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High Gas Prices Drive Families to Money-Saving Websites

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We love to grumble about the price of gas, but that’s about all we do. We keep buying it—and in fact, demand increased during the past year, despite higher prices. That is, until recently.

MasterCard reports that gas sales have fallen for five straight weeks. Finally, drivers are starting to feel the long-term pain. According to AAA Mid-Atlantic, for every 25-cent increase in price per gallon, the average family ends up spending an additional $333 in its yearly gas budget. Knowing that, do the math. The Philadelphia area’s average gas price hit $3 back in November 2010. Prices are now 75 cents higher than that $3 mark, which means families are spending an additional $1,000 annually. No wonder drivers are cutting back.

But how do you make up $1,000 in your budget? Here are a few ideas:

• Check out billshrink.com. This site helps you literally shrink some of your bills, including cell phone, cable service and credit cards. You just plug in your zip code and usages, and it shows you how much you could possibly save.

• Another resource, gazelle.com, offers big bucks for trading in used tech items, like cell phones, computers and even iPads.

• And don’t forget about group-buying websites like groupon.com. Oftentimes, you’ll get more than 50 percent off things like museum admissions, restaurant meals, cleaning services and even vacation offers.