Fuel Economy Tip – Combine Trips

Today’s tip will help you save a bit of gas and hopefully make your shopping trips a little less time consuming.

Combine your short trips.

Let me give you an example from my own personal experience:

Last weekend I had to make three separate trips to different stores. I went to Office Depot (3 miles from my house) in the morning, Target (8 miles from my house) in the afternoon and Home Depot (5 miles from my house) in the evening.

So, all said and done, I traveled 32 miles to go shopping.

Because I’m a bit of a nerd, after I made it back home from Home Depot, I calculated how much gas I could have saved if I had simply combined all of the shopping trips into one larger trip. Here’s how it SHOULD have gone:

  • 3 miles from home to Office Depot
  • 2 miles from Office Depot to Home Depot
  • 4 miles from Home Depot to Target
  • 8 miles from Target back to my house

If I would have combined trips, I would have traveled only 17 miles as opposed to the 32 miles I traveled during the three separate trips.

By traveling those 15 extra miles, I wasted roughly a half a gallon of gas, based on my car’s 29 mpg average. With the cost of an average gallon of gas being around $3.00, I essentially wasted $1.50 by taking three separate shopping trips.

If you were to take those three separate trips each weekend, you’re losing $75 per year just for poor planning!

Moral of the story, think ahead and combine your small trips.


  1. Anonymous says

    I don’t know about you, but $75.00/year isn’t going to break me

  2. I don’t think it would bother most people, but like I’ve said many times, it’s the aggregate of all of these tips that ultimately save you $500 or more.


  1. […] Combine all of your small trips. Frequently turning your car on and off is pretty tough on your gas mileage, and the problem is only made worse when you’re stuck in all the stop and go traffic usually associated with short trips. If you plan ahead and combine all of those short trips and you should see an increase in gas mileage. […]

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