Labor Day weekend sees high prices at the pump
BETHESDA, Md. (NBC) -- It's starting to seem like a rite of summer travel.
Just about the time a three-day weekend comes around gas prices suddenly go up.
In this case, we've never seen pump prices this high for a Labor Day weekend - and they took a big jump this week.
The last great escape of summer 2012 and if your mode of transportation involves tires - it turns out a Labor Day getaway has never been more expensive.
The national average is now $3.83 a gallon, up 10 cents in a week, 30 cents in a month.
Hurricane Isaac gets much of the blame, as it took aim at Louisiana, oil rigs, refineries, even a critical pipeline shut down.
While they escaped unharmed, the down-time pushed prices higher.
Add in a ruptured pipeline in Wisconsin, refinery problems in the Midwest, a fire at a California last month and an expensive summer blend - it all spells, higher prices.
It all spells higher prices.
"american states are with the highest prices we've ever seen them going into labor day weekend for much of the united states,” said Patrick Dehaan of the website Gas Buddy.
In Los Angeles, the average is now $4.16 a gallon.
GasBuddy.com's heat map shows the least to most expensive states at the pump - from a low of $3.51 in Colorado, to $3.78 in Massachusetts, $3.97 in New York and $4.15 in both California and Illinois - the highest in the country.
In Chicago, they're near $4.34!
"I have to make changes with how i buy food, how i do my bills."
Triple-A calculated that if you're driving from Atlanta to Kansas City in a 2008 Toyota van , you'll pay about $190 in fuel. (799 miles)
The same vehicle driving from New York to Chicago , you'll pay roughly $200.
Driving from Spokane, Wa to Palm Springs would run you about $358 in fuel. (1418 miles).
The good news is that gas prices aren't expected to stay this high. As refineries switch to the less expensive winter blend and inventories rise, pump prices should come down.
"Between Thanksgiving and Christmas , the national average range may drop to the mid- $3 range, and certainly in some areas, even lower than that.,” said DeHaan.
In the short-term, getting around is going to cost a little more.