If you own a vehicle, you understand the pain of hitting an empty tank and having to spend money at the pump.
Fuel expenses are inevitable for drivers. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, households spent more than $2,000 on gasoline and motor oil in 2018. That’s a 7.2% increase from 2017. Although the price of oil and gas might dip at certain times, in the long run, we should all prepare for rising gas prices and begin to budget accordingly.
Fortunately, there are a number of ways to reduce your vehicle expenses. Finding affordable auto insurance, regularly servicing your car, and using a gas rewards credit card are examples of ways to cut costs.
However, if you want to save more money on gas, you need to get a bit creative. One effective strategy is to use a variety of apps to find cheap gas stations near you to ensure you get the best price per gallon.
If you’re tired of refuelling only to drive down the block to find a lower gas price, these apps are a must-download.
Pro tip: If you’re looking to earn cash back on gas purchases we recommend the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express. With this card, you’ll earn 3% back at gas stations as well at 6% back at grocery stores.
Apps For Finding Cheap Gas Stations Nearby
It doesn’t matter whether you use an Android or iPhone; there’s bound to be a gas finder app that helps you cut down on fuel expenses.
- Pros: Save money on gas; become a more fuel-efficient driver; paid plans for frequent drivers; direct savings in your checking account
- Cons: Funds come out of your checking account, which isn’t ideal if you have a gas rewards credit card
- Verdict: Ideal for non-credit-card users. If you have a rewards credit card, compare the card’s rewards to GasBuddy to find the best deal.
GasBuddy is one of the most popular gas apps around. According to GasBuddy, users have saved more than $2.9 billion in fuel costs over the last 15 years. If you live in the United States or Canada, this app is one of the easiest ways to find cheap gas while on the go.
- Find Cheap Gas. Search by city, state, or brand to find real-time gas prices. You can enable your location to find the best gas prices near you. It’s possible to save up to $0.25 per gallon.
- Plan Trips. The Trip Cost Calculator feature lets you estimate the cost of road trips or your regular driving routine. Use this feature with live gas prices to ensure you refuel at the cheapest gas station.
- Monitor Fuel Usage. Use the GasBuddy Fuel Logbook to track gas consumption and monitor overall fuel efficiency. This feature is useful for monitoring the impact certain driving habits can have on your fuel economy, such as speeding or breaking aggressively.
Additionally, you can save more money on gas once you join Pay With GasBuddy. To join, link your checking account to your GasBuddy account and receive your GasBuddy card in the mail. This doesn’t require a credit check because it’s just a membership card.
After you activate your card, you can swipe your card at the pump and enter your Driver ID when refueling. You use your checking account for payment, factoring in savings of up to $0.25 per gallon. Note that this $0.25 per gallon is not guaranteed and that actual savings vary.
If you want to guarantee savings, you can upgrade to one of two plans:
- GasBuddy Plus. Save $0.20 per gallon on up to 50 gallons per month. Save $0.05 per gallon on every fill afterward. Costs $7.99 per month.
- GasBuddy Premium. Offers the same gas savings as the Plus plan. You also gain 24-hour roadside assistance coverage from Allstate for up to three events per year. Costs $9.99 per month.
Finally, you can also earn GasBack — or cash back in the form of free gas — for shopping at your favorite stores through the GasBuddy app. This is a similar idea to cash-back websites like Rakuten, except instead of earning PayPal cash, GasBack applies savings at the pump.
Out of all the apps that help you find cheap gas, it’s difficult to find a more robust platform than GasBuddy.
- Pros: Helps avoid traffic and roadside hazards; easy-to-use gas station filters
- Cons: Data isn’t always accurate; saving money on gas isn’t the focus
- Verdict: Waze is perfect for anyone with a regular commute who frequently encounters traffic.
Waze is another free app for Android and iOS that’s best known for helping drivers avoid traffic and efficiently plan their commute. With Waze, it’s easy to spot traffic jams, police checkpoints, and roadside hazards, and to monitor your speed.
These basic features already help reduce gas costs. Idling in traffic is a massive waste of fuel, as is speeding unnecessarily and then having to hit the breaks.
Waze is also useful for finding cheap gas stations along your route. The Waze app highlights nearby gas stations and their prices, making it easy to pick a winner.
Plus, you can also set preferred gas stations using filters like brand, gas type, distance, and price. This feature is useful for marking specific gas stations along your regular commute.
