I'm just looking for one step up from a magic 8 ball...
June 7, 2011 11:53 AM   Subscribe

Is there anyway I can reasonably accurately predict gas prices in July/August of this year? And compare gas price in certain parts of the country?

I live in Indiana. I am going to Idaho in mid-July through mid-August. I could fly or bus, but it would be difficult getting around once I am there, so it would be much easier for me to take a car. However, money is really the most major factor in this decision.

I'm trying to pin as best I can how much it would cost me to drive out there. Searching "gas price predictions" gets me people saying anything from $3-8/gallon for July/August.

Is there anyway to predict whether gas prices will be going up or down within the next few months or is it all just wild speculation? I realize there are a lot of factors in prices and it will depend on world events, but can anyone who knows more about this point me to some of the most likely scenarios for prices?

Also, I imagine this wouldn't be too hard for me to look up, but does anyone quickly have a sense of how gas prices across the great plains compare to the rest of the US? higher, lower?
posted by geegollygosh to Travel & Transportation (5 answers total)
I don't really have any guesses as to what the gas prices will be, but the geographical pattern of prices shown on this map is generally going to remain the same.

posted by UncleBoomee at 12:02 PM on June 7, 2011

The U.S. Energy Information Administration's Short-Term Energy Outlook guesstimates that gas prices will average $3.75 during this summer's driving season.
posted by jon1270 at 12:04 PM on June 7, 2011 [1 favorite]

Also, does anyone have any experience with rideshares? I'm kind of going from the middle of nowhere to the middle of nowhere (via mostly the middle of nowhere), so I'm not sure how much luck I'd have finding anyone, but what would be the best way to go about looking into that?
posted by geegollygosh at 12:06 PM on June 7, 2011

If I were you I'd concentrate on finding a rideshare from Chicagoland to Yellowstone. Perhaps look for someone who is backpacking or working for the Park Service. Much more popular origin/destination, and it gets you almost all the way there. I'm sorry but I don't know where to look for rideshares. Craigslist? Backpacking-specific forums? Websites for Park Service employees?

From personal experience driving out West (four years in Montana): for the love of God don't wait until the light comes on to get gas, because the vast stretches of emptiness are inconceivable until you've been there.
posted by desjardins at 12:36 PM on June 7, 2011

You cannot predict gas prices. If you can, you live in tower somewhere manipulating the little people.
posted by ovvl at 7:49 PM on June 7, 2011

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