Gas prices across the country and globe are spiking to record levels, leaving many people feeling the pinch at the pump. If you’re planning a summer vacation, you may be worried about how these high gas prices can affect your travel plans. Never fear! There are plenty of ways to save money at the pump, even when prices are high. Following these money-saving tips, you can enjoy your summer vacation without breaking the bank.

Watch Your Driving Habits

One easy way to save money on gas is to make sure you’re driving safely. Speeding, sudden braking, and other risky behaviors can lead to accidents and waste gas. Stick to the speed limit, avoid tailgating, and be extra cautious in construction zones to help save both money and lives. So, take your foot off the pedal and pay less at the pump.

Keep Up with Car Care

You can also save gas by following the proper maintenance schedule for your vehicle. Regular oil changes, tire rotations, and engine tune-ups can improve your gas mileage by up to 4%. If your car is due for any of these services, get them done before you hit the road for your summer vacation.

Check Your Tire Pressure Regularly

One often-overlooked factor in poor gas mileage is tire pressure. If your tires are low, they have to work harder to spin, which wastes gas. Check your tire pressure at least once a month before any long road trip. You can usually find the correct tire pressure for your vehicle in the owner’s manual or on a sticker inside the driver’s door.

Look Into a Defensive Driving Course

If you’re serious about saving money on gas, look into taking a defensive driving course. Many insurance companies offer discounts for drivers who have completed these courses. Learn about efficient driving techniques that can keep you safe and may actually help save you money on gas. The extra savings from insurance premiums can help cover the increase in fuel costs.

Check with your insurance company to see if they offer any defensive driving discounts. You can take an online defensive driving course from the comfort of your home and skip spending hours in a room with a bunch of other drivers.

Plan Your Route Carefully

Planning your route is another easy way to save on gas. When driving, take the time to map out your route in advance. This will help you avoid unnecessary backtracking and mile-long detours. In addition, try to plan your itinerary so that you’re driving on highways as much as possible. These roadways have higher speed limits, which means you can reach your destination faster and use less gas.

Consider a Rental Car

Does your vehicle get excellent gas mileage? If not, you may rent a car for your summer vacation and save money. These days, many rental companies offer fuel-efficient vehicles that can help you save money at the pump. Just be sure to compare rates carefully before booking to get the best deal possible. Check with your insurance company or employer perks for discounts on rental cars.

Pay Attention to Gas Prices on Your Trip

High gas costs are plaguing the entire U.S., but some areas are worse than others. This problem occurs for various reasons, such as different taxes and regulations from state to state. Pay attention to the gas prices in the areas you’ll be visiting so you can budget accordingly.

If you’re driving through areas with higher gas prices, top off your tank before leaving. This will help you avoid stopping for gas in these more expensive areas.

Don’t Use Cruise Control

You may think cruise control will help you save on gas, but this isn’t always the case. When driving downhill, your car’s speed can increase without you realizing it. This can cause you to use more gas than necessary. If you want to be extra safe, avoid using cruise control altogether.

Skip the AC

When the temperature outside is hot, it may tempt you to blast the air conditioning in your car. However, this can waste gas. Instead, try opening the windows and enjoying the breeze. You’ll save money at the pump and get some fresh air at the same time. Pack a cooler for cold drinks to keep you cool on your summer road trip.

Consider a Group Vacation

Many people save money on gas by carpooling. But what do you do when you want to save on gas for other road trips? One option is to plan a group vacation. This way, you can split the cost of gasoline with other families or friends. Plus, you’ll have more people to help with the driving! Not only can this decision save on high gas prices, but it can be a ton of fun for everyone involved.

Take Less Luggage with You

Another way to save money on gas is to take less luggage with you. The more weight your car has to carry, the more gas it will use. You don’t have to forgo necessary items to save a few dollars on the summer vacation.

But a few smart decisions, such as skipping the surfboard you’re not sure you’ll have time to use, renting one when you reach your destination, leaving behind the heavy toolbox, and bringing a small emergency kit instead.

Pack a Picnic Lunch

One final tip for saving money on your summer vacation is to pack a picnic lunch. Eating out is one of the most significant expenses when traveling. But if you pack your own food, you’ll save a lot of money. This is especially true if you’re traveling with kids. The money you save on food can be used to buy more gas.

Safe travels! So there you have it; some easy tips to help you save money on gas this summer. Following these simple money-saving tips, you can enjoy your vacation without breaking the bank.