HUNTSVILLE, Ala. – At the beginning of the pandemic, Americans parked their cars and stayed home. As a result, gas prices plummeted but as things begin to reopen gas prices are slowly increasing.
Patrick De Haan, head of petroleum analysis at Gas Buddy said in the past six months consumer wallets are feeling the difference, “Now with things starting to improve Americans are filling up their tanks more and prices are going back up,”
De Haan said it’s all because of supply and demand.
According to him, there isn’t much of a science to it. Americans are ready to be out and as the popular travel months approach, De Haan predicts a slow and steady increase at the pump.
“We tend to see a more organized decrease in prices every Autumn, that’s simply because Americans drive less in Autumn and Winter than they do in Spring and Summer. But now with COVID-19 and the economy recovering, we could see a sustained period where gasoline continues to increase.”
Throughout the country, many have feared a gas shortage and price increase because there was a significant decrease of truck drivers throughout the pandemic. While that may be a concern for most, De Haan said the trucker shortage won’t affect gas prices.
De Haan said that’s good news, “There is plenty of gasoline and going back to supply and demand; supply is adequate, it’s just getting that supply where it needs to go, the station level. So consumers should not expect prices to be impacted this summer from the truck driver challenges.”
There may be some stations that run out of fuel temporarily but the majority of people should not experience any type of gas shortage this summer.
Weather could be a factor, unexpected effects from a hurricane or other natural disasters can have a direct effect on price inflation. But, an uptick can be accounted for.
“I don’t see any circumstances that could deliver record-high prices this summer but we will likely have to dig a little bit deeper than we have in the last couple of years,” De Haan told News 19.
While many stations are competing for your business, the best way to save money at the pump is to shop around for the best gas prices.