PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Gas prices have recorded their biggest one week increase since Hurricane Katrina in 2005.
“It’s totally ridiculous, man,” said Anthony Pollard. He is feeling the pinch at the pump, like many other motorists. “I’m putting $50 in here today. And that’ll probably get me half a tank.”
Pollard owns a Chevy pickup. His other vehicle is a gas-guzzling Lincoln, and he refuses to drive that until prices come back down, which may not be anytime soon.
AAA Mid-Atlantic’s Rick Remington says prices jumped 21-22 cents nationally and 18 cents in the Delaware Valley over the past week.
Remington says there’s a lot of volatility out there, so drivers would be wise to shop around.
“We’re seeing prices vary from $3.14 in South Jersey to $3.50 in Philadelphia. So within about a 15-20 minute drive, quite a spread.”
Industry experts predict we could see prices head up to the $3.75 zone by April.
And if you’re booking a flight anytime soon, be prepared for a little sticker shock.
Blame the higher cost of jet fuel. Delta started the latest wave of fare hikes by raising prices up to $20 a flight Thursday. American Airlines went with a $10 increase — and then United, Continental and US Airways also kicked up fares by $10 bucks.
Jet fuel prices are at their highest March levels since 2008.
Tom Parsons of www.bestfares.com says that means leisure travelers should be doing their shopping now.
“If you’re traveling in summer, you better be poking around right now and hope you can lock in a great airfare.”
Right now analysts say demand remains strong — but if prices continue to climb, leisure travelers may decide not to fly.
Reported by Paul Kurtz and Mike DeNardo, KYW Newsradio