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Surprise Savings With Green Cars

Perks include tax credits, discounted parking and more

Hybrid cars can get benefits including free parking benefits.

Photo by Vincent Kessler/Reuters/Newscom

Driving a hybrid car can offer benefits such as free parking.

Never mind what you'll save on gas — a hybrid or electric car brings other rewards. Utah gives a state income-tax credit of $605 for purchase of a "clean fuel" vehicle, while Oregon grants a credit of up to $1,500 for electric cars. You can stop feeding parking meters in cities including Albuquerque, N.M., New Haven, Conn., and Salt Lake City. In Florida, green cars carrying just the driver may use carpool lanes. The same goes in Colorado, Virginia, Utah and on various highways in New York and New Jersey, though generally only if the car has the state's license plate. Most Kimpton boutique hotels offer free or discounted parking to guests with hybrid vehicles. ­

Also of interest: Ways to save on car expenses. >>

Joan Rattner Heilman writes about health and consumer issues.