Expert: Hawaii drivers will pay more for gas this summer

Bill Green
Bill Green
Gas prices in Kalihi on Sunday
Gas prices in Kalihi on Sunday
Gas prices in Lihue, Kauai on Sunday
Gas prices in Lihue, Kauai on Sunday

By Paul Drewes - bio | email

HONOLULU (KHNL) - As summer heats up, gas prices are expected to rise as well.

The summer driving season usually means an increase in prices at the pump. And many are bracing for it to get worse in the islands.

After sky high prices last summer, Hawaii drivers haven't felt too much pain at the pump this year.

"I think we've just gotten used to it going up and down. And it was so expensive last year," said one Honolulu driver.

But experts expect that to change. As the price of gas continues to go up.

"Very definitely its going to keep on going up. Very specifically its going up at the end of the month," said Bill Green, a former gas station owner and gas consultant.

Hawaii's prices are impacted by the busy summer driving season on the mainland.

More drivers on the roads there -- mean higher prices here.

"The demand goes up and when the demand goes up, the price tag obviously goes up," added Green.

Some island motorists are used to the seasonal rise and fall of gas prices. They are already budgeting to spend more this summer.

"I choose to drive so I have to pay for it," said another Honolulu driver.

But for others, every penny counts. Especially when those pennies are tacked on to each gallon of gas.

Adding up to extra dollars spent - just on summer driving.

That added expense could cut back on other fun activities under the sun over the next few months.

"You have to get gas, so you end up having to cut back in other areas to make up for that," said a concerned driver.

Green adds prices are expected to jump by about 10 cents a gallon at the end of June. When the State starts charging a general excise tax. Other measures by the Legislature could also add more to the cost of summer driving.