To save on gas, just use cash!

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I am an avid weekend commuter. With family and friends four states away, I get to see the varying gas prices along my weekend route.

Currently, the average price of car life giving blood is $3.28 in Maryland, and just last week I went in search of the ever elusive just-a-few-cents-cheaper gallon. I came across a rinky-dink station, with blaring red neon signs that read, "Regular $3.19", JACKPOT! Then I see the blaring blue sign, "CASH ONLY." Uhhh, seriously?

I realize it's one of those smaller chain gaseterias, and that I will now have to find my way to a bank to get, yick, "cash." I really do like the ease of swiping a debit card and being on my way, call it spoiled if you want. I guess being able to accept cards costs the station owners money, so if they're willing to pass on the savings for not using credit machines, I'll play along.My trip took me to New Jersey, where I noticed another small gas station posting two prices, yes TWO prices for each grade of gasoline. Cash price and card price. With the average New Jersey gallon going for $3.05, I was pleasantly surprised to see that I could get away with highway robbery at a mere $2.99! But this is hardly highway robbery ... I call it "industrial route" robbery. These cheap gas stations are usually on truck routes, or industrial park ridden roadways.

At the beginning of my return trip I'll avoid buying gas in Connecticut, one of the higher priced areas. CT station owners must be able to afford those card machine fees cause they charge a whopping $3.39 a gallon! Ride on fumes till New Jersey, fill up with cash, and fill up once more just before the "Delaware price jump" ($3.21 average there).

With the summer coming, weekend trips will become common place once again, so another trick will be to fill up on Thursday mornings, right before station owners, plastic accepting or not, hike prices for weekend travelers.
Check around your neighborhoods, there may be a "Cash Only" oasis near you!
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