Tag Archives: saving

Benefits of Using Public Transporation

Is public transportation cheaper than driving? Beyond just cost, is it a better alternative?

Of course, this is something that’s a matter of opinion.  I’ve had experience with both types of commutes, throughout my working years.  Also, I’ve had various difficulties of commutes.

Such as:

  • Driving 5 minutes
  • Driving 30 minutes
  • Driving 90 minutes (no fun)
  • Taking a 40 minute train, then walking 30 minutes or taking a bus
  • Taking a 60 minute train, then walking 10 minutes

Clearly, driving just 5 minutes was amazing.  The thing is, it was my first job out of school, and I didn’t really know any different.  I just saw it as a normal job, and equated the commute to the amount of time I had to spend getting to college or high school in the previous years.  It took me having a longer commute to fully appreciate how good I had it with that first position.  At least, in terms of distance for driving.

Once I had the opportunity to take public transportation, I had a new perspective.  I liked it!  It sure beat having to drive each day.

Now, I would most definitely choose a very short drive over a long train ride.  Time is valuable! However, most other things being equal, one can see a lot of benefits to public transportation.   Here are 5:

1) Spend less on gas.  With the high cost of filling up your car with gas, it can be very expensive to have a long commute.  Driving isn’t cheap! A 30 mile commute, might cost somewhere in the range of $10 round trip.  A train fare, for example, might be comparable or less.

2) Cause less wear and tear on your car.  These are additional “expenses” that we don’t really notice because we don’t see additional cash outlay right away.  However, they add up. The more mileage a person puts on his or her car, the more quickly it depreciates.  For example, a car with 50,000 miles is worth more than a car with 100,000 miles, everything else being equal.  Not much is depreciating when you take public transportation.

3) Less stress.  Let’s face it, we’re really making major life and death decisions on the road when traveling at high speeds.  We also come into contact with enough drivers out there that we eventually cross paths with a few really bad ones here and there.  All that can add subtle stress on the mind and body.  If you take public transportation, you can just sit back and chillax! That allows your own energy to be used on more productive things.

4) A chance to get things done.  So, I mentioned that public transport helps facilitate less stress.  Well, if you want to get some work or other things done, you could do so on public transportation.  You can’t send emails in the car, and you certainly can’t tweet and drive! Not safe.  On a train or bus, this is no problem.  You can be more productive, which can be more profitable.

5) Better for the environment.  Fewer cars on the road helps keep the air cleaner, right?  There is something to be said for knowing that you’re helping do your part, in our own little corner of the world, to help the greater good.

Another thing I’ve liked about public transportation is the reliability of coming and going at specific times, based on a schedule.  Of course, there is a flipside to that, in terms of losing some flexibility. But keeping on schedule probably helps us stay focused on getting things done.  You won’t linger at work for that extra 10 or 15 minutes if you’re risking making your train or bus!

Readers, what are your thoughts about public transportation as an alternative to driving?

Finding a Way to Get Things For Free

Free = good.  Well, not always, as sometimes we do get what we pay for.  But if you can get something of value for little or no cost, it’s pretty cool.

Januarybe I get a bit more excited that some folks do over such things, but sometimes it just feels great to score a deal.  It’s even more fun when it’s something that required a small bit of resourcefulness to make it happen.

I had one of those situations recently, when I was – of all things – planning to see a movie.  It was an evening of going to dinner and movie, and the latter wouldn’t involve any matinee prices.  Rather, we’re talking about full price theater tickets.  In this suburban locale, they weren’t going to cheap, despite prices at this theater being somewhat reasonable.

So, we were at dinner, and it hit me that a few years ago I had earned some “Fandango Bucks”.  Basically, these are dollars that can be applied to a purchase through Fandango, where you can get movie tickets in advance.  I had earned $15 of credit via a work function from 2.5 years ago, a place where I actually no longer work.  Anyway, it was a “reward” for members of the winning team in some type of strategy team building sessions.  Yeah, we were in a big conference room, divided up into groups, trying to brainstorm a strategy to solve a business issue.

