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U.S. Drivers to Get Hit by Soaring Pump Prices over Memorial Day Holiday

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by Stephanie Kelly

U.S. motorists will see the highest gasoline prices in seven years when they hit the roads this Memorial Day weekend, the traditional start of the summer driving season, as fuel demand surges alongside coronavirus vaccination rates.

Retail gasoline prices are at about $3.04 a gallon on average nationwide, the most expensive since 2014, data from the American Automobile Association showed.

And after a year of lockdowns to curb the coronavirus pandemic, tens of millions of American road-trippers are expected to be stung by those prices: More than 34 million Americans are expected to take to the highways between May 27 and May 31, AAA expects, an increase of 53% from last year but still down 10% from 2019.

“Ahead of Memorial Day, gas demand is expected to rise as more Americans take to the roads for trips that may have been delayed or avoided because of the pandemic,” said Devin Gladden, AAA spokesperson.

U.S. gasoline demand is running at about 9.48 million barrels per day, the highest since March 2020, when U.S. officials began widely restricting travel, Energy Information Administration data showed.

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