GasBuddy app review

Some apps are nice to have. Others, like GasBuddy, are indispensable.

GasBuddy is a free app for iPhone and Android that tracks fuel prices at over 150,000 gas stations in the U.S., Canada, and Australia. Although it has a website, GasBuddy is best used as an app on the go. The app was launched in 2000 and has been downloaded over 60 million times and has saved users over $2.9 billion.

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GasBuddy is particularly useful for car renters. Most rental car companies require you to fill up within a few miles of the drop-off location. But if you're returning your car to an airport on the main road, you'll usually see inflated gas prices. A small detour of just a few blocks can often result in significant savings. With GasBuddy, it's easy to find the cheapest gas station wherever you are.

 

Best Features on the GasBuddy App

 

GasBuddy has a history of innovating with a number of helpful features.

 

Find Gas

 

Looking for the cheapest gas in an area? GasBuddy lets you search by city, state or brand.

 

Pay with GasBuddy

 

Pay with GasBuddy is a gas discount program. You sign up, request a debit card, link it to your checking account, and receive an ongoing discount of 5 cents per gallon.

The sign-up process is pretty straightforward. You enter your date of birth, bank account routing number and account number, driver's license number, address, and phone number.

Gas stations love when you use Pay with GasBuddy. Credit card transaction fees are a major expense for gas station owners. In some competitive markets, avoiding those fees can be the difference between breaking even and making a profit, which is why some stations have started to charge a higher price for credit card transactions. Pay with GasBuddy helps retailers avoid those transaction fees, which lets them pass on some of the savings to users.

Free discounts are always good, and if you normally pay for gas with cash or use a debit card, then Pay with GasBuddy is certainly a better option. But with the national average gas price of $2.43, saving 5 cents per gallon is only a savings of about 2 percent. Many credit cards offer better rewards on gas—up to 5% back, in some cases. That's an effective savings of 12 cents per gallon.

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Pay with GasBuddy works at about 95 percent of all gas stations in the country. While most major brands participate, it's worth noting that many independent gas stations, warehouse clubs and some grocery stores won't accept it.

 

GasBack

 

When you shop at one of the partner stores—the list includes Old Navy, Overstock, Dick's Sporting Goods, Home Depot and others—you can earn GasBack points. This is free money for gas earned from everyday purchases. Earning GasBack is easy and it's automatically applied at the pump at gas stations nationwide.

 

Trip Cost Calculator

 

Want to budget for your road trip? GasBuddy's calculator can help you figure out how much you'll spend in gas.

 

Outage Tracker

 

If you're in an area where there's been a hurricane, tornado or power outage, GasBuddy can lead you to a gas station that's open and functional. In September 2017, as Hurricane Irma prepared to make landfall in Florida, GasBuddy put out an update that let users report which stations were open so people were able to fill up and evacuate without spending precious time looking for gas. This feature is not only handy but in some cases lifesaving.

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