Gas prices dip as Memorial Day weekend nears: AAA

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Drivers got a break at the pump this week as fuel prices dropped just ahead of the official start of the summer driving season, according to the latest AAA report. 

The national average cost for a gallon of gas declined to $3.64, a slight three-cent decrease from the previous week. The drop comes as oil prices dropped below $80 a barrel and demand for gas held steady.

AAA said slack demand, rising supply and falling oil prices could push pump prices lower into Memorial Day weekend, the official start of the summer driving season. 

“The current news cycle is jam-packed, so not having gas prices in the mix should be a welcome relief,” AAA spokesperson Andrew Gross said. “Most consumers will probably see pump prices barely budging for now. That’s important because, on May 13, AAA will release the Memorial Day travel forecast, which could be a robust weekend for car trips.”  

If you’re trying to lower your overall auto costs, you could consider switching auto insurance providers. You can visit Credible to compare quotes from different companies without affecting your credit score. 

MIDDLE-INCOME AMERICANS FEEL MORE OPTIMISM ABOUT FINANCES AND ECONOMY’S DIRECTION: SURVEY

These states paid the most for gas

Gas costs for motorists nationwide fluctuated, with some states tallying higher averages than others. These 10 states have the most significant fluctuations in prices:

  • Indiana (+13 cents)
  • Florida (-12 cents)
  • Ohio (+9 cents)
  • Delaware (-8 cents)
  • New Mexico (-7 cents)
  • Maryland (-7 cents)
  • Utah (-7 cents)
  • Tennessee (-6 cents)
  • Nevada (-6 cents)
  • Texas (-6 cents)

These 10 states had the most expensive gas

  • California ($5.31)
  • Hawaii ($4.81)
  • Washington ($4.65)
  • Nevada ($4.49)
  • Oregon ($4.44)
  • Alaska ($4.39)
  • Arizona ($3.99)
  • Illinois ($3.93)
  • Idaho ($3.86)
  • Utah ($3.83)

Shopping for cheaper auto insurance is another way drivers can lower the cost of owning a car. You could consider changing your auto insurance provider if you want to save money on your auto costs. Visit Credible to find your personalized premium without affecting your credit score.

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No relief in car insurance costs

The break in gas prices should be a welcome relief to drivers who are dealing with rising costs across other areas of the economy.  

Car insurance rates, in particular, continue to increase. Drivers paid an average of $1,841 to insure a car in 2023, or 5% more than they did the previous year, according to a recent report from the Zebra. That comes after a 15% jump between 2022 and 2023. Unfortunately, according to the report, 2024 will likely bring more of the same. 

Premiums have risen in sync with auto claim losses and expenses. In 2022, these costs spiked to more than $1.12 for every $1 premium, according to an American Property Casualty Insurance Association survey.

“Over the last five years, the cost of car parts and used cars and trucks increased nearly 40% and the cost of vehicle repairs increased by more than 20%,” APCIA said. “Other key cost drivers include higher numbers of car thefts and more complex and expensive repairs due to the increasing sophistication of the technology in today’s vehicles.”

Drivers can take proactive steps to try to lower their insurance costs by following these tips: 

  1. Contact your insurance company or agent for a policy review.
  2. Shop around with other insurers to see if there is a better match for coverage and cost.
  3. Increase your deductible and lower non-essential coverage like glass, rental car and roadside service.
  4. If you’re driving less, consider usage-based insurance.
  5. Ask your insurer if they have billing method discounts or other discount programs

One way to lower your overall cost of car ownership is to shop for cheaper auto insurance, which can help reduce your monthly premiums. Visit Credible to compare your options without affecting your credit score.

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Have a finance-related question, but don’t know who to ask? Email The Credible Money Expert at [email protected] and your question might be answered by Credible in our Money Expert column.

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