Fuel, fuel, fuel.
Money, money, money.
When you live in the country, fuel flies out the window faster than a cheetah on steroids. Just driving to the grocery store blows through your husbands morning wages. Drive an hour to the doctors office. Drive an hour in the other direction to Costco. Drive to school. Drive to soccer practice. Drive, drive, drive. And don’t you dare let it get under a quarter of a tank because you might not have enough fuel to make it back into town!
Okay okay sorry! I got all riled up and couldn’t help myself. And maybe I exaggerated A LITTLE BIT. But seriously, we go through a lot of fuel.
So naturally, I have thought of plenty of ideas to save on fuel since we moved to the farm. We have tried to implement all the obvious ones to the best of our abilities like:
- carpool whenever possible
- plan ahead so you can run all your errands in the same trip to town
- store extra food so you can go awhile without running to the store
- Live without some things for awhile (like new clothes)
- don’t go out to eat except special occasions
- take care of your car and drive “nicely” so your fuel mileage is okay
- catch rides with other people
But I wanted MORE. There has to be better ways to save money on fuel right?
Well it turns out there are. Insert smiley face here!
There are two ways that we have found to save BIG on fuel while living out in the country.
- Sign up for amazon prime
Amazon prime is quite possibly the best Christmas present I have ever received. Okay, now that I think about it, Farmer bought me a car a few years ago and actually pulled off the surprise …. that was the best Christmas present ever… but amazon prime is a close second!
Here is why:
- Amazon prime has FREE 2 day shipping … did you get that? FREE!!!
- You can find almost ANYTHING on amazon. It’s crazy what they have on there! I have purchased clothes, gardening supplies, cleaning products, food, toys, deodorant, toilet paper, and a million other things, from my computer, in my living room.
- I can order everything I need FROM HOME, in my pajamas, any time of day or night. I don’t have to make myself look presentable, load up four kids, drive half an hour, unload four kids, struggle through a store with a toddler and a baby, tell them all “no they can’t have candy” 10 times, load them all back in the car, fuel up at the gas station, drive another half an hour home, unload four kids and the groceries, and then take a shower because of how sweaty that made me. I just get to relax in my living room with crazy bed head ….. ahh
- With amazon prime, I can even be a procrastinator. For example, I purchased my ENTIRE Christmas for my family of six on amazon prime last year 1 week before Christmas. AND IT GOT HERE ON TIME!
- Amazon prime includes a huge list of free movies, tv shows, books, and music. We no longer drive to the library to rent movies, or buy the $5 ones from Walmart. Now we choose a new movie every time we watch one, from the couch, in our living room.
So now that you know how awesome it is, can you see how much fuel that would save you? The only time I have to go to the store since becoming a member, is to get perishable things like bananas and milk from the grocery store. I almost never have to drive to the city for clothes, gifts, toothpaste, homeschool supplies, diapers, formula, or any of the other things that sneak up on me and force me to go shopping.
With access to thousands of free movies, we no longer buy them at the store, or drive to the movie theater. We can watch a new movie anytime we like for free. Of course it’s not new releases, but it’s still an enormous list of movies. That saves fuel and money.
So let’s run the numbers here ….. If you get amazon prime through my link RIGHT HERE it costs $99. The nearest Walmart to my house is 45 miles. Taking into consideration the car I drive (suburban) and the price of fuel right now where I live ($2.95 a gallon) it costs me about $17 roundtrip. We call that “going to town”. Before I got amazon prime I went about once a week. The nearest Costco to my house is 75 miles. That costs me about $26.50 and we call that “going to big town”. Reading that makes me feel a little silly, but yes that’s what we call it. Before amazon prime, I went about once a month.
Since purchasing amazon prime, I no longer go to “Big town” to shop, and I only go “to town” about once a month for shopping. All perishable items I purchase at our small local grocery store that is 10 miles away. So by eliminating those trips, I cut back our fuel costs by $318 (for big town) and $612 (for town).
That’s a grand total of $930. Minus $99 for an amazon prime membership = $831 saved on fuel each year.
And that doesn’t take into consideration the holiday season. I would have made several extra trips for Christmas gifts.
Now if that doesn’t make you want an amazon prime membership, then I don’t know what will. CLICK HERE to purchase your membership for $99, or keep reading for the second thing I do to save BIG on fuel, living in the country.
2. Get a fuel tank on your property
You have to do this the right way or it won’t save you much. Here is what you must do:
- Check to see if you need permits in your county
- Get a large fuel tank, not a small one. I recommend 1000 gallons.
- Shop around for the best rates and who delivers to your area.
- Fill it up when prices are low. Generally fuel prices are the lowest in the winter.
So here is the deal … It’s A LOT of money up front, but it you do it right, it can save you hundreds or even thousands of dollars on fuel each year. It will pay for itself pretty quick. You have to do your homework though, and shop around for someone that will deliver it to you. Also, when you are ordering that much fuel, a few pennies difference per gallon will make a big difference. Let’s look at some numbers here …
1000 gallons of fuel x $2.50 = $2,500
1000 gallons of fuel x $3.00 = $3,000
So if fuel prices are $2.50 in the winter and $3.00 in the summer, and you purchase all of your fuel in the winter, you just saved $500 on fuel for the year.
That all depends on you watching fuel prices though, because if you don’t pay attention and you buy all of your fuel when it’s at top dollar, then you will be losing $500 not saving it.
The other thing that is nice about a fuel tank is when you buy that much fuel at a time, they give you a discounted price. It’s just like food. If you buy it in bulk, it’s usually cheaper.
And as an extra bonus, you have a fuel tank on your property! You no longer need to run into town to fill up. You have it right there ready for cars, lawn mowers, four wheelers, etc.
As I said before, paying for fuel is not my favorite thing. If I can figure any way to save money on it, I will.
So if I discover any other way to save money on fuel, I promise to pass it your way. In the meantime, start shopping for fuel tanks and purchase your amazon prime membership by clicking RIGHT HERE and you will be on your way to saving hundreds or thousands of dollars on fuel.
Do you have any suggestions? Even little ideas to save money on fuel? Please leave a comment with your idea. I appreciate it! And so does everyone else reading this post.
If you are interested in saving money, don’t miss my post sharing How we saved $230,000 in 7 years.