September 1, 2017
The results of Hurricane Harvey continue to and have been unprecedented. Perhaps surreal for many of us not directly impacted, Harvey’s reach will certainly impact the rest of the nation as eight refineries in Texas have shut down. According to AAA data, the closures have already resulted in more than a five percent (10 cents) increase to the nation’s average gas prices.
Though prices are still nominal compared to years past, there are now reports of at least one Garland, TX station charging as much as $8 a gallon. As the Labor Day holiday approaches, gas prices typically increase anyways, but the nation may continue to see prices rise even further until the refineries are put back online and as consumer’s fear of a potential gas shortage increases demand. In an effort to combat these shifts in fuel costs, we’ve compiled a list of apps and resources to help you find the cheapest fuel near you.
If you are also interested in supporting those impacted by Hurricane Harvey, we’ve also compiled a list of resources that are on the ground there and seeking donations. For those directly impacted by Harvey and suspect a gas station is price gouging you, you can report them to the Texas Attorney General.
GasBuddy is perhaps one of the longest running and most well known standalone apps when it comes to tracking down fuel prices. Android or iOS, yes, even desktop too, the GasBuddy app does everything from showing you a map of local gas prices, to estimate your trip cost, get price hike alerts, and more. Prices are also crowdsourced, giving you some of the most up-to-date information available.
For those of us using Google Maps, most fuel pricing is now built right into your navigation and browsing. Simply open up your map, look for a fuel icon, press it, and below the basic information will be pricing for each fuel type. You can also do a search for fuel or gas and the closest options available will appear with their known prices (if available). And before you ask, no, Apple Maps does not offer this.
Perhaps one of our favorite navigation apps around, Waze has similar functionality to Google Maps, with the added benefit of eating our smartphone battery too. By doing a quick search for fuel or gas you’ll be presented with both a map and list of the closet gas stations and their prices. It’s even color coded to help you find which stations are above the average for the area and which ones are below it.
What first started as a popular Android app, Gas Guru is Yellow Pages version of fuel cost monitoring. While it doesn’t get updated as often as GasBuddy, it does have some interesting features like comparing prices of fuel near how or your office so that you can see where the best place to fill your tank is.
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