Gas prices in Buffalo hit the $3.00 mark, expected to continue rising through Memorial Day

Posted at 5:41 AM, May 24, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-24 19:23:33-04

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — Gas prices in Buffalo have hit the $3.00 mark and experts don't think they will start to fall any time soon.

According to AAA Western and Central New York, the cost of a gallon of gas in Buffalo increased approximately four cents in the last week. It's the same in Batavia.

"Demand is way up. So if you consider demand, even compared to a year ago, people weren't really out and about so much, so demand is way up. Last year, oil prices plummeted to below $0.00 per barrel. They were in negative territory. They've sense recovered so oil prices are back up," Elizabeth Carey, Director of Public Relations and Corporate Communications for AAA Western and Central New York, said.

While AAA said there is an ample supply of gas in the United States, there are issues getting gas where it needs to be.

"Even though the Colonial Pipeline is back up and running, there's a shortage of delivery drivers, a shortage of truckers across the country so it's still hard to deliver the gasoline to different places and that pushes up the prices too," Carey said.

Statewide, the average gas price is approximately $3.07 per gallon, higher than the national average of $3.04. Both have roughly remained steady in the last week, only changing by one cent.

"We are basically right on par now with what we were paying in 2018. Three years ago today the average price in Buffalo was $2.99 as well. We're just about on par with pre-COVID or 2018 high prices. We may go a little bit higher as well," Patrick De Haan, Head of Petroleum Analysis for GasBuddy, said.

New data from the Energy Information Administration shows demand is up while supply is down ahead of Memorial Day Weekend, in which more than 37 million Americans are expected to travel more than 50 miles by road or by air.

Experts say the lingering effects of the Colonial Pipeline ransomware attack are expected to play a role in increasing prices; they recommend fueling up early this week before prices go up again for the holiday weekend.

"We could see a few cents even before Memorial Day so it's a good idea to get your gas now," Carey said.

Experts said shop around for the best price in order to save this weekend. You can track the prices near you by clicking here.

"Prices are going up in some places, so even if you stay local in Buffalo shop around before you fill your tank but especially if you're heading out of the state, as soon as you cross those state lines, gas prices can vary by 20-30 cents per gallon," De Hann said.

Luckily, AAA said gas prices could drop a little after the holiday weekend.

"They should taper off and they should be lower, by lets say a few cents, by fathers day and then maybe a few cents after that. Then we have to see what the demand is for the summer driving season," Carey said.