Thursday, October 14, 2004

A Fuelish Way to Advertise

What with gas prices being the way they are, I'm far more prone to use price as the primary determining factor in where I stop than anything else. RaceTrac and QuikTrip are my friends these days. I'm sure that Dad would be disappointed that I don't stop at a Shell station every time (he's retired from that company), but the fact is, there aren't that many of those on my teaching route, and right now, it really is all about the price.

So today, I was running out of gas during the middle of the day, which prompted me to do something I'd rarely do: stop at the gas station in front of the Evil Empire (actually its corporate cousin) because they had gas advertised at $1.82 on their sign. Yet when I pulled up to the pump, the display asked me if I had their club card (which I obviously don't). Lacking one, my price suddenly jumped up to $1.87...yes, a nickel more a gallon than the sign said. Needless to say, I bailed. If you're gonna advertise a price, and it's a "members only" price, you'd better put that in big letters on your sign so unsuspecting bargain-hunters like myself don't get lured over there on false pretenses.

After that, I went and did what I should have done in the first place: got my gas at Tom Thumb, where I do have a club card. They list the "full" price on the marquee, which also notes that gas is 3 cents cheaper with the card. That's the way it should be done: honest, accurate advertising, and nobody's fooled. Yet another reason why the good guys get my business, and the others don't.

UPDATE: We just think we have it bad here; check out the comments to this post, where James tells us how much worse gas prices are in Australia (thankfully, he does all the math and conversions for us).

I think we know where the Sonic sign guy works now: Last fall and winter, I made fun of a local Sonic drive-in that had all kinds of spelling and grammar issues on its marquee sign. Eventually, they got better, which means the Sign Dude either learned to spell or found work elsewhere (I suspect the latter). This week, I noticed similar handiwork on a sign at a local credit union:


"Line of credits," huh? Maybe I can get some "Certificate of Deposits" while I'm there. I guess it could be worse; they could have invited us to TRY ARE NEW LINE OF CREDITS or something. Still, I hadn't had a laugh like that in a while.

Really, officer...the squirrel made me do it: There are a lot of stories at UNT about the albino squirrel that hangs around campus. Up in Ohio, however, those kind of squirrels must not be as friendly, because one of them forced a teenage driver to crash his car this week.

(via Dave Barry's Blog)


James said...

Just thought I'd chime in with a whinge about petrol prices... In Oz, our prices have steadily rising from about $0.79/Litre about 5 years ago, up to the current price of about $1.09/Litre. $1.09 is the worst we've ever seen it.

Just as a comparison, that's $AU4.03/Gal.... or, by 2day's currency rates, $US2.93/Gal! Gah! We're paying so much more than u for petrol!!!

Anonymous said...

there was a sign in Clark Grill that said "This cups are for only icee."

john guari

Kev said...

Heh. That reminds me of when I lived in Bruce, and there was no Sunday evening meal in the cafeteria, so they usually served a fairly decent little filet mignon steak at noontime on that day. You were only allowed one of them (but could get the "alternate meat" if you were still hungry), and their sign proclaiming that policy said "No Steak on Seconds."