7. Change in-town driving behavior --If you’ve been a steady-state driver out on the highway, don’t throw out your smarts when it comes to driving in town. Avoid jack-rabbit starts and sudden stops which waste fuel big-time.
8. Keep track of gas mileage --One way to ensure you’re getting good gas mileage is to keep a log of it. If you notice a drop in fuel efficiency, it could mean that your vehicle isn’t being properly maintained or there’s a problem that’s cropped up that needs attention. Another benefit is that when you notice a spike either way – less fuel efficiency or more – it should alert you that you’re either doing something right or need to make some changes.
9. Use the most fuel-efficient vehicle in the household -- If there’s a choice and the household has more than one vehicle, using the more fuel efficient one can translate to greater fuel savings. If long-distance travel becomes (or is) a daily necessity, when it comes time to replace your car, consider one that gets higher fuel economy than your current one – and still meets your needs. Maybe a 2011 Hyundai Sonata, Kia Optima, Chevrolet Cruze, or Toyota Prius, for example. And if you do go for another car, here are a few more tips. Light interior and exterior colors tend to reduce heat buildup and save on air conditioning use. Four-wheel drive vehicles generally use more gas than front-wheel drive ones. Smaller cars generally get better fuel economy. Cars that require premium fuel (as recommended in the owner’s manual) will cost more to operate over the long-term. Trucks, vans and SUVs come in various configurations and sizes. Generally speaking, smaller bed, cab and cargo capacity equates to better fuel economy.
10. Check out gas rebate programs -- Long-distance road warriors are pretty savvy about where the best deals are for gas – especially if they travel the same route regularly. If you spend a lot of money on gas, whether it’s for work or during family trips, consider checking out various gas rebate programs offered through credit card companies and other outlets.
Got other gas-saving tips for long-distance travel that you’d like to share? Feel free to comment below. Also check out Bengt Halvorson’s article in TheCarConnection on how to save money on gas without downsizing.