Impact of gas prices on Memorial Day travel in Southwest Florida

Reporter: Asha Patel Writer: Joey Pellegrino
Gas station in Southwest Florida. Credit: WINK News

You may want to hit the road for Memorial Day weekend, but will gas prices put the brakes on your plans?

The price for a gallon of gas is not stopping everyone from hitting the road. More than 2 million people in Florida are expected to travel on Memorial Day weekend. According to AAA, it’s predicted to be the busiest in three years despite Florida recently hitting a record high in gas prices, leaving some people with the difficult choice of deciding between gas or groceries.

One driver WINK News spoke to, John Sterious, says it’s a struggle right now. He says his family had to cancel its plans for Memorial Day because gas prices are just too high for traveling.

“I have a lot of family over on the east coast,” Sterious said. “And when I say the east coast, like the Stuart area, so we have not been able to do some of those trips that we like, and so we haven’t been able to see family. And it’s heartbreaking, because I’m very close with my family, and I know they would like to actually come over here, too. And then same thing applies to them, so it’s just tough all around.”

Officials say people feel more comfortable traveling these days because more people are vaccinated and tired of spending their holidays at home without seeing friends and family. Ronald Ennis and his wife have their truck packed up and ready to travel this weekend. He says that although gas prices are taking a toll on him, he’s still traveling, but he’s being more selective.

“You got to pick and choose what trips you take, because of the price,” Ennis said. “You can’t travel every weekend like you could when it was, you know, $2 a gallon. That’s really what you’d have to do. You don’t have any other choice.”

Copyright ©2024 Fort Myers Broadcasting. All rights reserved.

This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without prior written consent.