Thursday, August 31, 2017

9 Ways Not to Get Stuck Waiting for Gas

Gasoline shortages is the word of the day. Some stations have shut off their pumps and it is expected to get worse until the refineries that were shut down by Harvey come back online. Recognizing that we are producing about twenty percent less gasoline than we normally use, we ought to drive less so that people who need gasoline the most will have it available. But let’s get real. For most of us the real concern is that we don’t want to get stuck waiting for gas at a gas station or have to go station to station until we find one that has gas. So here are nine ways to not get stuck waiting for gas.

1. Buy Gas Early in the Morning

The reality is that there is gas available, so if you get out before everyone else then you are more likely to find gas. During the night there are truck drivers out refilling tanks and demand for gas is low.

2. Use the Most Fuel Efficient Vehicle

If you have two vehicles and one uses less gas than another then you won’t have to buy as much gas. But there is a limit to that because a smaller vehicle may force you to make multiple trips.

3. Combine Trips

The more things you can combine into one trip the less fuel you are likely to use. For example, if you normally drive to work each weekday and do your shopping on the weekend, you can save fuel by doing your shopping on the way home from work.

4. Use Fewer Vehicles

Many families have a car for each person with a driver’s license. You can save fuel by family members riding together. That way, only one vehicle has to be kept filled up. You can also make use of carpooling to work. This has the added bonus that one of your co-workers ends up being the person stuck waiting for fuel rather than you.

5. Work from Home

If you have the option to stay home then there is no reason you have to use gasoline to get to work.

6. Take Public Transportation

Most people with cars tend to forget that public transportation is available. They may be slow and it may be confusing to figure out how to get to where you need to be, but they will keep you out of the line at the gas station.

7. Walk

This is something that almost everyone does, but they forget that it is a mode of transportation. And if you are within a mile or two of where you need to be, it may be faster to walk than it is to drive. Given that driving may also force you to wait at a gas station, walking may save you even more time.

8. Ride a Bicycle

For some reason this one scares people, but a bicycle can get you anywhere you want to go without gasoline. In some locations the speeds you can travel on a bicycle are higher than the average speed of automobiles on the same road, and that even before you take into account the time people spend refueling or servicing their cars.

9. Go Electric

Most people realize that if they had an electric car then they wouldn’t have to visit the gas station while there is a gas shortage. Not everyone has that option because they are expensive. There is, however, another way you can go electric. These days electric bicycles are becoming more popular. Maybe you aren’t physically fit enough to use a bicycle as transportation, but if you have an eBike then you can make use of an electric motor that will allow you to travel at speeds similar to those of a fit cyclist. It probably won’t save you money over driving a car, but you won’t be waiting to buy gas.