I turned in my rental car today with just about 500 miles on the trip odometer - an average of a hundred miles for each day I had it. It was a lot of driving (from Albany to Seneca Lake and back again, by way of Binghamton) but it's not the distance that makes it remarkable - it's that I filled the tank only once, on the way to drop off the car at the rental agency. I spent all of $29 on gas for a 500 mile trip. Why?
Two words: free upgrade.
Instead of the super-economy model I had reserved, I was given a Prius at the car rental agency. I was initially skeptical of a car that had a power button like a radio, a matchbox-sized plastic rectangle for a key, and required a lesson before departing, but not spending a fortune on gas made all the fuss worth the effort.
It was a remarkably peppy little thing, too - on the highway, at least. The fact that it kinda turns off when you stop makes for less-zippy red light departures, but overall it was pretty fun to drive. Almost makes me want to own a car again...