Learn English – Idiom request: Putting too much effort, but the return is so low that it was not worth the effort


I am looking for an idiom.

You put too much effort, but there is so little gain that it would not be worth the effort.

Update: More specifically, some guy wants to save money and gas, thus he skips toll highway and take the free road. But the free road is longer, or congested that he ends up using more gas.

Best Answer

"Penny wise, pound foolish" works because to save a small amount of toll money, they'd waste much more time which also has a monetary value.