Saving Money by Comparing Gas Prices Online or With Apps

Gas PricesUnless you live in an urban center, and don’t need to commute too far, you probably live in a household with a car.  Along with that car comes expenses, including the regular purchase of gasoline.  As we know, in recent years those prices arent’ exactly low anymore. Thus, it just might be a good idea to compare gas prices in order to save money.

Now, first of all, I have to admit that I think that we should be careful not to go too far just to save a little bit of money on gas.  Or, for that matter, anything.  While saving money is very important, and of course a critical part of reaching financial freedom, it shouldn’t require spending ridiculous amounts of time to do so.  Not to mention spending money or driving further to do so, which is convoluted and another topic for another day.

However, sometimes we can just spend a little bit of incremental time in order to save money. In these such cases, I think it might be worth it.  One such way to save money on gas is to compare prices online, or via a smartphone app.

The one source I sought to check out was Gas Buddy, which honestly was simply top of mind to me.   When it comes down to it, this is really quite simple and doesn’t take much time to do.  Remember, time is valuable! Anyway, all it took was searching by zip code to get the most current reported low prices in the area.  Just a few moments, and the prices were there!

I was quickly able to determine that there was a price variation of $0.20 per gallon in the local vicinity, from high to low.  Additionally, to capture these savings, it wouldn’t really require any extra time or additional driving.  So, it would be pretty close to incremental.  Filling up 15 gallons, that would equate to $3.00 in savings.  If you fill your tank 3 times per month, that’s $9.00.  Annualized, that’s $108.00!

Of course, it’s hard to really say that there would such a wide range of prices at all times, and that it would always be possible to count on such savings.  However, even if you could save 50% of this – meaning $54 – it’s not a bad annual total to save just for taking a moment to quickly search prices. Small amount add up!

Other sources (these were sites, not apps) that I saw were Mapquest Gas Prices, and MSN Autos.  Ultimately, whatever you might prefer to use it of course up to you.  But keep in mind that there just might be some savings to be had by taking a few moments to quickly compare gas prices.

Readers – do you actively compare gas prices? If so, A) do you check online, and B) what would be enough of a difference for you to go to a different station that originally planned?

13 thoughts on “Saving Money by Comparing Gas Prices Online or With Apps

  1. Pauline

    Those apps are really cool if you live somewhere with a lot of gas stations. I wouldn’t drive out of my way for gas, both for time and money reasons, so usually just check the ones I will pass by on the app.

    1. Post author

      Pauline – that makes sense. Driving out of the way has costs in terms of time and money.

  2. Jason @ WSL

    I don’t really compare gas prices, but I just recently got a smart phone and haven’t utilized all of the apps that are out there. I simply make note of prices as I’m driving, but I primarily stay with the same gas station for my weekly fill-up.

    1. Post author

      Jason – might be worth checking out prices this way, if there are multiple places on the same route! Smart phones do have a lot of apps, no question. Some better than others.

    1. Post author

      Maria – I think it works best if you’re not changing plans or going in a different direction just to buy the cheaper gas. If two gas stations are more or less on the same path, but you know that the next station a few minutes down the same road has gas for less, might as well wait. That’s an example of when I think gas price comparision site/app efforts could pay off.

  3. Edward Antrobus

    I keep an eye on prices as I do my normal driving. I’ve driven around town enough over the past three years to where the better prices are and fortunately, they are all along routes I normally take anyway.

    1. Post author

      Edward – what I like is that you’re considering places on the same route anyway. Good not to go too far to save!

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