5 ways to save on gas as prices continue to soar

New Jerseyans continue to feel pain at the gas pump as prices continue to rise amid Russia’s ongoing war on Ukraine.

The average price of a gallon of plain water was $4.38 in New Jersey on Friday, according to AAA. This compares to a national average of $4.33.

GasBuddy.com puts the average price in Toms River at $4.36, while in Trenton it is $4.38.

Prices will likely continue to rise in the coming weeks, so be aware of what does and does not count as price increases.

Here are five ways to cut higher bills.

1. Examine your credit cards

Many credit cards offer a percentage or penny on each gallon. Others allow cardholders to earn cash back for certain types of purchases, including gas.

Take a look at what your credit cards are giving you and make sure you’ve signed up for the right savings plan.

If you are unhappy with your card offers, consider getting a new card with better benefits. Check out sites like BankRate.com and CreditCards.comwhich have search tools to help you find the card that suits you best.

Just make sure you’re not lured in by gas rewards alone. Beware of cards with high interest rates or annual fees that could wipe out rewards from your bottom line.

2. Reward programs for gas stations

Some gas companies offer valuable rewards programs for loyal customers.

For example, if you shop at BP or Amoco stations, try BPme Rewards, which gives you 5 cents off every gallon for your first month. according to BankRate.com. If you spend at least $100 on gas for each subsequent month, you will keep this discount.

Exxon Mobil also offers a program that gives you three points for every gallon you buy and two points for every in-store purchase. Every 100 points add up to $1 off, says BankRate.

Shell gives you between 5 and 10 cents off every gallon if you spend a certain amount at participating retailers. If you reach “silver” status, you’ll get an extra 3 cents on every gallon.

Other gas stations offer different programs, so look around.

3. Supermarket loyalty programs

Depending on where you shop, you can save gas.

For example, if you use your Shop & Shop Card, you’ll earn one point for every dollar spent, which translates into a discount at Shell stations.

Albertsons, Safeway and ACME have a similar program with Exxon Mobile.

Ask your favorite supermarket if there is a rewards program you can participate in.

Costco says its members will still see gas at a discount compared to its competitors. Although you have to buy a subscription, which starts at $60 per year, you could see the savings add up if gas prices continue to rise.

4. Shop

It doesn’t make much sense to drive from station to station, burning gas while chasing the cheapest prices.

Instead, use the GasBuddy app or website, which is outsourced to list the best prices on a map.

This will allow you to decide where you are going before you get behind the wheel.

5. Change your driving habits

There are many things you can do to reduce your vehicle’s gas mileage, such as removing unnecessary weight from your car, making sure your tires are inflated, and giving your car a tune-up.

Considering where prices are headed, it’s worth taking the time to save.

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Karin Price Mueller can be reached at [email protected]. Follow her on Twitter at @KPMueller.