Gas prices expected to stay down for holiday travel


Drivers are beginning to see a bit of a gas price war in some Indiana towns.

Some stations saw lines as they lowered the price of a gallon of unleaded fuel to $3.17. But overall, gas prices in Indianapolis have gone up about 11 cents over the past week, averaging around $3.28, which is slightly higher than the national average.

Compared to last year, drivers are seeing a price break as they get ready to head out of town for the holidays. But how long will it last?

Dave Wood and Mike Lowis spent Monday hunting deer in southern Indiana and hunting low gas prices for the drive home.

"We drive down here, it's 100 miles. It's $50 every time we drive down here," said Wood, who lives in Franklin.

So the difference between $3.35 a gallon in Scottsburg and $2.95 a gallon further north in Seymour is good news for those hunting cheap gas.

"I think this year, gas prices are going to be about 20 cents lower than they were last year," said Purdue University professor Wally Tyner.

That's perfect holiday travel news at a time when AAA says 43 million Americans will hit the highways. So why won't we see a typical holiday price spike at the pumps?

"Production of shale oil in this country has been huge. Our dependence on imported oil is falling and our domestic production is increasing," Tyner said.

For the deer hunters and every Hoosier hoping to bag savings, that's big news coupled with all the refineries up and running.

"I'll tell you, middle-class family, three kids and when gas gets up to $3.75-3.90 a gallon, I have no extra money for fun stuff. It all goes into gas," Wood said.

But when he can save $5-10 on a fill-up, "we are okay."

"More money to do fun stuff. Go hunting," Lowis said.

Which also means more Christmas presents for those kids.