BOSTON (May 9, 2019) – With the national average price of gasoline seeing its largest seasonal rise since 2011, motorists are probably ready for a well-deserved break when it comes to rising gas prices. GasBuddy, the only smartphone app connecting drivers with their Perfect Pit Stop, today predicts that relief is likely just days away from beginning in some areas of the country while others may lag behind, but that most areas will see lower prices ushered in by Memorial Day.
“It’s been a rough spring at the pump with prices advancing at a maddening pace and multi-year highs happening in more places than I can count on two hands,” said Patrick DeHaan, head of petroleum analysis at GasBuddy. “We’re cautiously optimistic now that the worst is behind us and relief is on the horizon for nearly every area in the country. Motorists shouldn’t get too impatient- this won’t happen overnight- but as stations begin to fill their tanks with slightly cheaper gasoline, they’ll begin to pass the savings on, just in time for Memorial Day and beyond.”
The year-to-date rise in gasoline prices hasn’t been this bad in years; 2018: 33c/gal, 2017: 1c/gal, 2016: 22c/gal, 2015: 43c/gal, 2014: 35c/gal, 2013: 24c/gal, 2012: 49c/gal, 2011: 92c/gal, 2010: 27c/gal, 2009: 55c/gal, (Decade average: 41c/gal). The seasonal rise in gasoline prices has been enhanced this year by myriad issues: rising oil prices (Iran sanctions, OPEC production cuts and rising demand, just to name a few), refinery maintenance that stretches from March to May resulting in less gasoline being produced as inspections, repairs and upgrades are performed and the switch to summer gasoline. Some refiners are continuing maintenance into late-May, so while the coast may be clear for many, it’s not there for everyone just yet.
While the West Coast has been particularly hard hit as unexpected outages combined with normal maintenance has led to tight gasoline inventories and skyrocketing prices, prices are about to start dropping in those hardest hit areas first- with the usual caveat that further outages could interrupt that relief. Gas prices in California will likely drop back under $4 per gallon by the time gas stations have fully passed along the lower prices in the weeks ahead, and hopefully won’t see such prices again all summer as refineries ramp up production, leading to an increase in supply.
Most states will see average gas prices begin to tiptoe lower in the next few weeks, continuing into June as supplies of summer gasoline build. Barring a major reversal, it appears that, for the time being, a national average of $3 per gallon is off the table after coming within 10 cents of it both last year and this year.
GasBuddy is a company that connects drivers with their Perfect Pit Stop. As the leading source for crowdsourced, real-time fuel prices at more than 150,000 gas station convenience stores in the U.S., Canada and Australia, millions of drivers use the GasBuddy app and website every day to find gas station convenience stores based on fuel prices, location and ratings/reviews. GasBuddy’s first-of- its-kind fuel savings program, Pay with GasBuddy, has saved Americans more than $6 million at the pumps since its launch in 2017. The company’s business solutions suite, GasBuddy Business Pages, provides Fuel Marketers and Retailers their best opportunity to maintain their station information, manage their brand, and promote to their target consumer audience. For more information, visit http://www.gasbuddy.com.