Expensive gas still sells-- We stop buying other things instead
People feel gas is an essential. When it goes up other products become non-essential Video by kgun9.comvideo
Gas station operators say their profit margin on gas is just a few pennies per gallon even when prices go up. They say the profits that keep them alive are from snacks and other things they sell---the sort of things people stop buying when gas goes up.
Propane is cheap and selling well at the GasCo at Broadway and Craycroft. Drivers are using it in cars converted to use propane.
Reporter: Craig Smith
TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - There's $5-a-gallon gas in California and people dread any prospect of prices like that reaching Arizona.
Prices shot up another three-and-a-half cents Thursday to Friday, sending the national average to $3.64 a gallon.
Triple A reports Arizona's average is just two cents lower.
Gas prices have gone up steadily for the past 17 days.
When gas prices go up, your ability to pay for all those other things in your life goes down.
No matter the cost, you'll probably pull up to the pump again, and again, and again. For a lot of people gas is an essential and when it goes this high, other things become non-essentials.
Cary Jensen says, "There's things you have to cut back on. Sometimes going out to dinners and entertainment, that type of thing you basically have to look at your budget, see where you stand, you just have to prioritize and gas is unfortunately a necessary evil."
KGUN9 reporter Craig Smith asked Susan Jerrell: "When gas prices go up do you start making adjustments elsewhere in your life?"
She says, "Actually I'm in between jobs so right now I'm looking for a job closer to home because of gas prices."
At Magpie's Pizza, gas fuels the income for delivery driver Paul Tabor.
"We do get an allowance for it but now that gas is up above 3.50 or around 3.50, it takes out the whole allowance. We pay a little out of pocket for your gas, which hurts, you know."
Gas station operators often say don't be angry with them. They say they make a few cents a gallon at most and their profit per gallon does not go up when they have to pay more for the gas they re-sell to you.
They get hurt when people buy gas because they have to, then skip buying the other products, like soda and chips, that make enough profit to keep the store alive.
Gas station manager Hassan Allem says: "It has had a great effect on us because people come in and they realize they have to pay for gas first and they can't buy anything else."
But you know what is selling well? Propane----because drivers with vehicles converted to burn it are buying it instead of regular gas.