The cost of gas continues to climb, but we've still got places to go. Changing commuting habits can help you avoid pain at the pump.
Walking or riding a bike for shorter journeys is a start. A 2019 study by INRIX Research of over fifty million trips in a single month in the 25 most congested U.S. cities — including L.A. — found that 48% of all car trips are less than three miles in length, with about 20% being shorter than one mile. Why waste money filling up for a short car trip when there's a cheaper and healthier way to get around.
Dump the pump for the classic cost-saving choice of using public transportation. Individuals who ride the bus or train instead of driving on average save more than $800 each month — according to an American Public Transportation Association report. Annually, that amounts to close to $10,000 for a person who switches their daily commute by car to taking transit.
Public transportation is especially affordable, and convenient, for UCLA commuters, with several local and commuter lines serving the campus. Not only is there a discount on a university-issued transit pass, but there's even an extra savings available for the spring quarter.
And here are some gas-saving tips to help get you through the oil price hike for those who need to stay behind the wheel.
Drive sensibly: avoid speeding, rapid acceleration, and hard braking. Aggressive driving can lower your highway gas mileage by 15%-30% and your city mileage by 10%-40%, according to fueleconomy.gov. Also, minimize idling your car, which can use a quarter to a half-gallon of fuel per hour, depending on engine size and air conditioner use.
Take advantage of an app like GasBuddy to find the cheapest gas near you. Look into grocery store and fuel rewards programs, which allow you to collect points to cover part of the costs of filling up your tank.
Remember, the best way to deal with spiking gas prices is a switch to sustainable transportation, which helps your pocket and benefits the environment.