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Holiday gas prices offer travelers good news

Thanksgiving travelers and other motorists may jump out of their seats in joy this week over the average price of unleaded regular gasoline.

The state of Georgia’s average price is $3.26 a gallon, a 9-cent drop from last week, said Jessica Brady, spokesperson for AAA’s The Auto Club Group.

Florida’s average price is $3.36 a gallon, a decrease of 5 cents, while Tennessee’s price is at $3.17 a gallon, a 7-cent decline, she said.

The nation’s average price for unleaded regular gasoline is $3.35 a gallon, which is a decrease of 7 cents from the week prior, Brady added.

“Thanksgiving travelers will get a bit of a break at the pump this year,” she said. “Although a gallon of gas costs more than last year, motorists shouldn’t see prices spike before Thanksgiving. There’s a good chance gas prices will continue to drop into Wednesday.”

She said crude oil prices topped $101 last week, but quickly fell back under $100 after the euro’s value fell, and European leaders recognized that the resolution of the debt crisis would be a longer process than anticipated.

Oil prices settled at $97.41 a barrel on Friday, Nov. 18, on the New York Mercantile Exchange, $3.15 more than last week, she said.

Oil prices keep inching up on a weekly basis, but gas prices keep falling on lackluster demand levels, said Brady. Demand for gasoline is 3.6 percent behind a year ago, which has helped keep pump prices lower, she said.

Diesel fuel demand, on the contrary, has boosted its price, because of infrastructure development worldwide, said Brady. This demand caused diesel prices to near $4 a gallon, she explained.