BLOOMINGTON — Colby Smith won’t let rising gas prices stop him from traveling, but he’s more selective about where to fill up.
“I plan to fill the boat up in Paducah,” he said during a pit stop at the Mobil gas station just off Interstate 74 in Downs. Using GasBuddy, an app that tracks fuel prices, he figures he’ll get the best price after crossing the border from Kentucky on his way to Florida. “We will always make our trips; we’re not going to let it slow us down. It will hurt a little more. I’m going to run the boat a little slower to get better mileage than if I was trying to run fast.
Fuel prices in the United States and McLean County have spiked in the past week, believed to be linked to the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
Russia’s military strikes have created uncertainty for the commodity as the country, which is one of the world’s largest oil suppliers, is sanctioned by other nations that depend in part on that fuel supply. .
“Russia could retaliate by using oil as a weapon,” said Patrick De Haan, GasBuddy.com‘s Head of Petroleum Analysis.
In central Illinois, regular unleaded prices were around $3.69 on Tuesday.
Smith called the link between high costs and military strikes “the price of freedom” and said that in his hometown of Stoughton, Wis., gas was about $3.29 when they left. .
“Nobody likes it, but gas prices were going up right now anyway,” he said, matching data from the US Consumer Price Index. .
Pulling his 100-gallon boat behind a pickup truck, Smith said: “I would have liked to refuel last fall, but nobody expected Russia to get a little frisky with Ukraine. But the gas will be what it will be. You still have to do what we can do.
Ben Myers, who was driving home near Columbia, Mo., when he stopped to refuel at Downs, said he was getting 45 to 50 miles per gallon in his Mini Cooper, and the rise prices “does not make a significant dent” so far.
Although fuel prices alone don’t affect his life much, he has noticed its effect on the associated costs – “the inflation that is caused by it, like the price of propane and everything associated with it”.
Will Walker said that with new parts under the hood and new tires, his pickup gets the best gas mileage possible, but he still puts about $30 in his tank every day if he goes out.
“I’m more just sitting back and enjoying the vehicle than traveling in it,” he said as he stopped at the Circle K station on the corner of Oakland Avenue and Clinton Street between runs. . “I left it out, like the last few days I didn’t even run that.”
Walker said he was able to rest him more because he was working from home.
“I’m going to have a car soon, just for fuel reasons,” he said.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Contact Kelsey Watznauer at (309) 820-3254. Follow her on Twitter: @kwatznauer.