Updated Sep 2, 2022 - Economy

Gas prices dip ahead of Labor Day, but here's how to save more

Illustration of a gas sign with a dollar sign for the "S"

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Gas prices have dropped for the eleventh week in a row and the national average price was $3.809 per gallon Friday, according to AAA.

Why it matters: Despite dropping from a June peak of $5.01 per gallon, regular unleaded is still nearly 63 cents higher than a year ago for the busy Labor Day travel weekend.

The big picture: Domestic travel bookings for Labor Day weekend, which include air travel, cars, cruises, hotels and tours, are up 22% from 2021 — and international travel bookings are up 104%, per AAA travel data, Axios' Erin Doherty reports.

  • 53% of Americans say they plan to travel this weekend and nearly 36% will be traveling by car, according to a recent survey from The Vacationer.

What they’re saying: “Gas prices are now $1.20 per gallon lower than mid-June with Americans spending $450 million less on gasoline every day as a result,” said Patrick De Haan, head of petroleum analysis at GasBuddy, in a statement this week.

What’s next: Weather and hurricane season “can affect prices by disrupting oil production in the Gulf of Mexico and impacting large coastal refineries,” said Andrew Gross, AAA spokesperson, in a recent statement.

From searching for the cheapest price to using loyalty programs, it's still possible to beat inflation on your fill-up. Here are some promotions that will help you save on gas.

Wawa fuel discount returns

Meanwhile, Wawa is offering loyalty members 15 cents off per gallon when they pay for gas through its app now through Oct. 30.

Details: To save, Wawa Rewards members need to use the app on their phone to activate a fuel pump and pay, the company said in a news release.

  • The discount was last offered to Wawa Rewards members for a limited time in May and June.

Be smart: Almost every major gas station chain has a loyalty program and some regularly offer savings.

Circle K Fuel Day deal

Driving the news: Circle K announced Wednesday that it would hold a Fuel Day sale for three hours Thursday, Sept. 1 — from 4 to 7pm local time — at pumps nationwide.

  • The company is offering 40 cents off per gallon at more than 3,600 Circle K branded fuel locations.

What they’re saying: “It’s been a challenging summer for travel, so we want to thank our customers for their loyalty by offering them additional savings ahead of the busy holiday weekend, ending the summer on a high note,” Nathan Woodland, head of North America Category Fuels at Circle K, said in a statement.

  • “Our Circle K Fuel Day will also kick off an entire month of deals inside our stores.”

GasBuddy, AAA apps can help find cheap gas

Check apps like GasBuddy, AAA and Gas Guru to find the cheapest gas prices before filling up.

What they’re saying: GasBuddy spokesperson Nicole Petersen advises shopping around for the best gas prices, but the cheapest station isn’t always the most convenient.

  • “Drivers can save in the range of 30 cents per gallon just by comparing prices and driving a few extra blocks,” Petersen recently told Axios.

Editor's note: This story has been updated with Friday's national average gas price and additional data.

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