By GalTime.com Consumer Watchdog, Mary Schwager
Who isn't mad about gas prices? It's getting outright ridiculous ---many businesses that make deliveries are now even charging extra fuel surcharges ! The outlook is dismal, the U.S. Energy Information Administration projects regular gas will average $3.86 this summer, up 40% from the same time last year. We already know that many places are topping out over $4.00/gallon. Because of this price increase, the EIA estimates that the average American family will spend about $825 more on vehicle fuel in 2011 than it did in 2010.
Related: Save $100 a Week
Now here's a thought, instead of driving five miles out of your way to fill up at the cheapest place in town, perhaps use how you pay for gas to your advantage. Card Hub just released a list of the Best Gas Credit Cards, aiming to help people save money on gas. This Consumer Watchdog is scratching her head-never thought the day would come we'd turn to credit cards to SAVE us money!
Credit cards tied to particular gas station chains provide savings up to 5%. Among the best cards in this category, according to Card Hub:
- The Shell Credit Card - 5% rebate on gas purchases made at Shell stations
- The BP Credit Card - 5% rebate on gas purchases made at BP stations
- The Exxon Mobile Credit Card - 15 cents per gallon rebate on gas purchases made at Exxon Mobile stations (amounts to 3.75% off on a $4 gal.)
Getting a cash back credit card
Some cash back credit cards offer particularly high rewards/earning rates on gas purchases made at any gas station, in addition to generous rewards on all other purchases. The Card Hub top scorers include:
- The Blue Cash Preferred from American Express - 3% on gas purchased anywhere; $75 annual fee
- The TrueEarnings Card from Costco and American Express - 3% on gas purchased anywhere up to $3,000 in annual gas purchases; 1% thereafter; no annual fee for Costco members
- The Capital One No Hassle Cash Rewards - 2% cash back on gas purchases made anywhere and no annual fee
Of course all this savings only applies if you make sure you PAY your card on time and pay close attention to any terms and changes in the card agreement that may show up in your mailbox!
Related: Frugalista's Guide to Summer SavingsConsumers looking to save even more may also consider using one of the many smart phone applications, like GasBuddy, that help find the cheapest gas station in the neighborhood. Shopping at certain grocery stores such as Giant or Stop & Shop can also bring out considerable savings because for every $100 they spend, consumers get a 10 cent/gal. discount on their next fill up at a Shell gas station.
More From GalTime.com