June 30, 2006
As Virginians hit the roads this weekend, they're likely to find some higher prices at the gas pump. In some parts of the country, gas was up ten cents from Thursday to Friday.
High gas prices combined with the holiday weekend are forcing some drivers to rethink a few of their driving habits.
"Sometimes I end up making it too close to call, and I'm afraid that my car's going to break down, because I don't want to get gas," said Keenan Steiner, a driver filling up at the Exxon on Route 29.
These days a lot of people don't look forward to getting gas, but numbers show that are still filling up. This holiday weekend, AAA says there will be more people on the road than last year.
"It's become so integrated as a mode of travel and a private mode of travel," said Rachelle Rubinow.
Faced with limited alternatives, many people say they doubt Americans will change their habits much at all.
"What are you going to do?" asked Mike Rose, another driver at the Exxon. "Save a few bucks on gas by flying somewhere? Take a bus from one city to another? It's not going to work. The consumer just has to eat it. That's how it's going to be," he said.
It seems that some are simply accepting the rising prices. They say it's practically expected every summer.
"I like to think that when it's summer and it's nice out that they just raise the prices on us, because they know more people are going to be on the road for July 4th," said Steiner.
In Central Virginia, prices are lower than that national average. On Friday it was about $2.86 for a regular gallon of gas.
Steiner, who is from New York, said he usually pays a whole lot more. "Up where I pay it's like $3.30. I'm going to fill up down here and save some money, you know? [I'll] save a lot of money!"