Gas prices seemed to increase almost daily this past week. Iran’s threats of blocking the Strait of Hormuz, through which about 20% of the world’s oil supply goes through is causing instability in the market. Texas has some of the lower gas prices, but even we’re seeing some drastic increases, causing a drain on the pocketbook.
A firm that tracks gasoline prices, GasBuddy has predicted gas prices will be over $4.00/gallon before Memorial Day 2012. For our area, it can go as high as $4.25 per gallon from what I hear. Not only does this impact the transportation budget, high gas prices will also mean higher prices for other commodities especially food.
I don’t want to be an alarmist, but it would be worthwhile to consider what this would mean to your budget. Our city is quite spread out, and it is not unusual for residents to commute more than 50 miles per day.
Now is the time to think about back up plans and ways to save on gas before it happens.
- Can you drive less?
- Do you have a fuel efficient car you can use more frequently instead of the gas guzzler?
- If your lease is up for renewal, and you are contemplating a move, consider a location closer to school or work locations.
- Can you negotiate with your employer to work from home a few days per week?
- What will you cut back on to supplement the gasoline budget?
These things take time to plan out, so start thinking about combining errands; making carpool arrangements and other options.
Being prepared doesn’t only include stocking up on supplies or learning skills. It also involves paying attention to possible scenarios and considering all options. Maybe the predictions will be wrong, but if they turn out to be true, at least you’ll have a Plan B.