Do you remember when you were young and gas station attendants used to come out and fill up your tank, wash your windshield and check your oil? If you’re under the age of 30, don’t answer that.
I can still hear the “ding ding” as we would pull into the station and I can see the attendant looking spiffy in his uniform. Buying gas was a pleasurable experience.
Somewhere along the line, things changed. Prices went up, we started pumping our own gas, checking our own oil and washing our own windshields…and what I consider the biggest crime of all, paying for air.
So, when BP asked me to be involved with their Commute Better campaign here in Columbus, I was unsure. Aren’t these companies…I don’t know…the enemy, or something?
No, as it turns out, they’re not.
BP wants to make your experience pleasurable again. They have enlisted a Commute Better Crew who will be at crucial points for Columbus commuters for the next four weeks. They will be handing out commute essentials, answering your questions and maybe they’ll give you one of those old-fashioned smiles like we used to get from the people pumping our gas.
Now, remember…I was skeptical. Before I signed up to work with the BP Commute Better Crew I wanted to be educated on their product. I know a lot of Columbus drivers whose mood depends on the ease of their commute. I have friends who never deviate from their normal route and will sit in traffic no matter what. I see parents who leave their cars idling while sitting in the school parking lot at dismissal. I wanted to help all of them by informing them that it’s okay to make a change, but I wasn’t going to do it without knowing everything I could about BP.
So, I went to gas class. For real.
I learned that most every BP station is a sole proprietor; a mom and pop shop, if you will. And, apparently, each and every one of them prides themselves on making your stop enjoyable. They want to provide you with clean facilities, bright lights, fresh paint, nice landscaping and more than anything, they want to be known for brewing a good cup of coffee.
I recently spent half a day with a chemist who explained, in detail, how a car engine works and why using quality gasoline is important. Almost everyone I know uses their grocery store loyalty card for better gas deals and I saw with my own eyes what happens to an engine when you’re using a low detergency gasoline. It isn’t pretty, folks.
I saw that all grades of BP gasolines with Invigorate, help to clean and protect your engine from harmful build-ups and I learned that the knocking I hear in my car is not a good thing. Not good at all.
Because BP wants us to Commute Better, we brainstormed on how to prevent wear and tear on your vehicle. From the aforementioned idling to mapping out your day so that you run all of your errands at once, preferably on the same side of town. And, whether I liked it or not, local auto expert Dan “Boots” Longenette said that we should check our air pressure and oil every other time we fill up. I know that’s a pain, but your car is likely the second most expensive thing you will ever buy. You should treat it right.
And, guess what? BP wants to treat YOU right too! One lucky reader will receive a $40 BP gift card! Just leave a comment on this post telling me how you “Commute Better” (Do you change your air filter every 12,000 miles? Do you accelerate gently? Do you drive without air conditioning?). Please leave a valid email address with your comment before Monday, August 1st at noon EST. A winner will be chosen at random.
*Update* Congrats to Colleen! She was the lucky winner!
Disclosure: I was compensated by BP for my time and promotion of the Commute Better Crew.