Spring has sprung in the tristate area, bringing with it a spike in gas prices with no relief in sight according to AAA.
For weeks, gas prices have slowly, but surely, continued to creep upward, to a national average of $2.63 per gallon, up 10 cents from a month ago and 73 cents a year ago, when the average was $2.29 per gallon.
In a forecast released by AAA Northeast, the national average is expected to reach as high as $2.70 per gallon, the highest since the summer of 2015. A AAA spokesperson cited “a volatile marker, higher crude oil prices, and higher consumer demand are driving average gas prices up nationally and motorists can expect to see prices increase in early April.”
“Motorists can expect to see prices increase in early April and continue through the start of summer when refinery maintenance will be wrapped-up, the weather becomes warmer and the switchover to the more expensive summer-blend gasoline kicks in.”
According to a AAA New York spokesman, the price has been affected by multiple factors, including the price of crude oil overseas and an increase in demand nationwide. It also comes at a time when refineries begin the process of transitioning from a winter blend of gasoline to a more eco-friendly, expensive, summer blend.
“Right now we are seeing the market starting to purge winter-blend gasoline to make room for summer-blend,” said Jeanette Casselano, AAA spokesperson. “The jump in gas prices is just the beginning of the season. AAA forecasts the national gas price average will be as much as $2.70 per gallon this spring and summer.”
The tri-state area remains one of the most expensive places to buy gas in the country, with an average of $2.75 in New York, $2.66 in New Jersey and $2.72 in Connecticut.
In an effort to help motorists maximize their vehicle's gasoline, AAA offered tips as prices continue to rise:
- Slow down. The faster you drive, the more fuel you use. Every 5 miles per hour over 50 mph is like paying an additional 18 cents per gallon, according to the Department of Energy.
- Share work or school rides by carpooling, or consider public transportation.
- Do not use your trunk for storage. The heavier your car, the more fuel it uses.
- Combine errands. If possible, park in a central spot and walk from place to place.
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