Look, gas prices matter.

They change how much it costs to fill up a tank, to take a road trip, to buy groceries, and even to get to work. When gas prices rise, we’re forced to re-evaluate how much we drive, and that can be problematic when we’re trying to fulfill our daily obligations.

The cost of fuel in the United States is rarely stable for long. CSMonitor said it best, “In 2008 alone, the national average jolted above $4 a gallon in the summer before plunging to around $1.85 a gallon in November. Gas prices are notoriously fickle, spiking unexpectedly or suddenly tumbling at various points throughout the year.” As a consumer, how do we make sure that our lifestyles stay stable even while gas prices are not? Fortunately, it’s possible to save money at the pump if we think a little bit more strategically. Here’s how.

Choose a car with a high MPG

The sale of cars with a high fuel economy are on the rise, due in part to a wider, more reliable selection of low-cost MPG vehicles. One of US News and World Report’s faves in the fuel efficiency category, the Hyundai Ioniq hybrid clocks in at a whopping 57 city / 59 highway miles per gallon, making it one of the best new cars on the market for those trying to spend more time on the road and less time at the pump. When gas prices go up, it helps to have a vehicle that conserves the fuel you need to buy so that you don’t need to buy as much of it. This also comes into play when you're stocking up on fuel for those recreational vehicles like go-karts and dune buggies. If you’re chow save money changing gas pricesurious as to how your current vehicle stacks up, you can calculate your miles-per-gallon with this user-friendly MPG calculator by CarMax.

Plan your trips more efficiently

Have you ever left the house to run errands, finished up at Target, then travelled back across town to the grocery store only to realize that you needed to hit up PetSmart, which is back across town near Target? I do that more often than I’m proud of, but it doesn’t bother me too much when gas prices are low. Unfortunately, prices on the rise again, and I’m noticing a hit to my bank account that isn’t sustainable. Fortunately, there exists a way to maximize both the time you spend running errands, and the amount of gas you used to do it. This driving route planner uses a nifty logistics algorithm to calculate the most fuel-efficient route for up to 25 addresses at a time to save you time and money when you need to buy milk, printer paper, and windshield wipers all on the same day.