Spend less on gas this sum­mer!

Plan to take more road trips now that sum­mer is here? Here’s how to save on ev­ery tank­ful dur­ing your drive!

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● 1 Pick an eco­nom­i­cal car!

Rent­ing a car and not sure which will save you the most on gas? Or try­ing to choose be­tween your ve­hi­cle and an­other driver’s to get the best fuel mileage? It’s easy to fig­ure out the most cost-ef­fi­cient auto when you log on to Fu­ele­con­omy.gov/trip. Sim­ply in­put a few de­tails about each (such as make, model and year), en­ter your start­ing point and des­ti­na­tion, then es­ti­mate what per­cent­age of city and high­way miles you’ll be driv­ing. This free site au­to­mat­i­cally cal­cu­lates which ve­hi­cle saves the most on gas!

● 2 Get gas early!

In a new sur­vey, 80% of driv­ers said they wait un­til their fuel gauge reaches one-quar­ter of a tank or less to re­fuel—how­ever, you can save on ev­ery tank­ful by start­ing to look for a gas sta­tion once your gauge hits the half­way mark. Why? You feel less pres­sure to find any sta­tion due to worry about run­ning out of gas, so you hold out for a lower price!

● 3 Gas up in the cheap­est state!

Driv­ing through more than one state? When you’re close to state lines, use a free app, such as Gasbuddy (Gasbuddy.com), to find out the prices of fuel in each state you’ll be in. Due to dif­fer­ences in state and lo­cal taxes as well as gaso­line reg­u­la­tions, fill­ing up in one state could cost you a lot more than gassing up right across the bor­der!

● 4 By­pass traf­fic jams!

Get­ting stuck in an un­ex­pected traf­fic snarl can end up wast­ing gal­lons of fuel as you drive along at a crawl. Luck­ily, you can eas­ily avoid these gas-sap­ping slow­downs by di­al­ing 511 on your phone be­fore you go. This con­nects you to a free ser­vice from the Fed­eral High­way Ad­min­is­tra­tion, which tells you the cur­rent traf­fic con­di­tions on any road you spec­ify in the state you’re in, so you can change course to one that’s less con­gested. Look­ing for traf­fic con­di­tions in an­other state you’ll be in soon? Down­load the free app Waze, and you’ll be able to see traf­fic tie-ups that have been re­ported by other app users.

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