How you can save money as gas prices shatter records

After days of rising gas prices in the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the national average for a gallon of gas is now the highest in United States history.

The average cost of a gallon of regular fuel is approximately $4.17, according to AAA. That price tops the $4.11 price for a gallon of regular gas set in the summer of 2008.

On Monday, the cost of a gallon of gasoline was $4.06.

Here are a few resources for finding cheap gas in your neighborhood:

AAA Mobile App

The AAA Mobile App makes it easy to locate fuel stops with the cheapest gas, and to find the nearest gas station when it’s time to fill up.

GasBuddy

GasBuddy is a Boston-based tech company that offers an app to help users find the cheapest service station in their area. Fox Business writer Bradford Betz writes that users can search for gas stations by entering their city and zip code or even preferred fuel type and payment system.

GasBuddy also recommends signing up for loyalty programs and gas cards. Almost all gas stations have a loyalty program, and you can often link those rewards accounts to a gas card. For example, 7-Eleven has a program that gives you a discount of 11 cents a gallon for the first seven fill-ups on all fuel grades.

According to GasBuddy, the best day to save money at the pump is Monday, which has the lowest average gas prices in most of the country. Following Monday, Sunday is the cheapest day to fill-up.

The most expensive days in most states? Thursday followed by Wednesday.

Gas Guru

Akin to GasBuddy, Betz says the Gas Guru app will list “best” and “good” gas prices in your area, indicating each as green and yellow, respectively.

Fill up at Costco, Sam’s Club, Walmart and Kroger’s

Writing for USA Today, Jessica Guynn underscores that wholesale club stores Costco and Sam’s Club and grocery stores such as Kroger’s offer discounted gas. “Typically, you need to buy a membership or enroll in a discount program,” Guynn writes, adding, “Using the Walmart app, Walmart+ members get a 5 cents a gallon discount and access to member prices at Sam’s Club.”

Pay in cash at the pump

You can reportedly save 5 to 10 cents a gallon when you pay in cash. According to GasBuddy’s experts, “That can add up over time, averaging about $1 in savings each time you fill up a 12-gallon tank.” Experts also underscore that you should be aware of gas stations that charge a surcharge for using a credit card because they may charge higher prices.

Google Maps

Many gas stations on Google Maps show their prices for fill-ups using unleaded, or “regular” gas. This can be found by simply typing in “gas station” on Google Maps and nearby service stations will pop up with their prices.

Other ways to save money

In other cases, Betz writes that experts claim these simple tricks can help you save money at the pump:

  • Keep tires inflated
  • Avoid having heavy items in your car
  • Reduce unnecessary trips

Writing for Cox Media Group’s National Content Desk, Debbie Lord explains that gasoline prices are driven by several factors, with the price for crude oil being the largest factor.

“Crude prices have surged this week as the Biden administration said it may consider cutting off or restricting the amount of Russian energy exports the U.S. buys amid the ongoing Russian invasion of Ukraine,” Lord adds.

In a statement released this week, Patrick De Haan, head of petroleum analysis at GasBuddy, said:

“Americans have never seen gasoline prices this high, nor have we seen the pace of increases so fast and furious. That combination makes this situation all the more remarkable and intense, with crippling sanctions on Russia curbing their flow of oil, leading to the massive spike in the price of all fuels: gasoline, diesel, jet fuel and more.”

De Haan said that he predicts this “dire situation won’t improve any time soon,” adding:

“The high prices are likely to stick around for not days or weeks, like they did in 2008, but months. GasBuddy now expects the yearly national average to rise to its highest ever recorded.”

The national average hit the largest ever seven-day spike in prices, with a gallon of gas going up 49.1 cents.

Gas prices were heading up before Russia’s invasion of Ukraine nearly two weeks ago, with analysts reportedly saying there was an increase in demand due to the lifting of COVID-19 restrictions around the world.

The Associated Press also contributed to this report.


Nicole Bennett

Nicole Bennett

CMG Digital Content Producer

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