Pain at the pumps hits weekend overdrive with $2.09 expected
‘This is the highest in my life. We can’t suffer like this,’ one motorist complained.
After going up 5 cents on Saturday, gas price are set to increase another 6 cents Sunday, which would hit a record-high $2.09 a litre, according to an energy analyst tracking national prices at the pumps.
“For a lot of people I think it’s not feasible. It’s too fast, too high, too quickly,” said Dan McTeague, Canadians for Affordable Energy.
He expects gas could hover around $2.10 into the May long weekend.
“Sounds like I’ve saved myself $3 because I’m filling up today,” John Wiltshire said, as he filled his tank before the forecast midnight increase.
He said it used to cost him $35 to fill up at the beginning of the pandemic, now it costs him just over $100.
“The great news is I’m working mostly from home, so I don’t go as far as often,” Wiltshire said. “So not driving as much helps a lot.”
The spectre of rampant inflation has many people worried salaries are not keeping pace.
“I find now it’s incredible. It’s very expensive,” said Vanessa Ferrer, as she filled her tank.
“All the inflation, everything is going up. But the thing is our salaries are the same,” she said. “Nothing has changed. So that’s really upsetting because we are just coming out from recovering from the pandemic”
May tends to be the start of the summer driving season when more Canadians take to the road for vacations.
Not so – this year – for Jafar Alam.
“We are not going anywhere now. We cancelled our vacation. We had plans. But now we are not going anywhere,” he said, almost at a loss for words as he filled his SUV.
“It’s too much. Painful now,” Alam said. “This is the highest in my life. We can’t suffer like this.”
There are a number of factors seen as driving up the price of gas, including tight supply and the war in Ukraine.
Since Jan. 1, the price of a barrel of oil has gone from $75 to $110 on Friday.
“To me it just seems like price gouging,” said Valerie Alfred, who drives to Richmond Hill from Toronto daily and has no choice.
“I think it’s ridiculous. The price of everything is going up and, meanwhile, our paycheques aren’t going up,” she said. “There’s no relief in sight.”
McTeague, who also runs the gas price tracking website Gaswizard.ca, said this coming summer could be a painful one.
“We’re likely to continue to see these prices move towards a scenario on days this summer where we are at $2.25 a litre,” he said.