Anyway, I recall that my team had won, and they gave us each this email with a code that we could use to get $15 in credit toward use on Fandango.  The thing is, that was a few years back and I had forgotten about it.  All of a sudden, at dinner, I remembered that this was out there.  I then recalled that I had actually sent my self an email (personal email) with that code, just in case I lost it or left that job.   So, I quickly used my smart phone to check my personal email and guess what – I quickly found the code!

Next step was to go onto Fandango, apply the code, and get my free tickets.  Which, I did! The code was STILL valid after a few years!

The whole thing took Januarybe 6 or 7 minutes.  Don’t’ worry, I wasn’t being a rude dinner companion :)  It was all good.  Actually, it was great.  Thinking of a credit from a few years ago, then being able to utilize it via smartphone in just a couple minutes was cool.  Always nice to see a free movie!

Readers, have you ever been resourceful in getting goods or services free? Is there a recent example of when you’ve gotten something free that was pretty cool to you?

Free is Good – So Use Your Library!

So many of us truly enjoy saving money.  Not just the big picture, important aspect of having enough money for retirement or other necessary expenses.  We also like to have those frequent “successes” in terms of saving money on different purchases or expenses.

It that’s something you enjoy, why not visit the local library? Really, it’s easy to save money by using the library, as I’ve discovered.  Or, rediscovered is a better way to put it.

Personally, when younger, I didn’t care to go to the library.  Honestly, it was a place that was only someplace I might go if I wanted quiet in order to get things done. But looking to the library as a place of value, where I could save money? No, not so much.

However, it’s been the last 6 or 7 years when I’ve rediscovered the benefits of the library.  At the time my new-found discovery started, I was commuting over 75 minutes to work each way.  Yes, that’s 2.5 hours round trip, and on a good day at that.  Needless to say, I was spending far too much time in my car – certainly more than I wanted to!  There was only so much of the radio I could listen to.

That’s when I got the idea to look for books on tape.  For better or worse, my car at the time actually had a cassette option in addition to CD (yes, an older car!), so I had a chance to choose from both types of media.  Upon visiting the local library, I was happy to discover a wide range of good options that I could listen to.  The commute went from being horrible to being…well, at least much more tolerable!  I actually learned some things, and remember some key points from some of those audio books.

That got me to have a new appreciation for the library.  Here are a few things I’ve gotten from it:

New Release Books

Yes, I’ve been able to read some new releases – ones that I could have otherwise bought at a bookstore.  If you have a reader, you know that these things still aren’t cheap.  If you want to go “old school” with a hard-copy book, the library is a good option for a free read.  You might be surprised at the quality of the offerings at your library.  Of course, if you want older books, I’m guessing most libraries have plenty of those too :)

Movies

My local library offers a really good selection of DVDs. Sure, it’s not like I’m getting the benefits of streaming – and choosing from home.  But if you want a wide range of movies, including many great titles and some relatively recent hits, my local library has it.  I can keep the movies for 1 week, and I think I can could renew longer if nobody else has a hold on a particular title.

Classes

There has been one class I signed up for, so I suppose this hasn’t been one I’ve leveraged too much.  But I can see how this can be of major use to people depending on the class or seminar offered.

A  Peaceful Place to Work

This has been helpful.  Once in a while, I’ll leave home to get work done outside.  While I like a coffee shop for this, the library is a good alternative as well.  Why? Well, you get free wi-fi, peace and quiet, and you don’t have to spend a penny.  Alternatively, if you did want to bring in a glass of coffee, my library doesn’t mind.  So, you have choices.

The best part? Of course, it’s all free! No additional costs incurred, other than driving there.

Readers, do you ever try to enjoy your local public library? What do you find to be the best benefits of the library for you?

Customer Loyalty Cards are Great!

Do you use customer loyalty cards at places where you shop or eat?

