Cheaper gas prices have become the norm across Texas in recent years, but so far 2018 is bucking that trend a bit. The average price for a gallon of unleaded in Texas is now $2.27 per gallon, according to AAA. That's about 20 cents higher than a year ago. The national average is at $2.53 per gallon, about 25 cents more than the same time last year.
There are several factors at play in this year's more expensive gas prices. "This is the time of the year when we do see the prices actually increasing at the pump all across the state of Texas," says AAA Texas spokesman Doug Shupe. "A lot of folks are heading out there taking road trips for spring break, and also we are now in what is refinery maintenance season, and during that time you can see some of the supply limited in certain areas." Another factor is higher crude oil prices, which are now over $60 a barrel compared with $47 a barrel last summer.
Texas is still among the cheapest states in the country for gas prices, and our average will likely stay well below the national average. But Shupe warns that more increases at the pump are likely in the months ahead. "The big factor as we move forward during the warmer months will be the demand for gasoline, as folks fill up and head out to their spring break destination, and then of course their summer destination," he says.