Midwesterners Still Planning Summer Travel Despite Rising Gas Prices

Mans Hand holding Cash while Refueling Vehicle

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OMAHA, Nebraska -- It appears gas prices near or above $4.00 a gallon aren't doing much to keep people from planning summer driving trips.

"Obviously we hope that the trend will reverse itself, but with holiday travel coming up what we're seeing is that people want to get out--that this doesn't seem to be hindering travel," says Brian Ortner with the Omaha, Nebraska office of the AAA Auto Club.

He says they'll have a better idea of just how many people will be hitting the road--going 50 miles or more from home--when AAA's official Memorial Day travel forecast comes out next week.

"Compared to last year the numbers of people traveling, and making plans to travel, has increased," Ortner says.

As for the recent jump in gas prices across the Midwest--and the nation--Ortner says there's a familiar cause.

"What we're seeing is that with the cost of oil accounting for more than half of the pump price, more expensive oil means more expensive gasoline," he says.

With oil prices at closing on in $110 a barrel, AAA says pump prices are creeping closer to those record highs of early March.

They say the national average for regular unleaded gasoline on May 11th is a record high $4.40 a gallon--well above the $2.99 national average of a year ago.

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