Will higher gas prices ruin your vacation?

How will you cope with higher gas prices while traveling this summer?

From Beth Kassab
Posted April 20, 2006 at 10:24 AM
Does anyone have any suggestions for how to deal with higher gas prices on vacation? Will it affect the way you travel this summer? I'm a reporter for the Orlando Sentinel and I'm writing about this and would love some opinions. E-mail me or post a response here if you're willing to be interviewed.

From Robert Niles
Posted April 20, 2006 at 10:24 AM
Hi Beth, welcome to the site.

Personally, I say, bring on the high gas prices. I drive a high-mileage Toyota and would love to see more gas-guzzling drivers downsize to hybrids and smaller cars to preserve their theme park vacation money. But, then again, as folks around here likely will tell you... I am an idelistic freak. ;-)

I wouldn't think, though, that high gas prices would hurt Orlando's parks as much as it will hurt the smaller, regional parks that get most of their visitors through day trips. An Orlando vacation costs so much with the hotels and tickets that gas prices make up a relatively smaller percentage of a family's spending for the vacation.

In the short term, fifty cents extra per gallon probably won't deter a Midwestern family from taking a long-planned summer vacation to Orlando, but it might dissuade them from a spur-of-the-moment Saturday drive to Kings Island. Over a few years of increased prices, however, the situation flips, and those families might find they can't afford expensive summer vacations anymore. So they will start staying closer to home for everything. They still won't take the spur-of-the-moment trip to Kings Island, but they might instead plan their one-and-only summer vacation there.

Anyone else got a thought, or personal experience?

From Melinda Webster
Posted April 20, 2006 at 11:02 AM
My family and I took a road trip summer vacation last year. This year we are sticking close to home. We drive a Saturn Vue, an SUV, but on a car chasey so it has the same fuel capacity as an average car. We really enjoyed the road trip last summer, we went from Ft. lauderdale, Florida, to Georgia, Carolinas, Tennessee, Kentucky, Virginias, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Washington DC. After hotels, our largest expense was gas. I would rather pick one destination and fly then to have to pay like we did last summer. This year we are taking a one week vacation to Walt Disney World because it is only a 2 1/2 hour drive from home. I would rather stay in a nicer hotel with all the bells and whistles then to have to stay cheap because we have to have gas money to get back home! Plus at Disney when you stay on property, once you park your car, you don't really need to move it again! Let them use there gas!

From Gareth H
Posted April 20, 2006 at 1:36 PM
Hi Beth, I'm an Orlando local and am privalaged enough to live within walking distance of Universal Studios!
What annoys me about Gas Prices locally are the Gas Stations further toward Disney.
Around I-Drive, Universal and elsewhere in O-Town prices are fair and sometimes even below average, but by Disney, especially the 535, prices are extrememly high. The are generally 20c per gallon more expensive that the other gas stations. They can't be prosecuted for price gouging because they keep their prices high throughout the year.
Just because they sit on the entrance to Disney it doesn't, and shouldn't, give them the right to rip off motorists!

From ryan saunders
Posted April 20, 2006 at 1:51 PM

From Chris Walton
Posted April 20, 2006 at 4:27 PM
Don't get me started on the crooks like Exxon-Valdez.

From Erik Yates
Posted April 20, 2006 at 6:38 PM
I drive a gas guzzling truck, but its not neccesarily the high prices that will keep us traveling to the Orlando area parks as much as it is the crowds and the heat. However we were planning a trip to Busch Gardens Williamsburg (or should I say Europe now?) that may be hampered a bit because of the gas prices. Last year we cut down a bit on going to the theme parks. We ended up going only about three times last summer when througout the year we normally go at least twice a month. If the gas prices continue to spike the way they have we may have to cut back our trips this summer as well, after the coaster marathon at Cypress Gardens of course.

From Derek Potter
Posted April 21, 2006 at 5:22 PM
I kind of think the opposite of Robert. Unless a family is flying to Orlando, I think that people will be traveling more to their nearby parks for vacation days. Its about 19 hours from my town to Orlando. Thats a lot of gas, even for a vehicle getting about 28 miles a gallon. 3 bucks a gallon certainly will get me to drive 100 miles or so to Cedar Point rather than 1000 to any destination. Of course I say that...but I am taking a trip to Branson this summer. A good reason for that though is that the hotel cost will be zero.

From Jayson Myers
Posted April 23, 2006 at 10:07 AM
I think gas companies should charge as much as people are willing to pay. If people don't want to pay the price, they don't have to. Its a personal choice. They will charge, what people are willing to pay. If they charge more, they lose money. If they charge less, they lose money. Enough said?

From Chris Walton
Posted April 23, 2006 at 11:08 AM
How are these fat cats loosing money by charging more? It's not about what people are WILLING to pay, it's about what people HAVE TO pay. Until they find an alternative fuel source we will all have to continue to give in and fork out our hard earned cash! It is distgusting! It's extortion! It's a white-collar crime!!!

From Dustin Kern
Posted April 23, 2006 at 1:11 PM
It will affect me this year. I usually go 6 to 10 times to PKD in a summer and I live in Charlottesville (about 1 hr 30 min away). I'll probably go just as much, but I'll have to start charging my friends for gas because it's getting rediculous. I filled up just the other day, 14 gallons for $43.00. And from what I've heard, the gas prices are going to get up to over $3 in this area. I've also heard that it's the demand of gas that's driving the cost up, not because of the limited supply. It's because people were willing to pay the money when the cost of gas went up for the hurricanes that the gas companies have realized that they can get away with it. I think that it's a bunch of bs but there isn't too much we can do about it. We all have cars, and we all need to drive them which means that we have to pay for gas no matter how rediculous it gets.

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