Friday, March 30, 2007

Cheap(er) Gas

If you are like me, you've got maybe two or three gas stations you frequent on a regular basis. As far as you know, they tend to have the lowest prices in the area, right?

Well, how do you know?

I mean, really, unless you drive to each of them, how do you know that the one you choose will be the lowest price in the area that day? And wouldn't all that driving around just use up the money you would have saved (not to mention the waste of time)?


I don't have anything to do with this site other than as a happy visitor. All you have to do is go to the site, enter your zip code, and presto! you have a list of gas stations in your area, listed in ascending order by price per gallon.

Isn't it wonderful that all of these gas station owners are willing to post their prices. Wow! They must be super confident that they have the best prices around.


The reason this site works is that the users are the ones who keep it up to date. If you want to help out, all you have to do is register and you, too, can lead your fellow motorists to the cheapest fuel in town. The site even has a social reward for the reporters. The person who reports the current price at a given station is posted next to that station along with an icon representing how frequently they contribute. The social recognition, I'm sure, is what keeps people coming back.

I still won't go too far out of my way to save 5 cents a gallon, but if I'm out running errands, I might check along my path to see where I'm going to get the best deal.

Oh, and they even have support for mobile phones. They've got a site which is specifically designed for smaller screens or, if you prefer, there's an option to get the information using text messaging.

What a cool use of the group mind on the Internet!

So, what other daily activities could make use of a similar feature?

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