WILKES-BARRE — AAA Mid-Atlantic reports that high travel volumes over the holidays drove up average gas prices five cents per gallon on the week.
At $2.49 per gallon, AAA said the national gas price average is the most expensive seen at the start of a new year since 2014, when gas prices were more than $3 a gallon. Many Pennsylvanians, however, are seeing an average price about 25 cents above the national average.
In fact, motorists in the Northeast, South and the upper Midwest are seeing prices as much as 13 cents more expensive than one week ago.
“Although prices at the pump shot up over the holidays, now that the holiday season is in the rear-view mirror, motorists can expect gas prices to trend cheaper this month as we are likely to see a significant drop in gasoline demand,” said Jeanette Casselano, AAA spokesperson.
The latest Energy Information Administration report measures gasoline demand at a strong 9.5 million barrels/day, which AAA reports is typical of the holiday season. However, historical data shows that in early January, demand typically drops and stays below the 9 million mark for the first few months of the year.
According to statistics provided by AAA Mid-Atlantic, the nation’s top 10 states with the largest yearly changes are: Alaska (+ 39 cents), Montana ( + 35 cents), California (+ 34 cents), Oregon (+ 30 cents), Hawaii (+ 27 cents), Washington (+ 24 cents), Wyoming (+ 24 cents), Indiana (+ 23 cents), Nevada (+ 22 cents) and Utah (+ 22 cents).
The nation’s top 10 states with the least expensive gasoline today: Missouri ($2.22), Oklahoma ($2.22), Alabama ($2.22), Arkansas ($2.23), Mississippi ($2.23), South Carolina ($2.24), Texas ($2.24), Louisiana ($2.26), Tennessee ($2.26) and Kansas ($2.28).
AAA reports that average gas prices are $2.50 per gallon or more in 11 Mid-Atlantic and Northeast states, including Pennsylvania at $2.74. AAA says motorists in every state are paying more on the week. With a 13-cent jump, Delaware saw the largest increase in the country and the region.