Waze users provide local prices, so it’s important to monitor accuracy over time. If Waze lacks accuracy in your city, use Waze alongside another gas savings app like GasBuddy. After all, Waze is still a useful navigation tool that helps reduce gas consumption, ultimately saving you more money.
3. Gas Guru
- Pros: Simple and straightforward
- Cons: No cash-back earnings or useful navigation features
- Verdict: Gas Guru is perfect if you just want to search for gas prices and don’t care about earning cash back.
Gas Guru is another popular app for Android and iOS that helps you find cheap gas stations. The platform is part of Yellow Pages, so if you already use Yellow Pages to browse business ratings and leave reviews, Gas Guru is worth downloading.
With Gas Guru, it’s easy to:
- Find Cheap Gas. Search by fuel type, distance, and brand.
- Search Station Amenities. Add amenities like ATM access, cash discounts, 24-hour access, and other available services to your search filters.
- Save Favorites. Save your favorite gas stations alongside other Yellow Page favorites.
By far, the best feature is being able to compare gas prices between locations you save within the app. This makes it easy to decide to refuel at work, home, or somewhere along your commute.
If you want a simple gas finder app and don’t care about extra navigation features or fuel economy monitoring, Gas Guru is the perfect solution.
- Pros: Reward variety; savings stack with credit cards
- Cons: Coverage is still growing
- Verdict: If you don’t use GasBuddy because of their checking account requirement, use GetUpside to stack rewards and save money on gas.
GetUpside is the most similar competitor to GasBuddy. Although this app is relatively new and only works at about 25,000 gas stations across the country, GetUpside is growing and has plenty to offer.
Like GasBuddy, GetUpside lets you compare local gas prices and save up to $0.25 per gallon. However, unlike GasBuddy, GetUpside focuses on cash-back offers.
GetUpside partners with local gas stations to offer cash-back incentives. Like Ibotta, you can use the free GetUpside Android or iOS app to claim local offers before arriving to refuel. Once you pay with a debit or credit card, you upload a photo of your receipt through the app to verify your purchase.
Receipts must show the location, date, time, fuel or items purchased, and transaction total. You can claim up to 50 gallons in a cash-back offer. Some gas stations also offer cash back on services like oil changes, cash washes, and store purchases.
Cash back appears within 10 days in your GetUpside account. Like GasBuddy, you can use other reward programs, coupons, and cash-back credit cards to save more money.
However, your GetUpside offer might pay less cash back to compensate for this. GetUpside states that if you use another reward app like Checkout 51 or GasBuddy for the same receipt, they may deny your receipt.
It’s easier to redeem GetUpside rewards than many other reward apps’. You have several options:
- PayPal. Redeem your balance anytime. There’s a $1 fee for amounts under $15 unless you refer an active user to GetUpside.
- Check. Redeem your balance anytime. There’s a $1 fee for amounts under $50.
- Free Gift Cards. Most gift cards require $10 to redeem. GetUpside sends electronic gift cards within 24 to 48 hours. Reward options include gift cards to Amazon, Applebee’s, Domino’s, Dunkin’ Donuts, Starbucks, Target, and Walmart.
GetUpside is adding restaurant and grocery cash-back offers for select cities. Ultimately, it’s one of the most promising apps that help you save money on gas. And as gas station coverage increases, this app will only improve.
5. AAA TripTik Planner
- Pros: Perfect for AAA members; easy to plan road trips
- Cons: Waze or other gas finder apps are better for short commutes
- Verdict: Use AAA’s TripTik Planner the next time you have a long drive or road trip planned.
If you’re a AAA member, you already have plenty of ways to save money on travel expenses. Between various AAA membership discounts and the AAA Members Rewards Visa Signature card, it pays to become an AAA member.
The AAA Mobile app for Android or iOS is also an effective way to save money on gas and to plan your next road trip. This app lets you access your AAA membership card, request roadside assistance, and plan fuel-efficient trips through TripTik Planner.
TripTik Planner lets you add up to 25 stops to create the perfect road trip map. It highlights gas stations along your route and includes different fuel grades and per-gallon prices.
Other points of interest like restaurants, events, and attractions are also highlighted. The app also lets you access any AAA travel guide, making it easier to explore cities throughout your trip.
You don’t need to be a AAA member to use TripTik Planner, and the Web version is perfect for planning a road trip before you leave. You can use TripTik Planner for short trips within your city or state, but it truly shines on longer journeys.
