Fortunately gas prices in the Tampa area aren't as bad as this! This photo was taken yesterday (March 7) in Los Angeles.

As prices skyrocket due to the Ukraine conflict, there are 3 ways I save money at the pump.

#1: Use your cell phone’s GPS…
GasBuddy is a pretty helpful app, especially on a road trip. Prices can vary a lot from one city to the next. GasBuddy uses your phone’s GPS to narrow your choices to stations near you. You can sort by price or find a particular brand of gas if you’re picky. Right now, GasBuddy is showing unleaded gas prices under $4 in Lutz, Tampa, Clearwater, Brandon, and Odessa. Here’s one drawback of the app. All of the information on prices comes from other app users. So a price might have already changed by the time you get to the station. But generally, I’ve found the reports to be pretty accurate. If you don’t want to put the app on your phone, you can also go to their website.

#2: Buy a loaf of bread, raisins, some beer, eggs and ketchup…
Wow that sounds like the beginning of the worst recipe ever. If you live in Tampa Bay, chances are you live within a couple minutes of a Publix. About once a month, they’ll do a deal where you get $10 off a $50 gas station gift card if you buy $50 worth of groceries. It’s usually a Thursday to Sunday thing, so if you shop on Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday, you’ll miss the deal. You can check the Publix website to look at the latest flyer to see if they’re offering the deal this week.

#3: Another new app that can drop your price per gallon…
You might have heard an ad for a mobile phone app called “Get Upside.” Similar to GasBuddy, Get Upside uses your phone to find your location. They then show you gas stations they’ve partnered with to give a discount on fuel. Sometimes the discount is as little at 1 cent per gallon. But I’ve seen discounts go up to 20 cents per gallon. If you don’t want to connect the app to your bank account (I didn’t), you can opt to use your cash back for gift cards to places like Walmart, Outback Steakhouse, Dunkin, Target, or Applebees. They’ve grown based on referrals… so here’s my invite code: 64KYJ8. It’ll save you an extra 15 cents a gallon the first time you use the app and they’ll do the same for me. Sometimes you have to snap a pic of your receipt with your phone and upload it. A little effort, but if you drive a lot, it’s worth it.

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