Tommy Mann Jr.
The Orange Leader
Gas prices continue to fall across Texas and Orange County has the most affordable fuel in the state.
Retail gasoline prices across Texas have continued its recent slide as prices decreased by another five cents this past week. According to AAA Texas, the average price at the pump has slipped to $3.18 per gallon the Associated Press reported.
The timing could not be better as not only are gas prices, lower, but airfares are down, hotel rooms are a smidgen cheaper and money is tight all around, but 43.6 million Americans still plan to travel the United States for the approaching Thanksgiving holiday.
“Thanksgiving travel hit a decade low in 2008 when only 37.8 million Americans traveled,” AAA President Robert Darbelnet said in a statement. “Since that year we have seen a steady increase in the number of travelers taking to the roads and skies for the holiday. Americans continue to find ways to economize their budgets.”
Nine out of 10 people who told AAA they plan to travel more than 50 miles said they would travel by car, and the automobile club said the average price of unleaded gasoline is expected to be between $3.25 and $3.40 per gallon. This is a decrease of nearly 40 cents per gallon since the beginning of October.
Not only are state-wide fuel prices lower, but gasoline prices across the country are also lower with the nationwide average down 2 cents, to settle at $3.44 per gallon.
The association survey found El Paso has the most expensive gasoline statewide this week at $3.33 per gallon. The cheapest gasoline is in Beaumont at $3.06 per gallon.
Locally, fuel prices are even lower as a survey of 66 fuel locations revealed an average price of slightly more than $3.02 per gallon in Orange County.
A survey of more than two dozen fuel locations in the Orange area, which includes West Orange, Pinehurst and Little Cypress, revealed an average price of $3.01 per gallon for regular unleaded gasoline. The least expensive advertised price was $2.95 at a fuel location on 16th Street in Orange, while a convenience store in downtown Orange had the most expensive at $3.39 per gallon.
A survey of four fuel locations in Mauriceville revealed an average price of $3.11 per gallon, with the least expensive advertised price of $3.07 at a convenience store on State Highway 12 and the most expensive price, $3.19 per gallon, at a store on State Highway 62.
A survey of more than 20 fuel stops in Vidor, Rose City and Pine Forest revealed an average price of $3.02 per gallon with several convenience stores having the lowest advertised price at $2.97 per gallon. The most expensive advertised price was $3.39 per gallon at the truck stop in Rose City.
In the Bridge City and Orangefield area, a survey of 15 fuel stops revealed an average price of $3.00 per gallon of unleaded gasoline. The least expensive advertised price was $2.92 per gallon at a convenience store on Texas Avenue in Bridge City. The most expensive advertised price was $3.19 at the convenience store located at FM 1442 and Interstate 10.
Officials with AAA Texas say lower crude oil prices, reduced demand for fuel and economic growth concerns continue to pressure gasoline prices. The association predicts retail gasoline prices will fall even more during next week’s busy Thanksgiving holiday travel period.