Average gas prices around the nation have soared to around $4 a gallon. Last time prices were this high was three years ago in May 2008, right during the worst of the recession. Then Americans began to drive less, buy more fuel efficient cars, and take public transportation more often. But according to new projections from AAA, 34.9 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more next week for the Memorial Day weekend.
Andrea Bernstein, director of our Transportation Nation project, says it's too early to tell, but that many of the public transportation lines that people relied on three years ago no longer exist due to state and local budget cuts.
Two Takeaway listeners who participated in our gas prices map project also weigh in. Nick Lawson is a 25-year-old hybrid owner who commutes 100 miles from Tusla, Oklahoma to Joplin, Missouri at least once a week. Chris Schluz is a tour guide and actor who commutes to Boston from Coventry, Rhode Island, and has added up to two and a half hours to his commute.