- Florida is experiencing a significant drop in gas prices as it enters one of its busiest Thanksgiving travel weeks, with the average price per gallon at $3.04, the lowest since late December 2022.
- AAA reports that more than half of the gas stations in Florida are offering gas below $3 a gallon and anticipate stable low prices through the holidays, barring any sudden spikes in oil prices.
- The company also projects a near-record number of motorists on Florida roads during the holiday period, with an estimated 2.77 million Floridians traveling more than 50 miles by car.
- Air travel is also expected to be busy, with more than 209,000 Floridians flying, though this number is still below pre-pandemic levels.
As Florida gears up for one of its busiest Thanksgiving travel weeks on record, motorists are receiving an unexpected holiday bonus: a significant drop in gas prices, reaching a new low for 2023.
The average price for a gallon of gas in the Sunshine State is now $3.04, the lowest recorded price point since late December 2022, and 37 cents cheaper than during the same period last year. AAA largely attributed the downturn in prices primarily to the plummeting cost of crude oil, which decreased from $93 per barrel in late September to $72 last week. In August, the state average reached a new 2023 high of $3.84 per gallon – topping the previous high of $3.72, set back in April.
“More than half of Florida gas stations now have gasoline priced below $3 a gallon,” said Mark Jenkins, spokesman for AAA. “While there could be some fluctuations in the coming weeks, AAA expects gas prices to remain low through the holidays, unless oil prices suddenly spike.”
The drop in gas prices varies across the state, with the most expensive gas found in West Palm Beach-Boca Raton, Naples, and Tallahassee, where prices range from $3.17 to $3.28 per gallon. Conversely, the least expensive gas prices are in Pensacola, Crestview-Fort Walton Beach, and Panama City, with prices as low as $2.88 per gallon.
The lower gas prices are timely, as AAA projects a near-record number of motorists on Florida roads for the holiday period. The auto club anticipates 2.77 million Floridians will travel more than 50 miles by car, a figure only 10,000 shy of the record set in 2005.
AAA also predicts busy skies, with 209,985 Floridians expected to fly during the holiday period, up from 198,100 in 2022. However, this number is still below the pre-pandemic level of 218,215 air travelers in 2019. The overall number of Floridians traveling more than 50 miles for the holiday is estimated to be 3.03 million, surpassing the figures of the last two years.
“Travel demand has been strong all year and that trend will continue with one of the busiest Thanksgivings on record,” said Debbie Haas, Vice President of Travel for AAA.