After weeks of falling gasoline prices, Iowans are paying more at the pump lately and Triple-A-Iowa expects prices to creep up still farther before Christmas. Motor club spokeswoman Dawn Duffy says 49 of the 50 states are seeing average prices above two-dollars a gallon now, with Utah being the only exception.
Duffy says several factors are coming into play with the rising costs. Duffy says gas prices are up because there’s a surge in oil prices back over 60-dollars a barrel, as well as futures prices for wholesale gasoline, along with refinery problems in Venezuela and a terminal fire in Great Britain — all are combining and pushing up gas prices. Duffy says Iowans are paying about four-cents a gallon less than the national average.
The Iowa average is 2-14 a gallon, exactly where it was a month ago. A year ago, the state average was a dollar-75. Duffy says many Iowans will be hitting the road for long hauls next week and most will encounter higher prices on gasoline — and numerous other travel expenses. She says 63-point-five million Americans will be traveling 50 miles or more away from home over Christmas. That’s up one-point-seven percent from last year.
Triple-A surveys project that gasoline prices, hotel rates and airfares are all up from 2004. Only car rental prices have declined from a year ago. Duffy estimates gasoline prices next week will rise from the current national average of 2-18 to as high as 2-25 a gallon. In Iowa, Waterloo has the cheapest gas at 2-02 a gallon while Davenport is the highest at 2-18.