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Could we see $3 per gallon gas prices this summer? It depends on several factors

Posted at 7:03 AM, Apr 19, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-19 07:03:05-04

DETROIT — Drivers across metro Detroit and the nation are paying up at the pump. Prices this year a far cry from the low prices we saw last year.

The reason gas prices are fluctuating is due in part to the pandemic. If gas prices will $3 a gallon will depend on what happens with the surge of COVID-19 in our state.

According to AAA, the lowest gas prices in Detroit came during the last week of April 2020, costing $1.41 a gallon. Demand for gas then was low, but with lockdowns and restrictions starting to lift, and vaccinations underway.

“A new AAA survey reveals that nearly half of Michigan residents, around 45 percent, are more comfortable traveling and taking trips, and one of the reasons they attribute that to is the vaccine rollout,” said Adrienne Woodland with Michigan AAA.

That, along with warm weather on the way, is pushing prices up.

Warm weather means people getting out and exploring, driving up demand. A different gasoline blend is also used in the summer -- which costs refineries more to produce.

“The one thing that we have seen since the COVID-19 and the pandemic has started, it is a very fluid situation, and things could change very rapidly,” said Woodland.

If businesses remain open, demand for gas will likely continue to go up. If they are forced to close, gas prices could decrease.

In more traditional years, gas prices usually peak between Memorial Day and the Fourth of July. If you are planning a summer trip, plan on saving up now in case prices do continue to climb.

AAA does have an online tool to look at gas prices across the nation.