Gas prices down for holiday

Published 12:08 am Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Americans hitting the road for the Thanksgiving holiday will likely see stable gas prices this week and throughout the holiday season.

AAA projects 43.6 million Americans will journey 50 miles or more from home during the Thanksgiving holiday weekend, an increase of 0.7 percent from the 43.3 million people who traveled last year. This increase marks the fourth consecutive year of growing holiday travelers since 2008 when Thanksgiving travel fell by 25 percent. The Thanksgiving holiday travel period is defined as tomorrow through Sun., Nov. 25.

Clay Ingram, spokesperson for AAA Alabama, said officials have been expecting gas prices to drop over the last few weeks and even throughout the remainder of the year, but the holidays will likely slow that decline in price.

“We probably won’t see a lot of change between now and the Thanksgiving holiday,” he said. “But we are currently seeing a wide variety of pricing around the state and within some cities.”

For example, in the Capital City, there are stations currently charging $3.25 per gallon, while others are charging $3.09 or less.

State-wide, the average price is $3.20 per gallon, which is 34 cents less than one month ago.

Lo-cally, gas prices average between $3.20 and $3.26, which is down from last month.

In Andalusia, gas ranges from $3.16 to $3.49; in Opp, it ranges from $3.17 to $3.44; and in Florala, prices range from $3.22 to $3.29.

“Price shopping becomes very important when we see these major variations in price,” Ingram said. “So we all need to be aware of local prices and make an effort to buy the cheapest gas we can find.”

Ingram said Thanksgiving travel hit a decade low in 2008 when only 37.8 million Americans traveled.

“Since that year we have seen a steady increase in the number of travelers taking to the roads and skies for the holiday,” Ingram said. “Americans continue to find ways to economize their budgets so they can gather around the holiday table to carve the turkey.”