The price of gasoline continues to increase. Have you noticed that when you hear about the price of crude oil going up, the gas prices go up correspondingly and immediately the next day? In contrast, when the price per barrel goes down, it takes weeks for the gas price to lower. Why is this? I’m guessing we already know the answer to this burning question.
I drive 40+ miles to work one-way. I live in Fort Worth and work in Dallas. I go where the work is. It seems like I have always driven more than 35 miles throughout my working-life, even during summer jobs in high school and college. I suppose that I’m just lucky.
I drive an SUV. My current family fleet consists of three SUVs and a car. The SUVs always seem to get 17 mpg no matter how I drive. How do I pay for all that gas? For a few years, I took the Trinity Railway Express (TRE) a few times a week. It was mostly great. I got on at the first stop; therefore, I had my selection of seats. I could even get the seat with a table. I do understand now that the train is packed most of the time, and that’s fantastic. However, my one-way train trip door-to-door took an hour and forty minutes. There’s also the limited train schedule and the ability (or inability) to get back in the afternoon, which is an important consideration when most schools don’t seem to support after-school programs past 5:30 p.m. I read somewhere that they were trying to acquire some more passing tracks to possibly add some express trains. Sign me up.
I could make it work with the current train schedule nowadays, but I can drive the trip in fifty minutes. My commute is even better since I started carpooling and taking the HOV lane a few years ago. On alternate days, I can take a nap. Talk about sweet! Watching the stopped traffic on I30 and speeding past it is nice. I like to wave and smile.
The non-SUV in our driveway is a hybrid that my wife normally drives. It’s a Honda Civic that gets somewhere around 42 mpg – two and a half times the SUV’s rate. We bought it for our 14-year-old that cannot drive yet, but that’s another story. It’s been a great car, but it doesn’t quite have the “driving a recliner” feeling that my truck has. When we were looking at electrics and hybrids, the electrics didn’t seem to have the range or the space inside to sit comfortably, especially for extended duration trips. I didn’t think the cruising range would support all the after-school weekday activities and the daily commute, even when taking the charging stations at work into account.
How do you combat the high price of gasoline these days?
When you are sitting in I30 traffic, look over at the traffic zooming by on the HOV lane. The driver waving in the SUV might be me.