It’s no big secret that gas is a ridiculously high expensive nowadays. In Southern California, you’d be lucky to find anything under $4, and I’ve seen several stations offering diesel fuel for $4.99 per gallon. Long gone are the days where you could fill up your tank with $20, unless your car only takes 5 gallons, in which case you won’t be going very far. Yesterday my gas light came on, and I went to the gas station to fill up. When it was done, the pump read $70.65. I was appalled.

The hit wasn’t too bad since I don’t drive much anymore. Outside of running errands and occasional trips to my grandparents house, my car stays parked in the garage. Imagine if I was still making that 48 mile round trip commute every weekday to work! I’d be filling up a lot more often and my pockets would be filling a lot more pain.

But gas is still going up, with intentions of continually climbing. So how on earth can we avoid the gas pump?

  • Reduce your mileage: When you make a trip in your car, your fuel goes down (logic, right?). The more you drive, the more you have to fill up. Try to reduce the rides you make. Ask your boss if you could telecommute at least 1 day out of the week. Have your groceries delivered to you. Buy your necessities online. Work on any way you can to stay out of your car.
  • Carpool: Remember that word? It’s not just the diamond lane that you can’t get in to escape traffic. If you work out an arrangement with someone who’s going to same place you’re going, or at least in the vicinity, you can both save money.
  • Get a new car: The more expensive route upfront, definitely, but will save money over time. If your car is causing you troubles with low gas mileage, then you should probably consider investing in a new car. You don’t have to buy brand new. You don’t even need to “buy”. I’m leasing a car that is getting much better gas mileage than my previous vehicle. Yeah, it took $70 to fill up, more than it’s ever taken me before, but I also don’t go to the pump that often anymore. It takes about 460 miles to empty on a full tank, when my previous car didn’t make it to 200.
  • Go green: Hybrid cars are of course a trend, but a good one at that. Great for the environment, and light on your pocket at the pump. This, too, is also going to cost you upfront, but it’ll save you in the long run. Tej and I have a joke: “how many times have you seen a Prius at the gas station?” Exactly. And they have the lovely sticker that allows you to get in the carpool lane alone. Sounds appealing doesn’t it?

What have you been doing to steer clear from the gas stations? What’s the most you’ve spent on filling up lately? How much is gas in your area?

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