With gasoline prices skyrocketing, I knew I needed to do something to cut back. With gas prices over $3.00 a gallon and no sign of prices dropping anytime soon, my husband and I found that filling up our cars was becoming quite a drain on our budget, especially when he was working in outside sales. At one point last summer, we were paying $400 a month to drive our cars. That’s more than half our rent payment!
I decided that we needed to take drastic measures to cut back on fuel, because driving our cars was driving us straight into the poorhouse. So I adjusted our schedule accordingly.
I’ve never been a super-scheduled person. I like to go to the store to pick something up on a whim, and I found that I was making little trips here and there every day, because I was bored. I put an end to that and designated Mondays as errand running days. As soon as the bus picks my son up for school, I drop my daughter off at her school, and I head into town. I run every errand I have in succession and get home before my son gets home from preschool.
This has several benefits. First, I get a lot accomplished in a short amount of time. Second, I don’t take time to linger and lust after items I see in the stores. I’m on a tight schedule, and I don’t have the time to browse. I stick to my list and get in and out as fast as I can. Finally, it frees up other days in my week to be “no drive” days.
I try really hard to stick to my no drive days on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays. By not driving 3 days a week, I’ve managed to cut down the need to fill up my gas tank from three times a month to two.
Even if you aren’t able to commit to no-drive days, there are things you can do to cut down your gas consumption.
What do you think? Have high fuel prices caused you to change your habits? What do you do to compensate for the high cost of gasoline? Or do you just pay the higher prices?
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I'm just an average mom, trying to live a frugal life and get out of debt. I write about things that have (and haven't) worked to improve my family's financial situation. What works for me may or may not work for you, and you should always consult a financial advisor before making important financial decisions.
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