QC Gas Prices Lower This Memorial Day - News and Weather For The Quad Cities -

QC Gas Prices Lower This Memorial Day

Posted: Updated: May 26, 2014 11:26 PM
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Memorial Day traditionally kicks off the busy summer travel season for motorists, and drivers on the roads around here at least are feeling less pain at the pump this year.

That actually bucks the national trend.

According to GasBuddy.com, the national average for a gallon of regular now is $3.64. That's about two cents cheaper than it was this time last year, and within a few cents of where it was the year before that, too.

But, if you've filled up in our area for Memorial Day weekend travel, you know first hand that prices around here have changed dramatically.

The average price for a gallon of regular gas in the Quad Cities metro today is $3.47. That's a full 40 cents less than the $3.87 we were paying on Memorial Day last year.

Many drivers we talked to were happy to have that relief.

"I think it's good for the economy and good for people that want to travel and are getting ready to go out of town and stuff," said Alex Pena, a Davenport resident who was filling up his gas tank on Memorial Day.

"It's a big drop. It really helps out a lot," agreed Dana Hayden, another Davenport resident filling up on Monday.

"For us, it's nice to have it a little expensive than it was last year," said Moline resident Jacob Bancks, who was with his three children filling up the tank of their van Monday afternoon.. "We're already down to one car which we're really glad that it doesn't hit us worse than it does."

Those savings can add up to a big difference for some drivers and their families.

"Maybe we'll have to add a trip, you guys,what do you think? If the gas prices go down should we go back to South Dakota?" Bancks asked his children, to which they responded, "Yeah!"

Still, some drivers we talked to said these prices aren't worth celebrating yet.

"They're alright, but they could go lower," said one of them, Adam Day, of Davenport.

"I just hope it keeps going down," Hayden said.

The question, of course, is whether the local prices now a sign of lower gas prices ahead.

"If it's lower than it was last year, then that means we're getting a deal," said Moline resident Melody Panno.

"It seems like things are moving in the right direction," Bancks said.

Looking at the historical data, though, it's hard to say what will happen in the future. A lot of factors are at play when it comes to the price at the pump.

"I don't understand why fuel costs so much," Day said. "I mean, I understand it's supply and demand, but, if the oil comes from America, why do we have to charge Americans that?," he asked.

Despite steady national gas prices this Memorial Day weekend, the crude oil price is actually up about 6 dollars a barrel from the same time last year.

But, that was offset at the pump by increased supplies from U.S. Refineries. For the four weeks ending May 16, crude oil inputs into U.S. refineries totaled 15.9 million barrels per day, 0.8 million bbl/d higher than a year earlier, according to a report from the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

"And it's good that it happened on this time of the year, because as a veteran, we all deserve a break," said Demetrius Cuevas, as he filled up his tank on Memorial Day, "so I would say 'Thank you.'"

And there may be something else to be thankful for now, too.

Analysts predict that gas prices, at least on the national level, should stay lower than last year's peak price of $3.79 a gallon in late February.

That said, drivers around here know the national average doesn't always directly translate to local prices:

"You can travel across town and notice a difference," said Day.

So locally, motorists say they will continue to find whatever savings they can.

"I'm always looking for the cheapest price," Panno said.

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