Post # 1
DH and I are going on a trip soon with FIL/MIL. It’s about 6 hours away. DH told me the other night (as I’m about to fall asleep) that his dad wants us to pay his gas there and back. I’m not sure how I feel about this but…
1) The ILs are having financial problems. When we brought up the trip idea to them, they said they’d go since they hadn’t bought anyone Christmas gifts since they have no money and it’s their present to each other.
2) We discussed how much hotel, ski passes, food, etc. will cost as we’ve been there before. They were still on board with the idea and I was able to find us a much cheaper hotel saving us $100 per couple. They had picked the more expensive one.
3) It’s a SUV. We have one too but there is a part that should be repaired before going long distances. The trip is in less than 2 weeks and unlikely we’ll have ours fixed. We also each have a smaller car but for the distance, we (the ones in the backseat) won’t be comfortable, so that’s not an option.
We are looking at about $200 RT for gas. While we can afford it, I asked DH if WE were driving if his dad would pay for all our gas. He said no. So I feel like he should share some of the cost of driving. Granted it’s his vehicle taking the wear and tear…although it’s only 7 months old.
BTW, they’ve been driving more lately since our SUV needs fixing and occasionally DH does give him money. Just this weekend, they drove 2 hours total and we gave them $20. I guess I feel like they are always willing to drive to make money off of us…meaning driving us to dinner, etc. even though we’ve offered to take my car.
So should we pay for all the gas?
Post # 3
@texasbee: Normally you split that sort of thing. From my experience.
Post # 4
I would. In the grand scheme of things, $200 isn’t that much. If you can afford it and they can’t, why not just pay it to keep the peace?
Post # 6
@texasbee: What an awkward situation, sorry you’re so conflicted about it. I think I see your viewpoint and it does suck to feel like you’re being taken advantage of financially. When I’m riding with someone, I think it’s always courteous to offer gas money and even expect to contribute to the tank. Never with my parents before but this seems like a special circumstance.
While I don’t think it’s fair for them to expect you to cover all of the gas for the trip, I guess it doesn’t really always boil down to principle when dealing with loved ones. If you have the money and it doesn’t hurt you to pay for gas and you know they’re strapped…I say pay it. If you and your DH need the money just as badly, offer to split it.
Post # 7
@texasbee: it seems like an awkward conversation to have. I would suspect that if they have the money to stay in a hotel and ski then they would have 100 to split the gas.
I’d prob not say anything to keep the peace, but it would rub me the wrong way.
Reminds me of my SIl who was taken aback after we asked her to pay 50% of gas costs after DH and I drove her ass and her BF from NYC to Niagara and back in our car! People be crazy.
Post # 8
@texasbee: I’ve always just split gas between whoever is going.. If you all can’t really afford the $200 I’d tell your DH to talk to his parents about splitting it. Or even paying for one fill up there and one fill up back.
Personally I’d stay out of that kind of thing with my IL’s and send him to do it lol.
Post # 9
Reminds me of one of my favorite quotes from Sex in the City…money is fluid “someone needs it, you give it. you need it, you take it.
Post # 10
@texasbee: In my relationship, my fiancé and I would pay the gas on behalf of our in-laws. We wouldn’t let them pay, but that’s just us. We’re well off financially and paying for gas for a 6 hour trip won’t hurt us in any way. Especially for either set of parents.
ETA: If it was a road trip with friends, we’d split it.
Post # 11
@texasbee: Hmmmmmm weird scenario.
If I were going on a road trip with my parents, they’d be paying for gas- even if I wa driving, cuz that’s just how they are.
If you guys are ALL paying your own way for the hotel/ski passes/etc…..I don’t know why they’d expect that you should pay for ALL the gas.
If they were paying for your hotel rooms and/or ski passes, I’d say why not.
Since the IL’s are having financial problems- I’d ask your DH if he wants to pay for the gas in order to help out with his parents situation or if he’s just paying it because mom and dad said so.
If it’s something where your husband really WANTS to help his parents out, I don’t know how you can argue that.
That being said, if FIL/MIL are having such horrible financial troubles, why are they taking a vaca?
And lastly- do they really make you pay them gas $$ to dirve to dinner??!?!?!
My IL’s are not well off, but the few times FIL has asked DH to run an errand for him (FIL usually works out of town, so sometimes he’ll need something done locally while he’s away, and MIL doesn’t like to drive anywhere that’s ourside of thier smaller hometown)- so when FIL asks DH to run an errand for him, he’ll pay him nicely for gas to do that errand, even though I know DH would do it for nothing, happily.
It’s a small gensture on FIL’s part to show how he appreciates DH’s time/willingness to help out.
Post # 12
They are obviously strapped for cash. I would either pay or not go on the trip.
Post # 13
Normally I split gas when I go on a trip with friends.
Since you are splitting everything else, I would think you would split the gas.
But if they’re really that short on money and you do want to go on the trip with them (and can afford it), I’d just suck it up and pay for the gas. Sort of as a nice thing to do for family who is struggling.
Post # 14
If I were going with my parents, I’d pay. If I were going with my in-laws, they’d insist on paying for some, husband would fight to pay for it himself. If I were going with friends, we’d probably split it or just each of us grab a few swipes at the pump. All depends on your relationship, your knowledge of their financial situation, etc.
Post # 15
if my mom drove, she would never ask DH and I for gas money. if DH drove, he wouldn’t ask me or my mom for gas money either.
eventually it all comes out in the wash.
but if you know they are having financial difficulties and this would help them out, you were planning to go there anyway, so just refill their tank when you hit empty.
Post # 16
I haven’t been road-tripping with my parents since I was in college, but when we go with our friends, we usually split gas 50/50 regardless of who is driving. However, before H and I got married we’d sometimes split it where on person pays for gas, but the other covers the food/snacks and tolls. So maybe you could suggest something like that. You and your H will pay for the gas, and our ILs can cover snacks, tolls/parking, and any food you buy along the way.
Otherwise I’d probably just bite the bullet and pay for gas since his parents are more strapped for cash. It’s rude they demanded it, but in the grand scheme of things it’d be better to pay and not fight.