GREENVILLE, SC (WSPA)–In years past, many people typically spend Labor Day in the air or on the roads. This year, a couple of gas station managers told 7NEWS, things were fairly quiet. They believe the weather is mostly the cause. However, some drivers said inflation is a big factor this year.
“Today, it’s been relatively slow. We expected it because you know people wake up a little late, but right about now we would expect a full rush hour for picking up beer and ice and snacks. Nobody has been really coming in. So, it’s been scary,” said Krut Patel, Owner of Vgo #25.
Patel said last year, they were filled with customers all day.
“I think it has to do a lot more with weather today. You know today, Labor Day, you know everybody is out at the pool, and kind of enjoying the last weekend of summer,” Patel said. “But with the weather being the way that it is, I don’t think that’s going to be the best place to be right now,” he said. “I don’t think the weather is cooperating much, but I don’t think people are traveling as much as they were before. You know, we used to see a lot of tourists coming in, into here surprisingly. We’re not seeing that as much this weekend,” he said.
Some drivers in the Upstate said prices and inflation may be why some people are hibernating inside.
“Yeah, gas prices have been all over the place. So, obviously with what’s gone on in Russia and Ukraine and stuff,” said Peter Eliya, a driver.
According to AAA’s website, in Greenville, the average for regular fuel was $3.29 a gallon on Labor Day. However, around this time last year, the average price for regular gas was $2.81. On Labor Day in Spartanburg, the average price for regular gas was, $3.34 a gallon, verses $2.85 a year ago.
One driver said she’s happy prices have gone down in the last few weeks.
“I’m just happy that it has come from being so high, considering how much gas I do put in my car,” said Brittney Brackett, a driver. “I do a lot of travel, so it’s great for me when I don’t have to pay almost $5.00 a gallon,” she said.
Eliya said he was on his way to Virginia on Monday. He said he’s concerned about diesel gas. The average cost for diesel was $4.81 a gallon in Greenville, compared to $2.99 a gallon last year.
“Things are looking good right now, prices are going down, which is great, gas prices are going down, diesel prices are still up, which I’m filling up right now,” Eliya said. “Worried about truckers and the cost that passes on to everything else that it goes into,” he said. “I heard there’s an issue just keeping up with the demand for it, with all of the truckers, with all of the shortages they had,” he said.
“My friend works in trucking so he was telling me all about it. It’s causing all prices to kind of go up, because diesel goes into like 70 percent of the products we buy–food is produced by using a lot of diesel. Everything is shipped to all of our stores with diesel, so diesel is really a critical resource for our country,” Eliya said.
Whether it’s weather, or somewhat higher prices than last year, some drivers said either way, nothing is going to block them from traveling.
“Living life! Yeah, it’s not going to stop me,” Brackett said.
Click here to see the average gas prices for your county. You can also see the national average, as well.
An AAA representative tells 7NEWS, according to their 4th of July forecast, it showed more people are traveling this holiday season than last year. The representative did state they do not calculate Labor Day.