BOSTON (WTNH)– GasBuddy, an app that connects over 70 millions drivers with the Perfect Pit Stop, announced Wednesday that its latest survey on American motorists’ fuel-buying habits, discovered that drivers are most likely to overpay by at least 20 cents per gallon at the pump due to laziness and procrastination.
The app conducted the survey to get insights on where and when consumers stop for fuel and how their choices are costing them. GasBuddy came up with 5 things that are costing consumers at the pump.
- Being Creatures of Habit
About 80% surveyed say they have a gas station which they regularly attend. When making this choice, 38% say it’s because the station’s location is convenient.
“Drivers are getting lazier, and going to the same station because it’s convenient can cost you,” said Patrick DeHaan, head of petroleum analysis at GasBuddy. “The station two blocks away could be 20-40 cents per gallon lower in price, and while that’s only a few dollars’ difference per fill-up, it amounts to the hundreds of dollars per year you could be saving if you shop around.”
- Running on Empty
Of those surveyed 19% fill up their tank when they see a station with a low price. 37% wait until they only have a quarter tank of gas left, while 28% wait for the low gas light. Surprisingly, 35% have reported running out of gas.
“If you’re waiting until the last second to get gas, there’s a big chance you’re going to panic and pull into the first station you see without checking a price and risk filling up at an expensive station,” said DeHaan. “Our research shows that having enough fuel in your tank to shop around for the lowest price, especially in major metro areas like Los Angeles, Chicago and Washington D.C. could save you upwards of over $60 per month.”
- Choosing the Easy Route
Consumers are paying for convenience by not planning ahead, 50% of respondents chose a gas station based on location, while 16% chose a station depending on the ease of entrance.
- Paying with Plastic or Cash
When it comes to payment preferences, 69% of people use a credit or debit card to purchase gas, not cash.
“This is an interesting trend, because while stations do offer a cash discount, credit and debit cards now offer discounts on gasoline as well.” said DeHaan. “Paying with cash can be even less convenient when cards like Pay with GasBuddy can offer the same competitive discount that cash offers. Bottom line: While cash is still a way to save, do your research to find out if you qualify for additional savings at the pump with a card instead of carrying cash.”
- Mistaking Your Grades
Gas prices have slowly been going back up in the past few months, in turn, consumers are filling up with regular instead of more expensive grades like mid-grade or premium fuel.
“Two years ago, the average price for regular gasoline was $1.81 per gallon, almost 75 cents cheaper than today’s average, so it’s understandable that consumers today feel the pinch at the pump.” says DeHaan. “For those who are still filling up with premium, It’s important to note that you only have to use premium if your car manual says it’s required, not if it’s just recommended.”