What Have you Cut Back on to Offset Higher Gasoline Prices?

With the price of gasoline only ten percent below its record high, there’s no question that our pain at the pump has caused many of us to make several “lifestyle” changes in order to make ends meet.

Even with the recent month-long decline in the price of gasoline – now down 43 cents from its peak – we’re still paying about a third more than we were at the same point last year. This extra strain, in addition to higher food prices, falling real estate values and a slumping job market, has significantly hurt many families’ financial situations.

To see where people have been cutting back their expenses to deal with soaring fuel costs, I recently had a poll on Daily Fuel Economy Tip which asked, “What have you cut back on the most to offset higher gasoline prices?”

Here’s a breakdown of the responses:

  • Transportation – 38%
  • Nothing – 23%
  • Entertainment (movies, music, sports, etc.) – 18%
  • Dining Out – 15%
  • Vices (drinking, smoking, lotto, etc.) – 6%

Obviously, cutting back on driving is the easiest way to reduce the impact of higher gasoline prices. After all, if you’re using less gas, higher prices aren’t going to hurt you as much.

For many of us who can’t reduce our driving enough to make a sizable dent in gasoline costs, we need to look to cut costs elsewhere. Whether it’s not going out to the movies as much, making more of an effort to eat in, or cutting back on a pack-a-day habit, making small concessions can really go a long way towards easing the financial strain of higher gasoline prices.

I was pretty surprised to see that nearly a quarter of respondents stated they hadn’t cut back on anything in an effort to try and offset higher fuel costs. I’m not sure if it’s because they can afford the higher prices, or if they don’t feel like making any changes in their lifestyle, or something else.

For the rest of us, making even slight concessions might help to make our financial situations a little bit better.


  1. Honestly, I don’t know that I’ve made a lot of cuts. I’ve probably put less into savings than I would like to, but I haven’t had to pull the money from other parts of my budget besides that yet.

    Now, if prices hit $5 per gallon, that might change!

  2. And that is one of the reasons 1/4 of the people say they aren’t doing anything….they simply don’t “hurt enough” to make it worth them changing their habits. Playing right into the hands of the oil companies…

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