As gas prices continue to climb across South Jersey, some gas station signs are beginning to display the number "3" on higher grades of fuel.

According to AAA, as of Wednesday morning, regular unleaded was averaging $2.49 across the Garden State while mid-grade was around $2.83 and premium hit $3.00.

According to Patrick DeHaan, head of petroleum analysis at GasBuddy, the price increases are happening because there's a perceived light at the end of the tunnel in regards to COVID-19 and the vaccines that are being administered. DeHaan said, "Markets are being lifted on optimism that perhaps the vaccines will help us get back to normal, and that would boost gasoline demand. This whole situation with the coronavirus pandemic is really rewriting norms."

Typically, gas prices drop during the winter, but as is the case with just about everything else lately, the end of 2020 and the beginning of 2021 are going against the grain.

Gas prices on January 13 2021 in Egg Harbor Township NJ - Photo: Chris Coleman

Jana L. Tidwell, manager of Public and Government Affairs for AAA Mid-Atlantic, recently told delawarebusinessnow.com, "If crude prices continue to stay above $50 per barrel alongside higher refinery utilization rates, drivers could see pump prices continue to climb. This situation is unusual given that low winter gas demand typically pushes prices to their lowest point of the year but the increased confidence fostered by the distribution of the Covid-19 vaccine could push demand higher at some point this year."

DeHaan says average prices will continue to trend upward through the early part of this year as long there are no major setbacks related to the pandemic.

 

With prior reporting from Townsquare Media's Dino Flammia.

Enter your number to get our free mobile app

UP NEXT: See how much gasoline cost the year you started driving