WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – Gas prices are up 10% compared to a month ago, and multiple factors are contributing to the increase in rates.
The average price of gas in Kansas was $3.65 today compared to $3.24 a month ago.
The spike can partially be attributed to summer blend fuel, which is more expensive.
People also travel more in the summer, which means more gas is needed.
“Overdemand is probably influencing this market as well besides summer deliverables here,” said Jeremy Hill, the director of the Center for Economic Development and Business Research at Wichita State University.
Less gas is available because of international cutbacks in oil, according to the American Automobile Association. Extremely high temperatures are also putting stress on oil producers.
“Those high temperatures are not ideal for oil refining, so some refineries have had to scale back their production a little bit,” said Shawn Steward, a spokesperson for AAA Kansas. “That’s impacted the supply of oil and gas.”
Higher demand and less supply ultimately drove up prices.
The high prices are adding more strain to households struggling to keep up with inflation.
Jeremy McTaggart’s car takes about 20 gallons of gas each time he fills up.
“So if you drive as much as I do and fill up two or three times during the week, it gets pretty costly,” McTaggart said.
With rising gas prices and inflation, he’s had to make some hard decisions and cut back on vacations.
“It’s frustrating because anything that cuts into my pocket means less money that I can put away for my retirement, less money I can spend on things I enjoy,” McTaggart said.
For many, driving is a necessity that can’t be avoided.
“It’s really tricky right now. You’ve got to do what you’ve got to do to go to places, drive to places,” said Elijah, who is a driver.
Fuel prices will likely go down again in September, when summer blend gas will be phased out, and travel will decrease, according to AAA.