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To Travel or Not to Travel

Inflation seems to be going crazy and so is the price of fuel.

It’s been a long time since we have seen record breaking low fuel costs.

We have a fuel discount card with EFS and it has saved us a lot in the past. Unfortunately, for now, nothing can save us enough money that will make us feel comfortable to do a lot of traveling. At about 6 mpg with our big set up, it is getting very close to costing us $1 PER MILE!

With this spreadsheet, you can see we have saved almost $1500 over the past 2 years in fuel costs.

And this is a graph of the diesel price per gallon with and without our discount card. We have paid as low as $1.498 and a high of $4.569 with the card. That is a huge difference and can make it difficult to determine if we should go ahead and travel or stay put. And you know, we aren't getting any younger.

The EFS card will soon be providing discounts on gasoline too. Get your EFS card at no cost here:

The last time we bought diesel was March 4, 2022 in Dallas at a Loves Truck Stop at exit 466 off I-20. Here is what the price changes were over 6 days:

March 4 $4.248

March 5 $4.419

March 6 $4.689

March 7 $4.889

March 9 $4.989

March 10 $5.189

That's almost $1 increase in 6 days!


I have read on Facebook where some people say they will stay put. Others say they will take less trips or stay closer to home due to the costs for fuel. Some say now that they are retired, they are not going to let that stop them from traveling.


We always try to cut spending where we can. We use our EFS discount card App or Gas Buddy App and try to strategically choose when and where we will purchase fuel. We watch for weekly sales at grocery stores, use digital coupons and most importantly, try to cut costs by using our Senior Lifetime America the Beautiful Discount Card to get 50% off at USACE campgrounds, boondock or use our Thousand Trails membership, Passport America or Good Sam discounts.


We are currently back home at our houseboat in Gainesville, GA and are making plans and reservations to do a 3-month trip out West to go to the Badlands, Mt. Rushmore, Yellowstone Park, Glacier National Park, Grand Teton, Deadwood, Sturgis, Crazy Horse, Cluster and Big Horn this coming Summer.

It is a total of 5700 miles for a round trip. So, at $5 a gallon for diesel and 6 miles per gallon to travel, we would need 950 gallons. So, at $5 a gallon, and it will be higher out west, it could very easily cost us over $5000 in fuel. And if the price of diesel keeps going up, so does our cost to travel. If diesel goes to $8 per gallon, it would cost us $7600 just for fuel.

Fortunately, we will be staying mostly in Army Corp campgrounds that will save us a lot. However, we are planning on a few full hook-up private campgrounds to be able to do laundry, easily get water and dump. Of course, they are a lot more expensive than Army Corp campgrounds. So far it looks like our overall average cost per night will be around $18. That would be a total of around $1800 for campsites including boondocking over a 3-month period. So, along with admissions, fees, gasoline, food, etc. this whole trip will be over $8000. All we can do for now, is hope and pray the price of diesel will go down. If it doesn’t, we may have to rethink our trip or stay closer to home.


The other day, we were shopping and needed butter. Publix, Kroger, Aldis, Walmart ($3.18 a pound) and Sam’s Club did not have any butter. So, I was driving by CVS and thought I’d check for butter there. I couldn’t believe it when I saw their butter was $8.49 a pound and a dozen eggs was $3.39 in Georgia. I don’t shop for food at CVS and didn’t buy that day either.

I ended up at Dollar General for $3.95 for a pound of butter. I remember, some time ago, buying it for about $2.80 a pound at Aldis. They say the cost of food has gone up 6%. I say it’s more like 20% on many items and even more on others. Our Folgers decaf coffee that we purchase used to be $9.97 a can. Yesterday it was $14.45. Come on man! If diesel fuel stays around $5 per gallon, it will only add to the cost of transporting goods by truck, train or boat, further fueling inflation in coming weeks and months.


Should we go for it and dip into our retirement funds for this bucket list trip? What would you do? Are you changing your own travel plans due to the cost of fuel?


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