Gas prices skyrocket ahead of Labor Day; Californians paying highest prices ever

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LOS ANGELES (NewsNation Now) — Ahead of Labor Day, AAA projected that consumers traveling over this weekend aren’t going to get any relief at the pump.

Californians are paying the highest price per gallon of gas ever for this time of year — $5.79 for regular.

“I looked at the sign, and I see how much the gas was, and I said, ‘What?'” said Kamar Facey, a California motorist.

Facey isn’t alone in his state of price shock. He was almost empty, so he had to get gas on the west side of Los Angeles, where gas is near $6 a gallon. His $10 got less than two gallons.

“I’m gonna do $10 right here, just so I have gas in my tank so my car won’t shut down, and then go somewhere else, later on, to get some more gas and fill up,” Facey told NewsNation.

Prices aren’t only up in California; drivers across the country are paying far more than usual for fuel, just as an estimated 43 million Americans hit the road over the Labor Day weekend.

“Even when gas prices are high headed into a holiday weekend, that does not deter most people from traveling because so many people make their plans way in advance before they know what the pump prices are going to be,” explained Dough Shupe, AAA Southern California spokesperson.

According to AAA, the current national average for regular gas is $3.18 a gallon, almost a dollar more than last year. However, California’s average jumped by more than a dollar to hit a new average high of $4.40.

Hurricane Ida has complicated the situation in the southeast. Around New Orleans, long lines are forming long before stations even open. 

Overall, prices are expected to drop along with high demand after this weekend.

“It’s horrible for the other businesses that would’ve gotten my money. Why do I want to give these people my money? I could give a restaurant or one of the places on Melrose, I could give a lot of other people my money,” said Nathan Flynn, a California motorist.

Along with restaurants, AAA expects higher gas prices also to impact hotels and retail spending.

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