At one time, I would shy away from doing so.  My reasoning was that the loyalty cards would be more of a burden than a benefit.  For example, one would have to carry the card around in order to accrue any benefits.  For example, back when these were punch cards, it would require carrying the card with you on the specific instances you visited someplace.  Spontaneous visits wouldn’t gain benefits, and it would be cumbersome to carry cards with you at all times.

Also, there is the concept of being lured into visiting someplace just because of the loyalty card.  That was something I might have been influenced by when younger, but not so much anymore.  Such programs don’t cause me to behave any differently in terms of my purchasing habits, at least I believe that to be the case.

These days, however, we don’t need to be burdened by too much at all when signing up for a loyalty program.  If they ask for an email address – which is normal – I’ll give it to them.  You can always set up a separate email for such programs, so they don’t clog up the inbox of your primary address.  Thus, promotional-type emails aren’t annoying.

Additionally, if you visit a place, you don’t have to actually have your card with you.  Since the days of the punch card are gone with most bigger businesses, you can usually circumvent hassles by simply telling the cashier you don’t have your card with you but you can provide your phone number (or email address, if that’s the identifier they ask for).

Through last year, I estimate I probably got about $50 worth of discounts just by signing up for such programs.  There were a few free meals involved, and a few times when I got discounts when ordering.  All without any extra work, other than simply spending a few moments signing up for a program and then pretty much not doing another thing after that – except checking email a few times.  And I literally mean just a few times, as in around my birthday to get a few free meals.  Otherwise, it’s sign up and forget about it  – just take the discount or freebie when they tell you that you have it, when paying.

I suppose a bigger way to save is to never eat out (or do much shopping), and I would agree to that.  However, if you’re going to periodically grab food outside or on the go, sign up for the loyalty program where you think you’ll go multiple times.  Why give away money?

Readers, do you ever sign up for loyalty programs? Have you scored good freebies this way? Are you able to do so while making sure that such programs don’t cause you to spend more?

How Do You Save on Travel Expenses?

Everybody likes to travel, right?  Well, Januarybe not everybody.  I’ve met a few folks over the years who expressly stated that they didn’t like to travel and would like to stay at home instead.  But for most of us, traveling has some value.  For some, it’s a huge pastime.

Personally, at one time I traveled a ton.  Been all over the US and Canada, as well as through Europe and a few countries in Asia.  These days, I very rarely travel and simply do not have the time to do so.  Also, I watch my money a LOT more, and have a lot more necessary expenses than in the past, given that I have kids.  Until you have them, you don’t appreciate A) what an incredible blessing they are, and B) how much it really costs to raise them.

Back to traveling though – it’s often an expensive endeavor.  This is why I really try to save money on traveling if I ever choose to do it these days.  Along those lines, here are 5 Ways to Save on Travel Expenses:

Travel Off-Peak

This isn’t always the most fun option, as it’s nice to travel during certain times the year that are convenient, or offer the best weather.  However, if you travel during times that aren’t the most popular, you just might be able to save money.   For example, let’s say you’re in a cold weather locale.  Traveling to a very warm climate around the winter holidays, or around Spring Break, might be more difficult in terms of finding flights and accommodations at a price that fits your budget.  Simply traveling at different times that don’t have the same rush, or general appeal, would be a way to cut the costs while enjoying a visit to the same place.

Airline Miles

For some years now, I’ve had a credit card with no annual fee which has given me airline miles.   Now, I pretty much never think about the rewards when I’m considering making purchases, and often forget that I even earn miles.  Literally, I’m only reminded of it when I get a periodic email giving me a summary of miles earned.  Thankfully they send those :)  Anyway, this has helped me with travel costs.  For example, in the last trip I took, I used mileage to book 2 round trip tickets for us for free!  That made the trip much more manageable from a cost perspective.

Shopping Online for The Best Deals

There are so many sites out there to search for the best flights and hotel deals, that it can be dizzying.  You can simply google the terms and find a variety of options.  The thing is, it’s worth taking a little bit of time to look for great deals.  They can be found.

