We have always liked to ‘hit the road’ and do some vacationing during Spring Break. The bad winter weather is all but over, the kids have worked hard in school, and it’s a nice time to just get away and relax a little. The problem with doing this anymore is, gas prices are so high, and like everybody else, we have to watch our pennies.
We follow these simple steps before we go on any type of road trip. We feel that every little bit helps, and you can’t do to much, when it comes to cutting down on gas usage and what we spend on gas.
1. Tires should have the proper amount of air. If you aren’t sure how much to put in, you can check your owner’s manual that came with your car. There has been a few times that my husband has been busy, so he left it up to me. I took the car to Les Schwab and they checked the tires for me, and made sure the inflation was correct.
2. Keep the weight in your car to a minimum. It only makes sense, that the more weight you have, the more gas it is going to take to move it.
3. If you have it, use cruise control. It is much easier to maintain a consistent speed when you use cruise control, and this will help to conserve gas.
4. If driving on the freeway; keep speed down. Like most people, I would rather drive 70 mph when legally possible, instead of 55, but the lower speed does help keep gas usage down.
5. If it has been awhile, have a tune-up done on the car. Having everything in proper working order will help the car burn gas more efficiently.
6. If you have more than one vehicle, choose the one that is better on gas; not necessarily the one that is the most comfortable. My husband’s pick-up is definitely more comfortable on long trips than my Kia Sportage, but the gas we save taking the Kia makes a little bit of discomfort worth it.
7. No quick stops and starts. When you drive like that it uses more gas, and it’s really not necessary. You’re on vacation, and there is no need to hurry.
8. Plan your trip, and if possible; combine a couple. If there are a number of things that you would like to see and do, and if there are things in the same relative area, do those while you’re there. It is more fuel efficient. If you are going to be going through a city, you might want to plan an alternate route to miss traffic congestion.
9. Don’t use your air conditioner. Your car really does use more gas when the air conditioner is being used.
10. If possible keep your luggage in the car or trunk. Using a luggage rack interferes with the aerodynamics of your car, and will cause you to use more gas.
I think that you will find, that following these tips will help you keep gas usage down to a minimum, and will help you to fully enjoy your Spring Break vacation just a little bit more. After all, you will be saving money, and having a vacation.