• Lighten your load: On road trips, it's smart to leave behind heavy, unnecessary items. Even for your day-to-day travel, take a few minutes to clean out your car to eliminate extra weight. Pack only what you need, keeping a few items that can come in handy in an emergency.
• Reduce your speed: For every 10 miles per hour you reduce speed, you improve your fuel economy by 4 miles per gallon. Staying at or a bit below the speed limit can have a big impact on the environment and your bank account.
• Plan routes in advance and combine trips: Try to anticipate your errands and plan to knock them all out in one day, if not one stop.
• Buy for the need; rent for the exception: For those occasions when your day-to-day vehicle won't fit the bill, it's easy to rent something that will. For example, with more than 6,000 neighborhood locations, Enterprise is within 15 miles of 90 percent of the U.S. population and has a wide selection of vehicles from minivans to sport utilities to trucks. Whether buying or renting, focus on what you need.
• Use the right fuel: Check your owner's manual when choosing what grade of gasoline to use and don't spend the extra money on a premium grade if you don't need to.
• Avoid the top off: Filling beyond the cutoff point can lead to spills and release gas vapors into the air. This wastes money and pollutes the air, even aggravating smog in bigger cities.
• Carpool when possible: Set up a car pool with colleagues at work, or coordinate with family and friends to carpool for regular errands such as grocery shopping.
• Keep tires properly inflated: Maintaining proper tire inflation levels can improve fuel economy. Your vehicle owner's manual will show you the proper inflation levels.
• Cool off wisely: Sometimes air-conditioning can help drivers save money. At faster highway speeds, open windows can actually increase drag and hurt fuel economy. So consider the weather--and your speed--before deciding how to stay cool on the go.
For more information on ways drivers can go "green," visit www.keystogreen.com, Enterprise's environmental stewardship Web site.