I’ve enjoyed getting hotel room through Priceline that have been incredible deals.  I’ve done this on a few trips, and came away really glad I took that approach.  The hotel rooms ended up being at a big, big discount from the listed rates.  Which is great since I don’t want to pay listed, full price – and with some searching, we don’t always have to.

Use Alternate Airports

This January not be an option where you live – but if it is, you should consider looking at alternate airports.  For example, I’ve booked a few flights that were at an airport about an extra 1 hour further away than the major hub I would normally fly out of.  This smaller airport didn’t offer the direct flight I wanted, but through connections I was able to get to the destination cheaper.  Just one stop, flying from the smaller, alternate airport, and I save some decent money.  Not to mention that parking was less too!

Pack Smartly

By this I mean, keep in mind the checked bag fees that have become normal in recent years.  It really pays to travel light, and really analyze whether or not it’s worth paying more to take more.  Often, you can get away with taking less than you might think you can.  Backups and alternate outfits aren’t always necessary.

Also, packing food for the airport or road trips is a good idea too.  I once had to pay over $12 for a sub sandwich at a regular, U.S. airport! Now, I was traveling on business so I didn’t care as much as I would have otherwise.  After all, they made me travel!  However, imagine a family of 4 doing that.  It would be almost $50.  Simply packing food from home can save a TON of money.

Readers, what are your tips for saving money on travel? Have you used any of these?  Any others?

 

How Often Do You Upgrade Your Phone?

Ancient Phone

Januarybe this was a “smart” phone in its day?

First off, I’m NOT talking about a landline here.  Just to get that clarification out there, up front :)

In terms of buying a new phone – smartphone at that – there seems to be a culture here in the U.S. where replacing it every 2 years is the norm.  Januarybe not among all people, but people who can feasibly afford a smartphone seem to look to replace it every two years.

Why? Well, there’s the little aspect of a 2 year agreement that many folks seem to have.  I’ve had a few people tell me that as soon as their agreement was up, they immediate sought out a new phone.  That 2 year time marker was the signal to go phone shopping.  Apparently, everybody “must” upgrade phones at that time.  Or so some people say.

I had this conversation with some friends a few months back, and the people are really solid, sensible folks.  They’re good with their money, and don’t overspend much.  Yet, they’re a lot of fun.  That’s a good combination!

Anyway, I was good-naturedly teased a bit for not wanting to upgrade my phone right away.  You see, my 2 years have been up for many months – to the point where soon, it will be 3 years since my last upgrade.  They simply couldn’t understand why I would use such an “outdated” phone when I could instead go pick up a new iPhone.  To them, it was almost incomprehensible that I would be so hesitant to do that, and instead use a phone well over 2 years old.

Here’s the thing: just because a 2-year agreement is up, it doesn’t mean that you need to get a new phone.  Besides, a new phone that’s cutting edge isn’t likely to be free anyway with another agreement.  Additionally, if the phone you have still works well, what are you truly missing? So why spend when you don’t have to do so.

Let’s say you replace phones every 2 years.  This means, through 6 years, you will have used 3 phones before your next upgrade.  If you upgrade every 3 years instead, it will mean 2 phones are used in 6 years before your next upgrade.  You’ll save on the cost of a phone, just by stretching out each purchase by a year.

To me, it’s a case of wants vs. needs.  Yet, for many, any new technology within a product category might be perceived as a “need”.  I think at some point in time it might eventually become a need, but an immediate upgrade is usually a “want”.

Readers, what do you think about phone upgrades? How often do you replace your phone? Do you get very tempted to upgrade as soon as possible, or do you prefer to use your existing phone for as long as feasible?

Using RedLaser to Save Money

With smartphones and even simply going online at home, it’s not too difficult to price comparison shop for quite a few items.  Quite a bit different from how many people – inlcuding me – remember shopping just a decade ago.  Then, we had to go store to store or make phone calls.  No longer!

Along those lines, I recently posted on the phenomenon of showrooming, where people go to stores to look.  Then, they can turn around and buy elsewhere, particularly online.   It’s especially helpful to do this when you have a smartphone.

