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Travel Tips - Fuel Prices Everyone has travel tips. Share and discuss yours here with the rest of the group.

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  #1  
Old 08-20-2008
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Default What do you do to conserve fuel and get better fuel mileage

Fuel prices finally broke back into the $3.00 range here in South Carolina this week, for example this morning three out of the four Flying J Truck stops are below the $4.00 mark at;

Fuel Prices current as of 6am August 19, 2008 MST

Location - Hwy Exit - Ultra Low Sulfur - Low Sulfur

Blacksburg I-85 Exit 102 $4.0290 $4.0290

Columbia I-20 Exit 70 $3.9590 $3.9590

Latta I-95 Exit 181A $3.9590 $3.9590

Rock Hill I-77 Exit 73 $3.9590 $3.9590

The lowest price for diesel fuel at a Flying J was in ;

St.George, UT I-15 Exit 4 $3.859 $ 3.859

This is good news especially with the RITV, MAXTON, RATS and all the other rallies coming up in the near future, so hopefully this trend will continue for a while any way.

Please share with us what tips you use to help pinch that little extra bit of mileage out of your Fuel dollar, or some driving tips that you try to implement while you travel around the country in your 'Bird.

I'll start of by passing along this not so secret tip, that some people may not be aware of, I purchase a shopping card at Wal Mart and sometimes when I can locate a Wal Mart store that has a Gas station located at its facility that carries diesel fuel, when I purchase diesel with the shopping card it gets me a 3 cent discount per gallon, so if I were to purchase diesel at my nearby Wal mart Supercenter on US378 in Columbia, SC where the current price is $3.95 and purchased 100 gallons, that is a savings of $3.00. Now that doesn't sound like a big savings, but figure that over a long trip, or a years fill-ups and it can save a significant amount. I also use a credit card that gives me cash back on the initial purchase of that Wal Mart shopping card.

Since I was in the trucking business for so many years, I am used to planning out the routes that I will be traveling on and where I will fuel ahead of time, to save time and money and I continue to do this ahead of time today with the emphasis on saving money more than time and I have been using the Wal Mart shopping cards to purchase diesel as well as gas, for years and the savings has been worth the effort in my opinion.

Now you may ask how do I find a Wal Mart that has diesel and then when I get there can I get to the diesel pump with my 'Bird. One way of finding the Wal Mart that has a station with diesel is by purchasing a Wal Mart Road Atlas, that has most of their stores locations in it and they list the ones that have the service stations and if they sell diesel fuel. Then I go a step further and get some better directions to the store that I want to use and that is easy, go to http://www.walmart.com/ look on the left side of the web page for the Store locater box and enter the zip code of where you want to purchase fuel at, it will bring a list of stores in that area and a map showing their locations. I find the zip codes by looking them up using my DeLorme GPS program on my laptop.

Now it's much easier to just fuel at the truckstop located at an exit on the Interstate, but I personally like to drive the back roads and sometimes the Wal Mart with the station that has diesel available works best for me. Getting to the pump sometimes can be a problem especially at the older stations, but even towing my trailer with a combined length of 62 feet, I have found not being able to get to the pump, has been the exception rather than the rule.

I hear you asking yourself, how fresh is the fuel at these stations, well the word must be getting out to the independent dump truck and small business owners with diesel powered trucks because it seems I'm having to wait in line for these types of trucks to finish fueling before I get my turn, I have never got a bad batch of fuel at a Wal Mart. I always have an alternative fuel site in mind if my first priority is a Wal Mart just in case I can't get to the pump.

This has been one of my experiences and tips, now it's your turn to tell us your tips.
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1982 FC35RB
I'm NO EXPERT, but I did stay in the FINN'S INN EXPRESS last night
HOPKINS, SOUTH CAROLINA
VISIT THE FINN'S INN EXPRESS REMODELING ADVENTURE AND TECH. TIPS
I'M SO SLOW ON THE HILLS,THAT I GET TO SMELL THE FLOWERS AS I GO BY.....AND WATCH THEM GROW TOO!! NOT SO MUCH ANYMORE
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  #2  
Old 08-20-2008
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iamflagman iamflagman is offline
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Here's a good website to find truckstop fuel prices that are updated daily, check out;

DieselBoss
Diesel fuel prices at the larger truck stops normally updated daily
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JOHN FINN
FORUM MODERATOR-ADMINISTRATOR
1982 FC35RB
I'm NO EXPERT, but I did stay in the FINN'S INN EXPRESS last night
HOPKINS, SOUTH CAROLINA
VISIT THE FINN'S INN EXPRESS REMODELING ADVENTURE AND TECH. TIPS
I'M SO SLOW ON THE HILLS,THAT I GET TO SMELL THE FLOWERS AS I GO BY.....AND WATCH THEM GROW TOO!! NOT SO MUCH ANYMORE
Visit the WILD HARE RACING website
REMEMBER 9/11
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  #3  
Old 08-20-2008
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JackandLiz JackandLiz is offline
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Good detailed post, John.
We have traveled from Hondo, TX to Buena Vista, CO for the past two years. Our driving speed is 62 - 65 mph. That is a fuel conservation measure.

