Why Are Gas Prices Different At Every Pump

June 6th, 2011
Crude oil barrels

If you are planning a trip across the country be prepared to pay a varied amount on gas from state to state, pump to pump with prices fluctuating daily. We all know we have very little choice when it comes to paying for gas. We have places to be and unfortunately it requires gas to get from one point to another. But do you ever wonder why the price of gas changes from pump to pump, even those across the street from one another?

In the United States the price of gas fluctuates from $3.46 a gallon in South Carolina to $4.18 a gallon in Alaska, according to GasBuddy.com. That is a dramatic 71 cents difference. What causes the large jump in prices from state to state? Could it be the cost of transportation to states such as Alaska? Location may be a slight factor in the cost of gas the consumer pays, but according to the same list Washington DC drivers are paying $4.06 a gallon, roughly 360 miles from South Carolina but a dramatic 60 cents per gallon difference.

The price may also fluctuate based on owners of the gas station. Often gas station owners keep the price of gasoline down to draw in the consumers to make a profit on their overpriced snacks, beer and cigarettes. The market up on the goods in their store is where the profit may be, while the profit in gasoline could be as little as cents per gallon for the gas station owners.

A huge contender in the fluctuating cost of fuel, that varies from state to state, is the amount of taxes. The federal gasoline excise tax rate is 18.4 cents per gallon, each state than has the ability to add additional tax rates per gallon. Each state determines the amount of tax per gallon, based on various determinates such as environmental practices, past year wholesale price, inspection fees or transportation system taxes. The amount of cents per gallon added by the state for tax purposes varies as much as 8 cents in Alaska to 37.7 cents in Washington.

Although, the majority influence on the cost of fuel is dependent on the cost of crude oil, refinery processing and transportation, the state-by-state cost can vary depending on a numerous amount of things. To get up to date information on the cost of fuel in your state or other automobile related information visit www.autocricket.com.


AutoCricket.com is a diverse online resource available for searching for insurance rates, a new vehicle or automotive related information. With its secure and easy to use form, you can quickly compare top-rated insurance carriers and local dealerships prices in minutes. To see how much you could be saving visit www.autocricket.com.

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