Considering going for a road trip this year? The cost of gas may have given you pause and made you consider a stay-cation this year instead. But don't write off that road trip just yet. There are a few tips you can use that will let you save money on gas and still take the much-anticipated trip. With a bit of pre-planning you can stay within your budget and have a vacation to write home about.
- Before heading out: Owners of vehicles with an extended warranty should take the vehicle in for a trunk to engine check up. Well-maintained cars run smoothly and will get better gas mileage.
- Lighten your traveling load: Too many unnecessary items and added weight on the vehicle mean higher gas consumption. Additionally, roof racks on vehicles will cause drag on the car and lessen your gas mileage. Be sure that if you have a choice of vehicles to drive that you choose the smallest one that you own that you can comfortably fit the family and your gear into.
- Drive below or just at the speed limit: Driving the car above the optimal speed makes your engine work harder and has you using more gas than you need. If your vehicle has cruise control, use it, as the constant cycle of speed up/slow down will increase gas usage.
- Split the driving: Break up drive times by switching off with a friend or family member. If you can drive after the sun goes down or before the sun gets too high in the sky you can save some gas that is typically lost due to evaporation. Additionally, traveling at off hours when it's cooler helps you to save gas because you might be able to simply open your windows and not run the air conditioner.