5 Tips to Curb Holiday Travel Costs

Holiday travel these days is a Santa-sized hassle and it can be a real budget buster as well. To curb your travel expenses, consider these tips: Leave your wheels parked at home. Since most rental cars nowadays come with competitive rates and unlimited free miles, it may pay to rent a car — and prolong the life expectancy of your own wheels. You might also be able to save on gas costs by renting a more fuel efficient car than …

One Public Service Commission Puts Excessive Profits before People

Remember Paula Wood, the retired, single Alabamian struggling to pay her electric bills? While there has been some good news, things in Alabama aren’t looking a whole lot better. In early July the Public Service Commission (PSC) voted to lower the profit (return on equity) that Mobile Gas is allowed to earn from 13.45% to 10.95%.  While the decision is complicated, this will initially help save consumers like Paula money. The rates for Mobile Gas customers will go down, but, …

A New Gas Station Gotcha: ‘Sliding’

As if the price of gasoline isn’t bad enough, there’s a new form of off-the-highway robbery: The theft of valuables from inside your car as you fill your gas tank. Police call it “sliding and report a recent wave of incidents across the country. Although not an actual scam, it sure feels like one. As you fuel your car — likely watching the ever-increasing tally on the pump —  thieves casually “slide in from the other side to snatch purses, …

Wave Goodbye to $3 Gasoline

First the bad news: Gasoline prices are at a summertime high. Now the really bad news: Sometime soon we might look back on these as the good old days. AAA’s Chris Plaushin, testifying on July 16 before the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, said prices may never go below $3 a gallon again. The next day, prices inched up to an average of $3.66 a gallon for regular unleaded, according to Michael Green, who tracks prices for AAA. That’s …

Who Pays Some of the Highest Gas and Electric Bills?

Meet Paula Wood from Alabama. Retired, once married – now single, supporting herself on Social Security alone, Paula must make sacrifices to make ends meet. But, her electric bills have skyrocketed from $50 to $300 a month in six years. Paula has cut her budget in every possible way. She says, “I also have bronchial asthma, so I have to use power to be able to maintain breathing… If I didn’t have to eat and I didn’t have to breathe, …

More Ways to Save on Car & Gas Expenses

It’s no secret that Americans love our cars. Between gas, maintenance, insurance and monthly payments, costs add up fast. See 9 ways to save on car expenses from AARP Bulletin’s 99 Great Ways to Save feature. Here are five bonus tips. New rules for oil changes. Technology and oil chemistry have made today’s vehicles more resilient. How often you need to change the oil depends on the make and model, along with your driving habits. Look at your owner’s manual instead …