How Much Does it Cost to Drive Cross-Country Today?

Open Road Road Trip - Low Maintenance

For today’s National Car Care Month fact, let’s pretend your vehicle is already perfectly maintained (oil changed, tires rotated, fluids good to go, scheduled maintenance done; heck – you’ve even washed it!), and you’re hankering for a road trip. Today! You’re just curious to know – how much will that cost you in fuel?

Imagine your vehicle is 11.5-years old, because that’s the average age of a car. If you picked between two of the most popular vehicles in 2005, you might driving either the Ford F-150 pickup, or the Toyota Camry. Here’s the rundown for the cost today (April 21, 2016) to drive those vehicles for 2,800 miles across the USA –

The 2005 Ford F-150 gets about 20 miles per gallon on the highway. So that makes 140 gallons of gas to drive 2,800 miles. Today’s national average gas price, according to the AAA’s Fuel Gauge Report  is $2.11. So if you were driving that F-150 across the country today (even though it would take longer than a day), that would run you around $295.40. And the fuel tank capacity is about 26 gallons, so you’d probably have to stop for gas about six times.

The 2005 Toyota Camry gets about 34 miles per gallon on the highway. You’d use about 83 gallons of gas to drive 2,800 miles. With today’s $2.11 gas-price average, that adds up to about $173.75, and with the fuel-tank capacity of 18.5-gallons, you’d have to stop at least five times.

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road trip gas

Not a bad deal to get from coast-to-coast, and that certainly is a more economical way to travel if you’ve got a car-load of people (though that would slightly affect your fuel economy). Now you know!

Remember that fuel economy can be affected by a multitude of things, and you can increase fuel economy by reducing weight in your vehicle (ditch the junk), keeping your tires properly inflated, changing your air filter on schedule and avoiding hard acceleration.

Don’t head out on a long road trip without making a visit to a trusted mechanic for a thorough inspection and some scheduled maintenance beforehand. Using Openbay, you can compare, book and pay for local auto repair online and via mobile app (on iOS and now Android).

Drive safely!