Look at how much the gasoline will drop


High gas prices are testing the reliance millions of Americans have on their cars for work. Many are changing their habits, signing up for shared rides or even ditching their cars altogether to commute by bike.

The price of gasoline recently broke the psychological barrier of $5 per gallon across the country. The average price this week was $4.95 compared to $3.06 a year ago, according to the American Automobile Association (AAA, a federation of automobile clubs).

On Wednesday, President Joe Biden called on Congress to suspend federal taxes on gasoline for three months, which would reduce the price of gasoline by 18.4 cents per gallon. He also called on states to suspend their own hydrocarbon taxes. In the meantime, however, gasoline is straining family budgets and pushing people to look for alternatives.

Wallace Reid, for example, is looking for a new way to make a living.

Reid, who drives in New York for app-based taxi services Uber and Lyft, fills up his Lexus at least three times a week. He pays about $95 each time, almost double what he paid last year. To make up for that, he drives more often, but is also looking for other jobs that don’t require him to use his car.

“It’s more hours, more stress,” he said. “New York City is not an easy city to work in and this is affecting our lives.”

In a normal summer, Orvilia Nieto could commute in her truck from the mobile home she lives in in Lytle, Texas, but that’s getting harder this year. She has a hard time filling up her 2008 Ford Expedition SUV to get to her job at a TJ Maxx distribution center in San Antonio, about 20 miles away.

Nieto and his co-workers exchange tips on where gas is cheapest. She sometimes carpools or fills her tank only halfway, which still costs her more than $50, but she says she feels lucky. She says that several of her colleagues on her shift, which ends at 2:30 am, return to her house on bicycles in the dark.

“It has been a difficult road,” he said. “If we lived in the city it would be easier, I could take the bus, but at the end of the shift at 2:30 in the morning, what bus line is available?”

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