The question might be, what’s a good way to conveniently use your phone to showroom, or simply compare prices with another store?  I’ve recently discovered an app called RedLaser, which seems quite interesting and provides price comparison information that can be eye opening in some cases.

I simply downloaded the app on my Android phone, and in minutes I was ready to use it.  It’s available on iPhones as well, I believe.  Anyway, at that point I was at the store and all set to compare prices on a few items I was looking for – right before the holidays.

Here’s how it went:

Item #1: Kid’s Toy

Not to bore anyone with the details of the toy, but it was a toy for boys under 8 I would think, and was on sale at the store I was at for $50.  Well, actually $49.99, but let’s get real and call it $50.  I then opened up RedLaser, grabbed the toy, and then found the barcode.  At that point, I scanned the barcode with my phone.  Within a few seconds, the scan was complete.

Then, comparative prices appeared.  What caught my eye were two tabs: “online” and “local”.  Let’s start with the latter, local.  This was most relevant to me, as I probably didn’t have time to get things shipped to me expediently at that point.   The app quickly found local prices ranging from $50 to $76.  So, good news! I was in the right place.

In looking at the online prices, they ranged from $48 to $83.  So, shopping online might not have made sense anyway.

So clearly I was fine where I was.  But if I was somewhere else, at another store, I might have quickly found out that I needed to go somehwere else.  There were multiple stores just within a couple of miles.

Item #2: Laptop Mat

This was one of those things that you can put a laptop on, and it would theoretically keep it cooler.  It’s to be used when you’re on the sofa or just lounging using your laptop.

At the same store I was at, this was priced at $40.  In searching the local price comparison, one place just down the road came in at $30.  Where I was at was at the high end of the range.  Who knew things could be so different between the two items I looked at?

When looking at the online price comparison, there was a similar broad range of prices. Multiple sites had it for over $40.  However, the low end of the range was $26.  Now, I don’t know what shipping might have been in that case, if was free, or what the impact would be on prices.  But the actual item was in fact less.

Anyway, this was simply an experiement of two different items.  What I learned is that prices can vary quite a bit from store to store, and the savings aren’t necessarily just pennies.  If the stores are close enough to each other, using an app like RedLaser can help change where we buy and save us some money.  If we actually have time to shop online and let the items be delivered, it opens up potential savings even more.  Of course this needs to be for items more than just a few dollars, for this effort to be worth it.

So next time you go shopping: ready, set, scan!

My Questions for You

Have you ever tried RedLaser or any other app?

What are your favorite ways to price comparison shop?

 

Showrooming When Buying

Shopping online can be a great way to save money, as you can comparison shop.  With multiple options for buying certain products, we have a number of places we can look in order to see prices.  We can look for the place that offers our product for the best price, and then make the purchase.

Now, buying online might have some distinct shortcomings, and one that jumps to mind right away is the ability to actually see something.  Not everything is a commodity where we know exactly what we’re getting, and whether or not it’s a good fit for us.  Clothes come to mind as an immediate example.  But even beyond that, we might have a number of other things we would like to buy, such as electronics for example.

Whatever the case is, there is one way to avoid this issue: Showrooming when buying.

It’s simple, really.  Go to a retail store, and take a look at the product.  If you like it, you might consider buying it there.  Instead, you can go online or use price comprison apps to check competitor prices.  If you can get it cheaper elsewhere, just buy it elsewhere.  Use your smartphone immediately to decide, after seeing the product in person, if it’s worth your time to buy right there on the spot. Or not.

I just went through this practice, this week.  I was thinking of buying an iPod touch for someone as a gift, and thought I would check it out in person while I was out at a local store.  After liking what I saw, I determined that it would make a good – albeit expensive – gift.   A quick check of prices determined that I could get it for $7 less by simply ordering online, including shipping.  So, I walked out of the store without it.

Not that $7 is an astronomical amount to save, and one could certainly argue with real validity that the time I would spend later to buy it, along with the risks of shipping around the holidays, might not make that small amount of savings worth it.  Fair enough, in this specific case.

