FORT MILL, S.C. — Labor Day marks the unofficial end of summer, and millions of people are packing their bags and traveling this holiday weekend. For those hitting the road, gas prices have taken a dip compared to the high prices folks encountered at the pump just a few months ago.
The South Carolina Welcome Center in Fort Mill was full of road trippers.
“I just love to get out and see the country,” said Louann Hartley from West Virginia.
“It’s nice to get away from the home life, have fun with each other and get back to our roots,” said Mario Sandora.
His family is heading to Hilton Head Island, driving all the way down from Ohio.
After record-high gas prices through the summer, road warriors are happy to experience some relief at the pump.
“This is our annual trip to Hilton Head and we would travel regardless of the gas prices,” said Hatley. “But it is good that the prices are coming down.”
“A few months ago it could have been a question if we went, but with prices coming down we decided to go ahead and go,” said Larry Silvers.
The national average for gas prices is $3.80 per gallon for regular unleaded fuel. In North Carolina, it’s $3.51. The per-gallon cost of gas is $3.42 in South Carolina.
Silvers uses diesel, which really took a jump in prices back in June.
“Just today before we left I filled up and it cost me $70,” he said. “A few months ago that would have been $125 to $130.”
With the trailer attached, he is using more fuel because of the weight. But Silvers said the savings go a long way.
“It dropping allowed us to have a little extra money to do a couple of things we wouldn’t have done down there,” he said.
While the dip in prices is appreciated, the travelers WCNC Charlotte spoke to agreed: there's still a ways to go.
“I think they are still a little high and they need to come down,” said Hartley. “With COVID hopefully behind us and now that we are traveling again we need to be able to enjoy those gas prices again.”
“It’s a little bit of relief but could be better,” said Ai Thomdaham, a traveler.
Gas prices are the lowest since March 3 according to Gasbuddy, and 20% lower than the prices during the Fourth of July weekend.