Memorial Day weekend offers a time for families and friends to gather together to enjoy each other’s company and to honor those who are serving and have served our country. Whether you’re traveling this weekend or hosting a cookout in your own backyard, here are some ways to save this Memorial Day weekend.
If you’re going out of town, you’re probably already adding up the amount you’ll be spending on gas. Although gas prices remain high, follow these tips from the U.S. Department of Energy to get better gas mileage.
- Have a tune-up.Fixing a car that is noticeably out of tune can improve its gas mileage by an average of 4 percent.
- Keep tires properly inflated. Keeping your tires inflated to the proper pressure can improve your gas mileage by up to 3.3 percent.
- Drive sensibly. Aggressive driving wastes gas. It can lower your gas mileage by 33 percent at highway speeds and by 5 percent around town.
- Observe the speed limit. Gas mileage usually decreases rapidly at speeds above 60 miles per hour (mph). You can assume that for every 5 mph you drive over 60 mph, you pay roughly an additional $0.24 per gallon for gas.
- Remove excess weight. Avoid keeping unnecessary items in your vehicle, especially heavy ones. An extra 100 pounds could reduce your miles per gallon by up to 2 percent.
- Avoid excessive idling. Idling gets zero miles per gallon. Cars with larger engines typically waste more gas at idle than cars with smaller engines.
- Use cruise control. Using cruise control on the highway helps you maintain a constant speed and, in most cases, will save gas.
- Use overdrive gears. When you use overdrive gearing, your car’s engine speed goes down. This saves gas and reduces engine wear.
If you’re staying home this Memorial Day weekend, a cookout can be a great way to host a lot of people without breaking your budget. Here are some money-saving suggestions:
- Shop early. Buy nonperishable items that are on sale in advance. These items include paper plates, cups, plastic silverware and frozen goods.
- Watch for coupons.Check your local paper, in your mail and e-mail, and online for the best buys on the items you’ll need.
- Keep it simple. Hot dogs, hamburgers, chicken, corn on the cob and baked potatoes are all favorite cookout items that are inexpensive. Or, ask your guests to bring their own meat to put on the grill.
- Split the cost. If a large group of people will be attending, assign items for each of them to bring as a contribution to the meal.
- Do it yourself.Consider making your own iced tea, potato salad or fruit salad rather than buying them already made at the store.
These money-saving tips are provided by Iowa State Bank in partnership with the Iowa Bankers Association. Iowa State Bank is an Equal Opportunity Lender. Member FDIC.