Increase in Gas Prices May Spark More Family Staycations

Increasing gas prices may prompt travelers to pump the breaks and put a halt on their plans for a road trip. Gas prices could take a bite out of the travel market if American families pull back on spring and summer road trips.

According to AAA, gas near Yosemite National park in California, is already running close to $4.50 per gallon for regular. The east coast isn’t any better. In Washington, DC, the average price for gas has risen 40 cents over the last month to $3.68.

Business may drop a bit as people tailor their plans to suit their budgets if fuel prices stay high and continue to rise. For some, staying closer to home may be an option. That’s what travelers did during the summer of 2008 when fuel prices reached record highs, according to AAA national spokesman Troy Green in a recent CNN.com article.

Still, Americans have a strong desire to travel, and those who book months in advance are likely to go, possibly cutting back on spending for lodging, dining or incidentals.

AAA won’t issue a travel forecast until a few weeks before Memorial Day. In the summer of 2008, the automobile club forecasted a slight decrease in travel for Memorial Day, July Fourth and Labor Day due to economic woes and gas prices hovering around $4 a gallon.

Will history repeat itself? Will travelers rely on staycations for family getaways this summer? We’ll keep you posted. In the meantime, plan ahead and check out Travel Channel’s one-tank wonders and family staycations.

What are your travel plans this spring and summer? Will rising gas prices affect your next trip? Tell us. We want to know!

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Kwin MosbyKwin is Managing Producer of TravelChannel.com. His multimedia career has included working as a TV news reporter/producer and publications editor. What inspires Kwin to travel? It’s relaxing beach locations, vibrant...

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