Between driving to and from an assignment and taking excursions on your days off, Travel Nurses can really rack up fuel costs. Travel Nursing Blogs is here to save the day and help you save, with these 6 ways Travel Nurse can save money on gas and reduce their carbon footprint!
License to Buy
Consider fuel-efficient car choices, now or in the future, depending upon what makes the most sense for you. Smaller vehicles and manual transmissions are money-savers. You can also look at hybrids. According to FuelEconomy.gov, some of the most fuel efficient, electric/hybrid cars on the market in 2014 include:
- Fiat 500e
- Chevrolet Spark
- Ford Focus Electric
- Nissan Leaf
- Honda Fit EV
- Toyota Prius
- Tesla Model S
Where is Oprah when we need her, to gift us all with new cars?! 🙂
Prep Your Ride
A high-functioning car is a gas-saving car. Be sure to:
- Check your air filter at regular intervals.
- Inflate tires to their optimum fullness.
- Check alignment. Bad alignment is hard on tires and also taxes your engine.
- Get a tune up. The whole engine should get a good once-over, with special attention to spark plugs, belts, filters, and fluids.
- Secure your gas cap. If it’s loose or cracked it can add to air pollution and subtract from your fuel economy.
Lighten Your Load
This one is a little trickier if you are driving to and from an assignment and pack everything into your car, but keep in mind that for every 100 additional pounds in your car you reduce your MPG by about 2%.
- Pack light. Of course, you will likely need to bring a lot of stuff on assignment, but perhaps keep this in mind when packing. If you’re on the fence about bringing an item, go ahead and leave it behind.
- Be sure to unload everything when you get there so you aren’t driving around your destination city with a bunch of extra weight in the car.
- Don’t haul cargo on your roof. Large, roof cargo boxes can lower your fuel economy anywhere from 2% in the city to 25% on the interstate. If you need to use a cargo box, find one you can mount on the rear of the car.
- Check out AAA’s fuel cost calculator to get an idea of the current national cost for gas and estimate your cost.
- Use GasBuddy.com to search your location for a map that shows you where the cheapest gas in the area is!
- When possible, avoid purchasing gas on the weekends, when it usually edges up in price. The best day to buy gas in general? Tuesday.
Strategize Your Drive
- Slow down, Speed Racer! It’s estimated that for every 5 mile per hour slower you drive, you will reduce your fuel consumption by 5%-7%. Keep in mind that with speed, fuel economy suffers — especially at speeds higher than 60 miles per hour.
- Take control with cruise control, which helps you maintain a constant speed and usually saves on gas mileage.
- Avoiding rush hour when possible will eliminate idle time for you and your car, saving you money and stress.
Be a Smooth Operator
Avoid jack-rabbit starts, abrupt braking, and any other quick, jerky movements behind the wheel. It’s estimated this could save you 33% on interstate/highway gas mileage and 5% in-city.
In addition to these 6 ways Travel Nurses can save money on gas, do you have any tips to share? Let us know in the comments.