As Canada Day approaches, Metro Vancouverites will face the most expensive gas prices ever seen on the holiday long weekend, according to experts.
On June 5, Vancouver hit an eye-watering $2.37 per litre, surpassing the previous record of $2.336 a litre. Regional gas prices surpassed the $2-per-litre mark for the first time on March 4 and continued to climb.
Many locals plan road trips across the province and outside of B.C. over the July holiday long weekend. But they may feel compelled to stay closer to home due to sky-high costs at the pumps.
According to a recent BCAA survey, the lion's share (69%) of British Columbians still plan to go on a road trip, but 78 per cent of them plan to vacation closer to home. Once they are at their destination, 76 per cent of them plan to do less exploring by car, too.
While some Vancouverites say they'll go ahead with their summer travel plans despite the surging costs, others have already altered their itineraries.
Gas prices won't stop me from hitting the road in July, that's for sure.— bsilly (@bsilly3) June 24, 2022
I did talk to somebody who was cancelling an overseas trip due to high cost in addition to the added stress of increased variable rate interest costs.
I bet she goes on a road trip instead.
Gas Prices Vancouver: What to expect over the Canada Day long weekend
On Friday (June 24), the lowest gas prices at outlets in the Metro Vancouver region started at 212.6 cents per litre, according to GasBuddy.com. The prices are lower than they've been in previous weeks, but locals fear they'll shoot up again ahead of the long weekend.
Patrick De Haan, head of petroleum analysis with GasBuddy.com, says he's hopeful that the recent drop in gas prices will continue heading into the holiday weekend — but he isn't entirely confident they'll won't climb back up.
"I'm hopeful that the recent downturn in gas prices will continue ahead of the long weekend, but oil markets remain volatile, so there is still a chance that could change," he told Vancouver Is Awesome.
Even if prices don't climb back up, however, the petroleum analyst notes that it will be "the most expensive Canada Day on record" for local travellers.
"And while I'm hopeful we may have hit our peak for the summer, we could see a super spike in August should we see any disruptions from hurricanes," he added.
Gas prices have risen rapidly over the last year as a tight global supply has been worsened by the Russian invasion of Ukraine. They've also been pushed higher by strong demand as the economy reopens and a busy travel season gets underway.
With files from The Canadian Press