the Environmental Protection Agency. You can also ruin your car's vapor recovery system if there is no room for the gas to expand in your tank.
- Smooth Trip: Starting and stopping excessively can shorten the life of your engine, transmission, brakes, and tires. Go easy on your braking and accelerating. Remember to also turn off your engine if you know you'll be waiting for a long while. Staying put without moving means you're getting 0 miles per gallon.
I bet a lot of people can relate to Lo Bosworth's tweet this morning, which bemoaned the price of gas. She tweets: "100 dollars even at the gas station. I'm crying." A lot of people are feeling the pain of the rising gas prices, which are expected to keep increasing because of unrest in the Middle East. Read these tips on how to save money on gas if you're starting to feel the pinch in your wallet and if you're "crying" along with Lo.
How much does it cost for you to fill your tank up?
As a solution for the rising gas prices, people are taking to social media outlets to stage their protest, says The Consumerist. In fact, they are encouraging people to not fill their tanks today. We've been lamenting over the increasing cost of gas and came up tips to slash your bill and techie tools to find cheap gas, but it appears some people are being more proactive and are trying to make themselves heard by organizing a boycott on Facebook.
Their efforts seem to be pretty successful, the Gas Strike Facebook event, has more than half a million users who RSVP-ed. But it might not make a difference. The one-day gas strike will more likely hurt local gas station owners, rather than lower the price of a barrel of oil, says Economist Robert Salvino at Coastal Carolina University.
Will you be joining in the protest?
How's this for TMI? A friend sent me a text last week saying she was skipping out on our regular yoga date. She was a little embarrassed but admitted that she was feeling, "well, uh, gassy." For those of you who practice yoga, it's easy to understand why she felt like staying home. Passing gas during yoga class is not the most comfortable subject to talk about — or experience firsthand! Fitted yoga clothes, a quiet room, and poses that twist around your digestive area? It can be the perfect recipe for passing along an unwelcome gift to the people around you. I mean, yoga is all about letting go, right? But what do you do in this sort of situation: accept that your innards might get a workout too or stay home and avoid possible embarrassment?
I'm not embarrassed to admit that I'm an extremely gassy person. I know it's a natural bodily function, even though I seem to do it more than the average person, but now I have an embarrassing problem. I used to work from home, so it didn't matter if I let my gas pass, but I just got a new job where I work in a big office. All our desks are in one big room, so there's absolutely no privacy. I've been there for a week now, and have just been holding it so my co-workers don't know my smelly secret. It's been hurting my belly a little, and I'm wondering if this is really bad for my body not to let it out.
— Full of Hot Air
Although most wouldn't like to admit it, we can all relate to your problem of being gassy in public. I don't blame you for not wanting to let 'em go at your new job, or any job for that matter. Who wants to admit that they're the source of smelly gas? I have some suggestions on how to curb your flatulence, so read more
Yes, we all know gas is expensive and at a record high, but did you know Americans really have cut back on their driving? In fact, we've cut back so much that we are hurting gas tax revenues, which pay for roads, bridges and mass transit projects.
I've put together a list of facts you should know about the ever increasing gas prices and how the cost affects the rest of our lives.