- Pros: Sleek interface; extensive vehicle data; multivehicle tracking
- Cons: Android-only; data isn’t always accurate; saving money on gas isn’t the focus
- Verdict: Fuelio is perfect if you want to use data to become a more fuel-efficient driver. If you just want to find cheap gas, other apps are more accurate.
Fuelio brands itself as a vehicle management app, not a gas finder app. However, its features let you save money on gas and become a more cost-conscious driver:
- Track Fill-Ups. Track refueling, your mileage log, gas costs, fuel consumption, and where you’ve driven.
- Expense Management. Organize vehicle expenses into categories like servicing, tolls, and parking fees.
- Service Reminders. Be notified when it’s time to service your vehicle.
- Gas Prices. Fuelio uses crowdsourcing to provide local gas prices.
Fuelio is free and uses in-app ads to generate revenue. You can track multiple vehicles with one account, export data to Excel, and meticulously track your fuel economy. If you want to become a more efficient driver, Fuelio provides the level of granular data you need.
- Pros: Android and IOS availability; income tracking is useful for gig economy workers
- Cons: Saving money on gas isn’t the focus
- Verdict: Like Fuelio, Drivvo is useful for improving your driving habits and tracking your vehicle expenses. Drivvo is better than Fuelio if you drive to make money.
Drivvo is similar to Fuelio. It lets you track refueling, monitor expenses, get service reminders, and find local gas prices to save money. Additionally, Drivvo lets you track income, which is perfect if you’re a ridesharing driver for Uber or Lyft or a taxi driver.
Drivvo offers most features for free. You can pay $9 per year for the pro version, which lets you use multiple devices and track an unlimited amount of income.
8. Geico Mobile App
- Pros: Accurate gas prices; useful for existing Geico members
- Cons: Must use the Web gas finder if you’re not a Geico member
- Verdict: Use this app if you’re a Geico member. Otherwise, stick to other free gas finder apps.
As a Geico member, this app makes it easy to:
- Store ID Cards. Save your insurance ID information in the app for easy access.
- Pay Bills. Pay your car insurance bill directly through the app.
- Get Roadside Assistance. Request roadside assistance when needed.
- Keep Up With Vehicle Care. Get vehicle service reminders to keep up with maintenance.
- Find Gas. Use Geico Explore to find the cheapest gas prices in your area. This feature also lets you track and find your car.
Oil Price Information Service data provides local gas prices. You can also use Geico’s local gas finder on the Web without being a member, but you can’t use the mobile app without having a Geico policy.
- Pros: Real-time vehicle tracking; in-depth fleet data
- Cons: Expensive unit price and monthly plan for small operations
- Verdict: Dash is worth it for business owners with a fleet or if you make a living with your vehicle
Dash isn’t your everyday gas app. It’s a fleet management solution that covers operations ranging from small businesses to enterprise-level fleets.
Dash makes it easy to track vehicles in a fleet, organize expenses, and optimize driving routes using data. As long as your vehicles are 1996 models or newer, they’ll work with Dash. Dash uses an onboard-powered GPS tracker to provide real-time fleet updates to a Web dashboard.
Dash has a wide range of useful features that help manage fleets of any size, including:
- Predictive maintenance
- Real-time vehicle tracking
- Fuel economy tracking and driver scoring
- Speeding and idling alerts
- Check engine light diagnostics
Monthly pricing varies depending on your contract. Current plans include:
- Monthly: $20 per month, $95 for each device, no commitment
- Contract: $25 per month, one free device, 12-month commitment
- Custom: For enterprise operations; requires negotiation with Dash
Ultimately, paying $20 per month for a Dash device might be overkill if you don’t make money with your car with gigs like ridesharing or renting your vehicle on Turo.
However, if you own a small business and employ drivers, installing Dash tracking for your fleet is a data-driven way to improve efficiency and reduce fuel costs.
There are numerous ways to save money on fuel expenses. If you make an effort to improve your fuel economy and use a gas rewards card at the pump, you should rarely pay full price for refueling.
However, the first step in lowering your gas costs is to become more aware of them in the first place. Apps like GasBuddy or Gas Guru can immediately save money by helping you find the cheapest gas stations near you.
Combine these apps with navigation tools like Waze to optimize your driving. To go the extra mile, use apps like Fuelio or Drivvo to gain a better understanding of your driving habits and how to become more efficient.
Our vehicles are a consistent and often necessary expense. Thankfully, a simple mindset shift and a few apps can make a meaningful impact on how much you save on gas each month.