This is a sponsored post on behalf of Shell, in which I was compensated. All opinions are my own. We’ve been taking family road trips for over a decade. Since we moved to Seattle away from family, we often hit the road to return to our hometowns. During these trips we’ve learned quite a few tips, including how to save money on a road trip.
Packing Your Own Snacks
Early in our road trip days we’d grab a bag of chips, drink, and sweet treats at many of our road trip stops. It only takes a few of these stops to realize that those snack foods really add up. Now we pack our own snacks along for the trip. Sure, a candy bar or two is still a fun treat, but overall we save quite a bit not buying snack for four people. Check out my Road Trip Snacks for Family Travel Vacations for ideas on what to bring along on your trip.
Related Post: How to Pack Your Car for a Road Trip
Save on Gas
Paying for fuel can be an expensive part of road trips, so finding savings on gas can be a great money savings tip. There are some credit cards that offer extra cashback on fuel purchase, but our recent road trip savings came from using Shell and the *Fuel Rewards® loyalty program. It’s a free membership that currently offers Instant Gold Status, which gives you 5¢ off per gallon at participating Shell stations (up to 20 gallons per visit). Here’s a link to the sign up page for the Fuel Rewards program – it took me less than a minute to sign up.
Related Post: We’re Getting Summer Road Trip Ready with Shell
If you’re traveling with overnight stops, saving money on your hotel can help. I have a few tips for getting hotel deals. When you’re traveling, be sure to check out if any hotels are running promotions. They’re popular in the summer months, sometimes offering deals like a free night for every third stay. For road trips that have multiple stops along the way, being brand loyal can pay off with free points or stays.
Related Post: Tips for Getting the Best Hotel Deals
Optimize Your Car Performance
We always take our car to get a checkup before heading out on a road trip. Some of the major things we do are getting the tire pressure checked, having the oil changed if needed, and getting the filters changed if needed. Having your car tuned up and running smoothly can help your car run more efficiently. Car checks before your trip can help you spot any issues before you’re on the road. No one wants to get stuck overnighting at an unplanned stop with a car problem.
Related Post: 5 Steps to Prep Your Car for a Road Trip
Skip Fast Food
One of the unique tips we’ve discovered for saving money is to skip fast food and shop for meals at grocery stores. Grabbing some lunch foods or making our own sandwiches is normally much less expensive than eating out. Add in all the fresh fruit and veggies that you can pick up at grocery stores and you’re eating healthier while saving money too.
Hopefully these tips have given you some ideas for how to save money on a road trip. Don’t forget to sign up for the Fuel Rewards program and take advantage of their current Instant Gold Status to save you 5¢ per gallon when you fuel up at a participating Shell stations (up to 20 gallons).
Plus, once you’re signed up, you can send your referral link to friends and family so they can join the Fuel Rewards program. The first time a friend uses the program by earning a reward or using their card at a participating Shell station, you will instantly earn 25¢/gal on your next fill. And there’s no limit to how many friends you invite or how many times you earn.
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Shell. The opinions and text are all mine.
*Restrictions apply. To qualify for the Gold/Silver Status offers, you must be a Fuel Rewards® member and swipe your Fuel Rewards® card or enter your Alt ID when you fuel at a participating Shell station. With Gold Status, you will receive 5¢/gal in Fuel Rewards® savings on every fill-up. The 5¢/gal reward for Gold Status will be combined with other rewards in your Fuel Rewards® account. If you are an existing Fuel Rewards® member, you will receive Gold Status from 6/5/2017 through 12/31/17, the “Existing Member Introductory Period”. If you are a new Fuel Rewards® member, you will receive Gold Status for the initial month you join through the last day of the month, 6 full calendar months later, the “New Member Introductory Period”. The last 3 months of the Existing Member Introductory Period or the New Member Introductory Period (collectively the “Introductory Period”) is the “Qualification Period”. You will retain your Gold Status during the Qualification Period, but you must make 6 qualifying fuel purchases to qualify for Gold Status for the next 3 months, the “Benefit Period”. During the Benefit Period, you must continue to make 6 qualifying fuel purchases to maintain your Gold Status for the next 3-month Benefit Period. A qualifying fuel purchase is any fuel purchase at a participating Shell station in which you swipe your Fuel Rewards® card or enter your Alt ID and fill up with at least 5-gallons of any grade of fuel. For example, if you are a new Fuel Rewards® member and register on 6/15/2017, you will receive Gold Status through the New Member Introductory Period (i.e., 12/31/2017). You will need to fill up with at least 5 gallons of fuel at least 6 times during the Qualification Period (i.e., 10/1/2017 and 12/31/2017) to maintain Gold Status during the Benefit Period (i.e., from 1/1/2018 to 3/31/2018). Thereafter, if you continue to fill up with at least 5 gallons of fuel at least 6 times during the successive 3 consecutive month Benefit Periods, you will retain your Gold Status. If you do not maintain your Gold Status, you will receive Silver Status. With Silver Status, you will receive 3¢/gal in Fuel Rewards® savings. The 3¢/gal reward for Silver Status will be combined with other rewards in your Fuel Rewards® account. Redeem Fuel Rewards® savings with your Fuel Rewards® card or Alt ID at participating Shell stations. Fuel Rewards® savings are limited to 20 gallons of fuel per purchase, per vehicle, or fraud limits placed by Shell and/or limits placed on your financial card by your financial institution, each of which may be lower. Fuel Rewards® savings must be redeemed in a single transaction. Once you begin to dispense fuel using your Fuel Rewards® savings, you must dispense to the 20-gallon limit or you forfeit any remaining discounted gallons of fuel. For example, if you only pump fifteen (15) gallons of fuel, you would abandon the remaining five (5) gallons of discounted fuel. If you have a rewards balance greater than the current per-gallon price of fuel, the price will roll down to the maximum capability of the fuel equipment, and your remaining rewards will be saved for a future fuel purchase. Dispenser may require a price of up to 10.9¢/gal. It may not be possible to combine multiple discounts and/or rewards in a single transaction. For purchases of $75 or more, please go inside to pay. Unbranded diesel and alternative fuels may not be eligible. The Fuel Rewards® program is owned and operated by Excentus Corporation. Offer may be modified or discontinued at any time without notice. Not valid where prohibited by law. Please see fuelrewards.com for complete Fuel Rewards® program details and Terms and Conditions. Other restrictions may apply. All trademarks are the property of their respective owners. To learn more, visit fuelrewards.com/gold or call (888) 603-0473.