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Gas prices range up to 30 cent difference across Forrest County

Published: Jan. 25, 2022 at 6:24 PM CST
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PINE BELT, Miss. (WDAM) - Filling up one town over or just one exit down the road could have you paying up to a 30 cent difference.

Don Redman, the Mississippi spokesperson for American Automobile Association says there are a lot of reasons that account for the differences at stations.

“If you’re in a high traffic, high demand area, and you’re very convenient for motorists, you can usually get away with a little bit higher gas prices, then the person who’s a little harder to get to and also though sometimes your prime real estate carries with it higher taxation, that’s higher taxes that service station owner has to pay,” Redman explains.

As of Tuesday afternoon, a regular gallon of gas ranges from $2.79 in Petal, to $3.01 at Interstate 59 and U.S. Highway 49, to $3.19 on Hardy Street.

“If you’ve got a good convenience store inside your service station and you’re drawing a lot of people in to get coffee and soft drinks and donuts and those type of things, you can sometimes hedge your losses on fuel prices by making it up for that cup of coffee. There may be a higher markup on that cup of coffee than there is on the gasoline,” explains Redman.

Depending on the station, prices can get locked in during a purchase contract. Those contracts range from a week to a few months.

“Sometimes that’s good as good protection or that gas station owner so that way they’re not subject to wild swings and gas prices. They’re very stable for about three months at a time, but that can also mean that when prices do dip, you’re still stuck at a higher price, you’re not able to respond as quickly.”

According to AAA gas prices in December and January are usually the lowest of the year, since the refining process costs more in the spring.

You can find gas prices in the area ranked by current price in our WDAM app under the ‘Gas Prices’ tab.

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