Drivers probably were not happy to see gas prices jumping up just ahead of the Labor Day holiday, as they typically do when demand is higher, but they should be happy that it was still the cheapest Labor Day weekend gas in four years.
More than 29.7 million families gassed yup for a road trip on the weekend, according to AAA, with average prices nearly 19 cents cheaper than last year in Florida.
“There’s no doubt that low gas prices helped convince many Americans, who were on the fence about traveling, to take a trip during the holiday weekend,” said Mark Jenkins, a AAA spokesman, in a release. “Prices may get even cheaper in the coming months.”
That will come because of a mixture of higher domestic production in the fall, and lower demand, Jenkins said. In fact, he is expecting to see gas prices fall to below $3 a gallon before the end of the year. However, things that could spoil that would be refinery outages, or a hurricane in the Gulf of Mexico.
Barrels of oil were trading at $97.88 at the beginning of August, but finished the month at $93.86, helping to push the national average gasoline pieces down 9 cents. That included a 6-cent drop in Florida, as well as 8 cents in Georgia and 7 cents in Tennessee.
Right now, Florida is averaging $3.37 per gallon, 3 cents more than last week, but down a nickel from a month ago.
As of Monday, the cheapest gas in Land O’ Lakes, according to GasBuddy.com, was at the Mobil station at State Road 52 near the Suncoast Parkway, where regular unleaded was listed at $3.19. The most expensive was at a Shell station on the corner of State Roads 54 and 56, with a price of $3.37.
In Wesley Chapel, gas prices ranged from $3.18 at Sam’s Club on State Road 56 near Bruce B. Downs Boulevard, to $3.38 at a Shell station at State Road 54 and Oakley Boulevard. Lutz saw prices as low as $3.26 at a Sunoco in State Road 54 and Collier Parkway, and as high as $3.39 at the Shell station at Van Dyke Road and Lakeshore Drive.
The cheapest gas in Zephyrhills as of Monday was at the Marathon at Eiland Boulevard and Geiger Road at a cost of $3.25. The most expensive was reported at Citgo at Wire and Otis Allen roads at $3.40. Dade City gas prices ranged from $3.26 at the RaceWay at U.S. 301 and McDonald Road, to a cash price of $3.39 at the BP station on U.S. 98 Bypass and Church Street.