According to calculations from the Car Care Council, even if gasoline hit $5 per gallon this summer, the costs of driving would still be substantially less than those associated with flying. The Council cites estimates from AAA that a 1,000-mile round trip for a family of four in a typical sport-utility vehicle would be $343 even with $5/gallon gas, a cost that also includes maintenance and tire wear. The same family trip via airline, according to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics, would cost more than $1,300, not including transportation to and from the airport, parking, etc.
Even though the costs of fuel have risen substantially in recent months, the same fuel costs that affect motorists also affect airlines, leading to rising ticket prices, fewer bags allowed, etc. This is a trend that bodes well for the lube industry heading into the busy summer driving season, traditionally the most profitable time of year for lube operators. Even with high gas prices, fewer people in the air could mean more on the roads — and more visits to the neighborhood fast lube to get the car ready for that long summer road trip!