Sunday, June 15, 2008

Think gas prices are high in the US? Try Amsterdam.

When Brett and I drove from San Francisco to New York, we drove in a rented Ford Expedition that we laughingly called "The Beast." It was a comfy ride and great for towing cargo - but we both own smaller cars, so getting 18 miles per gallon was quite a shock. Our gas bill for the trip was almost $700 when you factor in $4/gallon gas and 3,000 miles of driving.

Here in Amsterdam $4 per gallon would be quite a steal as the prices are over double what they are in the US. We haven't seen more than 1 or 2 SUVs on the streets yet, and none of them have been full-size, though we have seen plenty of "Smart Cars," scooters, and of course the most fuel efficient transportation of them all - bicycles.

The sign in the picture shows gas at 1.69 Euros per litre. With 3.8 litres per gallon that's 6.42 Euros per gallon. When you factor in the exchange rate, the price in USD for a gallon of gas is $9.85. Our gas bill on the x-country drive would have been $1,650 or almost $300/tank! Luckily for us, public transportation is easily accessible here and the train systems are excellent.

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