The last holiday weekend of summer is just ahead and more Iowans are expected to be on the road this Labor Day compared to last year. Rose White, at Triple-A Iowa, says holiday travel should be picking up nationwide. “Across the country, we’re expecting that travel will be up about 1.3% from last year with about 34.7 million Americans taking trips 50 miles or more away from home,” White says. “In fact, this will be the highest level of Labor Day travel that we’ve seen in 6 years.”
Most people who are taking trips for the holiday will be traveling by car, about 86-percent, according to the motor club’s survey. “If you are traveling by car, you will see some lower fuel prices that will help make the trip more affordable,” White says. “Some will see the lowest prices for this holiday weekend since 2010. Although we did see an increase in the Midwest fuel prices over the last few weeks, they are now on a downturn.”
U.S. oil production is at a record high level, and since the winter-grade fuel is cheaper to produce, White says prices at the pump should continue to drop as we head into fall. “In Iowa, prices right now are below the national average,” White says. “In Iowa, you can expect to pay about $3.33 for self-serve unleaded, a year ago, that price was at $3.52.”
The survey finds Iowa’s most expensive gas is in Des Moines at $3.36 a gallon, while it’s cheapest in Sioux City at $3.22.