We also conserve fuel by by not running the generator anymore than necessary and by driving shorter distances. To accomplish that objective, we try to get going early in the morning before the weather gets really warm. That way we don't have to run generator to power the roof airs to keep the coach cool. Instead of driving for 5-6 hours as we used to, we drive for about 4 hours and stop for the day.

Flying J has changed their policy of giving the cash price at the truck fuel islands. Something to do with service charges on credit and debit cards. I quoted part of that below:

Also starting September 1, 2008, Flying J will no longer offer the cash discounted price with a Rewards or RV Real Value loyalty card at our commercial truck islands. In order to keep fuel prices down the fees charged by credit/debit card companies will no longer be covered by Flying J. Our loyalty members may continue to receive the cash price at the commercial truck islands by paying with cash, a pre-approved check or one of Flying J's proprietary cards or Transportation Alliance Bank (TAB) Rewards Plus or RV Real Value Plus credit cards. You may apply for this card with no annual fee at https://www.tabbank.com/home/persona...plus/index.jsp, or pick up an application at a Flying J near you. At this time the cash price is still offered at the RV and gas islands for all methods-of-payment. For more information please review our FAQ's concerning these programs.

Another credit card!!! Oh, well. Guess we'll apply for that one.

Y'all take care,
Jack and Liz Pearce
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  #4  
Old 08-20-2008
Paul Paul is offline
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I just speed up to get there faster.
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  #5  
Old 08-20-2008
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Since I think FJ is now up to 9 cents differential between cash and credit I suspect I will be at the RV pumps for a long time in the future!

On the subject of speed/mileage, I did some eperimenting today.

I crossed the Bonneville salt flats under ideal conditions this morning, with not even a slight breeze when we stopped at the rest stop on the west end. I don't know of anywhere else that you can get so many miles of level straight run without any elevation change.

I ran two miles each with the cruise control at 60, 65, and 70. The GPH for those three were 10, 12.2, and 14.8. That works out:

60=6MPG
65=5.3MPG
70=4.7MPG

A/C was on, so cooling fan was on high.

I did not test 55 because on cruise my rig will downshift to 4th at about 58, and it wouldn't be a good test. Didn't test 75 (the limit) because I rarely drive that fast.

BTW, this is "speed week" at Bonneville, so there were a lot of interesting vehicles coming and going.
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  #6  
Old 08-20-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DonB View Post
Since I think FJ is now up to 9 cents differential between cash and credit I suspect I will be at the RV pumps for a long time in the future!

On the subject of speed/mileage, I did some eperimenting today.

I crossed the Bonneville salt flats under ideal conditions this morning, with not even a slight breeze when we stopped at the rest stop on the west end. I don't know of anywhere else that you can get so many miles of level straight run without any elevation change.

I ran two miles each with the cruise control at 60, 65, and 70. The GPH for those three were 10, 12.2, and 14.8. That works out:

60=6MPG
65=5.3MPG
70=4.7MPG

A/C was on, so cooling fan was on high.

I did not test 55 because on cruise my rig will downshift to 4th at about 58, and it wouldn't be a good test. Didn't test 75 (the limit) because I rarely drive that fast.

BTW, this is "speed week" at Bonneville, so there were a lot of interesting vehicles coming and going.
Don,

That difference in mileage, especially between 60 and 70 mph is significant especially over the long haul, I usually try set my cruise at 62-63 mph, it likes to run well at that speed, although I have never done a scientific analysis of the actual mileage, so all I have estimates for a few fill ups and that was not using the same pump to fill both times. Diesel fuel pumps are hard to get an accurate fill from, due to the foaming of the fuel, but it good to know approximately what I'm getting and how just backing out of the throttle will save me $$$ that is unless you are Mr. Moneybags like Paul L he kept on wanting to push me on a short trip from Maxton to Charlotte a few years ago.

Usually when you stop at that rest area just east of Wendover during Speedweek, if you look off to the north, you can see the cars over on the Bonneville Salt Flats Speedweek courses, although they will be very small in the distance. Some of those same cars and motorcycles will be competing at the Fall Maxton Blue Bird Mini-Rally in Oct. the weekend before the 2008 Bluebird Owners Rally Across The Street, OCTOBER 30 TO NOVEMBER 2, 2008
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JOHN FINN
FORUM MODERATOR-ADMINISTRATOR
1982 FC35RB
I'm NO EXPERT, but I did stay in the FINN'S INN EXPRESS last night
HOPKINS, SOUTH CAROLINA
VISIT THE FINN'S INN EXPRESS REMODELING ADVENTURE AND TECH. TIPS
I'M SO SLOW ON THE HILLS,THAT I GET TO SMELL THE FLOWERS AS I GO BY.....AND WATCH THEM GROW TOO!! NOT SO MUCH ANYMORE
Visit the WILD HARE RACING website
REMEMBER 9/11
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  #7  
Old 08-20-2008
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Rob Robinson Rob Robinson is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DonB View Post
Since I think FJ is now up to 9 cents differential between cash and credit I suspect I will be at the RV pumps for a long time in the future!

