A perfect storm is brewing to create Hurricane Chill Session this summer.
El Niño is nowhere to be seen, the economy is perking up, and local gas prices are more than $1 lower per gallon than they were at this time last year, according to pump comparison site GasBuddy.
The site revealed the results of its annual summer travel survey. It found that, because of the favorable prices, about one in four respondents said they would take advantage and hit the road.
Slightly more than half are traveling to “relax” and for leisure, GasBuddy found. And more than a third of you plan to take at least two road trips this season.
“Motorists will be filling up their tanks with the cheapest summer gasoline since 2005, and we are finding that more people than ever will be taking advantage by hitting the road,” said Patrick DeHaan, senior petroleum analyst for GasBuddy.
Late last week the Auto Club of Southern California reported that L.A. was experiencing dropping prices, a rarity in spring, as a result of extra refining capacity. Torrance's ExxonMobil refinery came back online recently after last year's debilitating explosion.
The Auto Club recorded L.A.-Long Beach prices of $2.837 a gallon last week.
“There’s no doubt this year has experienced one of the mildest Southern California spring gas price spikes in recent memory, thanks to consistently lower oil prices and reduced worldwide demand that has contained the price for the fuel we have had to import in recent months,” said Auto Club spokesman Jeffrey Spring.
Now for the bad news.
Oil prices are bouncing back. If that continues, we'll probably feel it at the pump.
And even with fuel relatively cheap, at least compared with the past, L.A. continues to have some of the highest prices in America.
Personal finance site NerdWallet says we had the second-highest pump prices in the nation in 2015. The Los Angeles market average was $3.39 a gallon, the site said. The national average was — gulp — $2.24.
Only Kodiak, Alaska ($3.54) beat us.
So hit the road, be safe, and enjoy it while you can.