Gas price spike forces drivers to get creative

By Stefano DiPietrantonio – bio |email|Facebook

MONFORT HEIGHTS, OH (FOX19) - Gas prices took, yet another giant leap upward this week. That's bad news for any of us filling up your gas tanks.

And that's just the beginning. Gas prices jumped almost a quarter in the last few days.

Some folks though, are getting creative in their spending, even as some retailer bail under the economic strains.

The signs are everywhere, especially at the former Super America on North Bend Avenue in Monfort Heights, which is boarded-up now. Not only are consumers feeling pressure at the pump, but even some of those who are selling it, are literally running out of gas.

"Ten dollars," said John Kroeger, who was pre-paying at the Shell station next door. And as fast as that ten dollar bill slipped from his hand, he knew his return at the pump would be slim.

"My spending money, savings money, yeah," he said, as he went to put the gas in his tank.

He could not even count to 30 and the ten dollars was already in his tank.

"We didn't even make 3," he lamented. "Not even 3 gallons."

"It's pretty disappointing," he said. "But I gotta do it, otherwise, I don't have rides anywhere."

The Shell station owner said he's been called every name in the book, each time he's had to up his prices to stay competitive.

"Cigarettes yeah, even the lottery tickets," he said will still sell well, despite the rise in gas prices. Otherwise, sales of other goods at his convenience store have been steadily falling with the rising gas prices.

"It's almost four dollars!," yelled Andrew Roehrich, who can only use premium gas in his car.

"Well, it was $3.59, and I got some off with the Kroger Plus Card, which is kind of good, that's helpful. I think it makes a difference if you are able to use it all the time, but I kind of steal it from my parents because they go to Krogers more than I do," he laughed.

Speedway and almost every other gas company, offers some sort of rewards program, where you can save up to a dime or more per gallon.

"So, on ten gallons it's a buck you know," he laughed.

It's a far cry from the good old cheap gas days.

"But I remember being in high school and it being under a dollar," he sighed.

"I put 9 gallons in," he said looking amazed. "That was 34 dollars, that's pretty crazy!"

Another man we ran into at the same station drives a 28 gallon truck, which takes about 80 bucks to fill-up. His company pays for that twice a week.

"I could drive close to 40 miles a day," he said. "Do you think there will be a point where your company's going to say, hey...," we asked.

"Yeah, " he said. "Cut your driving down, consolidate your work."

The new spike is forcing many people to look at sharing rides, carpooling, driving only when they absolutely have to.

With that potential "five-dollars-by-summer" looming out there, we may all have to get even more creative about our driving habits.

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