On the subject of speed/mileage, I did some eperimenting today.

I crossed the Bonneville salt flats under ideal conditions this morning, with not even a slight breeze when we stopped at the rest stop on the west end. I don't know of anywhere else that you can get so many miles of level straight run without any elevation change.

I ran two miles each with the cruise control at 60, 65, and 70. The GPH for those three were 10, 12.2, and 14.8. That works out:

60=6MPG
65=5.3MPG
70=4.7MPG

A/C was on, so cooling fan was on high.

I did not test 55 because on cruise my rig will downshift to 4th at about 58, and it wouldn't be a good test. Didn't test 75 (the limit) because I rarely drive that fast.

BTW, this is "speed week" at Bonneville, so there were a lot of interesting vehicles coming and going.
I've read your post and many others concerning the RV Islands at Flying J. Now that things have changed and many may be now deciding to use the RV islands I'd like to say that I've used the RV Islands almost exclusively over the last 5 years. I've fueled a 40ft rig plus 15ft toad at Flying J 15 times in the last year and have never had a problem. I insert my FJ card first and then my VISA. No fuel shut off. On the odd occasion where I had a pump problem I just left my rig in the island and went inside to fix it. If the current situation continues we are going to find more RVs using the RV islands. I'd like to remind members that when you see RV Island user leave his rig and walk to the office he cannnot move ahead to leave you some room. In every FJ I have patronized I have never ever seen enough room in the RV island to accomodate a pull out.
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  #8  
Old 08-20-2008
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iamflagman iamflagman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob Robinson View Post
I've read your post and many others concerning the RV Islands at Flying J. Now that things have changed and many may be now deciding to use the RV islands I'd like to say that I've used the RV Islands almost exclusively over the last 5 years. I've fueled a 40ft rig plus 15ft toad at Flying J 15 times in the last year and have never had a problem. I insert my FJ card first and then my VISA. No fuel shut off. On the odd occasion where I had a pump problem I just left my rig in the island and went inside to fix it. If the current situation continues we are going to find more RVs using the RV islands. I'd like to remind members that when you see RV Island user leave his rig and walk to the office he cannnot move ahead to leave you some room. In every FJ I have patronized I have never ever seen enough room in the RV island to accomodate a pull out.
When I fuel at a Flying J RV fuel island, I can get in and out with my trailer in tow, that 62 feet overall, but some are more difficult than others, but my combination bends at the 36 foot mark, the trailer hitch and not at 40 foot or more and that can make a difference, especially if someone has bumped into and moved those concrete "Barrels" at the exit of some of the RV islands.

I usually look over the RV fuel island entrance and exit before I drive into it and then I don't center the 'Bird in the island lane, but get closer to the side that I will be turning toward when I exit, this leaves a little more room for the tail of the 'Bird and the trailer to swing, paying close attention to my mirrorswhen I do this. I get plenty of practice doing the same thing pulling out of and backing into my drive gate here at the homebase.
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JOHN FINN
FORUM MODERATOR-ADMINISTRATOR
1982 FC35RB
I'm NO EXPERT, but I did stay in the FINN'S INN EXPRESS last night
HOPKINS, SOUTH CAROLINA
VISIT THE FINN'S INN EXPRESS REMODELING ADVENTURE AND TECH. TIPS
I'M SO SLOW ON THE HILLS,THAT I GET TO SMELL THE FLOWERS AS I GO BY.....AND WATCH THEM GROW TOO!! NOT SO MUCH ANYMORE
Visit the WILD HARE RACING website
REMEMBER 9/11
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  #9  
Old 08-20-2008
Paul Paul is offline
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Not trying to start a flame war, but I keep very good records of fuel, and I have the Detroit Pro Driver (although not truely accurate, it's close enough, and relative is all that matters). You all will call me crazy, but my wife can confirm it, I generally get better fuel mileage at 70 than I do at 65 or sometimes 60.

The key is the wind, just like sailing or flying. Head winds kill all of us. I watched my mileage, at a constant speed, when the wind changes go from the 7s to the low sixes. I have gotten as much as 8+ at 70 when I have a good tail wind. I adjust my speed, when time allows, to match the wind direction by slowing down in head winds and hauling *** in tail winds. My averages are in the mid to high 6's for 70,000 miles. I usually travel with full fuel, full water (although changing that) and towing a 5,000 Jeep.

So, John, the next time I am pushing you, it's a tail wind Besides, the faster we got there the faster I got away from the smoke One of these days I'll slow down, I guess, and "smell the roses".
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  #10  
Old 08-20-2008
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Randy Dupree Randy Dupree is offline
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Paul,roses don't have any smell!
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