$50 fill-ups: Gas prices remain high for Thanksgiving as fewer expected to drive this year

Investigators

RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — Thanksgiving is looming and this year, it appears fewer people will take to the roads than they did last year during the holiday break.

When it comes to gas prices, it’s also costing us a lot more to fill up than it did last year at this time.

According to a Gas Buddy survey, gas prices are still historically high but they are beginning to drop slowly as we move close to the holiday.

“I just filled up my tank and it was $50,” said driver Erica Lally, who is frustrated by gas prices.

For many, gas prices are hurting their wallets despite a recent small drop.

“Prices in Raleigh are down an average of 2 cents a compared to last week, but they’re still high,” said Gas Buddy’s chief petroleum analyst Patrick DeHaan.

According to Gas Buddy’s annual Thanksgiving Day price survey, the average price of $3.35 a gallon Friday is close to what it was on Thanksgiving 2011 when it averaged $3.32 a gallon.

Last year on Thanksgiving, gas was $1.25 lower, averaging $2.11 cents a gallon.

“I could usually fill up around $35-ish now I’m over $50,” said driver Warren Rhem.

If you’re looking to travel this holiday, it pays to be a gas procrastinator this year.

“Don’t fill up early,” said DeHaan. “Fill up late, because they (prices) will continue to decline.”

Lally said she’s staying home for the holiday because gas prices are playing a role.

“Gas is expensive,” she said.

Gas Buddy found only 32 percent of people will travel by road this holiday — that’s even fewer than traveled by car last year.

“Fifty-one percent of people told us high gas prices will impact their travel this year,” said DeHaan. “I think people will be staying closer to home.”

Oil prices today are running at about $75 a barrel.

DeHaan says if that crude oil price trend continues, we could see prices for gas fall below $3 a gallon in central North Carolina very soon.

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