Gas prices ramp up ahead of Memorial Day weekend

Lloyd Doyle
May 26, 2018

While the higher prices aren't expected to impact travel this weekend, with 1.8 million North Carolinians estimated to be out on the roads, according to AAA, the higher costs of fuel may begin to impact summer travel plans.

AAA says this year's Memorial Day gas prices are the most expensive since 2014. That's a few pennies ahead of Hawaii and roughly 30 cents more than Washington, which have the second and third highest gas prices in the country, the latest figures from AAA show.

AAA estimates that a record 3.2 million Southern Californians will head out of town for all or part of the three-day weekend, and they can expect to pay hefty prices for gas across the state.

While we may be paying more in fuel, Milani says they're not expecting gas to come anywhere near 2014 prices.

Nationally, 36.6 million said they plan to drive somewhere this weekend, 4.7 percent more than past year.

Experts say travelers should try to avoid coming back from the holiday after 6 p.m. Monday.

"The Saudis are quite enjoying $80 prices", said Michael Tran, global energy strategist at RBC Capital Markets.

The higher prices are due to OPEC production cuts while there is increased demand for oil.

How high will prices go? . On the other side of the U.S., CT and MI lead the pack of the most expensive states, with prices of $3.145 and $3.133, respectively.

"It's just a part of life, and it cost more in California", said Akhmiri Sekhr-ra, about increasing fuel prices as she filled her vehicle at a Bobby and Steve's gas station in Minneapolis on Wednesday. CT comes in at $3.13 a gallon with New Jersey just over $3 a gallon.

Every spring, refiners switch fuel blends so as not to produce smog and ozone in warmer months.

The winter gasoline blend is a bit cheaper to produce. But a constellation of factors have contributed to the spike, including rising oil prices, geopolitical developments and the strong economy. But neither see gasoline prices running up into the mid-$3 range. Supplies are running more than a million barrels under where they were previous year.

Then there's the US pullout from the Iran nuclear deal, and the threat of sanctions on that country's oil exports. The price was 59 cents a gallon higher than a year earlier, according to AAA.

On the other hand, US oil production is booming at a pace not seen since 1970, compensating somewhat for shortfalls in oil output elsewhere.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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