The Richmond Times-Dispatch keeps it’s readers informed on the price of gasoline in the metro-Richmond area, much to the distress of many readers who see the price rising weekly, edging closer and closer to the $5.00 a gallon mark.
According to AAA Mid-Atlantic, the average price for a gallon of gasoline in Virginia has risen to $3.61 a gallon. That is a 7 cents increase from last week, and 40 cents more a gallon than it was a year ago.
The auto club is already forecasting a continued rise in gasoline prices to pass the $4.00 a gallon mark in the next few weeks in Virginia. This is besides the fact that the price of a gallon of gas is over $5.00 in some areas of California.
Why there are differences in gas prices across the country
And that is another strange thing about the price of gasoline in the United States, it’s not the same at all across this country. It goes from a high of $5.21 a gallon at a Mobil station in Los Angeles, California to a low of $2.94 a gallon at a U Pump station in Fort Collins, Colorado.
Knowing that huge differences in gasoline prices exist makes people wonder if the government is creating price variations on purpose. There is an explanation for the price differences, not only countrywide, but even within the state.
Price differences come down to state laws governing the quality of gasoline, and excise taxes at the state and local level. California has some of the harshest clean burning fuel requirements in the country.
Add to those harsher requirements high state and local government excise taxes and you will see a $5.00 gallon of gas. This same scenario holds true at the state level.
Just knowing this about gasoline pricing doesn’t make those of us on fixed-incomes feel any better, but it helps. So what can you do, particularly if you are on a fixed-income?
Ways to save money and still buy gasoline
This is a good time to make use of the Kroger, Martin’s and Sam’s Club ‘Valued Customer Cards.’ These and other cards like them, offer discounts on the price of gasoline at either local service stations in the area, or their own gas pumps.
People that work, check into car-pooling. Not only will this save everyone involved money, but will help in reducing pollution. Keep a family calendar and update it weekly to keep track of after school trips and appointments.
If possible, give this job to the teens in the family so everyone has a hand in helping to save on gas. Learn to combine those after school trips, and see if you can’t be creative in doing it.
The same goes with seniors and those on fixed incomes. Team up with friends to go to meetings and church. Try doing the weekly grocery shopping with a friend, and share the cost of gas.
If anyone has some other ideas on saving money on gas, leave your comments below to share with other readers.