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Is it ‘worth the drive’ to Washington for gas? Coquitlam app designer says yes

Click to play video: 'New gas price app will tell you if a run for the border is worth it' New gas price app will tell you if a run for the border is worth it
WATCH: New gas price app will tell you if a run for the border is worth it – Apr 29, 2019

How far would you drive to get a break on the record-high price of Metro Vancouver gas? And would that round trip be worth it?

It’s a question many Metro Vancouverites have asked as they’ve eyed alluringly low fuel prices across the border in Washington state.

READ MORE: Should B.C. regulate the price of gas? Economist says it’s the antidote to oil industry ‘gouging’

Now, Coquitlam man Gilson Tsang has developed an Android app he says will take the mystery out of the equation.

The app is called “Worth the Drive,” and crunches numbers including round-trip distance, vehicle fuel efficiency, travel time, currency conversion and local and U.S. gas prices to tell a driver if they’ll save money by going south of the border.

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“Last night, I thought, ‘Why am I building this app, who am I building this for?’ And this morning I woke up, and I looked across at my neighbour and she has a jerrycan filling up her car,” he said.

“I know she has kids, I know she has a very busy life … this app is for her,” he said.

Tsang said he makes the 80-km round trip from Coquitlam to Blaine about twice a month, and that it saves him close to $100 per month.

READ MORE: B.C. Liberals call for caps on gas prices, but NDP push for long-term solutions

“I get a savings of around $48 per trip in two hours,” he said. “That would include my jerrycans I bring along with me, and that will last me roughly two weeks.”

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Tsang said the app has been available for about a week and has been downloaded about 200 times so far.

He says he’s working on an iPhone version, too, but it will be some time before it is available.

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