Gas prices inch up

LIHUE — Gas price averages increased slightly throughout the islands this past week, according to the AAA Hawaii Weekend Gas Watch.

Today’s statewide average price for a gallon of regular unleaded is $3.07, up 2 cents from last Thursday and 3 cents more on this date a month ago. Today’s state average price is 34 cents higher than on this date a year ago, according to GasPrices.AAA.com.

The price for one gallon of regular gasoline in Lihue on Thursday varied from $3.29 at 76 Gas Station to $3.37 at Shell. Princeville’s North Shore General Store was charging $3.59, and Kalaheo’s Aloha Island Mart charged $3.37.

“At least it’s not as high as it was five years ago,” said Patty Lingaton, who pumped fuel at a Lihue Shell station on Kuhio Highway. “My truck eats a lot of gas, but I still have to get around.”

In Honolulu, Thursday’s average price for regular was $2.90, which was up a penny since last Thursday, the same price on this date last month and 37 cents higher than last year.

The Hilo average price was $3.09, which was 1 cent higher than last Thursday, six cents higher on this date last month and 33 cents higher than on this date a year ago. Wailuku’s average was $3.50, which was 2 cents higher than last Thursday, 2 cents higher on this date a month ago, and 22 cents higher than on this date a year ago.

“Hawaii (at $3.07 a gallon) remains the nation’s most expensive market for retail gasoline. Drivers in the state are paying 10 cents more per gallon than second-place California ($2.96). Regional neighbors, Washington ($2.83), Alaska ($2.81), Oregon ($2.69) and Nevada ($2.63) join in the rankings as the top six most expensive markets,” said AAA Hawaii general manager Liane Sumida.

“In other West Coast oil, gas and travel news, the Oil Price Information Service reports that Oregon refiners are ramping up production in anticipation of an expected tourist spike related to the total solar eclipse later this month. This will be the first total solar eclipse in the continental U.S. since 1979, and the Oregon Department of Energy anticipates it will draw about one million visitors to that state,” Sumida said.

The highest price for gas on record for AAA in Honolulu was $4.48 on May 8, 2011.

Average prices are derived from fleet vehicle credit card transactions at more than 120,000 stations around the country.

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