However, in other cases, where timing isn’t of the essence and the products are perhaps different, the value proposition could be much more clear.  You could simply look in person, then order later - all the while saving more money while waiting a short while for your item to arrive.

I do feel a tiny bit guilty, but rationally I know that it’s not warranted. Business is business, and you have to save when you can.  Showrooming can be a good way to get the best of both worlds, seeing the product in person and getting the best online price.

Readers, have you ever showroomed? What do you think are times when it can be worth it?

5 Ways Bloggers Can Use Fiverr to Outsource Tasks

The Number 5

Taking a chance on $5 Services!

In the world of digital money, we can bank, invest, and shop online.  With barriers to entry weakened, there are many different business and entrepreneurs who can take advatange of this stage to get their products to you.  This can push prices downward, which in man cases helps the end consumer.

One such source for low-cost deals is Fiverr.  Have you ever really spent time to check it out?  I really hadn’t paid much attention to it until recently, just perusing it to see what it was all about.  However,  when going through the site for a specific purpose recently, I realized that there are a ton of different things that one can get for the low cost of just $5.  Yes, are are tons of things that can even be outsourced for $5.

This is where I decided to consider how to use Fiverr for outsourcing blogging tasks.  I almost feel bad that people are just getting $5 for such things, at that doesn’t seem like a lot of money for one’s time.  However, it’s a free market and if that’s the going rate, then I’ll take a look!

In honor of the $5 price point, and to serve as an example of the value of this site, here are 5 tasks that bloggers can outsource on Fiverr:

1) Blog Header

Starting a new blog? Or, do you have a header you don’t want – but don’t want to spend the time putting one together?  This is where you can get low cost help.

Take a look at the header at the top of this page.  Yes, this was purchased through Fiverr.  I offered up my specs, paid the $5, and hoped for the best.  It was my first and only foray into Fiverr, but I thought I would give it a try.  The result was a functional header that was pretty much what I was looking for: black background, with silver or similar lettering.

Granted, I can admit that this isn’t a super glamorous header.  A more snazzy, detailed one might have been able to be purchased for quite a bit more.  However, a basic header was good for this site at this particular point in getting started, and I was pleased with getting this for just $5 while being turned around is 1 day.  The designer even gave a 2nd version, just in case.  I went with this one, and can be considered a pleased customer.

Some other things that you might be able to get for $5 (I haven’t paid for any of these):

2) Twitter Background

Again, I haven’t done this.  But given that my Twitter background is quite basic at this early point in the blog’s life, I might explore this in the future.

Just searching Fiverr, I can see quite a few opportunites to get a Twitter background for $5.  TONS of people were advertising this service, which really speaks to how the competition can be quite intense.  I like that, from the perspective of a potential consumer.  With such a massive number of people trying to do something very similar at the same price, it makes sense that to get a lot of repeat orders they should work to be very good.

3) E-Book Cover

Have an e-book that you’re writing? Or, perhaps you’re considering writing one in the future?  This is yet another option for that $5.  I saw people describing the end product as “professional”, and some noted 24 hour turnaround.  Certainly worth keeping in mind, at the very least!

4) Keyword Research

Now, this appears to run the gamut of possible services.  From specific keywords for niches, or analysis, or other tasks altogether, there is no shortage of people that offer these services.  I haven’t used any of this, so I can’t speak for the output at all.  That being said, you can see the rating percentage as well as read individual reviews of the services.  That might offer some useful information before shelling out that $5!

5) Voice-Over

Considering making a video, or just need a voiceover for something you’re trying to add to your blog?  There are people offering their services on Fiverr that advertise just those types of things.  You could even get things in different accents!  Not a mainstream blogger need, perhaps, but an interesting option that’s there!

Other services I noticed:  facebook fans, twitter followers, blog promotion…and the list goes on.

Readers: have you ever used Fiverr for anything, blogging or otherwise? After checking it out, is there anything that seems interesting that caught your eye as a good deal for $5?

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?