My husband and I were planning on taking a driving vacation in our car (we have a Buick Lucerne) and seeing the Appalachians on our way from our home in Falls Church, Va., to see our daughter and grandkids in Atlanta. But with the price of gas, we're not quite sure that this even makes sense. We were really looking forward to wandering the back roads and don't want to put ourselves through the torture of flying. Can you help us save our driving vacation by making it cheaper?
-Rachel, Falls Church, Va.
Let me first tell you about GasBuddy.com, a Web site that can help you find cheaper gas. GasBuddy has a searchable database that lists the daily gas prices by city and state. It's updated frequently, so the day before you head out, look up some possibilities for cheap gas along your chosen route.
Another idea is joining a gas company loyalty or credit-card program, such as ExxonMobil’s MasterCard, which earns you 3-percent rebates when you fill up at their stations, and Shell’s MasterCard, which gives you 5 percent rebates. Both companies’ Web sites have route planners, which means you can map out your drive and stop at your preferred gas stations to save throughout your trip.
For added savings, BedandBreakfast.com is running a promotion that offer free gas cards at selected B and Bs. Since you'll be stopping for the night at some point on your journey, getting a gas card along with your room would be a nice bonus. Check out BedandBreakfast.com for a list of the participating B and Bs.