Travel gas mileage Calculator

Knowing your fuel costs in advance leads to a more stress-free trip.Knowing your fuel costs in advance leads to a more stress-free trip. (Photo: Comstock Images/Comstock/Getty Images )

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Taking a road trip can be the ideal way to see the countryside. The next time you're thinking about a road trip, plan ahead by calculating your car's gas mileage. This way, you won't be taken by surprise when you pull over to refuel.

Step 1

Determine your car's miles-per-gallon (MPG) rate. This number is typically listed in your car's model-specific user manual. Otherwise, calculate it yourself via the following method.

Fill up the tank and reset the odometer. Drive the car until the fuel tank registers at the halfway mark. Fill up the tank again. Note how many gallons you added to the tank, as well as how many miles are listed on the odometer. Divide the number of miles by the amount of gas you just added. The result is your car's MPG. For example, if you drove 200 miles on 10 gallons of gas, your MPG is 20.

Step 2

Determine how many miles you need to go on your trip. Measure the road distance on a traditional map between your starting point and your destination. Use the map's scale to calculate the approximate number of miles you need to drive. Even easier, plug your start and end addresses into an online map program like Google Maps to get an instant result.

Step 3

Divide the total length of your trip in miles by your car's MPG. The result is how much gas you will need for the trip. For example, if you need to travel 400 miles and your car is rated at 20 MPG, you'll need approximately 20 gallons of fuel.

Step 4

Multiply the results of Step 4 by the average fuel price in your area, as noted by the AA's Fuel Gauge Report (see Resources). The result is approximately how much you may need to spend on gas for your trip.


  • The online fuel cost calculator provided by Roadtrip America can do the final fuel cost estimation for you once you know your car's gas mileage, the trip distance and the average cost of fuel.

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