With gasoline prices soaring out of control, wouldn’t it be nice if you could shave even a few pennies off of every gallon?
The Key to Lowering Your Gasoline Costs is to “Charge It”
Yep, charge it, but not just on any credit card. If you want to start paying less at the pump then it’s out with the old and in with the new. You may need to replace your current charge card with a gasoline “cash back” card.
Cash Back is Nothing New
The Discover Card has been offering it for years, but there’s a new breed of cash-back cards, ones that offer rebates on gasoline purchases, and those are the cards that we’re talking about.
As gas prices continue to escalate, many oil companies are offering gasoline price incentives to get you to apply for their affinity card. Some offer a straight cents-off rebate for every gallon you buy, while others offer percent of purchase rebate. With those rebates running as much as 5%, or higher, it doesn’t take a calculator to figure out that a $3.00 per gallon can become $2.85 per gallon just by choosing the right credit card when you pay at the pump.
Many of these credit cards have annual rebate limits and those limits vary. So check the Terms and Conditions before you apply.
Most gasoline rebate deals are offered through joint ventures between major banks and the oil companies. In order to get in on the savings, you have to apply for a Visa or MasterCard that bears some oil company’s logo.
For example, Hess Oil has teamed up with Chase Bank to offer the Hess Visa Platinum Card. Besides no annual fee, it offers a 10% rebate on all Hess gasoline purchases for the first 90 days, a 5% rebate after that, and a 1% rebate on any purchases made anywhere else for practically anything else.
Even though that 10% doesn’t last forever, a $3.00 per-gallon price becomes $2.70, and if you’re planning a road trip anytime soon, it just might make sense to apply for a card.
If Hess isn’t a familiar name where you live, Marathon is offering the exact same deal for their Chase/Marathon MasterCard.
Gasoline discounter Speedway also has a deal with Chase and MasterCard, but they’re only offering 8% for the first 60 days, 4% after that, and 1% on any other purchases.
Don’t forget to check the credit cards that are already in your wallet. American Express Blue cards offer 5% back for all gasoline and grocery store purchases, and Discover is offering “up to 10% off” at gas stations.
And if you’re a student, the CitiBank Student MasterCard gives 5% cash back on gasoline and grocery store purchases as well.
A penny saved is a penny earned and that penny does more good in your pocket than in the oil company’s. Check your wallet to see if there are hidden gasoline savings inside. If not, grab a credit card that pays you to pump gas.